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The New World of Mr. Tompkins

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  271 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Mr. Tompkins is back! The mild-mannered bank clerk with the short attention span and vivid imagination has inspired, charmed, and informed young and old alike since the publication of the hugely successful Mr Tompkins in Paperback (by George Gamow) in 1965. Now, this highly affable character returns to embark on a set of adventures that explore the extreme edges of the uni ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published August 6th 2001 by Cambridge University Press (first published 1999)
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Jan 19, 2014 Yasmeen rated it really liked it
Very cool, cute book. To be honest, science is not exactly my biggest passion in life, but I do find certain aspects of it extremely interesting, like relativity and quantum theory. It's really nice to have ideas like that made accessible and even entertaining. I liked the format of reading Mr Tomkins' musings followed by some actual explanation by the professor- it meant that I was generally able to follow what was happening. The overarching narrative was cute too, and made the whole thing feel ...more
Sep 04, 2015 Brian rated it it was ok
A lot of the fun and charm of the original was lost in this politically correct update.
Allan Olley
May 11, 2017 Allan Olley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This reworking of a classic work of popular science is well put together and engaging. I can not comment on the differences between this and earlier iterations like Mr. Tompkins in Paperback. It explains various concepts in physics using fanciful examples to give one a qualitative feel for some of the implications, very little of the precise math or the like is conveyed although an equation or two pop up. Some parts are just straightforward exposition of physics and may drag a little, but overal ...more
Nina Selezneva
Oct 11, 2016 Nina Selezneva rated it it was amazing
Wonderful pop science accessible to all audiences
Harshit Tabyal
Jun 29, 2016 Harshit Tabyal rated it really liked it
It covers topics mostly from quantum physics and one or two chapter are on relativity. It is a excellent book for layman who wants to know about these subjects. Concepts are explained through funny and entertaining adventures of Mr Tompkins.

You won't understand the concepts of quantum physics in entirety (otherwise there would be no need for university education) but still it presents before you pretty good picture of things.

If you want to understand concepts quantum physics like a proper scient
Jun 24, 2012 Jenny rated it really liked it
After reading about George Gamow earlier this year, I wanted to go back and reread some of his Mr. Tompkins stories. This updated edition was available through the public library. It retains many of Gamow's original stories and the lyrics and music to the Cosmic Opera written by his wife. It does not contain many of the more dated and sexist references from the original and updates the physics to what was known and accepted in 1999.

More importantly, reading this book reminded me of reading my f
Jun 03, 2008 John rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, nonfiction
Pretty good. Though nowhere near the PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH comparisons. I got a bit weary toward the end and just like the Mr. Tompkins of the title, found myself fighting nodding off. Which he seems to do whenever anyone starts talking science stuff. If I had been the professor and some bald headed jerk always showed up to my lectures only to sit in the back and snore loudly, I would have rudely disinvited him from any future attendances. Not introduce him to my daughter. Still. A decent frame to s ...more
Jun 13, 2009 L.S. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science, 2010
Mr. Tompkins adventures are really delicious. But I feel the last 3 chapters by Stannard don't fit very well in the volume.

Argumente ale expansiunii Universului:
- faptul că vedem galaxiile foarte îndepărtate aşa cum erau în urmă cu numărul corespunzător de milioane de ani-lumină
- creşterea numărului de galaxii pe volum de spaţiu cu cât mai în urmă priveşti în spaţiu; cu alte cuvinte, universul se rarefiază
- quasarii pe care în prezent îi vedem dar ei nu mai există*
- raportul hidrogen-heliu (77%
Dec 13, 2016 Steve rated it really liked it
This is a great update to a classic book. The original adventures of Mr. Tompkins have been modernized and his story has been extended. As time goes on, he continues to attend the Professor's lectures and also marries the Professor's daughter, who also has an interest in science. Modern discoveries such as quarks and superstrings are explained, and the book also shows how an accelerator ("atom smasher") works. A really fun, informational read!
Mar 15, 2014 Retrovold rated it really liked it
Shelves: universe-physics
Many of those "bring science closer" books are written in same way of trying to explain basic rules of the universe to people who did not get it on the first time or never heared of it. Mr. Tompson skips the neccessary funny and comes in terms of novel which on it's way happens to make you lagh but story it contains makes it easier to use your fanatasy and therefore remember given rules.

Feb 15, 2008 Ben rated it it was amazing
This is all about modern physics. There is so much out there on the topic, but I find most books unclear ... especially if you don't already know the material. This is a delightful book that really helps the reader get a handle on mind-bending physics. Still not a light read. Probably should have given it 4 stars, but I really want people to read it.
John P
Oct 16, 2015 John P rated it really liked it
A very enjoyable book. I don't much care for the 'love story' subplot, but I guess the author figured he must 'dumb down' the topics to appeal more to a general readership.

The parts about the effects of increasing Planck's constant and about shrinking the size of the universe were my favorites. The (too detailed) discussion of all the varieties of subatomic particles and forces, not so much.
Ravi Jain
May 27, 2015 Ravi Jain rated it really liked it
A great book explaining science concepts which most people find difficult to comprehend, in a very innovative way. Though the lecture chapters get little boring mostly because you wont understand most of it, i would recommend this to high school people.
Feb 27, 2014 Fred rated it it was amazing
Great update on the original.
Nitthilan K
Apr 07, 2016 Nitthilan K rated it it was amazing
Probably the best introduction to relativity ever. Written in simple words and makes the reading fun. Had a fun ride by reading this books
Nathan Letwory
Sep 12, 2007 Nathan Letwory rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finnish, learning
A very nice introduction into the world of relativity theory, quantum physics and such in the form of a novel. A worthwhile read even if you have already the knowledge on these issues.
Chenglu Jin
Nov 21, 2013 Chenglu Jin rated it it was amazing
Learn some basic idea about the physics in last century
Matt Young
Aug 20, 2012 Matt Young rated it it was amazing
This book conveys key topics from Classical to Quantum Physics in an almost childish way. And that's a good thing. Good primer. And bonus, there is absolutely no math involved.
May 05, 2010 Robin rated it it was amazing
This book provides an interesting view of many hard to understand physics theories and facts. Amazingly clear, creative, and a great read altogether, this book is a one of a kind.
Sep 17, 2007 Anome rated it it was ok
Shelves: science
The chief problem with this book is the way it has been updated. While applauding the ideas behind some of the changes, they end up as an almost patronising exercise.
Stephanie rated it really liked it
Oct 28, 2014
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Jun 11, 2011
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Hobbes rated it it was amazing
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Nov 17, 2014
Paul Vittay
Paul Vittay rated it it was amazing
Feb 06, 2017
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George Gamow (Russian pronunciation: [ˈɡaməf:]; March 4 [O.S. February 20:] 1904 – August 19, 1968), born Georgiy Antonovich Gamov (Георгий Антонович Гамов), was a theoretical physicist and cosmologist born in the Russian Empire. He discovered alpha decay via quantum tunneling and worked on radioactive decay of the atomic nucleus, star formation, stellar nucleosynthesis, big bang nucleosynthesis, ...more
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