Tim Niland's Reviews > The Grand Design

The Grand Design by Stephen Hawking
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Sep 27, 10

bookshelves: 2010-reads
Read in September, 2010

Over twenty years ago, Stephen Hawking wrote his classic popular science book A Brief History of Time which was a runaway best-seller (and a huge influence on my teenage reading.) A lot has happened in science since then, and although the original book has been updated through several editions, Hawking and co-author Leonard Mlodinow take a different track with this volume, looking at the search for the so-called "theory of everything," a scientific explanation of all the properties and history of the universe. The authors look at the science and philosophy behind the search, and explain the basics of M-Theory, currently the leading candidate for the all encompassing theory. It's pretty complicated, but they shy away from a lot of mathematics and physics, relying on metaphor and simple examples to explain the aspects of the theory. This was an interesting look into the way that modern science operates, using observation, theory and complex computation to search for a way to explain how everything came into being. The authors don't mince words, explaining how science can propose a theory for the beginning of the Universe that doesn't require a creator to set into motion. That has been played up in the press, but the whole book is interesting and worthwhile for popular science fans.
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