The trouble with gravity

The trouble with gravity DEFAULT

THE TROUBLE WITH GRAVITY

According to this fine popular primer, nobody knows what gravity is, but few readers will feel that their time was wasted.

No one thought about gravity before Aristotle, writes science writer Panek (The 4 Percent Universe: Dark Matter, Dark Energy, and the Race to Discover the Rest of Reality, ), but all ancient cultures knew that some things were “up” (the heavens, the gods), and earthly matter was “down.” Everything on Earth fell down, but the heavens stayed up, and few thinkers wondered why. “Reasoning,” writes the author, “…was what Aristotle would introduce into the conversation: methodology, not mythology.” However, he came to the wrong conclusion, maintaining that objects fell because they are drawn toward the center of the universe, which sat at the center of the Earth. Heavenly objects, being perfect, were exempt. Newton’s concept of universal attractive force and the inverse square law were not original, but his outstanding mathematics, which predicted movements of bodies anywhere in the universe, made him a superstar in Britain. Natural philosophers of other nations pointed out that a force that acted magically across empty space was clearly nonsense. Because Newton’s math worked so well, they came around, but plenty of thoughtful scientists remained unhappy. Panek paraphrases physicist and philosopher Ernst Mach: “the theory of gravitation had disguised its philosophical shortcomings by proving its reliability and usefulness. But the philosophical shortcomings remained. They’d just become respectable.” Einstein solved the problem in by more dazzling mathematics demonstrating that matter warps nearby space-time. Bodies moving through this distorted space seem to change direction, giving the appearance of a force acting on them. Many bizarre consequences—black holes, gravitational lenses, the slowing of time—follow naturally. Philosophically inclined readers may complain that scientists still don’t know what gravity is, but the remainder will enjoy Panek’s expert description of the spectacular things that gravity does.

A useful primer on a force that still inspires mystery.

Pub Date: July 9,

ISBN:

Page Count:

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Review Posted Online: March 25,

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15,

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Sours: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/richard-panek/the-trouble-with-gravity/

The Trouble with Gravity: Solving the Mystery Beneath Our Feet

Thought-provokingPanek&#x;s inquisitive, fine-tuned narrative is full of character and, unlike many other books on physics, imbued with the friendly casualness of a coffee-shop chat. As such, it will delight both lay readers and serious students.  

&#x;Booklist 

 

Fine popular primerexpert description of the spectacular things that gravity does.  

&#x;Kirkus Reviews 

 

I've long been a big fan of Richard Panek&#x;s writing. He is eloquent, smart, and a fascinating thinker, someone who is able to get me excited about topics that would have never even occurred to me. I respect and trust him&#x;and am always eager to see what he will write next.  

&#x;Maria Konnikova, New York Times best-selling author of Mastermind and The Confidence Game 

 

Richard Panek moves with startling grace and economy through the intersecting realms of philosophy and physics, always asking the unexpected question. He has forced me to rethink my fundamental assumptions about gravity&#x;and shown me how much we can gain by doing so.  

&#x;Andrea Barrett, author of The Air We Breathe and Archangel 

 

In The Trouble with Gravity, Richard Panek acts as a guide, both amiable and erudite, through one of the most puzzling mysteries of the natural world.  In explaining the various &#x;explanations&#x; of gravity from classical to post-modern times, Panek draws us into a thoughtful meditation on the mythic, cultural, philosophical and, yes, scientific implications of what happens when a wet potato or a crystal vase slips from your hand.  

&#x;Billy Collins 

 

Gravity is a mystery&#x;one of the greatest. It has baffled and teased humans since the dawn of history and perplexes us still. Richard Panek takes us on a journey that is original, brave, and ultimately very beautiful: a reminder that sometimes science isn&#x;t a solution but a search.  

&#x;James Gleick, author of Time Travel: A History 

 

Without gravity, there would be no earth, no humans, and no nonfiction books. Which would be a shame, because we&#x;d miss out on Richard Panek&#x;s wonderful, entertaining work. Richard takes us on a vivid journey from the arctic to the tropics, from the human skeleton to the edges of the universe, filling our imagination with counterintuitive modern science and ancient philosophy. And all of this is delivered in buoyant, almost poetic, writing. So thank you gravity and Richard.  

&#x;A. J. Jacobs, author of The Year of Living Biblically 

 

Sours: https://www.hmhbooks.com/shop/books/the-trouble-with-gravity/
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The Trouble with Gravity

"A thoughtful meditation on the mythic, cultural, philosophical, and, yes, scientific implications of what happens when a wet potato or a crystal vase slips from your hand." (Billy Collins)

A mind-bending exploration of gravity, the universe's greatest mystery. What is gravity? Nobody knows - and just about nobody knows that nobody knows. How something so pervasive can also be so mysterious, and how that mystery can be so wholly unrecognized outside the field of physics, is one of the greatest conundrums in modern science. But as award-winning author Richard Panek shows in this groundbreaking book, gravity is a cold case that we are closer to cracking than ever - and whose very investigation has yielded untold truths about the cosmos and humanity itself. 

Part scientific detective story, part meta­physical romp, The Trouble with Gravity is a revelation: the first in-depth, accessible study of this ubiquitous, elusive force. Gravity and our efforts to understand it, Panek reveals, have shaped not only the world we inhabit, but also our bodies, minds, and culture. Its influence can be seen in everything from ancient fables to modern furniture, Dante’s Inferno to the pratfalls of Laurel and Hardy, bipedalism to black holes. As we approach the truth about gravity, we should also be prepared to know both our universe and our­selves as never before.

Design by Martha Kennedy

Sours: https://www.audible.com/pd/The-Trouble-with-Gravity-Audiobook/B07W8VRCS4
The Trouble With Gravity (Live at Cafe Bella, January 23, 2015)

The Trouble with Gravity

"A thoughtful meditation on the mythic, cultural, philosophical and, yes, scientific implications of what happens when a wet potato or a crystal vase slips from your hand."—Billy Collins

A mind-bending exploration of gravity, the universe's greatest mystery.


What is gravity? Nobody knows—and just about nobody knows that nobody knows. How something so pervasive can also be so mysterious, and how that mystery can be so wholly unrecognized outside the field of physics, is one of the greatest conundrums in modern science. But as award-winning author Richard Panek shows in this groundbreaking book, gravity is a cold case that we are closer to cracking than ever—and whose very investigation has yielded untold truths about the cosmos and humanity itself.

Part scientific detective story, part meta­physical romp, The Trouble with Gravity is a revelation: the first in-depth, accessible study of this ubiquitous, elusive force. Gravity and our efforts to understand it, Panek reveals, have shaped not only the world we inhabit, but also our bodies, minds, and culture. Its influence can be seen in everything from ancient fables to modern furniture, Dante’s Inferno to the pratfalls of Laurel and Hardy, bipedalism to black holes. As we approach the truth about gravity, we should also be prepared to know both our universe and our­selves as never before.

Sours: https://www.harvard.com/book/the_trouble_with_gravity/

Gravity the trouble with

The Trouble With Gravity

book

The Trouble With Gravity: Solving The Mystery Beneath Our Feet is a nonfictionpopular science book by Richard Panek and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt on July 9,

Content[edit]

The book begins its first chapter by discussing ancient history and old beliefs regarding gravity and what lies above. This includes a discussion of belief in gods and how those religious views were shaped by the existence of gravity and its prevalence on living beings and all matter.[1] The topics of Mount Olympus and stories among Aboriginal cultures in Australia are discussed in how the sky is believed to be separate from the earth and creates a separation between humans and the divine. The book points out that gravity was often seen in such context as something that only affects people on Earth and not as a universal force.[2] Authors and those more on the philosophical end of the topic are also considered, including Dante Alighieri and Ernst Mach.[3]

The second chapter investigates how gravity formed from the beginning of the universe and also how the Big Bang may have created a large number of parallel universes and that gravity is not sourced in our universe, but is leaking through spacetime into ours.[4] Then, Panek moves on to human history and how the motion of gravity was first discovered, identifying the revolution that Isaac Newton's theories on gravity had on the general public.[2] A series of other scientists and their chronological discoveries about gravity are delved into, including John Philoponus, Nicolaus Copernicus, Galileo Galilei, Albert Einstein, and Werner Heisenberg.[5]

Style and tone[edit]

Publishers Weekly noted that the book's "inquisitive, fine-tuned narrative is full of character" and that it departs from other science books on similar topics by having a "friendly casualness of a coffee-shop chat".[6] The heavy topics and complex science investigated in the book have the potential to bog down the reader, Undark Magazine writer Dan Falk pointed out, but Panek's writing style manages to deliver the topic with "humility and humor".[7]

Critical reception[edit]

Kirkus Reviews calls The Trouble With Gravity a "useful primer on a force that still inspires mystery" and that, despite philosophical shortcomings that some may have, others will "enjoy Panek’s expert description" on the complex field of study.[8] Clara Moskowitz for Scientific American writes that this "beautiful and philosophical investigation of nature’s weakest force" will help provide insights to readers, despite not being able to answer the fundamental question regarding gravity.[9]Library Journal reviewer Sara R. Tompson calls it "one of the best of the postgravitational-waves-discovery physics books" and that all readers would find the text accessible.[5]Shelf Awareness calls the book's glimpse into the mysteries of gravity "thought-provoking" and that while any definitive answers may not be forthcoming, The Trouble With Gravity still gives "much to contemplate".[10]

References[edit]

  1. ^Baldwin M, Cummings C, O'Mahony J (August ). "New books & media: The Trouble With Gravity". Physics Today. 72 (8): doi/PT Retrieved December 12,
  2. ^ abUrry, Amelia (August 18, ). "Scientists know gravity exists. They just don't know how it works". The Washington Post. Retrieved December 12,
  3. ^Kiser, Barbara (June 14, ). "Life's innovations, the enigma of gravity, and how to feed 8 billion: Books in brief". Nature. Retrieved December 12,
  4. ^Tarantola, Andrew (July 13, ). "Hitting the Books: Gravity's mystery may prove our multiverse exists". Engadget. Retrieved December 12,
  5. ^ abTompson, Sara R. (May 31, ). "Sciences: The Trouble with Gravity: Solving the Mystery Beneath Our Feet". Library Journal. Retrieved December 12,
  6. ^"The Trouble With Gravity Review". Publishers Weekly. April 10, Retrieved December 12,
  7. ^Falk, Dan (August 9, ). "How We Brought Our Understanding of Gravity Down to Earth". Undark Magazine. Retrieved December 12,
  8. ^"The Trouble With Gravity: Kirkus Review". Kirkus Reviews. March 25, Retrieved December 12,
  9. ^Moskowitz C (October ). "Recommended Books, October ". Scientific American. (4): doi/scientificamerican Retrieved December 12,
  10. ^"Book Review: The Trouble With Gravity". Shelf Awareness (). July 12, Retrieved December 12,

Further reading[edit]

Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Trouble_With_Gravity
NYSL: 2019-09-12 Richard Panek, The Trouble with Gravity

(After a pause, during which he looks intently at ANTON You told me about ten percent, and that, damn it. I understand it. Ten percent is understandable. this, for example, is the stuffed cabbage about which Monya told me said: he fucking takes it in his mouth and gives it in the ass.

Now discussing:

I looked at Mikhail in a completely different way, he really acted professionally, - You can really trust. - Of course, - he answered shortly, - And remember, a lot depends on you, on how clearly you will follow my instructions. Do you remember what you have to do five days before departure. - I remember not having sex with Dasha.

- Right.



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