Warped Passages (2005) and Knocking on Heaven’s Door (2011) by Lisa Randall

For those like me who have been confused and fascinated by modern physics, these two books are an awakening to the subject. Not only does Lisa Randall give a bit of history as to how modern theories came about, she also gives examples, allegories, and stories to help in understanding. She contrasts theories and models showing what each can do in making a connection between abstract ideas (often mathematical or multidimensional) and the real world we experience.

Randall clearly prefers Switzerland (CERN) to northern Illinois (Fermilab) which she regards as boring notwithstanding the buffalo herd and colorful buildings. I recommend both of these books but Knocking on Heaven’s Door is the more current and tells a great deal about the Large Hadron Collider at CERN. These books are quite readable even by those with little technical education. Check out Warped Passages today.

And in a bit of serendipity, a superconducting particle storage ring is being transported from New York to Illinois this summer. Join us on July 25 at 7pm as a representative from Fermilab shares more about future experiments and big science.

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