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On The Shoulders of Giants (2002) - Stephen Hawking

On The Shoulders of Giants (2002) - Stephen Hawking
On the Shoulders of Giants: The Great Works of Physics and Astronomy is a compilation of scientific texts edited and with commentary by the British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking. The book was published by Running Press in 2002
·        On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres by Nicolaus Copernicus, which explains Copernicus' theory of heliocentrism: that the Sun, rather than Earth, lies in the center of the universe
·        Mystery of the Cosmos, Harmony of the World and Rudolphine Tables by Johannes Kepler, which describes Kepler's theories and observations in astronomy
·        Two New Sciences by Galileo Galilei explains Galileo's discoveries in physics
·        Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy) by Sir Isaac Newton
·        The Principle of Relativity by Albert Einstein
In On the Shoulders of Giants, Stephen Hawking brings together the greatest works by Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Newton and Einstein, showing how their pioneering discoveries changed the way we see the world.
From Copernicus’ revolutionary claim that the earth orbits the sun and Kepler’s development of the laws of planetary motion to Einstein’s interweaving of time and space, each scientist built on the theories of their predecessors to answer the questions that had long mystified humanity.
Hawking also provides fascinating glimpses into their lives and times – Galileo’s trial in the Papal inquisition, Newton’s bitter feuds with rivals and Einstein absent-mindedly jotting notes that would lead to his Theory of Relativity while pushing his baby son’s pram. Depicting the great challenges these men faced and the lasting contributions they made, Hawking explains how their works transformed the course of science – and gave us a better understanding of the universe and our place in it.
World-renowned physicist and bestselling author Stephen Hawking presents a revolutionary look at the momentous discoveries that changed our perception of the world with this first-ever compilation of seven classic works on physics and astronomy. His choice of landmark writings by some of the world's great thinkers traces the brilliant evolution of modern science and shows how each figure built upon the genius of his predecessors. On the Shoulders of Giants includes, in their entirety, On the Revolution of Heavenly Spheres by Nicolaus Copernicus; Principiaby Sir Isaac Newton; The Principle of Relativity by Albert Einstein; Dialogues Concerning Two Sciences by Galileo Galilei with Alfonso De Salvio; plus Mystery of the Cosmos, Harmony of the World, and Rudolphine Tables by Johannes Kepler. It also includes five critical essays and a biography of each featured physicist, written by Hawking himself.
Acclaimed physicist Hawking has collected in this single illuminating volume the classic works of physics and astronomy that in their day revolutionized humankind's perception of the world. Included are Copernicus's On the Revolution of Heavenly Spheres, Galileo's Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences, Kepler's "Harmony of the World," Newton's The Principia and selections from The Principle of Relativity by Einstein. Taken together, these writings document the evolution of our conception of the universe from a pre-Copernican cosmos with a stationary earth at its center to one in which the very weave of time and space are relative. The editor's ability to step back and view the sweep of his subject was first showcased in his bestselling A Brief History of Timeand confirmed in his The Universe in a Nutshell. In an essay introducing each work here, he gives a short and sweet biography of its author and an explanation of its significance, as well as the occasional gem, like Galileo's handwritten renunciation of his beliefs before the Inquisition. To read the works themselves is to feel the thrill and mystery of intimacy with oft-cited source documents. Despite the volume's heftiness, Hawking has given these works a setting that is elegantly simple and, in its simplicity, effectively broadening. (Oct.)

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