The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe
  • The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe
  • The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe
  • The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe
ISBN: 0679776311
EAN13: 9780679776314
Language: English
Release Date: Jan 9, 2007
Pages: 1136
Dimensions: 2.1" H x 9.2" L x 6.1" W
Weight: 2.45 lbs.
Format: Paperback
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The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe

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Book Overview

Nobel Prize-winner Roger Penrose, one of the most accomplished scientists of our time, presents the only comprehensive--and comprehensible--account of the physics of the universe.

A guide to physics' big picture, and to the thoughts of one of the world's most original thinkers.--The New York Times

From the very first attempts by the Greeks to grapple with the complexities of our known world to the latest application of infinity in physics, The Road to Reality carefully explores the movement of the smallest atomic particles and reaches into the vastness of intergalactic space.

Here, Penrose examines the mathematical foundations of the physical universe, exposing the underlying beauty of physics and giving us one the most important works in modern science writing.

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Book Reviews (10)

4
  |   10  reviews
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5
   the real deal
Excellent primer for quantum mechanicanics and modern physics. Penrose is writing at a level for the reader who is willing to do some work in order to understand a very complicated topic. A much more educational experience for the general reader than the usual books on quantum mechanics.
 
5
   Authentic thinking
Too many physics books are dry, dull, and full of academic rigor, like the classical series, or simply overviews of some particular subjects that gloss over necessary math for a true understanding. I consider neither fun to read, even though I have a PhD in physics. This is one of those books that truly gives you an inside look at how an authentic mind works, how it perceives reality in terms of math, and how math and reality are constructed to be the one and the same, the physicists'view of the, and it really touches on a deep philosophical level. This is a book for anyone who truly loves physics, neither as a real-world training tool nor as a pseudopop science kind of trash, but a piece of mechanicalacademic work that is full of life.
 
1
   Not as advertised
I learned calculus for this book, but 90% of the math and the book is all math - is much more advanced than calculus. I believe that the book would be very valuable to someone with an advanced degree in mathematics, recent enough to still retain the details, and has no previous background in physics, but is interested in it. Penrose can or does not have the ability to teach '' mathematics, either he calls some functions honest or a function doesn 't seem uncomfortable, etc. Shop-talk for people who know this stuff already inside out. But if you're an advanced mathematician, this is the text for introductory physics.
 
5
   Discussion of Entropy plus much more
The entropy of the universe part was itself worth the time and money spent just fascinating. The rest of the book is very long and mathematics is often above my level and only small nuggets of insight make it worthwhile.
 
3
   A flowery mess
This apparently bizarre mess of a book manages to be both pedantic and self-indulgent. The author seems more interested in imparting his breath of knowledge to the reader than in impressing understanding. The book oscillates between apparent simplicity and nuanced complexities with the speed of a neutrino. Penrose uses exacrane and idiosyncratic notations in some cases to learn home points that are unintelligible unless the reader takes a long detour to drive them. This book requires high maths literacy and a willingness to tackle the hard work of figuring out what the author is talking about. This work can pay in a new insight and a greater understanding. It may also lead to frustration, so beware. I am glad the author wrote this difficult book, but would love to throw a pie in his face to teach him to teach his readers first, and then humiliate them. Of course, I would never do this because he appears to be a truly lovable person on TV at least.
 
3
   Tell Us the truth
I wanted to read this book really badly ''. I had already read another one of his books'titles, Cycles of Time An Extraordinary New View of the Universe, and enjoyed it. What disappoints me in this book is that Roger Penrose gives us a history of mathematics, where it comes from, and how you can understand reality with mathematics, but not into the history of the Egyptians and the Babylonians. He would like us to believe that mathematics was created by Greek civilization, but we know that this is not true. The is no way to build a pyramid on the scale Egpytian built without math. We also know that Thales, Euclid and Pythagoras studied in Egypt.
 
1
   A Perfectly Horrid Book
Roger Penrose may be a brilliant theorist, but he can hardly write. The book is even uncipherable to those bearing under their belt at least a year of calculus. Penrose is insistent that he must contain mathematical equations to explain how the universe works. He meanders around and inside advanced mathematics without explaining the math and without ever getting to the explanation of how the universe came to be and how it works.
 
5
   The Bible of scientific reality
This book is an all-time favorite, Dr. Penrose is a giant of physics comprehension. Tons of math, individual equations, scope and depth galore, all packaged for the layman who likes to go 5-10 times over individual paragraphs because the truth is just that complex. Penrose is an outside box geometer, more comprehensive than any equivalent volume. As he suggests in the intro : I suggest that you read the mathematics just before the words. For five years, I have been revisiting my copy with endless pleasure.
 
5
   The Times
When you read a newspaper, you will understand 100% pretty easily, but of that 95% will be fluff or filler. It is a rare exception when a newspaper article has more than one or two nuggets of actual value, and even this value will probably expire easily within a few weeks. That is, contrary to a book like The Road to Reality. There are very few people I think could understand this book in its entirety, and may even be generous to a reader on my level 50%. But of those pieces that make it through the haze is the density of value on a scale so far removed from that of a newspaper, that even one of Penrose's chapters could overwhelm a year of daily study of the times. Not only is the information content extraordinarily high, but what is contained possibly more timeless and universal than mathematics and the laws of the universe itself?
 
4
   Very Good
It is very comprehensive. When your math is rusty, forget it. You won 't be able to put it down otherwise.
 
1