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Three Roads to Quantum Gravity (Anglais) Broché – 13 juin 2002

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Descriptions du produit

Book by Smolin Lee

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 256 pages
  • Editeur : Basic Books; Édition : Reprint (13 juin 2002)
  • Collection : Science Masters
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0465078362
  • ISBN-13: 978-0465078363
  • Dimensions du produit: 14 x 1,5 x 24 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.5 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 59.793 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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We humans are the species that makes things. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par David sur 31 mars 2004
Format: Broché
Passionnant livre en anglais, facile d'accés, qui laisse imaginer la façon dont la théorie des cordes et la gravité quantique pourraient fusionner pour former une théorie globale, unifiant relativité et mécanique quantique, formulée en terme de géométrie discrète de l'espace-temps aux échelles de Planck.
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile  Par Ziad AJALTOUNI sur 5 août 2013
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Très bon livre sur les approches modernes de la quantification de la Relativité Générale. Ouvrage écrit avec un esprit critique et fin.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 62 commentaires
127 internautes sur 132 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Readers get at least a vague picture of a difficult problem 27 juillet 2001
Par Tatsuo Tabata - Publié sur
Format: Relié
The completion of a quantum theory of gravity (quantum gravity for short) is one of the most challenging problems in science in the twenty-first century. This theory aims at unifying Einstein's theory of general relativity for large-scale phenomena with the quantum theory for the micro-world, to get understanding of everything from space and time to matter and the universe. Lee Smolin, Professor of Physics at Pennsylvania State University, tells the story of recent and future research pursuing this theory for the intelligent layperson.
The author writes earlier chapters very understandably. The reader who knew nothing about the quantum gravity learns easily the following interesting things: There are three approaches to quantum gravity, i.e., the route from quantum theory (string theory), the road from the theory of general relativity (loop quantum gravity), and the path from fundamental principles. To do cosmology the classical logic demanding that every statement be either true or false is inadequate. A theory of quantum gravity has to answer about the nature of the information tapped in a quantum black hole. The search for the meaning of the temperature and entropy of a black hole is now leading to the discovery of the atomic structure of space and time. Etc.
In the middle of the book the author states that the style of these chapters will be more narrative than others because he can describe from personal experience some of the episodes in the development of loop quantum gravity. Lessons told are, for example, as follows: Science progresses quickly when people with different backgrounds and educations join forces. Einstein's example teach us that trying to invent new laws of physics requires not only intelligence and hard work but also insight, stubbornness, patience and character. Of course, these are also quite understandable.
In the last three chapters some or most of readers might find it difficult to follow the author's explanation. After reading the whole book, however, all the readers would feel that they have gotten at least a vague picture about the difficult problem of proceeding to quantum gravity. This is an exciting book for those who want to catch a glimpse of theoretical physics at its forefront.
There are some typos. Among them the followings are especially unfortunate, because the meanings of one of the laws of thermodynamics and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle are completely reversed to lead laypersons astray: In chapter 7, "The second law of thermodynamics requires only that the total entropy of the world never increase" should read "The second law . . . never decreases." In two inequalities in chapter 11, the symbol of "less than" should be that of "greater than or equal to."
60 internautes sur 62 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Nice book on Quantum Gravity 19 juillet 2001
Par K. Graham - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
I approached this book with great enthusiasm, hoping for a pedestrian treatment of loop quantum gravity (LQG). To be fair, most of this book is pretty good. Smolin writes pretty well, especially about relational quantum mechanics and how it relates to quantum gravity and cosmology. In addition, Smolin clearly points out why many relativists have issue with string/m-theory's lack of background independence.

I was, however, mildly disappointed in his discussion of the physical meaning of spin networks and loops and in his exposition of a possible synthesis of M-theory and LQG. Perhaps I overlooked it, but this book doesn't directly point out how you go from spin networks and spin foams to spacetime. But, you can figure it out... if you know enough general relativity and quantum field theory.

The appendix of this book is excellent! It provides many useful references to the literature.

All things considered though, this book is worth a read, especially to learn about the connection between spacetime, gravity, and quantum mechanics.

I originally rated this three stars. I recently reread the book and now want to give it four stars.
31 internautes sur 31 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Very good, but no audience is ideally served 5 juin 2006
Par Irfan A. Alvi - Publié sur
Format: Broché
As my title states, this book is very good, but with the significant caveat that no particular audience is ideally served by it.

If you are truly a layman, you may initially be pleased to find that the book has essentially no formal mathematics and the technical vocabulary isn't too extensive. Smolin himself says that the book is aimed at the "intelligent layman" and that "the reader who has not read anything previously on these subjects will be able to follow this book." However, the book tries to convey a meaningful understanding of some rather advanced (some would say speculative) physics in the areas of thermodynamics of black holes, loop quantum gravity, and string theory, and it does this in a manner which is philosophically sophisticated, with many fundamental questions being raised about the nature of space, time, and scientific theories in general. Moreover, despite Smolin's claim to the contrary, one can't adequately appreciate what the book is about without a basic (at least popular-level) background in quantum mechanics and relativity, which the book doesn't provide.

As a result, I anticipate that the true layman would find this book to be difficult going. Instead, a more realistic audience would be the "advanced layman" who has some prior familiarity with this subject matter, particularly the basics of quantum theory, relativity, the standard model, and cosmology. This audience (which includes me) would probably find the book to be quite stimulating and interesting, and would get a sense of what this advanced physics is all about. However, because the presentation lacks the mathematics and technical details needed for anything resembling a rigorous understanding, they will probably also be left wishing the book had 50 more pages of "meat" and some key equations (explained carefully, but without derivations). For the same reason, the advanced reader would probably also wish the book was at least one notch more advanced, but even these readers may still find the book to be a fun and interesting overview of the subject.

Finally, I'd like to suggest that potential readers should be wary of reviewers who strongly favor the book because they agree with it's thesis, or condemn the book because they disagree. We are dealing with subject matter about which there is no consensus even among eminent physicists, so these reviews are not the place for readers to throw in their two cents about which theories are right and wrong. Instead, this sort of book should be judged mainly on criteria such as whether good questions are asked, whether the context for these questions is well formed, whether the alternative answers proposed for these questions are explained clearly and fairly, and whether the text is well-written. On all of these counts, my judgement is that Smolin does a good job.
13 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
An Introduction to Loop Quantum Gravity 4 mai 2004
Par Rama Rao - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Since the postulation of theory of relativity (theory of cosmos, which describes the structure of space and time), and quantum mechanics (laws of microcosm, which describes atomic structure, nuclear forces, and nature of basic component of matter); physicists until now have struggled to explain gravity (which is a manifestation of spacetime fabric in presence of matter) in terms of quantum mechanics (quantum gravity). In this book the author attempts to explain three different approaches to quantum gravity; Loop Quantum Gravity (LQG), Superstring - M theory (S. -M), and Blackhole Thermodynamics (BT). While each takes a different starting point, they all agree when viewed on Planck scale, and they also view space and time are not continuous, and space is composed of discrete units. LQG gives us a detailed picture of these units in terms of spin networks, where as S.-M theory proposes continuous space in terms of a continuous string (with compactified extra dimensions) made of string bits, which is governed by uncertainty principle. BT theory states that amount information in any given space is finite and is proportional to the area of the boundary of the region in Planck units. The author is a pioneer in the field of LQG and provides the reader with a good introduction of the theory in a non-mathematical form and then compares with S.-M and BT theories. The book is described in three parts; the first part is a general introduction, which describes historical development of three theories, the second part introduces LQG and then compares with S.-M and BT theories, and the final part attempts to unify the three approaches into a single theory using Holographic Principle.
The author gives us several interesting accounts of physicists working in these fields are in a climate of mutual ignorance and complacency with the belief that their theory is correct and others are wrong. There are instances when one group can't solve certain problems, and they seek the help from the other camp. The author also briefly explains other theories such as Twister theory, and Non-Commutative Geometry. This is one of the few books I have read which describes LQG in some detail, although there are several books in literature, which describes S.-M theory. The author is very honest in comparing the three approaches to offer the best explanation for quantum gravity. Anyone who wants to understand LQG must have this book.
38 internautes sur 45 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Light Reading On A Heavy Subject 29 juin 2001
Par Bruce Crocker - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Three Roads To Quantum Gravity by Lee Smolin isn't the easiest highway to travel in the universe, but will be rewarding to anyone taking the journey. Smolin, currently a professor at Penn State [my alma mater :)], writes simply, but smartly about the biggest piece of unfinished physics business leftover from the 20th Century, the resolution of the conflicts between our theory of the large, general relativity, and our theory of the small, quantum mechanics. Smolin assumes an interested and educated reader and simplifies our trip by not doing long introductions to relativity and quantum mechanics. After introducing the idea of a theory of quantum gravity, Smolin spends the rest of the book laying out the 'three roads' of the title, spending slightly more time on loop quantum gravity, the 'road' he's spent the most time on. Although not as elegantly written or as detailed as Brian Greene's The Elegant Universe, Three Roads To Quantum Gravity compliments that earlier book by coming at 'theory of everything' territory from a different direction. Since there is no AAA for physics, layfolks like myself should be glad that we have guides like Lee Smolin to direct us through the hidden regions of our universe.
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