Einstein Relatively Simple: Our Universe Revealed in Everyday Language
Ira Mark Egdall
Ira Mark Egdall is also the author of the eBook Unsung Heroes of the Universe and a popular science writer for DecodedScience.com. He is a retired aerospace program manager with an undergraduate degree in physics from Northeastern University. Mark now teaches lay courses in modern physics at Lifelong Learning Institutes at Florida International University, the University of Miami, and Nova Southeastern University. He also gives entertaining talks on Einstein and time travel. When not thinking about physics, Mark spends his time playing with his grandchildren and driving his wife of 45 years crazy.
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Website: iramarkegdall.com http://iramarkegdall.com/ (NOTE: A new web site is currently in progress)
Twitter: @IMEgdall https://twitter.com/IMEgdall
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Book Genre: Popular Science
Publisher: World Scientific Publishing
Release Date: February 24, 2014
Einstein Relatively Simple brings together for the first time an exceptionally clear explanation of both special and general relativity. It is for people who always wanted to understand Einstein’s ideas but never thought it possible.
Told with humor, enthusiasm, and rare clarity, this entertaining book reveals how a former high school drop-out revolutionized our concepts of space and time. From E=mc2 and everyday time travel to black holes and the big bang, the book takes us all, regardless of any scientific background, on a mindboggling journey through the depths of Einstein's universe.
Along the way, we track Einstein through the perils and triumphs of his life — follow his thinking,
his logic, and his insights — and chronicle the audacity, imagination, and sheer genius of the man
recognized as the greatest scientist of the modern era.
All knowledge begins in wonder.
In June of 1905, former high-school drop-out and lowly patent clerk
Albert Einstein published a paper in the German Annals of Physics
which revolutionized our understanding of space and time. What came to
be known as the theory of special relativity predicted a strange new universe
where time slows and space shrinks with motion.
In that same journal, Einstein proposed light comes in discreet packets
of energy we now call photons. Along with Max Planck’s work, this
insight sparked the quantum revolution. This in turn set off the greatest
technological revolution in human history — enabling the invention of
television, transistors, electronic digital computers, cell phones, digital
cameras, lasers, the electron microscope, atomic clocks, MRI, sonograms,
and many more modern-day devices.
Einstein’s follow-up article in September of 1905 proposed that mass
and energy are equivalent. His famous equation, E = mc2, came to solve
one of the great mysteries of modern science — how the Sun and stars
shine. Some four decades later, Einstein’s breakthrough ushered in the
In December of 1915, Albert Einstein — now Professor of Theoretical
Physics at the University of Berlin — surpassed his already staggering
accomplishments. In the midst of the turmoil and hardships of World
War I, he produced his life’s masterpiece: a new theory of gravity. His
audacious general theory of relativity revealed a cosmos beyond our
wildest imagination. It predicted phenomena so bizarre even Einstein
initially doubted their existence — black holes which trap light and stop
time, wormholes which form gravitational time machines, the expansion
of space itself, and the birth of the universe some 13.8 billion years ago in
the ultimate cosmic event: the Big Bang.
Not since Isaac Newton had a single physicist attained such monumental
breakthroughs, and no scientist since has matched his breathtaking
achievements. In recognition, TIME magazine selected Albert Einstein
above such luminaries as Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Mohandas
Gandhi, as the “Person of the Century” — the single individual with the
most significant impact on the 20th century.
Albert Einstein has long since passed from this corporal world.
Yet his fame lives on. His discoveries inspire today’s generation of
physicists — providing stepping stones to a new understanding of the
cosmos and perhaps someday a unified theory of all physics. His brilliance,
independence of mind, and persistence continue to be an inspiration
to us all. He remains the iconic figure of science, whose genius
transcends the limits of human understanding.
I wrote Einstein Relatively Simple to tell Einstein’s story — to hopefully
provide the non-expert a clear, step-by-step explanation of how he
came to develop both special and general relativity. My goal is a book
which is comprehensive, fun to read, and most important, understandable
to the lay reader . . .
So come explore how an unknown patent clerk came to develop a
new theory of time and space, how he came to supplant the illustrious
Isaac Newton with a new theory of gravity. Along the way we will examine
the mind of Albert Einstein, who preferred to think in pictures rather
than words, follow his thinking, his logic, and his insights.
To quote one of my students; “You’ll never look at the universe the
same way again!”