Richard Feynman's fame rests to a large extent on his picaresque exploits, but he was also a theoretical physicist of some significance. The discovery of the notes for his major lecture on the motion of planets around the sun, presented in this book, allows readers an insight into the workings of his mind. The book relates how the notes came to be ...
Richard Feynman's fame rests to a large extent on his picaresque exploits, but he was also a theoretical physicist of some significance. The discovery of the notes for his major lecture on the motion of planets around the sun, presented in this book, allows readers an insight into the workings of his mind. The book relates how the notes came to be lost, and how they came to be found again and reconstructed.
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I couldn't get through Newton's Principia. Come to find out, neither could Feynman. This book provides clear, easily understandable proofs, along with an interesting background of planetary motion theories from Copernicus forward.
Publishers Weekly, 1996-03-11 Isaac Newton, in his Principia Mathematica (1687), proved Johannes Kepler's law explaining why planets travel in elliptical orbits around the Sun. In 1964, theoretical physicist Richard Feynman, the bestselling author and Nobel Prize winner, set forth his own proof of Kepler's law, using only plane geometry. Feynman's difficult proof, presented in an introductory lecture to Caltech undergraduates, never made it into the classic multivolume Feynman Lectures on Physics, published between 1963 and 1965, but California Institute of Technology archivist Judith Goodstein unearthed the transcript of Feynman's 1964 lecture, published here along with explanatory commentary and historical background, plus 25 photographs and 150 diagrams. Caltech physics professor David Goodstein, Feynman's friend and colleague until the latter's death in 1988, provides a warm reminiscence and does a good job of explaining how quantum physics and relativity supplanted Newtonian science. (May)
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