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A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes by Stephen Hawking (1988)

  1. 20
    Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays by Stephen W. Hawking (gandalf_grey)
  2. 32
    Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher by Richard P. Feynman (OccamsHammer)
  3. 10
    The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space, Time, and the Texture of Reality by Brian Greene (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Although it's longer, Brian Greene's book is much more easily digestible. Plus, he gives you an idea of what they're hoping to discover at the Large Hadron Collider.
  4. 00
    Knowledge and Wonder by Victor F. Weisskopf (erik_galicki)
    erik_galicki: I think Weisskopf strikes a better balance between big picture and detail. Hawking provides more detail on particle physics and cosmology, but I think Weisskopf makes the connections between the two more apparent and clearer.
  5. 00
    From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time by Sean Carroll (steve.clason)
  6. 00
    Chaos and Harmony: Perspectives on Scientific Revolutions of the 20th Century by Xuan Thuan Trinh (Louve_de_mer)
  7. 17
    The Universe in a Single Atom: The Convergence of Science and Spirituality by Dalai Lama XIV (leahsimone)

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Showing 1-5 of 107 (next | show all)
I read this when it was first published.
A second read enabled me to understand more.
A thoughtful, well reasoned book.
I was given a digital copy of this book by the publisher Random House via Netgalley in return for an honest unbiased review. ( )
  Welsh_eileen2 | May 20, 2016 |
I listened to this book on a long car trip over the holiday… and I hesitate to admit it, but I was unimpressed. It was an older edition borrowed from the library, perhaps the first edition, and the narrator was just awful. He mispronounced many words, and I heard him use incorrect words (if they weren’t, the sentences made absolutely no sense, such as saying “neuron” instead of “neutron”)

I also thought the book was disorganized and was trying to be too many things, therefore failing to give proper attention to any one theme. I feel like I should have read this book when it was first published to be impressed with Hawking’s overview of physics and cosmology. As it was, I have read or heard all these concepts explained much more concisely from other sources.
( )
  memccauley6 | May 3, 2016 |
What I think the biggest achievement of this book is to bring some of the greatest and more complex theories to the non-scientist readers. It is an introduction to cosmology, black holes, light, the creation of the universe and the possibility of time travel.

The title could be a bit misleading. The book may be short but it follows the development of the scientific views about the universe from ancient greeks, through Galilei and Newton, to Laplace and Einstein.

I gave it 4/5 just because some of the theories are oversimplified for my taste. ( )
  muskurov | May 1, 2016 |
What a fantastic book. He managed to make the person most ignorant regarding physics understand, or atleast feel like understanding quantum mechanics and general relativity. All told with a delightful sense of humor and a stunning humility, especially coming from one of the greatest scientists of our time.

I'm happy that the first book regarding science I ever read was one that did not turn me off of the subject for ever due to being to difficult to grasp.
  bartt95 | Apr 10, 2016 |
Ok, this is a five star book, certainly. But I gave it a four because there were several moments when I realized that I hadn't understood a word that was written for a page or two - not the author's fault at all but it did lessen my enjoyment by a hair.

That said I love Hawking - he's very funny, easy (ish) to read (considering the weight of the subject) and inclusive. Hey, anyone who can make theoretical physics engaging, especially to the likes of me - a humanities loving Lit major, has to be a genius right?

I'm ending the year as I began, with some serious Hawk time - love it! ( )
1 vote MartynChuzz | Feb 22, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 107 (next | show all)
Through his cerebral journeys, Mr. Hawking is bravely taking some of the first, though tentative, steps toward quantizing the early universe, and he offers us a provocative glimpse of the work in progress.

» Add other authors (24 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hawking, Stephenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jackson, MichaelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kober, HainerTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kreitmeyer, JensCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miller, RonIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sagan, CarlIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Varteva, RistoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy.
What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise. What is the tortoise standing on? You're very clever, young man, very clever, but it's turtles all the way down! (Quoted on page 1)
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Sette geni della fisica, sei uomini e una donna. Socievoli e introversi, libertini e castigati, giramondo e sedentari, animati da passioni comuni: l'alpinismo, la musica e la letteratura. Una comunità giovane, piccola e perfetta, che, come ogni anno, nel 1932 si riunisce all'Istituto di fisica teorica di Copenaghen. Sono i maggiori scienziati del Novecento, i titani della fisica teorica che hanno dato vita e forma alla rivoluzione quantistica. Quell'anno in Europa si celebra il centesimo anniversario della morte di Goethe. Niels Bohr, Paul Dirac, Paul Ehrenfest, Lise Meitner, Werner Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli e Max Delbrück omaggiano l'ultimo genio universale mettendo in scena il Faust. Personaggi: Bohr-il Signore, Pauli-Mefistofele, il tormentato Ehrenfest-Faust, il neutrino-Margherita. Per la piccola brigata il 1932 è l'anno del miracolo. Questi giovani hanno scoperto, in rapida successione, il neutrone e il positrone e, per la prima volta in laboratorio, hanno indotto la disintegrazione del nucleo atomico, aprendo le porte all'era nucleare. Ma qualcosa di terribile si prepara per il mondo intero: quello è anche l'anno che prelude all'ascesa di Hitler, al cammino verso la guerra. Gli scienziati saranno costretti a essere complici della macchina bellica e a subire condizionamenti politici e militari.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553380168, Paperback)

Stephen Hawking, one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists in history, wrote the modern classic A Brief History of Time to help nonscientists understand the questions being asked by scientists today: Where did the universe come from? How and why did it begin? Will it come to an end, and if so, how? Hawking attempts to reveal these questions (and where we're looking for answers) using a minimum of technical jargon. Among the topics gracefully covered are gravity, black holes, the Big Bang, the nature of time, and physicists' search for a grand unifying theory. This is deep science; these concepts are so vast (or so tiny) as to cause vertigo while reading, and one can't help but marvel at Hawking's ability to synthesize this difficult subject for people not used to thinking about things like alternate dimensions. The journey is certainly worth taking, for, as Hawking says, the reward of understanding the universe may be a glimpse of "the mind of God." --Therese Littleton

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:48 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

"In the ten years since its publication in 1988, Stephen Hawking's classic work has become a landmark volume in scientific writing, with more than nine million copies in forty languages sold worldwide. That edition was on the cutting edge of what was then known about the origins and nature of the universe. But the intervening years have seen extraordinary advances in the technology of observing both the micro- and the macrocosmic worlds. These observations have confirmed many of Professor Hawking's theoretical predictions in the first edition of his book, including the recent discoveries of the Cosmic Background Explorer satellite (COBE), which probed back in time to within 300,000 years of the universe's beginning and revealed wrinkles in the fabric of space-time that he had projected." "Eager to bring to his original text the new knowledge revealed by these observations, as well as his own recent research, Professor Hawking has prepared a new introduction to the book, written an entirely new chapter on wormholes and time travel, and updated the chapters throughout."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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