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The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Leonard Susskind
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22. Juli 2009
At the beginning of the 21st century, physics is being driven to very unfamiliar territory--the domain of the incredibly small and the incredibly heavy. The new world is a world in which both quantum mechanics and gravity are equally important. But mysteries remain. One of the biggest involved black holes. Famed physicist Stephen Hawking claimed that anything sucked in a black hole was lost forever. For three decades, Leonard Susskind and Hawking clashed over the answer to this problem. Finally, in 2004, Hawking conceded.

THE BLACK HOLE WAR will explain the mind-blowing science that finally won out, and the emergence of a new paradigm that argues the world--this catalog, your home, your breakfast, you--is actually a hologram projected from the edges of space.

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The Black Hole War: My Battle with Stephen Hawking to Make the World Safe for Quantum Mechanics + The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design + The Holographic Universe: An Introduction to Black Holes, Information and the String Theory Revolution
Preis für alle drei: EUR 36,75

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  • Taschenbuch: 480 Seiten
  • Verlag: Back Bay Books; Auflage: Reprint (22. Juli 2009)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0316016411
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316016414
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 20,9 x 14 x 3,3 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 83.319 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Entertaining...both lucid and enjoyable...Like the best teachers, Susskind makes it fun to learn. With a deft use of analogy and a flair for language, he tames the most ferocious concepts...He has come up with the best visual metaphor for the multidimensinality of string theory that I've yet come across, one that alone is worth the price of the book - Los Angeles Times 'Susskind is very down to earth, an easy-going and entertaining guide through the most exciting frontiers of theoretical physics' #NAME?

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Leonard Susskind has been the Felix Bloch Professor in theoretical physics at Stanford University since 1978. The author of The Cosmic Landscape, he is a member of the National Academy of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the recipient of numerous prizes including the science writing prize of the American Institute of Physics for his Scientific American article on black holes. He lives in Palo Alto, California.

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Susskind ist grossartig 8. Mai 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
In dieser fast formelfreien Darstellung seines "Black Hole Wars" mit Stephen Hawking zeigt sich Susskind wieder als Meister der Erklärung - ohne dabei zu verschweigen, dass jede Analogie ihre Grenzen hat. Besonders interessant seine persönlichen Erinnerungen an Diskussionen mit anderen Grössen wie Feynman und Hawking.
War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?
Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.4 von 5 Sternen  91 Rezensionen
160 von 165 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A popularisation that mostly works 22. Juli 2008
Von Nigel Seel - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Susskind describes the decades-long battle between the quantum mechanics community and the general relativists as to whether information is lost when objects pass through the event horizon of a black hole and the hole eventually evaporates. According to Prof. Hawking and the GR community, as nothing can ever reappear from inside an event horizon, the information is indeed totally lost.

Susskind and Gerard 't Hooft begged to differ. Loss of information would violate the basic time-reversibility of QM: Hawking's ideas would lead to universe-destroying phenomena (p. 23). Somehow, the information locked the wrong side of the event horizon must leak out via Hawking radiation. But how?

The resolution of this dilemma took many years of conjectures and refutations. Susskind takes us on a tour of entropy, holographic principles and physics at the Planck scale. And the adversarial plot keeps the reader turning the pages.

I am normally very dubious about popularisations. They proceed by raking up endless analogies which never quite fit together, so that by the end of the book, your mind is like that jig-saw puzzle you bought and could never fit together.

This book was never going to be the exception - the mathematics of quantum field theory, general relativity and string theory are just too arcane for popular culture concepts to cohere around. However, there are wonderful insights all the way through this book and we do end up learning something about the large scale map of the territory. Apparently even the experts find it hard to get the whole thing into one focus.
27 von 31 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Liked it, didn't love it 22. März 2010
Von Eebers - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I find the material covered by Leonard Susskind in The Black Hole War intrinsically interesting, and Mr. Susskind does a creditable job of laying it out. The problem with this book is not the subject matter, but rather the writing and, even more so, the editing. The editor should have reigned in Mr. Susskind's penchant for rambling, tangential explanations. Covering this material without mathematics is a daunting task, and Mr. Susskind gives it a reasonable shot. But I was often left with the feeling that I should have had a better understanding than I did. For instance, his treatment of "horizon atoms" left me scratching my head.

One other aspect bothered me, and that was the overly blunt assessment of Stephen Hawking's current cognitive abilities. It was speculative and not particularly nice. A scientist search for truth needs to be bounded by a respect for the personal (as opposed to professional) privacy of living fellow scientists.

Finally, the whole premise of a "war" is really labored. Scientific theories change over time as new facts arrive. War is something else. The Catholic Church went to war against Galileo. Mr. Susskind participated in a, at-best, spirited debate.
49 von 59 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Susskind shines !! 16. Juli 2008
Von Regnal - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This is absolutely the greatest example of what popular science book about theoretical physics/cosmology should be !! Writing is so brilliant, witty, straightforward, direct and succinct, that regardless of education level, anybody can enjoy interesting content (history of science as well as author's personal story) of "The Black Hole War". Author uses analogies in the best possible way, comparable only to Brian Greene and Michio Kaku. Drawings are frequent, well selected, informative and easy to understand. He writes: "The real tools for understanding the quantum universe are abstract mathematics: infinite dimensional Hilbert spaces, projection operators, unitary matrices and a lot of other advanced principles that take a few years to learn. But let's see how we do in just a few pages". AND HE DELIVERES !! While this book could be a starter for anybody, I recommend it to all who know Kip Thorne's famous work. For reason unknown to me, important black hole "war" is not mentioned in "Black Holes & Time Warps" at all, therefore Susskind's work becomes great extension to BH history of science. Professor Susskind created a true masterpiece where he even acknowledges coexistence of science and faith by writing: "The British intellectual world seems to be big enough for both Dawkins and Polkinghorne". Nothing but big applaud for the author and his effort !!
90 von 114 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Black Holes 16. November 2008
Von Sanford Aranoff - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
The book discusses a problem. According to Hawking, when an object falls down a black hole (BH), all information is lost. The problem is that this violates a principle of physics that information is never lost. The future cannot lose track of the past, for then the past would cease to exist, as the only meaning to the past is present observations and records. Susskind proposes a solution that took him a decade to resolve, and he discusses this in the book. The solution is the Holographic Principle, which is that all the information inside the 3-dimensional sphere of the BH resides on the 2-dimensional surface. An object falling down a BH never crosses the surface, and so the information is not lost. There is a "dual description" that does not refer to the inside.

Susskind makes heavy use of String Theory to establish the theory. Actually, one can arrive at the same conclusion without the use of String Theory or quantum mechanics, by simply focusing on basic principles of physics and general relativity (GR). According to GR, it takes an object forever to reach the BH, and so it never gets inside. We therefore cannot speak about the inside. Everything falling down a BH is eternally falling, and so the information is not lost. We cannot speak about the inside of the BH. This then is exactly Susskind's Holographic Principle, where all information is outside the BH.

Science, and in particular physics, is a collection of theories. A theory is a mathematical system along with observational and experimental agreement. If it is impossible in principle to perform an observation, the theory cannot speak about that situation. Science also includes guesses, research proposals, and hypotheses, not all of which are theories.

The confusion arises from the formal existence of a solution of GR that from the viewpoint of the falling object, the object crosses the event horizon in finite time. However, since it is impossible in principle to observe an object "entering" the BH, this formal solution does not exist in reality.

If we accept the argument that something that a falling observer (someone who cannot return nor communicate with the rest of the world) can observe is considered as a valid scientific observation, we then lose our ability to criticize people for believing that the dead go to Heaven. The dead person (one who cannot return nor communicate with the rest of the world) observes Heaven. We scientists must be very careful about our scientific reasoning, and not give others the opportunity to twist it to make it sound as if we support religion, as is, unfortunately, often the case.

In summary, the principle of objective observation implies that no object can enter a BH.

Another point is that the formal solution of GR from the viewpoint of the falling observer is not a valid solution of GR. This is due to the proven existence of a singularity at the center. Since the object reaches the singularity in finite time, this solution is not valid. If we insist on accepting this formal solution, we get into paradoxes, as is usually the case when one accepts formal invalid solutions.

According to the Holographic Principle, no future theory can discuss the inside of a BH.

I gave four stars. The book makes excellent reading. It helps clarify some aspects of String Theory. For this, I give it three stars. His points about information residing outside the BH give it another star. I do not give it five stars, as his main point about where the information is can be proven by understanding and applying basic principles of science. We scientists and teachers must never lose sight of basic principles.

Susskind makes the common error of defining a BH as a place where light cannot escape, implying that the idea of an inside of a BH is a meaningful concept, contradicting his own Holographic Principle. A correct definition of a BH is a mass so large that objects falling towards it are time-dilated and red-shifted out of existence.

Another error in the book is mentioning "the 3-dimensional space inside the BH". The geometry is very much non-Euclidean. Approaching a BH is geometrically similar to moving eternally outwards to the "end" of the universe. Speaking about the inside of a BH is geometrically similar to speaking about space outside the universe, i.e., not meaningful.
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Black hole war 28. November 2010
Von Adjunct George - Veröffentlicht auf
I really enjoyed this book. I received my Ph.D. in experimental physics over 40 years ago so the words and ideas were new to me. For the clear exposition of string theory I am grateful. I believe this book is understandable (with a little digging) by anyone with an undergraduate degree in the physical sciences. The illustrations filled a conceptual gap for me. However, I have one criticism. The author seems to believe that having a description of the object is the object and so the world must act as the mathematics says it should act. I am not so sure. This has been a philosophical problem from Plato's day. Thus it appears that cutting edge physics is again within the "event horizon" of philosophy. When you read the book, just remember that the item is a thing and the description is just the current description of the item.
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