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What can we never do? Barrow looks at what limits there might be to human discovery, and what we might find, ultimately, to be unknowable, undoable, or unthinkable. Science is a big success story, but where will it end? And, indeed, will it end? Weaving together a tapestry of surprises, Barrow explores the frontiers of knowledge. We find that the notion of 'impossibility' has played a striking role in our thinking. Surrealism, impossible figures, time travel, paradoxes of logic and perspectives - all stimulate us to contemplate something more than what is. Using simple explanations, it shows the reader that impossibility is a deep and powerful notion; that any Universe complex enough to contain conscious beings will contain limits on what those beings can know about their Universe; that what we cannot know defines reality as surely as what we can know.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780099772118
ISBN-10: 0099772116
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 19mm)
Pages: 304
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 25-Mar-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Reviews

UK Kirkus Review » The author has strung together a whole heap of entertaining ideas on the thread of the limits of the possible - the limits of science, the human mind, cosmology and much more besides. This is Barrow at his best, getting a lot of deep ideas across relatively painlessly, and helping to show that in science everything is connected to everything else. (Kirkus UK)


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Author Biography - John D. Barrow

John D. Barrow is Professor of Mathematical Sciences and Director of the Millennium Mathematics Project at Cambridge University, Fellow of Clare Hall, Cambridge, a Fellow of the Royal Society, and the current Gresham Professor of Geometry at Gresham College, London. His principal area of scientific research is cosmology, and he is the author of many highly acclaimed books about the nature and significance of modern developments in physics, astronomy, and mathematics, including The Origin of the Universe, The Universe that Discovered Itself; The Book of Nothing, The Constants of Nature, The Infinite Book: a Short Guide to the Boundless, Timeless and Endless, The Artful Universe Expanded, New Theories of Everything, Cosmic Imagery and, most recently, The Book of Universes.