The Universe Speaks in Numbers How Modern Maths Reveals Natures Deepest Secrets

first_imgBy @SimonCocking review of The Universe Speaks in Numbers: How Modern Maths Reveals Nature’s Deepest Secrets Hardcover by Graham Farmelo. Available from Amazon here.A groundbreaking exploration of how the interplay of physics and mathematics has enriched our understanding of the universe – essential reading for anyone who wants to grasp how physicists are attempting, in Stephen Hawking’s words, to ‘know the mind of God’.One of the great mysteries of science is that underlying all the complexities of the universe is a harmonious order, whose existence Einstein described as ‘a miracle’. No less miraculous, the fundamental laws of the universe can be written in the language of advanced mathematics.Searching for these laws, physicists have found themselves developing ambitious mathematical ideas without experiment as their guide. In The Universe Speaks in Numbers, Graham Farmelodemonstrates how today’s greatest scientific minds are working in a tradition that dates back to Newton. He takes us on an adventure from the Enlightenment, through the breakthroughs of Einstein and Dirac, to the contemporary physicists and mathematicians who are shedding fascinating light on each other’s disciplines. As Farmelo shows, this blossoming relationship between mathematics and physics is responsible for huge, redefining advances in our understanding of reality, space and time.‘The Universe Speaks in Numbers’, my new book, is published today in the U.K. (in N America on May 28)— Graham Farmelo (@grahamfarmelo) May 2, 2019Review, How Modern Maths Reveals Nature’s Deepest SecretsIn some ways this book feels like a labour of love, as the author reveals his deep and long held interest in the topics covered within these pages. The time frame covered is long, several hundred years, with a sad consideration of the period of the ‘divorce’ between physics and maths for several decades in the twentieth century. Ultimately, fortunately, they became reconciled again as both sides realised that the other group were achieving valuable insights that could help them with their own investigations too.Time and time again uncanny parallels emerged between the work of cutting edge physicists and pure mathematicians when it often became clear that they were trying to unravel the same problems, but from different starting points. Even more interesting, and challenging perhaps, often one side had developed usable tools up to one hundred years earlier, before the realisation of their application in other fields and disciplines.Einstein naturally looms large in this book, but even he found the implications of his own theories hard to accept. Being reluctant to accept that God could play dice, it would take several more decades before further leading thinkers such as Stephen Hawkings and others took Einstein’s concepts on blackholes and gravity to their logical conclusions. The recent, impressive photograph of a blackhole finally showed us something that could be seen, over hundred years after Einstein’s theories first put forward the concept that they could even exist.This is an important element to the book, that it often takes a long time for ideas to emerge, for tests to then be conceived to assess if they are accurate or not, and then for further time to assess what the implications of this are, and could be for us in the future too. As we move into an ever more instant and real time expectations time frame, Farmelo does an excellent job of reminding us that nature is only slowly yielding its answers to us. Understanding moves in fits and starts, there are periods of rapid innovation, followed by times of seemingly glacial innovation and progress.This book is an enjoyable and important book to help put together a big picture overview of where we have come from so far, why it took so long for us to progress, and where we might be heading in the future. Read it!First published in London 332 years ago today, Newton’s wondrous Principia, later described by Einstein as ‘the first comprehensive, workable system of theoretical physics’:— Graham Farmelo (@grahamfarmelo) July 5, 2019More information about Irish Tech News and the Business ShowcaseFYI the ROI for you is => We now get over 1.5 million monthly views, and up to 900k monthly unique visitors, from over 160 countries. 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