The Ten Most Beautiful Experiments
From the acclaimedNew York Timesscience writer George Johnson, an irresistible book on the ten most fascinating experiments in the history of scienceómoments when a curious soul posed a particularly eloquent question to nature and received a crisp, unambiguous reply.
Johnson takes us to those times when the world seemed filled with mysterious forces, when scientists were dazzled by light, by electricity, and by the beating of the hearts they laid bare on the dissecting table.
We see Galileo singing to mark time as he measures the pull of gravity, and Newton carefully inserting a needle behind his eye to learn how light causes vibrations in the retina. William Harvey ties a tourniquet around his arm and watches his arteries throb above and his veins bulge below, proving that blood circulates. Luigi Galvani sparks electrical currents in dissected frog legs, wondering at the twitching muscle fibers, and Ivan Pavlov makes his now-famous dogs salivate at ascending chord progressions.
For all of them, diligence was rewarded. In an instant, confusion was swept aside and something new about nature leaped into view. In bringing us these stories, Johnson restores some of the romance to science, reminding us of the existential excitement of a single soul staring down the unknown.
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - thatotter - LibraryThing
The writing was fairly technical, so I'm not sure if this book will work for the popular audience Johnson seems to want. Johnson didn't give much context or analysis about the implications of these ... Read full review
Review: The Ten Most Beautiful ExperimentsUser Review - Jimmy - Goodreads
It has been said that the greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance but the illusion of knowledge. That's a great line. I'm not sure but it seems to me that ignorance and the illusion of knowledge ... Read full review
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