Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Review: The edge of physics by Anil Ananthaswamy

This book is part-travelogue, part-popular-science investigation, and a fascinating journey around the world of physics. As the title suggests, Ananthaswamy investigates topics on the fringes of our knowledge, often in remote or inaccessible places. 

Ananthaswamy's main focus is the physics, but his book also records the experiences and stories of the people he meets, giving a human angle to an abstract topic. The complex ideas are broken up by asides and anecdotes, which provide a lighthearted touch to a serious subject. This makes for an interesting and compelling account where I learnt a lot while visiting all the interesting and different locations along with him. 

His descriptions allowed me to imagine where he was and what the conditions were like for the people working there. Many of the places are locations few people will get to see, so I felt privileged and pleased to get the chance, even if it was by proxy.

Originally published in 2010, this still contains many relevant details today in 2017.

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