Download A Cultural History of Physics by Károly Simonyi PDF

By Károly Simonyi

ISBN-10: 1568813295

ISBN-13: 9781568813295

While the actual sciences are a consistently evolving resource of expertise and of knowing approximately our global, they've got develop into so really good and depend on rather a lot prerequisite wisdom that for plenty of buyers the divide among the sciences and the arts turns out even more than it used to be whilst C. P. Snow introduced his recognized 1959 lecture, "The Cultures."

In A Cultural background of Physics, Hungarian scientist and educator Károly Simonyi succeeds in bridging this chasm through describing the experimental tools and theoretical interpretations that created clinical wisdom, from precedent days to the current day, in the cultural surroundings within which it was once shaped. in contrast to the other paintings of its style, Simonyi’s seminal opus explores the interaction of technological know-how and the arts to exhibit the beauty and pleasure of medical improvement in the course of the a long time.

These pages include an abundance of excerpts from unique assets, a big selection of transparent and easy reasons, and an miraculous wealth of perception, revealing the historic growth of technology and alluring readers right into a discussion with the nice medical minds that formed our present figuring out of physics.

Beautifully illustrated, actual in its clinical content material and huge in its old and cultural standpoint, this publication could be a necessary reference for students and an notion to aspiring scientists and humanists who think that technological know-how is an essential component of our tradition.

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Extra info for A Cultural History of Physics

Example text

Admittedly, the questions we have raised are ideological rather than practical questions for a physicist. ” These words were not chosen carelessly. Let us imagine, for example, that an inventor wishes to patent an invention that purports to function as a perpetual motion machine. The patent examiner expects that an expert consultant will offer proofs of the impossibility of such an apparatus. In the final analysis, any such proof will rest on the law of conservation of energy. As for the validity of that law, physics texts always appeal to the fact that all of our experience supports the law, and to this day, no one has ever succeeded in creating and operating a perpetual motion machine.

In such a situation, no universally recognized overall theory is available to reflect the order and rationality of nature, and indeed, in principle, such a state of affairs could well become permanent. Physics belongs among the exact sciences. In fact, with respect to exactitude, it holds pride of place. “Logical and precise,” is how physics is described, and by those in the humanities this is often stated with a note of reproach in their voices. Physicists are said to be arrogant in the certainty of their knowledge and to be inflexible in their opinions.

All this is as it should be, and considering the current state of the world economy, the usefulness of a scientific result is indeed of paramount importance. Nevertheless, especially in more highly developed societies, physics—and the other sciences as well—should gradually be given a new role— something similar to the role of the arts. 29). Saying it another way, we should extend the idea of usefulness: Science has been viewed as useful because it has contributed to mankind’s material wellbeing by satisfying immediate material needs.

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