The Book of Nothing

3.94 avg rating
( 846 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780099288459: The Book of Nothing

From one of our foremost mathematicians and cosmologists comes this fascinating exploration of the surprisingly substantial and varied nature of nothing.

With unassailable expertise and a proven ability to make complex theories and ideas clearly accessible, John Barrow examines and explains every aspect of nothingness. From the zeros of mathematicians to the void of philosophers, from Shakespeare to the null set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, this book illustrates the fact that nothing is real.

Barrow begins with the origins of zero in ancient India, its rocky reception in Europe, and the early abhorrence and eventual acceptance of the concept of the void by Christianity. He traces the notion through the work of writers and thinkers from the ancient Greeks to our own time. He looks at mathematics, cosmology, theology, and physics to uncover the nothing that is at the heart of most things. Finally, he discusses recent concepts of nothing, which are having profound effects on our search for the origins and overall structure of the universe.

lluminating the many ways in which humankind has come to understand “nothing,” The Book of Nothing brilliantly belies its title.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

From our modern perspective, it is easy to deride the wranglings of medieval scholars over the number of angels that could dance of the head of a pin and whether Nature abhors a vacuum. But as John Barrow reveals in this timely and important book, new discoveries in science have shown that these scholars were right to suspect that Nothing has hidden depths.

It is a concept shot through with paradoxes: even innocent-looking phrases like "Nothing is real" flip their meanings as we ponder them, like those illusions that look like a vase one moment, and opposing faces the next. Nothing is fertile, too, as Barrow shows via a stunning trick that allows every number one can think of to be built out of nothing at all.

But his book is about far more than mind games. Arguably, the most important discovery of 20th-century physics is that there is no such thing as nothing: even the tightest vacuum is teeming with subatomic particles popping in and out of existence, according to the dictates of quantum theory. Now, many astronomers suspect that such "vacuum effects" may have triggered the Big Bang itself, filling our universe with matter. Indeed, the very latest observations suggest that vacuum effects will dictate the ultimate fate of the universe.

As an internationally respected cosmologist, Barrow does a fine job of explaining these new discoveries. The result is a book that is required reading for anyone who wants to understand why there will be much ado about Nothing among scientists in the years ahead. --Robert Matthews, Amazon.co.uk

From the Back Cover:

“Entertaining and informative... I am happy to report that nothing is full of interesting reading.” --New Scientist
“Convincing...authoritative . . . tells the story persuasively.” --Nature

“Barrow’s efforts to relate scientific developments to wider cultural themes must be applauded.” --Los Angeles Times Book Review

“Stuffed with wonderful stories. . . . [A] feast of clear thinking and fine writing.” —BookPage

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

JOHN D. BARROW
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Bookseller Inventory # 97800992884590000000

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
8.55
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

John D. Barrow
Published by Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom (2001)
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, from being and nothingness to creatio ex nihilo, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. Recent exciting discoveries in astronomy are shown to shed new light on the nature of the vacuum and its dramatic effect upon the explanation of the Universe. This remarkable book ranges over every nook and cranny of nothingness to reveal how the human mind has had to make something of nothing in every field of human enquiry. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
8.74
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

John D. Barrow
Published by Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom (2001)
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, from being and nothingness to creatio ex nihilo, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. Recent exciting discoveries in astronomy are shown to shed new light on the nature of the vacuum and its dramatic effect upon the explanation of the Universe. This remarkable book ranges over every nook and cranny of nothingness to reveal how the human mind has had to make something of nothing in every field of human enquiry. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
9.01
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Barrow, John D.
Published by Vintage
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Softcover Quantity Available: 5
Seller
Kennys Bookstore
(Olney, MD, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. 2001. New Ed. Paperback. From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. This book covers various aspects of nothingness to reveal how the human mind has had to make something of nothing in every field of human enquiry. Num Pages: 400 pages, map, portraits. BIC Classification: HP; PDZ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 195 x 130 x 26. Weight in Grams: 286. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
11.89
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Barrow, John D.
Published by Vintage (2001)
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Softcover Quantity Available: 5
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage, 2001. Book Condition: New. 2001. New Ed. Paperback. From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. This book covers various aspects of nothingness to reveal how the human mind has had to make something of nothing in every field of human enquiry. Num Pages: 400 pages, map, portraits. BIC Classification: HP; PDZ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 195 x 130 x 26. Weight in Grams: 286. . . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
12.11
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From Ireland to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

John D. Barrow
Published by Vintage (2001)
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Paperback Quantity Available: 2
Seller
The Monster Bookshop
(Fleckney, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. BRAND NEW ** SUPER FAST SHIPPING FROM UK WAREHOUSE ** 30 DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000190149

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
10.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: 1.99
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

John D. Barrow
Published by Vintage (2001)
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Softcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage, 2001. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # GH9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
9.83
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: 3.56
From Germany to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

JOHN D. BARROW
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Speedy Hen LLC
(Sunrise, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # ST0099288451. Bookseller Inventory # ST0099288451

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
13.65
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

John D. Barrow
Published by Vintage Publishing
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Paperback Quantity Available: 5
Seller
THE SAINT BOOKSTORE
(Southport, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, The Book of Nothing, John D. Barrow, From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, from being and nothingness to creatio ex nihilo, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. Recent exciting discoveries in astronomy are shown to shed new light on the nature of the vacuum and its dramatic effect upon the explanation of the Universe. This remarkable book ranges over every nook and cranny of nothingness to reveal how the human mind has had to make something of nothing in every field of human enquiry. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099288459

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
6.70
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: 6.95
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

John D. Barrow
ISBN 10: 0099288451 ISBN 13: 9780099288459
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Ria Christie Collections
(Uxbridge, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: New. Not Signed; From the zeros of the mathematician to the void of the philosophers, from Shakespeare to the empty set, from the ether to the quantum vacuum, from being and nothingness to creatio ex nihilo, there is much ado about nothing at the heart of things. Recent exciting discoveries in astronomy are shown to. book. Bookseller Inventory # ria9780099288459_rkm

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
10.19
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: 3.87
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book