Knocking on Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World

Knocking on Heaven s Door How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World Science has a battle for hearts and minds on its hands How good it feels to have Lisa Randall s unusual blend of top flight science clarity and charm on our side Richard Dawkins Dazzling ideas Read

  • Title: Knocking on Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World
  • Author: Lisa Randall
  • ISBN: 9780061723728
  • Page: 157
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Science has a battle for hearts and minds on its hands.How good it feels to have Lisa Randall s unusual blend of top flight science, clarity, and charm on our side Richard Dawkins Dazzling ideas.Read this book today to understand the science of tomorrow Steven PinkerThe bestselling author of Warped Passages, one of Time magazine s 100 Most Influential People in the Science has a battle for hearts and minds on its hands.How good it feels to have Lisa Randall s unusual blend of top flight science, clarity, and charm on our side Richard Dawkins Dazzling ideas.Read this book today to understand the science of tomorrow Steven PinkerThe bestselling author of Warped Passages, one of Time magazine s 100 Most Influential People in the World, and one of Esquire s 75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century, Lisa Randall gives us an exhilarating overview of the latest ideas in physics and offers a rousing defense of the role of science in our lives Featuring fascinating insights into our scientific future born from the author s provocative conversations with Nate Silver, David Chang, and Scott Derrickson, Knocking on Heaven s Door is eminently readable, one of the most important popular science books of this or any year It is a necessary volume for all who admire the work of Stephen Hawking, Michio Kaku, Brian Greene, Simon Singh, and Carl Sagan for anyone curious about the workings and aims of the Large Hadron Collider, the biggest and most expensive machine ever built by mankind for those who firmly believe in the importance of science and rational thought and for anyone interested in how the Universe began and how it might ultimately end.

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    About "Lisa Randall"

    1. Lisa Randall

      LISA RANDALL is Professor of Physics at Harvard University She began her physics career at Stuyvesant High School in New York City She was a finalist, and tied for first place, in the National Westinghouse Science Talent Search She went on to Harvard where she earned the BS 1983 and PhD 1987 in physics She was a President s Fellow at the University of California at Berkeley, a postdoctoral fellow at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and a junior fellow at Harvard University She joined the MIT faculty in 1991 as an assistant professor, was promoted to associate professor in 1995 and received tenure in 1997 Between 1998 and 2001 she had a joint appointment at Princeton and MIT as a full professor She moved to Harvard as a full professor in 2001 She was the 1st tenured woman in physics at Princeton the 1st tenured woman theorist in science at Harvard and at MIT She s the most cited theoretical physicist in the world in the last five years as of last autumn a total of about 10,000 citations In this regard, she is most known for two papers A Large mass Hierarchy From a Small Extra Dimension 2500 citations and and An Alternative to Compactification about 2500 citations Both concern Warped Geometry Spacetime and show that infinite extra dimension and weakness of gravity can be explained with an extra dimension.Lisa Randall s research in theoretical high energy physics is primarily related to the question of what is the physics underlying the standard model of particle physics This has involved studies of strongly interacting theories, supersymmetry, and most recently, extra dimensions of space In this latter work, she investigates warped geometries The focus of this work has been a particular class of theories based on five dimensional AdS space which has the remarkable property that the graviton is localized and the space need not be compactified Related work demonstrates that this theory yields a very natural resolution to the hierarchy problem of particle physics the large ratio of the Planck and electroweak scales and further, is compatible with unification of gauge couplings This latter class of theories suggests interesting experimental tests The study of further implications of this work has involved string theory, holography, and cosmology Lisa Randall also continues to work on supersymmetry and other beyond the standard model physics.Within a year of her work on extra dimensions, it was featured on the front page of the Science Times section of The New York Times It has also been featured in the Economist, the New Scientist, Science,Nature, The Los Angeles Times, The Dallas Daily News, a BBC Horizons television program, BBC radio, and other news sources She has also been also been interviewed because Science Watch and the ISI Essential Science Indicators have indicated her research as some of the best cited in all of science.edge memberbio lisa_randall

    306 thoughts on “Knocking on Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World”

    1. Lisa Randall is a theoretical physicist at Harvard University. She is well known for her research in high-energy physics. You can view a video of Jon Stewart interviewing Randall on The Daily Show. She is a very articulate speaker, and her writing is crystal clear.The book is divided into five parts. The first part explores the philosophy of science, and gets into some aspects of the science-vs.-religion debate. Randall notes that some people turn to religion for answers that science cannot yet [...]


    2. I love physics. I love that we know so much about physics, and that we still have so much left to learn! I love reading about how far we have come from Ptolemaic ideas of geocentricity to mapping the cosmic microwave background radiation itself. And don’t get me started about the Large Hadron Collider: 7 TeV? Really? Up to 14 TeV in the next few years? Various atrocious self-help books claim they’ll help you unlock “the secrets of the universe”. The scientists and engineers at CERN are q [...]


    3. I’m not sure how this book came about, but it’s the kind of mish-mash that suggests the work of a committee. First, there’s the title Knocking on Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World, which bears no resemblance to the content of the book. Then, there’s the subject matter itself. The book begins with an overly involved discussion of scale, and how scientists select the scale of their observations depending on the type of phenomeno [...]


    4. I will admit defeat. As much as I love popular physics books I just cannot bear to finish this one. The author is obviously brilliant, knows her field well, and has an infectious enthusiasm for science. Unfortunately, she seems to have fallen into the trap that some brilliant people do: she assumes her intelligence and acumen in the field of physics means that her insights outside of that field are similarly brilliant. Alas, this is not so. Repeatedly, she discusses the financial world and does [...]


    5. انتهيت من قراءة كتاب الطرق على أبوب السماء - ليزا راندل ، هو أكثر كتاب بسط لى فيزياء الجسيمات ، الكتاب أسلوبه سهل جداً وسلس رغم صعوبة موضوعاته فموضوعاته هى بلا شك أصعب موضوعات توصل لها العلم قاطبةالكتاب يشرح تجربة سيرن بالتفصيل ولا يشرح أغراض تجربة سيرن فقط ولكنه أيضاً يشرح ا [...]


    6. Eminent theoretical physicist Lisa Randall regards her new book "Knocking on Heaven's Door" as a "prequel" to her earlier "Warped Passages". But it is much more than that, as a clearly written statement by a distinguished scientist explaining how science works to an interested, if substantially scientific illiterate, public. While there are other books, such as those written by her high school and college classmate, physicist Brian Greene, which emphasize the state-of-the-art thinking in theoret [...]


    7. What I don’t know about particle physics amounts to an enormous trove of data. Before reading this book, I had no idea just how much I didn’t know. Now, however, I have a much better idea about what the parameters of what I don’t know might be. I can’t visualize them, but through the process of examining what I do know, the conspicuous absences in the shadows of my knowledge subtly hint at vast deserts of unknowable terrain. Fluctuations of confusion, blackness, and chaos are sometimes t [...]


    8. Once I had a guitar. I worked really, really hard on learning how to play, but never got the hang of it. I put it away. Ten years later I took it out of the closet, thinking to myself, I've been listening to a lot of music, and it's been ten years, I should be much better at this. That's right, I wasn't.I'm interested in cosmology and physics in much the same way I'm interested in Buddhism, and a bit more than I was actually interested in the guitar. Let's take Buddhism first. I've read lots of [...]


    9. Ótima descrição de como funciona o LHC, como foi construído e o que é pesquisado lá. É impressionante pensar no volume dessa empreitada, o número de pesquisadores envolvidos e a própria escala do que é feito lá. O livro em si vai bem mais além disso, é voltado para quem não tem familiaridade com a ciência. Então ela explica desde o processo científico à várias teorias científicas e questões atuais que devem ser investigadas. Cobre bem do "bem-vindo à ciência" ao conhecimen [...]


    10. This was quite a mish-mash of topics and quality. I really enjoyed some of the super-symmetry/particle physics discussion. The LHC motivation/justification seemed to be the main topic of this book, however, my impression was that this really should have been broken up into three or four separate books. There was some good physics and LHC background motivation. There was a totally disconnected chapter on the financial crises and climate change. There was a good proportion of this book on the phil [...]


    11. أتممته كتاب ‫#‏الطرق_على_ابواب_السماء‬ ل ‫#‏ليزا_راندا‬ ( وأخيرا Смайлик «smile» )تقييمي الشخصي للكتاب( ك كتاب علمي ) : 4.5 من 5 ( ك كتاب ثقافي) : 3 من 5اذا ما كنت وزيرا للتربية والتعليم لبلادي لأمرت بحرق جميع كتاب الفيزياء من الصفوف الاعدادية والثانوية وأيضا الجامعية ولاستبدلتها ب [...]


    12. I have to admit that I'm really not sure who this book is for. It is written very simply overall which makes me assume it is for the general public. However, the author includes complicated scientific details without explaining them thoroughly. I have a BS in physics and I know enough to understand what she describes IF she gave enough information. I was also annoyed by her incessant name dropping and how much she talked about her accomplishments. In general I have no problem with an author talk [...]


    13. This "prequel" to Randall's other book, Warped Passages, is quite good.Her writing style is (thankfully) much improved.She talks a lot about scale and model dependent realism.She tactfully tackles the topic of religion vs. science.Her thesis is that these activities involve incompatible brain processes.It's a neat insight, but she avoids stomping on religion's plethora of poor predictions.My wife and I played a drinking game where we took a shot every time the book uses the word "phenomena".We g [...]


    14. This was one of the best science divulgation books I've read. Lisa Randall makes excellent comments of the latest advances in physics, masterfully explaining relevant aspects about the weirdly interesting new discoveries and theories in Quantum Mechanics, and the new insights regarding the macro-structure of the Cosmos as told by modern Cosmology. She dedicates a good part of the book to tell us about the LHC history, perfectly illustrating it's importance. It's not only one of, if no the, bigge [...]


    15. Some of the contents in this book are quite complicated that I need to read the whole book twice in order to absorb what's in it. I've read quite a number of books on the impacts of science on the society and the critical role it plays, which is discussed again in Knocking on Heaven's Door, but what differentiates this book from others is that, the author gives quite a detailed information regarding the intricate working mechanism of the LHC and the other important machines at CERN. Readers will [...]


    16. Lisa Randall is one of my all time favorite scientists and this book has become on of my favorite books. I noticed that of individuals who gave this book low ratings, the following critiques were often included in their reviews:1) Randall does not write for the layperson/is too technical2) This book seems a mashup hodgepodge of unrelated topics3) Nothing new here- just cut and paste of her other booksTo the first critique, while I agree that Randall has a more formal style (to me something neces [...]


    17. This is really a combination of two books; one is a simple explanation of scientific method and worldview and the other is a description of the Large Hadron Collider and what it may find. The explanation of how science works is good if fairly basic; the most important part is discussing scales and effective theories. Unfortunately she mixes it with a weak-kneed criticism of religion, which annoys me in books of popular science -- I haven't taken religion seriously since I was eleven, and I doubt [...]


    18. كتاب اكثر من رائع اخذتنا فيه الكاتبه رحله من اصغر نقطة في الماده الجسيمات الى اكبر مما نتخيل الكونشرحت فيه الكثير ففي.الجزء الأول تقدير نطاق الواقعهنا الكاتب عرض الواقع وكيف ان ماهو صغير في نضر البعض كبير في نضر البعض الاخر ثم حاول كشف الأسرار بعرض الكثير من الأمثلة ثم تكلم ع [...]


    19. This is a disappointing book. The collection of the author's thoughts about the role of science and many of the key insights of physics seem repetitive of what has been said before. A good part of the book is about the Higgs boson and the Large Hadron Collider. That presentation was heavy on jargon and detail, and light on why all of this is significant for the non-expert reader, although it's probably excellent for those who want to get a full story on the Collider. The organization of the book [...]


    20. I don't give many books five stars before I read them in their entirety, but I am so impressed with Lisa Randall and her philosophical arguments in the first part of this very timely book. Namely she tackles the issue of religious thinking vs. scientific thinking head on. While she is clearly prejudiced in favor of the latter, being an honored Theoretical Physicist and Professor, she covers many salient points that concern both and manages to assert her understandings of the arguments without be [...]


    21. Lisa Randall's book is another attempt in a long line of books about contemporary physics which is aimed at the interested buy not scientifically educated public. It must be extremely difficult to explain highly sophisticated, highly-mathematically oriented concepts to the lay reader while maintaining his or her interest. We should thank these brilliant and gifted scientists for making the effort to help us understand these often non-intuitive concepts without the use of the difficult math which [...]


    22. الطرق علي ابواب السماءكيف تنير الفيزياء و التفكير العلمي الكون و العالم المعاصرتاليف / ليزا راندل.كتاب صعب كالعادة ، لانني قليل الاطلاع علي كتب العلوم . يتحدث الكتاب عن بحوث الفيزيائيين و علماء الفلك و كيف تطورت بحوثهم الي حد مذهل ؛ فقد وصلوا لانشاء و بناء " مصادم الهيدرونات ا [...]


    23. Lisa Randall is a tenured Harvard physicist, no mean accomplishment. She has become a bit of a personality figure, partly because she is a woman in a man's profession, partly because she is an attractive woman in a man's profession, and partly because (rumor has it) she is a lesbian woman in a man's profession. Whatever!The book is about the need for a new model of particles--the Standard Model ignores gravity and contains restrictions that make little sense. Randall reviews some basic aspects o [...]


    24. The first 2/3 of this book was a 3 star. Randall was all over the place with analogies and subject matter. It was hard to keep track of the points she was trying to make and for my desires it was a bit too light on the physics I was looking for. The last 1/3 completely made up for it. Good material on sub-atomic particles, the LHC, expansion of the universe, dark matter and a bit of string theory. Mostly over my head but I did feel my hair move in the breeze.3.5 stars rounded down because too mu [...]


    25. There seems to be two objectives to this book: the nature of science and its relationship with religion and beauty and the creativity that lies at its core; and the present state of particle physics and the roll the Large Hadron Collider will play going forward. Her meditations on the nature of science are welcome and thoughtful. She articulates passionately the beauty of the scientific method and the importance of scale.Next she gives us great insights into particle physics with an easy to foll [...]


    26. I really enjoyed this book: I'd love to give it 5 stars but three things prevent it for me:(1) I didn't understand the narrative flow, although I enjoyed each chapter. I couldn't quite follow the thread, robbing me of the final satisfaction of seeing it "all come together". Maybe the chapters weren't intended to build on each other (much) and I only imagined that they should?(2) In several cases, I *almost* understood the physics but wished that she had used just one more example, or substituted [...]


    27. This book introduces the reader to some of the recent research in the field of fundamental physics, with an emphasis on the now-constructed Large Hadron Collider (LHC) near Geneva, Switzerland. The author's enthusiasm and excitement for this new system is apparent on every page. As she correctly describes the LHC as simultaneously the world's most advanced and sophisticated machine, and also its largest in physical extent. It is certainly the most remarkable scientific instrument ever created, a [...]


    28. A nice summary of recent happenings at the LHC and, through that, a survey of contemporary physics. Randall's got an interesting perspective on the intersection of particle physics and cosmology, two topics which have fascinated me since I was a teenager, and this is a good overview of where those fields stand. Randall intersperses the book with her thoughts on creativity and science-thinking, which I appreciated as she touches on the disparity between theory and data that underlies so many publ [...]


    29. My rating has less to do with any recommendation for this book but more of my own personal reaction to it. In terms of recommendation, I recommend this book highly to those who want to know more about particle physics and the Higgs-Boson business and a thing or two about scientific thought. For my own purposes, I found Simon Singh's Big Bang theory much more enlightening in terms of how scientific thought progresses. Lisa Randall is much more contemporary with her content, of course, but this bo [...]


    30. This was interesting and generally pretty clear in describing some physics that is just ridiculously complex. Randall is a serious theoretical physicist and brings a good first hand view of what such people actually do with the LHC and what they hope to do next. It's topical just now because of the Higgs and she goes into just what the Higgs is and what it means. At the time of writing the Higgs had not been announced, of course, but reading this helped me understand the announcement much better [...]


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