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Time : a traveler's guide

by Pickover, Clifford A.

Format: Print Book 1998
Availability: Available at 2 Libraries 2 of 2 copies
Available (2)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Main Library Second Floor - Non-fiction QC173.59.S65 P53 1998
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Second Floor - Non-fiction
Call Number  QC173.59.S65 P53 1998
Penn Hills Library Non-Fiction 530.11 PIC
Location  Penn Hills Library
Collection  Non-Fiction
Call Number  530.11 PIC
"Bucky Fuller thought big," Wired magazine recently noted, "Arthur C. Clarke thinks big, but Cliff Pickover outdoes them both." And now, in his newest book, Cliff Pickover outdoes even himself, probing a mystery that has baffled mystics, philosophers, and scientists throughout history--What is the nature of time?
In Time: A Traveler's Guide, Pickover takes readers to the forefront of science as he illuminates the most mysterious phenomenon in the universe--time itself. Is time travel possible? Is time real? Does it flow in one direction only? Does it have a beginning and an end? What is eternity? These are questions that Pickover tackles in this stimulating blend of Chopin, philosophy, Einstein, and modern physics, spiced with diverting side-trips to such topics as the history of clocks, the nature of free will, and the reason gold glitters. Pickover includes numerous diagrams so readers have no trouble following along, computer code that lets us write simulations for various aspects of time travel, and an on-going science fiction tale featuring quirky characters who yearn to travel back in time to hear Chopin play in person. By the time we finish this book, we understand such seemingly arcane concepts as space-time diagrams, light cones, cosmic moment lines, transcendent infinite speeds, Lorentz transformations, superluminal and ultraluminal motions, ninkowskian space-times, Godel universes, closed timelike curves, and Tipler cylinders.
And most important, we will understand that time travel need not be confined to myth, science fiction, Hollywood fantasies, or scientific speculation. Time travel, we will realize, is possible.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "H. G. Wells, call your office! Pickover has stolen your time machine. Well, not quite. But he does move the concept of time travel out of wild fantasy into scientific possibility. In an entertaining dialogue between imaginary characters from the twenty-first century, he draws out the imaginative and scientific implications of a technology that would allow us to tunnel back into the past or catapult into the future. Neither the theoretical prohibition against faster-than-light motion nor the logical contradiction of rewriting our own history daunts this bold explorer. And lest readers dismiss his speculations too lightly, Pickover appends a "Science behind the Science Fiction" section to every chapter, marshaling the latest research on relevant topics. The temporal strangeness of wormholes, quantum connections, and cosmic strings will unsettle the skeptic and prompt new wonderings about what it would be like to visit--or be visited by--our descendants in future millennia. The intellectual daring of this book guarantees it a sizable readership now and--who knows?--perhaps in the distant past and future as well. (Reviewed April 15, 1998)0195120426Bryce Christensen"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "If you thought time travel was just for science fiction nuts, think again. As Pickover (Black Holes: A Traveler's Guide) demonstrates, time travel is not the stuff of Asimovian dreams, it being theoretically possible. Of course, how to travel through time is no simple matter, nor is explaining it, but Pickover rises to the challenge in many ways. Witty and profound quotations‘from Einstein to Woody Allen‘about time and our relationship to it are liberally scattered throughout. Pickover's masterstroke, however, is to divide each chapter into two sections. The first is a second-person narration recording the impromptu discussions about time-travel of a Chopin-obsessed curator from a Museum of Music with his assistant, "a Zetamorph, a member of a race of philosophers from a subterranean air pocket on Ganymede, a moon of Jupiter" and with a female earthling student. The second section, dutifully labeled "The Science behind the Science Fiction," is a sober essayistic review of topics addressed in the narrative half. Despite the popular tone, Pickover does not shy away from the mathematics of time travel. (He even includes an appendix of programmable algorithms.) A careful reader with some basic science should be able to follow Pickover chapter by chapter (and truthfully, some of the formulas can be skimmed). The imaginative and humorous approach makes a difficult subject palatable‘and gives a plug for Chopin at the same time. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Space and time.
Time travel.
Publisher New York :Oxford University Press,1998
Language English
Description xviii, 285 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 261-263) and index.
ISBN 0195120426 (alk. paper)
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