Q Is for Quantum : An Encyclopedia of Particle Physics

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9780684855783: Q Is for Quantum : An Encyclopedia of Particle Physics

John Gribbin has collected the answer to everything you need to know about the quantum world - the place where most of the greatest scientific advances of the twentieth century have been made. This reference begins with a thorough introduction setting out the current state of knowledge in particle physics. Gribbin blends articles on the structure of particles and their interactions, accounts of the theoretical breakthroughs in quantum mechanics and their practical applications, and entertaining biographies of the scientists who have blazed the trail of discovery. In a special section, "Timelines, " key dates in our quest to understand the quantum world are mapped out alongside landmarks in world history and the history of science. Q is for Quantum is an essential companion for anyone interested in particle physics.

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Review:

What's the deal with 20th-century physics? How and why did it get so complicated, so abstract, that even Einstein had trouble believing in it? Most of us need someone to come along and explain it all in words that make sense; fortunately, astrophysicist and science writer extraordinaire John Gribbin has seized that role with a flair and passion unequalled. He has outdone himself with Q Is for Quantum: An Encyclopedia of Particle Physics, 545 pages of definitions, histories, and biographical sketches that illuminate the ever-expanding search for the most basic forces of nature in a style that is at once witty, clear, engaging, and scientifically rigorous. No serious student of modern science (no dilettante, either) should be without it when reading about the greatest intellectual work of our time.

Whether he's explaining the intricacies of quantum chromodynamics or exploring the wild life and ideas of Richard Feynman, Gribbin uses just the right words, illustrations, and even (gasp!) equations to perfectly express the essentials to his interested, intelligent readers. Of special interest are the extensive timelines that close the volume and anchor particular scientists and their achievements within the context of world history; these are both helpful in grasping the development of physics and excellent aids to browsing. So, whether you want to expand your knowledge of modern science or just need a little help on Monday's midterm, Q Is for Quantum is the right book for you. --Rob Lightner

From the Back Cover:

Here in one volume, the award-winning science writer and physicist John Gribbin has provided everything you need to know about the quantum world -- the place where most of the greatest scientific advances of the twentieth century have been made.

This exceptional A to Z reference begins with a thorough introduction setting out the current state of knowledge in particle physics. Throughout, Gribbin includes articles on the structure of particles and their interactions, accounts of the theoretical breakthroughs in quantum mechanics and their practical applications, and entertaining biographies of the scientists who have blazed the trail of discovery. In a special section, "Timelines, " key dates in our quest to understand the quantum world are mapped out alongside landmarks in world history and the history of science.

An encyclopedia of the fundamental science of the future, Q is for Quantum is an essential companion for anyone interested in particle physics.

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Gribbin, John
Editorial: Free Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 068485578X ISBN 13: 9780684855783
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Gribbin, John
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John Gribbin
Editorial: Free Press (1999)
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John Gribbin
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