The End of Physics: The Myth of a Unified Theory

David Lindley, Author
David Lindley, Author Basic Books $25 (275p) ISBN 978-0-465-01548-1
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Lindley, senior editor of Science magazine, writes about the 20th-century quest for a theory that will unify the fundamental forces of nature into one mathematics. Other such overviews, such as Brian Appleyard ' s Understanding the Present (Forecasts, Feb. 15), may be more thorough and incisive, but Lindley's study has rare expository grace and verve. The ambiguity of Lindley's title ( end as aim, or death; myth as illuminating metaphor, or unverifiable falsehood) captures the breadth and significance of the search for GUT. Readers with ambitions to actually understand Hawking, Weinberg, or other active physicists writing about the state of GUT will find this a good place to begin. Library of Science selection. (June)
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