The Holy Grail for every Theoretical Physicist is undoubtedly a Grand Unified Theory. A theory that coalesces all the four primary forces of Gravity, Electromagnetism, Weak Nuclear Force and the Strong Nuclear Force into one coherent, concise and clear theory. This endeavour has repeatedly eluded some of the most brilliant and mercurial geniuses who have made an indelible mark in the realm of Physics. Even a mighty stalwart like Einstein was left to rue the last years of his life disputing his own findings in the quixotic domain of Quantum Physics. “God does not play dice” said this lambent persona before completely abdicating his faith in unification.
However, decades after Einstein shed his mortal coils, two intrepid Professors, John Schwarz of the California Institute of Technology and Michael Green of Queen Mary College in London pioneered a path breaking and earth shattering theory termed the “Super String Theory” which turned historically accepted conventions on its head. This Theory popularly known as Theory Of Everything (“TOE”) professed to explain all known physical phenomena in an inclusive manner. One of the leading exponents of Superstrings, Michio Kaku, in this fascinating books takes it upon himself to inform and animate the lay reader, the basics of this riveting theory that has the world sitting up in exclamation, enthusiasm and exhilaration! From Black body radiation to Kerr Black Holes; Schrodinger’s infernal cat to the inspired Feynman diagrams, Michio Kaku fulfills his self established test in a manner that is able and commendable. Not only do we get a flavour of the infinitesimal value of our existence, we are also allowed the luxury of basking in the brilliance of a breathtakingly humongous cosmos which while lending itself to scientific examination, also leads us towards the harsh realisation that the Universe is way beyond what we arrogantly perceive it to me.
In 1600 the amateur astronomer Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake by the Church for propounding his theory (which was proved to be perfectly valid many years later) that the Sun was a mere star and that there were an infinite number of Earths revolving/orbiting around it. It is heroes like Bruno who spur scientists such as Michio Kaku to unrelentingly work towards unearthing the mysteries of the unknown and unveiling the fabric of mystique spread by the cosmos over our imagination. And it is scientists like Michio Kaku who inspire an entire generation of minds thirsty for knowledge and restless for results.
“Beyond Einstein” – A marvelous unification of research, reflection and reason!