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The Hidden Reality: Parallel Universes and the Deep Laws of the Cosmos

by Brian Greene

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1,4623710,371 (3.9)18
"The Hidden Reality" reveals how major developments in different branches of fundamental theoretical physics -- relativistic, quantum, cosmological, unified, computational -- have all led us to consider one or another variety of parallel universe.
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  1. 00
    Why Does the World Exist?: An Existential Detective Story by Jim Holt (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Touching on similar concepts, including Nozick's "Ultimate Multiverse" (there's isn't something rather than nothing, there's both).

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Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
Not enough Simpsons in it.

Written after Manny's here http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/164107224, because somebody has to stand tall and write the tough reviews.

  bringbackbooks | Jun 16, 2020 |
It was a good update for what I've missed in the last decade, and it even makes me rather curious about some of the math. I've got a real curiosity about holographic universes now that I've got a better image of them. I love the idea of a highly encoded piece of information undergoing a transform that then gets plastered upon the ceiling of the universe. Touching upon branes and seeing how they might possibly touch each other was also pretty cool. The writing in this book was quite good and nothing seemed out of place, not even the heavy speculation near the end. In fact, I really enjoyed that, too. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
Probably a 4-star book, but I confirmed that I'm just not interested in alternative-universe theories/studies/realities. ( )
  GirlMeetsTractor | Mar 22, 2020 |
Probably one of the most comprehensive and comprehensible books on basically everything I have read. From classic physics to Einstein and string theory to reality are explained. This is definitely not a book for non-science people. Greene does, frequently, give the reader a chance to jump ahead if they do not want to read about the explanation of the theory presented. Greene will give a summary and then go into the science the reader has the choice of listening tot he details or accepting the theory and moving to the next step. As the science gets weirder from Einstein to quantum physics, the explanations become more detailed. Multiple universes, a touch of the hologram theory, white holes, and inflationary multiverses are enough to boggle the average educated mind.

audible.com edition read by the author ( )
  evil_cyclist | Mar 16, 2020 |
I am probably doing this book a disservice by reviewing it. The problem is, I listened to the audiobook version of The Hidden Reality.

It's not that the author, Brian Greene, who reads the book himself, is a bad narrator. Quite the contrary, I think the guy could do this for a living if he wasn't a theoretical physicist. It's just that it is easy for a mind to wander momentarily when listening and then you miss things. Normally not a problem, but when you're listening to an explanation of string theory or general relativity or the brain-slice multiverse theory, then you may quickly miss the point and have difficulty following the subsequent explanations. And unlike with a book, you cannot just quickly rescan what you've missed, you have to rewind.

Anyway, The Hidden Reality is all about how our universe may be just one of the perhaps infinitely many universes in a multiverse. Various possible multiverse theories are explored. There is the inflationary theory, the bubble one, the holographic one, my favorite the simulated multiverse theory and even the ultimate one.

The science supporting each such theory is explained, whether be it Newtonian physics, Einstein's relativity, quantum fields or, of course and possibly most prominently, string theory. Quite often Greene resorts to colorful metaphors, such as using Cartman from South Park rolling down the mountain to explain inflationary cosmology, but I wonder if that actually does more harm than good, since it obscures and possibly trivializes the subject. I mean, I didn't quite get it - not that it means anything.

Fascinating subjects are broached here, but as I said, one might get more out of it by reading rather than listening to this book, which I once already abandoned listening to due to the problems described above. I am going to try to atone by actually reading one of Greene's previous books on the subject of string theory. ( )
  matija2019 | Jan 8, 2019 |
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If, when I was growing up, my room had been adorned with only a single mirror, my childhood daydreams might have been very different.
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"The Hidden Reality" reveals how major developments in different branches of fundamental theoretical physics -- relativistic, quantum, cosmological, unified, computational -- have all led us to consider one or another variety of parallel universe.

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Book description
From the best-selling author of The Elegant Universe and The Fabric of the Cosmos comes his most expansive and accessible book to date—a book that takes on the grandest question: Is ours the only universe?

There was a time when “universe” meant all there is. Everything. Yet, in recent years discoveries in physics and cosmology have led a number of scientists to conclude that our universe may be one among many. With crystal-clear prose and inspired use of analogy, Brian Greene shows how a range of different “multiverse” proposals emerges from theories developed to explain the most refined observations of both subatomic particles and the dark depths of space: a multiverse in which you have an infinite number of doppelgängers, each reading this sentence in a distant universe; a multiverse comprising a vast ocean of bubble universes, of which ours is but one; a multiverse that endlessly cycles through time, or one that might be hovering millimeters away yet remains invisible; another in which every possibility allowed by quantum physics is brought to life. Or, perhaps strangest of all, a multiverse made purely of math.

Greene, one of our foremost physicists and science writers, takes us on a captivating exploration of these parallel worlds and reveals how much of reality’s true nature may be deeply hidden within them. And, with his unrivaled ability to make the most challenging of material accessible and entertaining, Greene tackles the core question: How can fundamental science progress if great swaths of reality lie beyond our reach?

Sparked by Greene’s trademark wit and precision, The Hidden Reality is at once a far-reaching survey of cutting-edge physics and a remarkable journey to the very edge of reality—a journey grounded firmly in science and limited only by our imagination.

L'autore dei bestseller L'universo elegante e La trama del cosmo affronta in questo libro la domanda delle domande: il nostro è l'unico universo? Un tempo, la parola universo significava tutto ciò che esiste. Ogni cosa. Ma negli ultimi anni le scoperte della fisica e della cosmologia hanno portato un certo numero di scienziati a concludere che il nostro universo potrebbe essere uno dei molti esistenti. Con una prosa cristallina e un uso ispirato dell'analogia, Brian Greene illustra il ventaglio delle proposte di «multiverso » che emergono da teorie sviluppate per spiegare le sofisticate osservazioni delle particelle subatomiche e delle oscure profondità dello spazio: un multiverso in cui chi sta leggendo questa frase ha un numero infinito di doppi che leggono la stessa frase in universi distanti; un multiverso che comprende un vasto oceano di universi-bolla, dei quali il nostro non è che uno; un multiverso che nel corso del tempo attraversa lo stesso ciclo all'infinito, un altro che forse è sospeso a pochi millimetri da noi e tuttavia rimane invisibile, un altro ancora in cui ogni possibilità permessa dalla fisica quantistica prende vita. Da ultimo un multiverso, forse il piú strano di tutti, fatto esclusivamente di matematica.
Greene, uno dei piú importanti fisici e scrittori di scienza, ci guida in un'avvincente esplorazione di questi mondi paralleli, che rivela quanta parte della vera natura della realtà potrebbe essere nascosta al loro interno. Con la sua impareggiabile capacità di rendere comprensibili e gradevoli gli argomenti piú impegnativi, affronta la domanda essenziale: come può progredire la scienza se vaste regioni della realtà sono inaccessibili?
Anche grazie all'arguzia e alla precisione caratteristiche di Greene, La realtà nascosta è al contempo una rassegna di ampia portata della fisica d'avanguardia e un viaggio straordinario al confine stesso della realtà - un viaggio basato saldamente sulla scienza e limitato soltanto dalla nostra immaginazione.
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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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