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A Briefer History of Time

4.19  ·  Rating Details ·  22,343 Ratings  ·  870 Reviews

The science classic made more accessible
• More concise • Illustrated

Stephen Hawking’s worldwide bestseller A Brief History of Time remains a landmark volume in scientific writing. But for years readers have asked for a more accessible f
Published December 18th 2007 by Bantam (first published September 23rd 2005)
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Igor Chertkov This particular book is an updated and slightly simplified version of the earlier editions. You don't have to read both.
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Community Reviews

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Cait Poytress
There's nothing like the contemplation of the universe for making one feel simultaneously awe struck and incredibly insignificant.

Kind of random, but I loved Hawking's frequent use of the exclamation mark. For example::

"However, when an antiparticle and a particle meet, they annihilate each other. So if you meet your antiself, don't shake hands - you would both vanish in a great flash of light!"
"The supermassive black hole has a star orbiting it at about 2 percent the speed of light, faster t
May 31, 2016 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An exceptionally good, concise look at physics for the layman. The explanations were just super. Simple, yet not stupidly so for me with my high school & Sunday supplement level of education on the subject. There are some tough concepts to understand. For instance, wave-particle duality is pretty weird, so be prepared to stop the book & think about what he says at times. Maybe even repeat his explanation. I found most became fairly clear, even time travel, but maybe not string theory. Th ...more
Deborah Markus
If you're thinking of reading A Brief History of Time, read this first. At least if you're a total civilian, which I am.

My son and I read this together. We did have to hit the Internet pretty hard a few times to get clarification on some critical points; but all in all, this is a well-written, accessible introduction to some pretty heady stuff.

I would recommend having the basics of atomic structure and the life cycles of stars under your belt before giving this a go. Also, it really helped my s
Tariq A
Mar 11, 2012 Tariq A rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: علوم, 2012
كتاب لطيف، مختصر، ومركّز، يجعلك تعرف بشكل جيد أكثر الموضوعات التي تهم علماء الفيزياء اليوم
يحوي الكتاب عدة موضوعات متّصلة بطريقة ما، قرأت عن أكثرها سابقا بشكل منفصل، لكني لم أجد كتابا مثل هذا جامعا لها، بشكل واضح يجعلني أفهم رغم أني لستُ مختصّا
استمتعت به، وأراه مناسبا لكل من لديه أسئلة حول الفيزياء والكون بشكل عام.
Sep 24, 2015 tyranus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Zamanın Daha Kısa Tarihi", "Zamanın Kısa Tarihi" adlı kitabın daha anlaşılır özeti gibi düşünülebilir. Fazladan birkaç konu başlığı eklenmiş. Kitapta zaman yolculuğu yapmanın neden mümkün olabileceği güzel anlatılmış. Solucan delikleri, zamanda yolculuk, galaksiler arası yolculuk gibi ilgi çekici konulara anlaşılır cevaplar verilmiş. Hawking, geçmişe ve geleceğe yolculuğun mümkün olduğunu anlatıyor; ama hemen ardından "Eğer geçmişe yolculuk yapmak mümkünse, neden gelecekten biri geriye gelip, b ...more
Yazeed AlMogren
Feb 05, 2016 Yazeed AlMogren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
كتاب يحتوي على معلومات عديدة في الفيزياء، أعتقد بأن 40% من معلوماته لايفهمها الا المتخصصين ...more
Jul 11, 2008 Briynne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow and wow. I am not by nature a science person. The largely-repressed memories I have of high school chemistry still make me feel a little ill. But this, friends, is more like reading poetry than it is like reading a textbook. I am officially in awe of Stephen Hawking - the man can actually make you feel about subatomic particles and forces of nature. It's nothing short of amazing, really. I don't pretend to understand 99% of what the book discusses beyond an extremely superficial level, but I ...more
Feb 03, 2013 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
In an attempt to prove to some recent mega-brainiac friends (not that they asked me) that I was capable of some limited understanding of physics, I picked up this slim volume. The result: my brain hurts, I learned a few things, and I humbly submit that I will stay in the humanities. Although I think I got most of it, I nonetheless find it hard to accept certain things. I need some time-travel pills, as I am queasy. A lot of this material I learned in school or absorbed over time in media (and St ...more
To begin, I am not….scientifically inclined. But I would like to get a better grasp on some scientific principles, so I thought I would give this book a whirl. I didn’t grasp everything, by any means, but the book is very informative. I found it very interesting to learn how little/much physicists know about the universe, its properties, and the struggle to find natural governing laws that consistently prove true. I feel that I’ve learned a great deal from this book, and will probably read it ag ...more
Jan 02, 2017 Nərmin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: science geeks
Recommended to Nərmin by: My teacher
"A briefer history of time" is briefer and simpler version of "A brief history of time". However I wish explanations to some theories made sense to me. I still feel unfullfilled about string theory and multi dimensions.

In addition, the language was a bit dry, or so I thought. After Carl Sagan's flowing poetry-like language, I am unimpreed by Stephen Hawking. Still humor wasn't absent.
Apart from those, I liked this book. Got good deal of information and understanding of theories. After reading sc
Islam Salem
الكتاب بيتكلم عن كيفية نشئة الكون من وجهة نظر علمية ، المفروض إن الكتاب ده هو تبسيط للكتاب الأصلي " موجز تاريخ الزمن " بس للأسف الكتاب لسه بيحتوي على معلومات و نظريات صعبة و معقدة على غير المتخصصين زي حالاتي .

الكتاب ممكن تطلع منه بشوية معلومات مفيدة كل كام صفحة و لكني في النهاية لا أنصح بيه لغير المتخصصين أو الباحثين في علوم الفيزياء و الفلك.
Hazem Anwar
Oct 01, 2015 Hazem Anwar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

مرحباً! إسمي ستيفن هوكنغ، وأنا فيزيائي وعالم فلك، وحالم بعض الأحيان
على الرغم من أنني لا أستطيع الكلام أو التحرك إلا عبر كمبيوتر
ولكن في عقلي، فأنا حر تماماً.
هُنالك شئ ساحر حيـال ستيفن هوكنغ، مُلهم بدرجـة كبير
يخبرك دون أدنى فعل أنَّك تستطيع أن تفعل شيئاً ما
كُل ما في الأمر، أنه عليك أن تبحث عن ما يُمكنك فعله
إن كان السحر يتملَّك شخصيـة ستفين هوكنغ،
فالسحر كُل السحر على بُعد ملايين الأميال مِنَّا
يبدأ على بعد 8 دقائق ضوئيـة فنرى الشمس
ويستمر على بعد ار
S.Baqer Al-Meshqab
Imagine you are a tiny particle, one that lived throughout the universe since the beginning of time. You witnessed the dawn of creation, and within you lie the rules with which the end can be foreseen. You are fully aware of the characteristics of space-time. Relativity & Quantum Mechanics are nothing but infant struggles to identify you and your behavior. You could even be a string! But nobody can say for sure, for only you have that knowledge. You gaze at the human race along the path of t ...more
Mar 30, 2008 Rick rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: non-scientists
I love Physics. And I suck at understanding Physics. But I try. I can actually identify the paragraph where I get lost. I guess that, at least at this time in my life, I'm not capable of getting my head around the concept of a unified and relative space-time and all the implications it carries (such as the bending of time near large gravitational fields, differences in aging the farther one gets from the center of a large gravitational field, and that whole section about time travel). I really w ...more
Sep 12, 2009 Brooke rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2009
Very readable, and I was actually surprised to realize I'd learned most of this information in an astronomy class I took in college. Who knew I was this educated?

The end of the book, where Hawking discusses the theories that scientists are currently trying to prove, started getting to be a bit above my head - in my lay opinion, I think it was a combination of Hawking getting a bit more vague and having fewer concrete facts and observations to state.
Nov 30, 2015 Fil rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: letti-nel-2015

Se alla fine del libro non vi è venuta voglia di cercare in internet questi due argomenti, allora il libro non è servito a molto.

Guardando quelle pagine si scopre che queste due azioni "fantascientifiche" sarebbero in teoria possibili. Fra molti anni. E con molti se.

Le pagine su Wikipedia sono più tecniche e "più matematiche" del libro, che è totalmente divulgativo. Molto più divulgativo
Anto Desormeaux Matthei
Jan 14, 2015 Anto Desormeaux Matthei rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Anto by: Goodreads
I began watching Neil Degrasse Tyson's Cosmos last year and it rekindled my interest in learning about physics and astronomy. It began when I watched Carl Sagan's Cosmos, which I loved. I would dream about the stars at night. So Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time caught my eye. Now, I had always been total shit at physics class in school and I excelled in the IGCSE/A Level programs of English Literature, Biology and Modern History. When I learned that there was a Briefer History of Time, ...more
This is ridiculous, I finished it in less than a day! Yes, it's that interesting and overwhelming, no matter if you've read the earlier version of this book - A Brief History of Time, or how many times you've watched Stephen Hawking's popular series on BBC.

This is Stephen Hawking’s way of describing gravitational attraction of composite bodies.

And you recognize good old Stephen Hawking humour when he introduces Isaac Newton by stating that "Isaac Newton was not a pleasant man."

A Briefer History
Данило Судин
Коротка і просто написана книга про фізичний світ (чи світ фізиків, якщо бути точним). Початок оманливо простий, але автори швидко піднімають рівень - переходячи до складніших питань.

Одним з важливих сюжетів книги є питання: "Чи Бог існує?" Адже фізики відомі своєю схильністю до атеїзму. Але автори не займають чіткої позиції, хоча у висновку все ж розкривають карти: питання "Навіщо?" - це питання філософії, а не фізики. І скрушно додають, що філософи тепер не ті - вважають, що вивчати можна лиш
Mar 24, 2008 Bruce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone who has not yet made it to a grad-school-level physics class
This will be a shorter-than-usual review for me, but it doesn't seem necessary to add much more to the many excellent reviews of this book. This is the Hawking-Mlodinow easy-reader (because his best-seller A Brief History of Time was bought to make people seem better informed, but not actually really read. The challenge here was to comprehensively and cogently present complex concepts like relativity, quantum theory, string theory, etc. without using *any* numbers whatsoever (not even powers of ...more
Mar 27, 2012 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Stephen Hawking, famous physicist and atheist, undertakes in this book to explain to the casual reader some of the most complex and mind-bending concepts of modern physics while asking ultimate questions regarding the origin and destiny of the universe. Hawking surveys the development and revision of scientific theory regarding space and time from Aristotle to Ptolemy to Newton to Einstein and beyond, briefly and simply (as possible) elucidating concepts such as gravity, relativity, curved space ...more
Michael Lawrence
Jul 08, 2008 Michael Lawrence rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in the physical world
Recommended to Michael by: Stephen himself
An even shorter version of a History of time... then a brief history of time and now a briefer history of time. I dont care how short he makes the next one. If it will take physics and make it digestible to the average joe then I'm all for it.

It surprises me how disinterested we are today about things like physics, space, the universe and philosophy of our existence, our purpose, our final destination.

That was somehow lost in our information generation. So like I said, if this tiny take on life
Arabian Rihanna
May 18, 2014 Arabian Rihanna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a short, readable book about how the universe works ― or how we think it works, so far.

I, however, do not understand the quest of physicists for a unified theory of the universe. I find that very limiting, what with all the existing, fascinating theories about the largeness and continuous expansion of the universe. Paradoxical much?
Apr 26, 2015 Umar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Saleh MoonWalker
Jun 15, 2017 Saleh MoonWalker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: physics
جزو پر فروش ترین و بهترین آثار هاوکینگ. ویژگی بارز سایر آثار هاوکینگ رو هم خوشبختانه با خودش داره. مطالب کاملا جنبه ی فیزیکی دارن، اما برای فردی که سواد متوسطی از فیزیک هم داشته باشه، کاملا پاسخگو هستش و خیلی پیچیده و فرمول بندی شده توضیح نداده که باعث میشه خوندن و فهمش خیلی راحت باشه. بخشهای اصلی که در این اثر ذکر کرده، ماهیت فضا و زمان، نقش خدا در به وجود آمدن هستی و گذشته و آینده کیهان هست. تفاوتش با نسخه A Brief History of Time در اینه که نسبت به نسخه قبل کمتر فرمول بندی شده و زمینه تخصصی ها ...more
Anna Senina
Feb 26, 2017 Anna Senina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Отличная книга, поняла многое из того, что должна была понять еще в школе :)
May 25, 2016 I_ty_toje rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Не готов обсуждать достижения Хокинга как физика, но его усилия по популяризации астрономии, физики, космологии нельзя преуменьшать. Своими книгами о сильно возвысил этот жанр и, думаю, многие следующие за ним авторы должны быть благодарны.

О самой книге.
Очень интересно написано и даже мне, гуманитарию до мозга костей, не было скучно. Части до квантовой теории потрясающе понятны и позволяют систематизировать весь тот ворох информации что есть на эту тему. Дальше, при прочтении "квантовой" части,
General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, and String Theory for Dummies! This book is for all the thousands of people who bought the original edition, read 20 pages and gave up at the first differential equation, and put it on their to-be-finished-someday-in-the-far-future shelf. Well, it actually does a pretty good job of surveying the development of the cosmological and physical sciences from antiquity to the present. I thought general relativity and quantum were fairly well explained, but that s ...more
ياسمين خليفة
بعد أن قرأت هذا الكتاب ازداد احترامي واعجابي بكل المتخصصين في الفيزياء وعلوم الفضاء والفلك فهم عباقرة لأنهم يستطيعون فهم هذه المعلومات المعقدة جدا عن نشأة الكون والفضاء و النجوم هذا الكتاب للعالم ستيفن هوكنج يحاول شرح النظريات حول الكون والنجوم و نسبية اينشتاين والثقوب السوداء والزمكان والسفر إلى المستقبل وميكانيكا الكم والرجل حاول قد المستطاع تسبيط هذه المعلومات إلى أقصى درجة حتى يفهمها القارىء الغير متخصص ورغم أنه لم يقصر في شرح تلك النظريات العلمية إلا أنني لم أستطع استيعاب سوى نصف المعلومات ...more
Mohamedridha Alaskari محمد رضا العسكري
I'm absolutely convinced that Hawking is the best man in the simple illustration of sciences especially the cosmology and physics in general.

In partnership with Mlodinow created such an exceptional informative rich text. I tought in the first pages that this book is totally different than the obvious one but, in very smart characters it links with the old one " I mean a brief of history of time"

I finished the last pages of this book while the power is down! I couldn't leave it until I finished i
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Can Gravity Fields really cause Time-Dilation-Effects inside of them? 3 40 Jul 05, 2015 12:44AM  
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Stephen William Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 in Oxford, England. His parents' house was in north London, but during the second world war Oxford was considered a safer place to have babies. When he was eight, his family moved to St Albans, a town about 20 miles north of London. At eleven Stephen went to St Albans School, and then on to University College, Oxford, his father's old college. Ste ...more
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“What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.” 24 likes
“It's the gravity that shapes the large scale structure of the universe, even though it is the weakest of four categories of forces.” 17 likes
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