Author: Lars Q. English
Release Date: 2018-08-04
The main purpose of this book is to introduce a broader audience to emergence by illustrating how discoveries in the physical sciences have informed the ways we think about it. In a nutshell, emergence asserts that non-reductive behavior arises at higher levels of organization and complexity. As physicist Philip Anderson put it, “more is different.” Along the text's conversational tour through the terrain of quantum physics, phase transitions, nonlinear and statistical physics, networks and complexity, the author highlights the various philosophical nuances that arise in encounters with emergence. The final part of the book zooms out to reflect on some larger lessons that emergence affords us. One of those larger lessons is the realization that the great diversity of theories and models, and the great variety of independent explanatory frameworks, will always be with us in the sciences and beyond. There is no “Theory of Everything” just around the corner waiting to be discovered. One of the main benefits of this book is that it will make a number of exciting scientific concepts that are not normally covered at this level accessible to a broader audience. The overall presentation, including the use of examples, analogies, metaphors, and biographical interludes, is geared for the educated non-specialist.
Der beliebte Grundkurs Theoretische Physik deckt in sieben Bänden alle für das Diplom maßgeblichen Gebiete ab. Jeder Band vermittelt gut durchdacht das im jeweiligen Semester nötige theoretische-physikalische Rüstzeug. Zahlreiche Übungsaufgaben mit ausführlichen Lösungen dienen der Vertiefung des Stoffes.
Leben wir in der Zeit oder lebt die Zeit vielleicht nur in uns? Alle theoretischen Physiker von Weltrang, die den großen und kleinen Kräften des Universums nachspüren, beschäftigen sich immer wieder mit der entscheidenden Frage, was Zeit ist. Wenn ihre großen Modelle die Zeit zur Erklärung des Elementaren nicht mehr brauchen, wie kommt es dann, dass sie für unser Leben so wichtig ist? Geht es wirklich ohne sie? Carlo Rovelli gibt in diesem Buch überraschende Antworten. Er nimmt uns mit auf eine Reise durch unsere Vorstellungen der von der Zeit und spürt ihren Regeln und Rätseln nach. Ein großes, packend geschriebenes Lese-Abenteuer, ein würdiger Nachfolger des Welt-Bestsellers "Sieben kurze Lektionen über Physik".
Author: A. R. P. Rau
Publisher: OUP Oxford
Release Date: 2014-09-25
The beauty of physics lies in its coherence in terms of a few fundamental concepts and principles. Even physicists have occasion to marvel at the overarching reach of basic principles and their ability to account for features stretching from the microscopic sub-atomic world to the cosmological expanses of the Universe. While mathematics is its natural language, physics is mostly about patterns, connections, and relations between objects and phenomena, and it is this aspect that is emphasized in this book. Since science tries to connect phenomena that at first sight appear widely different, while boiling them down to a small set of essential principles and laws, metaphor and analogy pervade our subject. Consider the pendulum, its swing from one extreme to the other often invoked in social or economic contexts. In molecular vibrations, such as in the CO2 molecule, the quantum motions of electrons and nuclei are metaphorically the pendulums. In electromagnetic radiation, including the visible light we observe, there are not even any concrete material particles, only electric and magnetic fields executing simple harmonic motion. But, to a physicist, they are all "just a pendulum". The selection of topics reflects the author's own four-decade career in research physics and his resultant perspective on the subject. While aimed primarily at physicists, including junior students, this book also addresses other readers who are willing to think with symbols and simple algebra in understanding the physical world around us. Each chapter, on themes such as dimensions, transformations, symmetries, or maps, begins with simple examples accessible to all while connecting them later to more sophisticated realizations in more advanced topics of physics.
Author: Michael Silberstein
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2018-02-02
Theoretical physics and foundations of physics have not made much progress in the last few decades. Whether we are talking about unifying general relativity and quantum field theory (quantum gravity), explaining so-called dark energy and dark matter (cosmology), or the interpretation and implications of quantum mechanics and relativity, there is no consensus in sight. In addition, both enterprises are deeply puzzled about various facets of time including above all, time as experienced. The authors argue that, across the board, this impasse is the result of the "dynamical universe paradigm," the idea that reality is fundamentally made up of physical entities that evolve in time from some initial state according to dynamical laws. Thus, in the dynamical universe, the initial conditions plus the dynamical laws explain everything else going exclusively forward in time. In cosmology, for example, the initial conditions reside in the Big Bang and the dynamical law is supplied by general relativity. Accordingly, the present state of the universe is explained exclusively by its past. This book offers a completely new paradigm (called Relational Blockworld), whereby the past, present and future co-determine each other via "adynamical global constraints," such as the least action principle. Accordingly, the future is just as important for explaining the present as is the past. Most of the book is devoted to showing how Relational Blockworld resolves many of the current conundrums of both theoretical physics and foundations of physics, including the mystery of time as experienced and how that experience relates to the block universe.
Author: W.W. Cobern
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2012-12-06
Global science education is a reality at the end of the 20th century - albeit an uneven reality - because of tremendous technological and economic pressures. Unfortunately, this reality is rarely examined in the light of what interests the everyday lives of ordinary people rather than the lives of political and economic elites. The purpose of this book is to offer insightful and thought-provoking commentary on both realities. The tacit question throughout the book is `Whose interests are being served by current science education practices and policies?' The various chapters offer critical analysis from the perspectives of culture, economics, epistemology, equity, gender, language, and religion in an effort to promote a reflective science education that takes place within, rather than taking over, the important cultural lives of people. The target audience for the book includes graduate students in education, science education and education policy professors, policy and government officials involved with education.
Author: Raymond A. Eve
Release Date: 1997-06-12
Genre: Social Science
The authors of this volume provide a timely collection of articles which examine the emerging myths and theories surrounding the study of chaos and complexity. In the second part methodological matters are considered. Finally, conceptual models and applications are presented. This perceptive and thorough volume will be useful to sociologists and others interested in chaos and complexity theory.
Author: Kostas Gavroglu
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2007-05-05
This volume, compiled in honor of Sam Schweber, an outstanding historian of science, physicist and exceptional human being, offers a comprehensive survey of the present state of the history of science. It collects essays written by leading representatives in the field. The essays examine the state of the history of science today and issues related to its future.
Das Leben des Ausnahmephysikers aus einem völlig neuen Blickwinkel erzählt: Als Jane Wilde Stephen Hawking auf einer Neujahrsparty 1963 kennenlernt, ist der extravagante, blasierte Student aus Oxford bereits schwerkrank. Die beiden heiraten, obwohl Stephens Lebenserwartung damals nicht einmal zwei Jahre beträgt. Es folgen 25 gemeinsame Jahre, in denen Jane ein Schattendasein führt, zugleich aber ihren Mann 24 Stunden am Tag pflegt, drei Kinder mit ihm bekommt, und dazwischen selbst den Doktortitel erwirbt. Jane Hawking erzählt vom verzweifelten Kampf um Selbstbehauptung, von der Liebe zu einem Mann, in dessen verfallenem Körper der vielleicht größte Geist unserer Zeit steckt, vom bitteren Showdown ihrer Ehe – und zuletzt von Versöhnung und der Macht der Freundschaft.
Emergent quantum mechanics explores the possibility of an ontology for quantum mechanics. The resurgence of interest in "deeper-level" theories for quantum phenomena challenges the standard, textbook interpretation. The book presents expert views that critically evaluate the significance—for 21st century physics—of ontological quantum mechanics, an approach that David Bohm helped pioneer. The possibility of a deterministic quantum theory was first introduced with the original de Broglie-Bohm theory, which has also been developed as Bohmian mechanics. The wide range of perspectives that were contributed to this book on the occasion of David Bohm’s centennial celebration provide ample evidence for the physical consistency of ontological quantum mechanics. The book addresses deeper-level questions such as the following: Is reality intrinsically random or fundamentally interconnected? Is the universe local or nonlocal? Might a radically new conception of reality include a form of quantum causality or quantum ontology? What is the role of the experimenter agent? As the book demonstrates, the advancement of ‘quantum ontology’—as a scientific concept—marks a clear break with classical reality. The search for quantum reality entails unconventional causal structures and non-classical ontology, which can be fully consistent with the known record of quantum observations in the laboratory.
English summary: Lorenz B. Puntel presents a systematic philosophy that is understood as a theory of the most universal structures of the universe of discourse. It is based on two fundamental theses: firstly that all statements and all theories emerge only within theoretical frameworks, and secondly that the task of systematic philosophy is to articulate the dimension of structurality and then to put it into relation to a dimension of actuality, of being. The author explains the concept of the theoretical framework by concentrating on logic and mathematics, the philosophy of science, and the fundamental disciplines of semantics (including the theory of truth) and ontology. He does a thorough analysis of three types of fundamental structures: formal (logical and mathematical), semantic and ontological structures. German description: Lorenz B. Puntel bietet eine struktural-systematische Philosophie im Grundriss. Er halt an der grossen Idee der Philosophie als einer Konzeption des Ganzen der Wirklichkeit fest, prazisiert aber diese Idee, indem er die Philosophie als Theorie der allgemeinsten Strukturen des universe of discourse definiert. Zwei Grundgedanken sind fur die Entwicklung der so verstandenen Philosophie bestimmend: Der Gedanke, dass alle Aussagen bzw. alle einzelnen Theorien nur in einem Theorierahmen moglich sind, und der Gedanke, dass es darauf ankommt, die Dimension der Strukturalitat herauszuarbeiten und sie in Beziehung zur Dimension des Wirklichen (des Seins) zu setzen. Der Autor erlautert ausfuhrlich den auf R. Carnap zuruckgehende Begriff des Theorierahmens unter Beachtung der formalen Wissenschaften (Logik und Mathematik), der Wissenschaftstheorie, der Grunddisziplinen der Semantik (speziell der Wahrheitstheorie) und der Ontologie. Es werden drei Arten von fundamentalen Strukturen analysiert: die formalen (logischen und mathematischen), die semantischen und die ontologischen Strukturen. Eines der Ergebnisse dieser Untersuchungen ist eine neue semantische und ontologische Theorie.
Author: G. Vijver
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2013-04-17
The three well known revolutions of the past centuries - the Copernican, the Darwinian and the Freudian - each in their own way had a deflating and mechanizing effect on the position of humans in nature. They opened up a richness of disillusion: earth acquired a more modest place in the universe, the human body and mind became products of a long material evolutionary history, and human reason, instead of being the central, immaterial, locus of understanding, was admitted into the theater of discourse only as a materialized and frequently out-of-control actor. Is there something objectionable to this picture? Formulated as such, probably not. Why should we resist the idea that we are in certain ways, and to some degree, physically, biologically or psychically determined? Why refuse to acknowledge the fact that we are materially situated in an ever evolving world? Why deny that the ways of inscription (traces of past events and processes) are co-determinative of further "evolutionary pathways"? Why minimize the idea that each intervention, of each natural being, is temporally and materially situated, and has, as such, the inevitable consequence of changing the world? The point is, however, that there are many, more or less radically different, ways to consider the "mechanization" of man and nature. There are, in particular, many ways to get the message of "material and evolutionary determination", as well as many levels at which this determination can be thought of as relevant or irrelevant.
Scientists have always attempted to explain the world in terms of a few unifying principles. In the fifth century B.C. Democritus boldly claimed that reality is simply a collection of indivisible and eternal parts or atoms. Over the centuries his doctrine has remained a landmark, and much progress in physics is due to its distinction between subjective perception and objective reality. This book discusses theory reduction in physics, which states that the whole is nothing more than the sum of its parts: the properties of things are directly determined by their constituent parts. Reductionism deals with the relation between different theories that address different levels of reality, and uses extrapolations to apply that relation in different sciences. Reality shows a complex structure of connections, and the dream of a unified interpretation of all phenomena in several simple laws continues to attract anyone with genuine philosophical and scientific interests. If the most radical reductionist point of view is correct, the relationship between disciplines is strictly inclusive: chemistry becomes physics, biology becomes chemistry, and so on. Eventually, only one science, indeed just a single theory, would survive, with all others merging in the Theory of Everything. Is the current coexistence of different sciences a mere historical venture which will end when the Theory of Everything has been established? Can there be a unified description of nature? Rather than an analysis of full reductionism, this book focuses on aspects of theory reduction in physics and stimulates reflection on related questions: is there any evidence of actual reduction? Are the examples used in the philosophy of science too simplistic? What has been endangered by the search for (the) ultimate truth? Has the dream of reductionist reason created any monsters? Is big science one such monster? What is the point of embedding science Y within science X, if predictions cannot be made on that basis?
Author: Yuval Noah Harari
Release Date: 2013-09-02
Krone der Schöpfung? Vor 100 000 Jahren war der Homo sapiens noch ein unbedeutendes Tier, das unauffällig in einem abgelegenen Winkel des afrikanischen Kontinents lebte. Unsere Vorfahren teilten sich den Planeten mit mindestens fünf weiteren menschlichen Spezies, und die Rolle, die sie im Ökosystem spielten, war nicht größer als die von Gorillas, Libellen oder Quallen. Vor 70 000 Jahren dann vollzog sich ein mysteriöser und rascher Wandel mit dem Homo sapiens, und es war vor allem die Beschaffenheit seines Gehirns, die ihn zum Herren des Planeten und zum Schrecken des Ökosystems werden ließ. Bis heute hat sich diese Vorherrschaft stetig zugespitzt: Der Mensch hat die Fähigkeit zu schöpferischem und zu zerstörerischem Handeln wie kein anderes Lebewesen. Anschaulich, unterhaltsam und stellenweise hochkomisch zeichnet Yuval Harari die Geschichte des Menschen nach und zeigt alle großen, aber auch alle ambivalenten Momente unserer Menschwerdung.