A fantastic introduction to the possible ways in which the universe will end…
From one of the most dynamic rising stars in astrophysics, an accessible and eye-opening look at five ways the universe could end, and the mind-blowing lessons each scenario reveals about the most important concepts in cosmology.
We know the universe had a beginning. With the Big Bang, it expanded from a state of unimaginable density to an all-encompassing cosmic fireball to a simmering fluid of matter and energy, laying down the seeds for everything from black holes to one rocky planet orbiting a star near the edge of a spiral galaxy that happened to develop life as we know it. But what happens to the universe at the end of the story? And what does it mean for us now?
Dr. Katie Mack has been contemplating these questions since she was a young student, when her astronomy professor informed her the universe could end at any moment, in an instant. This revelation set her on the path toward theoretical astrophysics. Now, with lively wit and humor, she takes us on a mind-bending tour through five of the cosmos’s possible finales: the Big Crunch, Heat Death, the Big Rip, Vacuum Decay (the one that could happen at any moment!), and the Bounce. Guiding us through cutting-edge science and major concepts in quantum mechanics, cosmology, string theory, and much more, The End of Everything is a wildly fun, surprisingly upbeat ride to the farthest reaches of all that we know.
It has been a long time since I last took a science class — not just physics, but really any kind. I’ve kept my interest in the subject somewhat alive mainly through podcasts (for example, The Infinite Monkey cage, which is co-hosted by Brian Cox). Somehow, I managed to leave Katie Mack’s The End of Everything unread for quite some time. I started reading it late one night, and was hooked right from the start. This is an excellent book: one that should appeal to knowledgable scientists and the merely science-curious alike. I really enjoyed this. (And learned a lot!) Continue reading