From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time
Sean Carroll, Author . Dutton $26.95 (438p) ISBN 978-0-525-951
No one is better equipped to take readers on a rollercoaster ride through time, space, and the origins of the universe than Caltech theoretical physicist Carroll, cofounder of Cosmic Variance, one of the top science blog sites. “We're not thinking small here,” Carroll announces with glee before launching into his topic. Time is a medium we move through and a way to sequence events. But the “Arrow of Time' is also the only feature of the universe with one irreversible direction: time goes forward. This fact plays an important role in the second law of thermodynamics: the entropy (disorderliness) of an isolated system either remains constant or increases with time. This has implications for our understanding of the “Big Bang” origins of the universe. We may not be able to travel back in time, but we can find ways to peer back across it and see clues to how the universe evolved, thanks to such discoveries as quantum mechanics and relativity theory. Carroll writes with verve and infectious enthusiasm, reminding readers that “science is a journey in which getting there is, without question, much of the fun.” Illus.
Reviewed on: 11/02/2009