Advertisement
Wednesday, Oct 27, 2021
Outlook.com

M-Theory In Two Nutshells

Existence, God, the future, time travel, survival on earth—some of the oldest, and newest, queries are tackled here. Only a genius would attempt it with such concision.

M-Theory In Two Nutshells
Photograph by Getty Images
M-Theory In Two Nutshells
outlookindia.com
2018-12-14T10:28:40+05:30

On March 14, 2018, Stephen Hawking passed away. As the most famous public figure in science since Einstein, Hawking was not just an extraordinary cosmologist—his decades long fight against a debilitating dise­ase was a testament to his indomitable spirit. Hawking also authored popular books on science, appeared in television series and a Hollywood film based on his life had been released in 2014.

In this last, posthumous book, Haw­king ponders over not just the mysteries of black hole radiation and space-time singularities (the subjects of his path-­breaking research) but also attempts to traverse a wider terrain of human knowledge and experience. Hence the ‘Big’ in the title of this short book.

As Hawking says in the introductory chapter, “Why we must ask the big questions”, these are questions which have intri­gued humanity for millennia—‘Where do we come from? How did the universe begin? What is the meaning of it all?’ Hawking has his own list of ten big questions which he attempts to answer here.

The questions range from eternal ones like ‘Is there a God?’, ‘How did it all begin?’, to specific ones which relate to our modern view of the cosmos. Thus we also have expositions on “What is inside a black hole?”, “Can we predict the future?”, “Is time travel possible?” and “How do we shape our future?” Hawking also ventures into more speculative ideas when he talks about “Will we survive our earth?”, “Is there other intelligent life in the universe”, “Should we colonise space” and “Will Artificial Intelligence outsmart us?”

Hawking was an atheist and thus exp­ectedly, he uses science to answer questions that lie around religion. For...

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Aryan Khan Drug Case: Bombay HC Adjourns Hearing Of Bail Petition Till Tomorrow

Aryan Khan Drug Case: Bombay HC Adjourns Hearing Of Bail Petition Till Tomorrow

Justice Sambre has once again adjourned the hearing. The Bombay High Court will hear the petitions of Aryan Khan, Arbaaz Merchant and Munmun Dhamecha tomorrow afternoon after 2.30 pm.

Mandi Bypoll: 'Do They Want Me To Become Sati?', Asks Congress Candidate Pratibha Singh

Mandi Bypoll: 'Do They Want Me To Become Sati?', Asks Congress Candidate Pratibha Singh

Pratibha Singh talks about her decision to contest the poll and carry forward the legacy of ‘Raja Sahib’, ex-Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh.

Neeraj, Lovlina, Chhetri Recommended For Khel Ratna

Neeraj, Lovlina, Chhetri Recommended For Khel Ratna

They were among 11 recommended for Major Dhyanchand Khel Ratna, India's highest sporting honour.

Pegasus Snooping Row: SC Cites 'Right To Privacy', Appoints 3-Member Probe Panel

Pegasus Snooping Row: SC Cites 'Right To Privacy', Appoints 3-Member Probe Panel

Stressing on the right to privacy, CJI Ramana said it was incumbent upon the Centre to seriously consider the use of such a technology.

Advertisement