• Einstein and the Quantum

  • The Quest of the Valiant Swabian
  • By: A. Douglas Stone
  • Narrated by: Gabriel Vaughan
  • Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 06-10-13
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Audible Studios
  • 4 out of 5 stars 3.8 (18 ratings)

Summary

Einstein and the Quantum reveals for the first time the full significance of Albert Einstein's contributions to quantum theory. Einstein famously rejected quantum mechanics, observing that God does not play dice. But, in fact, he thought more about the nature of atoms, molecules, and the emission and absorption of light - the core of what we now know as quantum theory - than he did about relativity.
A compelling blend of physics, biography, and the history of science, Einstein and the Quantum shares the untold story of how Einstein - not Max Planck or Niels Bohr - was the driving force behind early quantum theory. It paints a vivid portrait of the iconic physicist as he grappled with the apparently contradictory nature of the atomic world, in which its invisible constituents defy the categories of classical physics, behaving simultaneously as both particle and wave. And it demonstrates how Einstein's later work on the emission and absorption of light, and on atomic gases, led directly to Erwin Schrodinger's breakthrough to the modern form of quantum mechanics.
The book sheds light on why Einstein ultimately renounced his own brilliant work on quantum theory, due to his deep belief in science as something objective and eternal. A book unlike any other, Einstein and the Quantum offers a completely new perspective on the scientific achievements of the greatest intellect of the twentieth century, showing how Einstein's contributions to the development of quantum theory are more significant, perhaps, than even his legendary work on relativity.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.
©2014 Princeton University Press (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By H. L. Mason on 09-04-15

ONLY FOR THE INITIATED

This is a fascinating journey from the "predictable"world of Newton to the "unpredictable" modern day world of quantum theory in which Einstein emerges as its principal driver - even though he later rejected the basic unpredictability of what he was so instrumental in bringing to light.
However, this is a book full of complex mathematical formulae which only those familiar with this subject can understand. Whilst I could follow the broad historical descriptions and developments, as a layman I was unable to comprehend the extensive mathematical explanations that so frequently occur in this book. In fact, I am not even sure that an average person literate in maths

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Homayon on 14-11-13

WOW what a riveting listen! A must for everyone

This book made me fall in love with the genius of the man all over again!

Over the years I have read many books (aimed at the layman) about the development of science and especially the history of theoretical physics. Of course I was aware of the whole 'not playing dice' objection but never knew the extent of how much the genius of the man shaped the quantum understanding too!

The book does an excellent job of depicting the genius and prowess of Einstein in such an easy way to follow and understand. The mix of anecdotes, life story, hard core physics and the well placed humour takes you through a gripping journey. Thank you Mr Stone for bringing him to life.

I wonder what he would have made of m theory?

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2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Amjad on 04-12-13

educational and fun

Any additional comments?

Great book. Actually explains enough physics to get what Einstein did in areas such as thermodynamics, specific heat, light quantization, the derivation of the Plank law, ...etc. This was the companion book I was looking for to go along with Manjit Kumar's "Quantum" (another great book). The two should be read (or heard) one after another.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Matthew L. Loftus on 11-05-18

A must for aspiring physicists/physics enthusiasts

This book was recommended to me by prolific physicist Alain Aspect at a talk he did at my University. He said that if I didn't end up liking the book, that he would pay me back for it. He makes this offer to lots of physicists and physics students, because he knows that they won't be disappointed. Now, on to the book itself.

Most physics lovers are familiar with Einstein's early contributions to what would ultimately blossom into modern quantum theory, such as his Nobel prize-winning work on the photoelectric effect. however, due in large part to his Monumental achievements with relativity Theory, and his philosophical objections to the emerging quantum theory, many are never made aware of the true extent of his involvement with (as well as his influence upon) the emerging theory of quantum mechanics. This book tells that story.

One of my personal favorite aspects of the book was the section in which the author gives what is perhaps the clearest and easiest-to-understand description of Bose-Einstein statistics I've ever heard. *That's essentially the application of Boltzmann's statistical mechanics/thermodynamics to quantum ideal gases, and would ultimately turn out to describe the aggregate behavior of the category of particles now known as bosons: particles with integer intrinsic spin angular momentum quantum numbers (i.e. photons, mesons, W & Z bosons etc), in contrast to fermions (spin 1/2 particles, such as quarks, leptons and baryons).

Anyway, I enjoyed the book.

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