An examination of Infinity — in history and science — with excursions into literature, philosophy and religion, written by one of the most successful writers of popular science.
Infinity is surely the strangest idea that humans have ever thought. Where did it come from and what is it telling us about our Universe? Can there actually be infinities? Or is infinity just a label for something that is never reached, no matter how long you go on counting? Can you do an infinite number of things in a finite amount of time? Is the universe infinite?
But infinity is also the place where things happen that don’t. All manner of strange paradoxes and fantasies characterize an infinite universe. So what is it like to live in a Universe where nothing is original, where you can live forever, where anything that can be done, is done, over and over again?
These are some of the deep questions that the idea of the Infinite pushes us to ask. Throughout history, the Infinite has been a dangerous idea. Many have lost their lives, their careers, or their freedom for talking about it. The Infinite Book will take you on a tour of these dangerous questions and the strange answers that scientists, mathematicians, philosophers, and theologians have come up with to deal with its threats to our sanity.
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John Barrow is Research Professor of Mathematical Sciences in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge. He is the author of several bestselling books including: Theories of Everything, Impossibility, and The Book of Nothing.Review:
“Highly engaging. . . . [Barrow] brings his charm and wit to bear. . . . [He] introduces novel twists and turns, and presents [the] material in refreshing ways.”–Nature
"Eloquent. . . . Succinct. . . . Barrow [has the] remarkable ability to provide clear, concise, engaging and distinctly finite explanations–even when describing some fairly advanced concepts. . . . [An] engaging read."–San Francisco Chronicle
"Clever and insightful. . . . [A] lively history of infinity through the ages."–Entertainment Weekly
“Entertaining. . . . Remarkably lucid and not the least mind-boggling. . . . His clear, engaging style manages to illuminate abstruse matters.... This is a useful guide to an endlessly fascinating subject.” –American Scientist
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Descrizione libro Jonathan Cape, 2005. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria M0224069179