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Description The Nobel Prize-winning scientist's presentation of his landmark theory According to Einstein himself, this book is intended "to give an exact insight into the theory of Relativity to those readers who, from a general scientific and philosophical point of view, are interested in the theory, but who are not conversant with the mathematical apparatus of theoretical physics. Having just completed his masterpiece, "The General Theory of Relativity" -- which provided a brand-new theory of gravity and promised a new perspective on the cosmos as a whole -- he set out at once to share his excitement with as wide a public as possible in this popular and accessible book.
Rating details. Book ratings by Goodreads. Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. Add to Cart. Also by Albert Einstein. See all books by Albert Einstein. About Albert Einstein Albert Einstein — , one of the greatest thinkers of the twentieth century, was born in Ulm, Germany, to German-Jewish parents. Product Details.
Inspired by Your Browsing History. Related Articles. Looking for More Great Reads? Download Hi Res. LitFlash The eBooks you want at the lowest prices. Read it Forward Read it first. Pass it on! Stay in Touch Sign up. We are experiencing technical difficulties. I collected feathers, insects, rocks and fossils; maintained an aerospace scrapbook; kept a journal about space exploration; and read a lot of science books ranging from popular stuff and textbooks to serious works from the library which I hardly understood.
My greatest intellectual interests by junior high were in cosmology and astronomy. During middle school, or possibly during the freshman year in high school, I started going to the library to rea As a kid my serious interests were scientific. During middle school, or possibly during the freshman year in high school, I started going to the library to read Einstein. Like many, I thought him the ne plus ultra and believed that mastering his work was of great importance. Having learned some algebra, trigonometry and geometry in school, I was able to read a little bit of his notation, but not much.
Basically, it was beyond me.source link
How Einstein's general theory of relativity killed off common-sense physics
In high school, starting freshman year, geopolitical concerns started commanding my attention. I'd been raised under the mushroom cloud like the rest of my generation and we were at war in southeast Asia. History and politics seemed more important, ethically and personally, than science.
Sophomore Chemistry sealed the matter. My lab skills were terrible, the teacher was poor, the textbook boring. That was my last physical science class until a single physics course in college. Being laid off from Loyola and working now only part-time gave me the opportunity to pursue some of the things I'd foregone. So, I picked up Einstein's Relativity, a book he wrote about the relativity theory for the general public.
Nov 27, Owlseyes inside Notre Dame, it's so strange a hour blaze and The Times from Nov. The theory of relativity is amazing and important, but contrary to what the tagline says, Einstein himself is probably not the best person to have explain it to you. I read this class for Freshman Studies in college, and I honestly have to admit that I wouldn't have gotten much of it without the significant aid of in-depth lectures and classroom discussions.
This is not because the ideas themselves are too complex, but because Einstein fails in his attempt to make his ideas understood to a layma The theory of relativity is amazing and important, but contrary to what the tagline says, Einstein himself is probably not the best person to have explain it to you. This is not because the ideas themselves are too complex, but because Einstein fails in his attempt to make his ideas understood to a layman.
I don't know what book you ought to read instead, but there are certainly many alternatives, of which some must be good. Einstein does not assume any knowledge of physics, but he does kind of glide over what his variables mean or where they come from, and this makes it hard to grasp what the math means and how it fits in.
Mar 18, Heather Cawte rated it it was amazing. Read on my Kindle, free from Project Gutenberg. The biggest problem I had with this was actually one of presentation. The team which had prepared it for release had presented all the equations as jpegs, a reasonable idea when reading it in HTML, but not a good one when reading it on a Kindle! Still, who am I kidding - the equations probably wouldn't have made sense to me anyway I am an arts graduate trying to understand relativity.
I wasn't expecting to understand much, but I was amazed by how much I really did 'get'. Every version of the theory explains it in a slightly different way, and with each version I read, I discover and comprehend a little more. This is by no means an easy read, but it was much more comprehensible than I expected. It was written for the general public, which certainly helped, and it was an extraordinary experience to be reading such an iconic book and finding that at least some of it made sense When I was at university the lecturers recommended books on relativity and I even read a few.
I gleaned a vague understanding of the subject. None of them recommended Einstein's book. I can't remember where I found it but I'm very glad I did. It's the best and easiest to understand book about relativity I have ever read. I recommend it to students who are struggling with the concepts and all of them so far have had the "Aha! It's just been returned to me from ano When I was at university the lecturers recommended books on relativity and I even read a few. It's just been returned to me from another student, and I'm planning to re-read it just for fun.
Great book. Not too thick, written well, covers the subject well. If you're at all interested in relativity, this is the book for you. After reading Walter Isaacson's brilliant biography, "Einstein" and finally coming away with an understanding of Einstein's theories, I felt I could make the leap and actually attempt to read something written by the most famous genius of the twentieth century whose theories would transform science and the world. Well, except for the portions of the book that used mundane objects such as a train, an embankment, Times Square or a clock to describe the most famous theory of all time, the rest of the book a good 60 percent was incomprehensible to me.
It could have just as well been written in Latin. I strongly recommend that unless you have a scientific background, you should not start off by reading this book if you are at all interested in understanding the mind and theories of this, undeniable, genius. I recommend the Isaacson's book I mentioned above as a good starting point. Not to be deter, I will nevertheless continue my interest in physics and when I have the time and patience I will start reading books about Galileo and Newton's theories, so much seems to have originated from their work.
They are constantly mentioned throughout by Einstein. This year is the centennial of the publication of Einstein's general theory of relativity. I got my hands on the Pi Press edition, which was published 10 years ago coinciding with the centennial of the special theory of relativity.
Yesterday, the New Horizons spacecraft flew past Pluto, sending huge volumes of information back to Earth - and the day before, CERN announced that the LHC has found proof of the existence of the pentaquark. Science continues to reach new frontiers, though nothing t This year is the centennial of the publication of Einstein's general theory of relativity. Science continues to reach new frontiers, though nothing that can compete with the relativity revolution ushered in by Einstein a century ago.
The book also includes an essay by David C. Cassidy titled "The Cultural Legacy of the Relativity Theory" which examines the impact of the theory outside of physics. This proved to be an interesting read and for me it contained lots of new information. On the reception of the theory among the general public he writes: "Relativity was not just another important new theory. It profoundly challenged the common understanding of everyday physical concepts — space, time, mass, simultaneity.
Two New Books Mark 100th Anniversary of Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity
Even the very name "theory of relativity," coming after the rise of Darwin's theory of evolution, seemed to confirm the decline of old absolute values and beliefs, together with the old world order, and the triumph of a universal relativism. Einstein, of course, objected to such interpretations. Relativity theory had nothing to do with relativism, he insisted. In fact, he had first called it the "theory of invariants," for its emphasis on the unchanging character of natural laws within different reference frames.
It would seem that the real problem was - and still is - the widening gap between specialists and non-specialists; between scientists and the general public. It also helped that this time I knew the disposition of the text and could attack it proceed with more patience. I also identified what had hampered me so much on the first read: that pesky Lorentz transformation!
It wasn't quite as daunting this time around. Still, in comparison Gaussian coordinates is a piece of cake. So when Einstein states the general principle of relativity as "All Gaussian coordinate systems are essentially equivalent for the formulation of the general laws of nature," I feel rather relieved that I can say ok I get that - somehow. Stephen Hawking writes in A Brief History of Time that "seventy years ago, if [Arthur] Eddington is to be believed, only two people understood the general theory of relativity. Also included in this edition is a commentary by Robert Geroch which provides some useful elucidations expanding on the explanations Einstein uses in the various chapters.
Dec 18, Mohamed rated it it was amazing Shelves: science , masterpieces , relativity , physics. How dare I give this masterpiece less than 5 stars?!
Although I could hardly claim that I understood 10 percent of the book! What he was talking about?! Moving reference bodies, Euclidean geometry, Newtonian theory of gravitation, We don't see the real length of things as everything is moving in the space! Length is relative as well as mass!
So what is real? Is there one single thing that all human can agree on it?! Relativity can be applied on other aspects of life other th How dare I give this masterpiece less than 5 stars?! Relativity can be applied on other aspects of life other than Physics. What is right and what is wrong? Everything depends on your reference body and everything is relative! What about the keyboard I am using right now, could it be anything else on another planet?! Creepy Craze!
However, I will try to read more about it. Einstein said "Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex. It takes a touch of genius, and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. I think it would be better if it used more diagrams and drawings! Good luck for those brave ones who are planning to read this May 23, Arya Ptb rated it really liked it Shelves: essays , philosophy , math-computers-physics. The best "for dummies" book ever. Written by the master himself, explaining it all with great depth and as simply as possible.
I feel that the General Theory was not covered in any real sense, probably because it would have been too difficult for us. While still appreciating Einstein's visual demonstrations and thought experiments, I wouldn't have minded a few more equations and formulas either, to combine the powers of intuition and precision.
Given Einstein's universally-acknowledged genius and the reputation for intractability still enjoyed by general relativity a century after its birth, this work is a paragon of clarity and simplicity of explication. It is very light on mathematics, only requiring basic algebra, and works almost entirely through illustrative models such as that of an observer on a moving train.
Einstein was one of those who had been forced to rethink our universe based on the contradictions raised by the apparent Given Einstein's universally-acknowledged genius and the reputation for intractability still enjoyed by general relativity a century after its birth, this work is a paragon of clarity and simplicity of explication. Einstein was one of those who had been forced to rethink our universe based on the contradictions raised by the apparent anisotropy of the fixed speed of light in vacuo on a moving Earth.
His solution was simple but profound, representing another Copernican revolution, in that he abandoned the twin presuppositions of fixed time and position. As he writes here, everything else in Special Relativity follows as a matter of simple logical consistency, and his new universe is perfectly coherent, if weird. The General form extends this to the abandonment of a fixed coordinate system altogether, hence the name of "General Relativity", but it entails some important further considerations.
GR space is Gaussian rather than Euclidean. Its geometry is Riemann, and as a profound consequence we can infer that the Universe is finite but unbounded: Look far enough into distant space and you would see the back of your own head. Hereby is an important inconsistency arising out of Newtonian physics dissolved, as a Newtonian Universe would require a centre and a finite size; a sphere uniformly filled will at sufficient size exert infinite gravitational forces at its bounds. Our Universe can be unbounded and uniformly filled at the largest scales without contradiction. Gravity - and acceleration - also bend space.
Measure pi by sitting on a spinning disk and measuring along the circumference and perpendicular across the axis and the foreshortening along the direction of motion will yield a lower than Euclidean value - space has curved for the fly on the wheel. Einstein's work is unquestionably one of the two or three most successful in scientific history.
He explains and predicts phenomena that could be observed at the time, such as the precession of Mercury's orbit and the gravitational shift in the positions of stars close to the line-of-sight of the Sun. Yet he also makes predictions which could not have been observed at the time, and I think it is correct to say that all have since been confirmed. QED and QCD might compete with Relativity for predictive and explanatory power, but they were the work of many great minds.
Einstein, along with perhaps Newton and Darwin, earns unique credit for being the single mind associated by history with the entire edifice, even if this picture is not entirely fair in all cases. It is a joy to find he also writes so gracefully. As an aside, I just encountered Einstein's name today in a discussion of Muslim behaviour towards non-Muslims.
We got Einstein, it transpires, via Albania, where virtually all native Jews and thousands of refugees survived the Shoah under the protection of the Muslim majority. May 08, Andrew rated it really liked it Recommends it for: nerds; cosmic thinkers. Albert Einstein was a really smart motherfucker. He was smart not just because he was able to conceive of the theory of relativity both the special and general theories - he was working on things that people before him had already worked on. What was really smart about him is that he was able to make it all explicable - if not entirely comprehensible - to your average person.
Celebrating 101 years of the general theory of relativity
I'm not going to go into the general and special theories of relativity, because I honestly only understand the theorie Albert Einstein was a really smart motherfucker. I'm not going to go into the general and special theories of relativity, because I honestly only understand the theories in metaphor, and Einstein's metaphors are much more eloquent, nuanced, and specific than mine. Plus, I don't really remember exactly what it was all about.
Basically, that Euclidean geometry is always going to fail in the face of a universe that is infinitely more complex than we can possibly imagine. But there are some constants and things you can do with math that help make calculations a lot closer to and reflective of actual observation.
Related Relativity: The Special and the General Theory, The Masterpiece Science Edition,
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