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Coming of Age in the Milky Way by Timothy…
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Coming of Age in the Milky Way (1988)

by Timothy Ferris

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1,279119,557 (4.24)11
Winner of the 1988 American Institute of Physics Prize and named one of 1988's best books by the New York Times Book Review, this brilliant, lively and informative book seeks to comprehend the enormities of cosmic space and time and how this quest has shaped religion, politics and philosophy.
  1. 10
    The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, the Royal Society, & the Birth of the Modern World by Edward Dolnick (rakerman)
    rakerman: Many of the same scientists show up in Coming of Age and The Clockwork Universe, with different emphasis and focus. The books complement one another, for example there are more details about Kepler's work in The Clockwork Universe.
  2. 00
    A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson (sturlington)
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» See also 11 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Probably the best book on the history of scince and present understanding of the universe that I have ever read. ( )
  Matt_B | Nov 10, 2018 |
This book is breathtaking in its historical scope, research, and in the author's ability to explain complex concepts in astronomy and physics to those of us without advanced degrees in those fields. On top of all that Ferris is a superb writer. ( )
  bkinetic | Mar 28, 2017 |
Just read this again after having read it the first time about 20 years ago. It really is a beautiful book that hasn't lost any of its relevance even with 20 years of additional discovery (which it deals with in an afterwards).

It tells the story of the Universe while also telling the story of telling the story of the Universe, from the first decipherable cave paintings to up to date discoveries in the field of particle physics - all in a way that can be understood by folks like me that have an interest in science and discovery but have no aptitude for it! ( )
  mybucketlistofbooks | Jan 10, 2015 |
A comprehensive overview of how we came to understand the cosmos, with an emphasis on the personalities involved.
  rakerman | Aug 15, 2014 |
Ferris is such an excellent science writer. His history is rife with the personal anecdotes that make history fun, and his science is competently explained. Presenting physics theories alongside their history and associated experiments makes them much more understandable. ( )
  bexaplex | Jun 24, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
One thing I have learned in a long life: that all our science, measured against reality, is primitive and childlike—yet it is the most precious thing we have.
—Albert Einstein
The wind was flapping a temple flag, and two monks were having an argument about it. One said the flag was moving, the other said that the wind was moving; and they could come to no agreement on the matter. They argued back and forth. Eno the Patriarch said, "It is not that the wind is moving; it is not that the flag is moving; it is that your honourable minds are moving."
—Platform Sutra
Dedication
For Carolyn
If I could write the beauty of your eyes
And in fresh numbers number all your graces,
The age to come would say, "This poet lies—
Such heavenly touches ne'er touched earthly faces."
—Shakespeare
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The skies of our ancestors hung low overhead.
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