A Brief History of Time – Stephen Hawking
In between trying to figure out my story this month, I also read and tried to understand Stephen Hawking’s book.
So, did I understand it? No, not really.
But I did learn some things. I learnt about space-time (4D space/events) and that black holes are formed when a star starts to shrink and the gravitational forces are so strong that not even light can escape it.
I always thought a black hole is this weird phenomena you usually find in cartoons where the cartoon can walk into another time dimension.
Now it turns out if you ever find yourself in space and come across a black hole (which you’ll probably only realize when it’s too late) you’re that joke in the Big Bang Theory where Sheldon says he’s screwed.
“A brief History of Time” is briefly about how scientists or theoretical psysicists (i.e. Stephen Hawking and Sheldon from the TV series) try to contemplate the universe through science and maths.
Just like how Sheldon tries to explain to Penny what Leonard does, Hawking starts at the very beginning (the Greeks and Aristotle) and works his way up to where they were when he wrote the book.
It’s very interesting to see how man’s thought processes developed through time and the different theories each one came up with.
Also, if it weren’t for Hawking’s brilliant examples, I wouldn’t even have understood this much (see above). And the joke on page 1 is hilarious.
Back cover: Was there a beginning of time? Could time run backwards? Is the universe infinite or does it have boundaries? These are just some of the questions considered in an internationally acclaimed masterpiece [their words, not mine] which begins by reviewing the great theories of the cosmos from Newton to Einstein, before delving into the secrets which still lie at the heart of space and time.
First published: 1988
Rating: 3/5 (Mostly because I didn’t really understand what I was reading).
In an unrelated note, the thing which I found most surprising was this:
“In October 1981, I went to Moscow for a conference on quantum gravity… In the audience was a young Russian, Andrei Linde, from the Lebedev Institute in Moscow…” He came up with the idea of “the new inflationery model “A better model, called the chaotic inflationery model, was put forward by Linde in 1983.”
Now, for you it might seem like useless information, I mean who cares who this Linde guy is, but as a person who shares the same surname I find it fascinating that he knew Stephen Hawking and that Hawking actually mentions him in his book.
I would love to know his family history, because as far as I know is that our forefather Hans Jurgen Linder came to South Africa about 1753 and it was through the Dutch East Indian company (VOC) that our surname was changed to Linde without the letter ‘r’.
From what I gathered the inflationery model is a theory on how to explain how and why the universe is expanding.
Posted on April 18, 2018, in Book Reviews and tagged big bang theory, black holes, book review, history, Linde, stephen hawking. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on A Brief History of Time – Stephen Hawking.