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How to Build a Time Machine: The Real Science of Time Travel
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How to Build a Time Machine: The Real Science of Time Travel

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3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  91 ratings  ·  22 reviews
"A pop science look at time travel technology, from Einstein to Ronald Mallett to present day experiments. Forget fiction: time travel is real.
"In "How to Build a Time Machine," Brian Clegg provides an understanding of what time is and how it can be manipulated. He explores the remarkable possibilities of real time travel that emerge from quantum entanglement, superlumina...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published April 16th 2013 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published December 6th 2011)
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Kathleen
For a book about the wonders of time travel, this one isn't very enthusiastic. The science-history is interesting enough, although if that is what you're after I recommend A Brief History Of Time and The Physics of the Impossible as the best bits here are already attributed to Hawking and Kaku. The trouble with pop science books like this--and it isn't Clegg's fault at all--is that I'm a fan of the genre. I already know about Young's double slit experiment, relativistic time at speeds approachin...more
Glen Stripling
I am a science fiction writer that has written on wormholes and time travel. So I'm alwasys on the lookout for the the lastest research on time travel theory.

That is why Mr. Clegg's book was a great surprise for me and and an easy to read work on the basics or the reltavistic principles of the features involved with the traveling through spacetime.

His chapter on the story of Ronald Mallett and his research was an incredible chapter on the newest research on this exiting subject.

I get a lot of q...more
Kellie
A lot of it is really technical, but very informative which leads me to wonder why Sheldon and Leonard (Big Bang Theory) are always waiting for time traveling selves to walk through the door? Being physicists they should know the rules about traveling to the past. Can't say much more without giving the plot away!
Dasaleph
It seemed to me he was struggling to fill the pages. He repeats himself over and over again. Found it dull, often annoying. Nothing in there I hadn't already read somewhere else where it was presented in a more interesting way.
Paul Lunger
Time travel is a concept that is today more science fact than science fiction, but the key to understanding how this could become reality is the main question that Brian Clegg addresses in this rather interesting book. Clegg takes us on a journey that takes us from the very basic question of what is time all the way through the question of paradoxes. In the journey he examines the feasibility of time travel & the energy as well as physics behind the concept. He also describes just what it mi...more
Frank
As a science fiction author I found this book an interesting read on the physics that can make time travel possible. It re-confirmed in my mind that the most likely means will be available in the distant future once there are starships that can make extended voyages at close to the speed of light, thus creating the time dilation Einstein's Theory of Relativity predicts. That would take the star traveler on a one-way trip into the future.

Other theoretical means for time travel such as passing thr...more
Glen Robinson
No self-respecting science fiction writer would try to write without actually reading some science, and this is more ammunition for my speculation gun. Brian Clegg holds a physics degree from Cambridge University, and is the author of other popular books on physics such as Before the Big Bang and Armageddon Science. He does a good job of writing about some pretty heady stuff (quantum theory) without losing most of his readers. In contrast to most physicists, he also had the ability to communicat...more
Resa
Before beginning my review of this book I want to make it perfectly clear I have very little prior knowledge of quantum mechanics and physics that I used to inform my reading and that was my motivation to pick up Brian Clegg’s book. I love physics but hate math, which is a bad combination in the academic/practical world of physics. I do have the background of some college level physics, and that was enough for me to understand the concepts the way Clegg explains them in his book.

Unlike what the...more
David
After reading Stephen King's "1963", reading about book about whether or not time travel is real seemed to make sense. Clegg reviews the mysteries of quantum mechanics and historic experiments, even science fiction, that all touch on time travel. While the quantum physics gets tedious and hard to follow - even though Clegg does his best to keep things at a lay level - the reality that comes through is that time travel is probably not possible. Clegg remains optimistic - look how far technology h...more
Mike Ehlers
Overview of theoretically valid time travel methods. I know this is a pop science book, so I wasn't expecting anything rigorous, but the author often left gaping holes in his explanations of possible time travel methods/devices. Background on relevant scientists and potential paradoxes was interesting, but the actual descriptions of how time travel theoretically would work left me disappointed. Granted, it's quantum mechanics, inherently difficult to explain, but if you're going to write a book...more
Bruce
Clegg surveys historical and current theories of time travel, often using classics of science fiction, such as “Star Trek” and “Doctor Who” as examples, and concludes that although nothing known in current physics would prevent time travel, in practice the forces and conditions that would allow it to happen are beyond our current technical capabilities since they would involving the manipulation of masses denser than stars, and equally immense quantities of energy. This is good survey of the top...more
Philip
Interesting and entertaining presentation of some pretty difficult material - my brain hurts now.
Kara

It wasn’t what I was expecting, but it was fairly interesting.

He does a very good job covering the math and science behind the theoretical ways time travel could happen, but he also explores the people throughout the history of math and science who have tackled this problem, and not only explains their words and theories to the average lay person, he makes them all come alive and shows how human these people, despite a reputation for being dry and distant.
Michael
Read the whole book, and I still don't know how to build a time machine.

Joking aside, this is an introduction to topics such as the measurement and flow of time, relativity, entanglement, wormholes, and causality paradox. It takes a while to address the possibility of time travel. Not too surprisingly, the answer is "Who knows?"
Cara
This book was an easy read with the science clearly explained and next to no math equations to figure out. The author traced the history of theories of light, how time travel would have to work and where we are along the journey of what it would take for time travel. Science fiction is much more optimistic.
B Kevin
Very well written introduction to some of the more 'interesting' applications of modern physics. Don't panic, no equations. If you have ever wondered how possible time travel may be, without getting a degree in physics, this is the book for you.
Kevin Thews
Great book. Goes in depth about the concepts without using math. Clegg does a great job of explaining things simply, yet not leaving you to feel like he's left parts out.
BakuDreamer
WAY better than ' About Time ' by Frank ( which was closer to ' Waste of Time ' ... ) Akward in parts but overall very good
David
I'm not a science guy but I found this book entertaining and clearly written. Great for general readers.
Frances
Interesting tidbits on time...along with all the other scientific stuff that was made easy to understand.
Lisa
A bit over my head at times, but I made it through. A lot of physics and theory of time travel.
Kat
only just started...
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Brian Clegg has a degree in natural sciences from Cambridge and a masters in Operational Research. He spent seventeen years with British Airways, where he formed a new department tasked with developing hi-tech solutions for the airline, and now speaks throughout the world on business and science-related topics.

He is the author of several popular science titles, including Inflight Science, The God...more
More about Brian Clegg...
A Brief History of Infinity: The Quest to Think the Unthinkable Inflight Science: A Guide to the World From Your Airplane Window The God Effect: Quantum Entanglement, Science's Strangest Phenomenon Before the Big Bang: The Prehistory of Our Universe The Universe Inside You: The Extreme Science of the Human Body From Quantum Theory to the Mysteries of the Brain

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