Thursday, August 10, 2017

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
by Neil deGrasse Tyson
Published: May 2017

 A very compact, yet quite thorough sampling of astronomical topics. We bounce from the ingredients of the cosmos to particle physics, from relativity to dark matter and a quick breakdown of the electromagnetic spectrum. Woven into the science lessons, we also get some pushes toward critical thinking and humility:

"Ignorance is the natural state of mind for a research scientist. People who believe they are ignorant of nothing have neither looked for, nor stumbled upon the boundary between what is known and unknown in the universe."

Overall, well written and accessible, a must-read for anyone in need of a quick refresher course on the fabric of the universe.

4 out of 5 stars: As someone who loves to read pop-sci physics books but never made it past PHYS 101 in college (*ahem*), I knew this would be right up my alley. Then again, as someone who loves to read pop-sci physics books, I should have realized that there wasn't going to be lot of new information presented here. But that wasn't deGrasse Tyson's fault! This offers a good, solid base of information for anyone who wants to learn about astrophysics but gets overwhelmed by the trail of links you must follow when researching on Wikipedia.

Bonus: after listening to the audiobook, if you crave more NdGT, he gave the 100th commencement at Rice University which I was actually quite a bit bummed about missing (until I remembered how godawfulhot it is outside during graduation season)

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