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Waves in an Impossible Sea: How Everyday Life Emerges from the Cosmic Ocean

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by Matt Strassler (Author) 

A theoretical physicist takes readers on an awe-inspiring journey—found in "no other book" (Science)—to discover how the universe generates everything from nothing at all: "If you want to know what's really going on in the realms of relativity and particle physics, read this book" (Sean Carroll, author of The Biggest Ideas in the Universe).

In Waves in an Impossible Sea, physicist Matt Strassler tells a startling tale of elementary particles, human experience, and empty space. He begins with a simple mystery of motion. When we drive at highway speeds with the windows down, the wind beats against our faces. Yet our planet hurtles through the cosmos at 150 miles per second, and we feel nothing of it. How can our voyage be so tranquil when, as Einstein discovered, matter warps space, and space deflects matter?


The answer, Strassler reveals, is that empty space is a sea, albeit a paradoxically strange one. Much like water and air, it ripples in various ways, and we ourselves, made from its ripples, can move through space as effortlessly as waves crossing an ocean. Deftly weaving together daily experience and fundamental physics—the musical universe, the enigmatic quantum, cosmic fields, and the Higgs boson—Strassler shows us how all things, familiar and unfamiliar, emerge from what seems like nothing at all.


Accessible and profound, Waves in an Impossible Sea is the ultimate guide to our place in the universe.


"[Waves in an Impossible Sea] is a readable and rewarding introduction to mysteries that physicists are still trying to figure out."―Wall Street Journal

"Abundant with analogies and anecdotes, this book exemplifies how experts should write about matter, motion and mass for the masses."―Scientific American

"Strassler takes readers on a comprehensive tour of the physics of the cosmos...Strassler walks readers through the possible misunderstandings different social groups may have of words such as theory, massive and matter in a way I found insightful, thought provoking and humorous."―Physics World

"In this illuminating book, theoretical physicist and writer Strassler....delivers a deep understanding of the Higgs boson and the Higgs field...Strassler delivers a comprehensive background in a reader-friendly and enjoyable review of mass, energy, waves, fields, and quantum mechanics."―Booklist

“Strassler is a competent guide to complex topics, but most impressive is his approach to simpler concepts—mass, energy, light—where observation and common sense have been misleading…. Strassler is an imaginative thinker and capable writer… A fine introduction to the cosmos.”―Kirkus

Categories : Quantum Theory, Mathematics, Science History & Philosophy

ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0C9ZPQJ64

Publisher ‏ : ‎ Basic Books (March 5, 2024)

Publication date ‏ : ‎ March 5, 2024

Language ‏ : ‎ English

File‏ : ‎ EPUB, 4.18 MB

Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled

Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported

Print length ‏ : ‎ 444 pages

You will get a EPUB (4MB) file

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