Cover image for Everything you need to know about physics
Everything you need to know about physics
Stebben, Gregg.
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Publication Information:
New York : Pocket Books, [1999]

Physical Description:
146 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm.
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QC24.5 .S74 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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If you think the Laws of Motion are only discussed in the local traffic court, or that E=mc[superscript 2] is the name of a rap group, The Pocket Professor: Physics is just the thing to accelerate your learning curve and give you the vocabulary and core knowledge you need to make sense of the rules that govern our universe. You'll learn why Galileo dropped the ball, follow Planck on his quantum leap, and perceive the relative genius of Einstein. Taking you to the eve of the atom's discovery and explaining the seriousness of gravity, this invaluable volume gives you everything you need to better understand the world according to Newton (that's Sir Isaac, not Big Fig). Book jacket.

Table of Contents

What Goes Up Must Come Downp. 1
Why Does the Sun Always Set in the West?p. 2
What Is Physics?p. 2
What Is Hard?p. 3
What If Physics Were Simple?p. 4
You Got a Problem?p. 7
Albert Einstein Explains How to Think About Thinkingp. 7
Galileo's Scientific Method Unveiledp. 8
How Carl Sagan Separated the Scientific Truth from the Bullp. 10
How to Talk in Physicsp. 11
English-to-Physics Dictionaryp. 12
Physics Across Three Time Zonesp. 18
Physics Timeline Explainedp. 18
Two Thousand Years of Wrong Thinking in Physicsp. 19
The Way Things Weren'tp. 19
Aristarchus and Aristotlep. 20
Missing the Boat with Aristotlep. 21
Ptolemy What You Thinkp. 21
Aristarchus Gets Vindicated and Ptolemy Gets a Kick in the Pbuttp. 23
Let the Classical Physics Revolution Beginp. 23
Galileo Develops the First Astronomical Telescopep. 23
Science Throws Down the Gauntletp. 23
Galileo Takes on the Church ... and Public Opinionp. 24
Galileo Takes on Aristotlep. 24
"What If Physics Were Different?"p. 25
Galileo Starts Smallp. 26
Galileo's Next Problem ...p. 26
Galileo as Supermanp. 29
But Galileo Doesn't Complete the Circlep. 30
Kepler is Loyal to the Church But Supports Galileo, toop. 31
Descartes Adds His Two Cents and Finally Gets Ahead of the Horsep. 32
Newton Wins the Gloryp. 33
"Solar" System? What a Concept!p. 33
Newton Steals More Ideas from Galileop. 34
How to Think Like Isaac Newtonp. 34
The World According to Newtonp. 35
Phenomenon, Phenomenap. 35
Gravity ... As You've Never Known Herp. 37
The Ultimate Gravity Proofp. 39
The Other Ultimate Gravity Proofp. 41
The Final Ultimate Gravity Proofp. 41
Marilyn, Elvis, and Isaac?p. 41
Three Things Isaac Newton and a First Lady Have in Commonp. 42
New Study Shows It's Not Just Criminals Who Hate Newtonp. 42
Maybe It's Just a Sign of the Timesp. 43
Keeping the Planets in Linep. 44
Elliptically Speakingp. 44
Distance [divide] Time = Speedp. 45
A Matter of Gravityp. 46
Gravity's Not the Only Forcep. 47
Do-It-Yourself Gravityp. 49
Great Strides in Physicsp. 49
Classical Mechanicsp. 50
Alternative Energy Source?p. 51
An Analogy to Drool Overp. 52
Electricity and Magnetismp. 56
Four Things Ben Franklin Never Knew About Electricityp. 58
Heatp. 61
Gas, Liquid, or Solid?p. 66
Soundp. 69
Catch a Wave! Eleven Things Your Local Surfer Can Teach You About Physicsp. 70
Lightp. 72
... The End of Classical Physicsp. 74
What's an Atom?p. 74
Ernest Rutherford Discovers the Nucleusp. 75
The Birth of Quantum Theoryp. 76
And Let's Not Forget the Ether Questionp. 77
Albert Einstein Mounts a Side Attack on Newton and Classical Physicsp. 78
Love Your Underachieverp. 78
Or Did Albert Have a Master Plan?p. 79
Einstein Has a Good Yearp. 79
Al Has an Even Better Year ... While Taking a Road Trip 42 Years After He Diedp. 80
E = mc[superscript 2]p. 80
How Albert Einstein Tricked the Teacherp. 81
"Isn't that Special?"p. 81
"Why Didn't I Think of That?"p. 81
From "How Come...?" to "What If...?"p. 83
Now It's Time for an Einstein Anecdotep. 83
"What Did You See and When Did You See it?"p. 85
Faster than a Speeding Gedanken...p. 86
The Bottom Line on Einstein's Special Relativityp. 87
"This is Einstein to Mission Control"p. 87
Space and Timep. 90
My Time Isn't Your Timep. 91
The Einstein Addendump. 94
Heads or Tails?p. 94
"What's It All About, Alfie?"p. 95
Yikes! Light Bends! Space Is Warped!p. 96
"Go Straight, Young Man"p. 98
Whew! That's a Relief--Even Einstein Could Fail!p. 99
Contrast with a Theory Called Chaosp. 100
Back to the Quantum Highwayp. 100
A Technical Physics Term: "Weird"p. 102
Ten Random Clues About Quantum Physics That Won't Help You Understand It at allp. 103
But What About Schrodinger's Cat?p. 113
And Einstein's Cat...p. 113
Your Favorite Physicists Trade Barbsp. 115
How to Make a Startling New Discovery in Physicsp. 126
How to Succeed in Physicsp. 127
Are Great Physicists Born or Made?p. 129
The Difference Between Science and Technologyp. 130
How to Win the Nobel Prize...p. 131
...And What to Do After You've Won Itp. 132
Best-Selling Authors as Physicistsp. 134
A Few Final Wordsp. 135