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Do you...

Seek inspiration and intellectual stimulation?

Like books that are easy to read?

Want to better understand how progress in science comes about?

Enjoy humor and anecdotes?

Like analogies & thought experiments?

Fancy exploring new ways of thinking and creativity?

How many times did you say “yes” to the above?

2x

Nice, the book may offer you some value. Get it now and read it whenever you find the time.

3x

Cool! You’ll like the book, check it out soon.

4x

or more

OMG, stop doing whatever you’re doing right now and get the book!

FAQ

Is this about yet another crazy theory in physics?

No! Or let’s say: not only. The book’s main purpose is to analyze how progress in physics came about, and what we can learn from it. Today, this aspect is often neglected; the focus is solely on the outcomes. Yes, the outcomes are what counts at the end of the day. But if we only have a superficial understanding of the path toward them, we’ll never get to the big new discoveries.

The book also analyzes a few specific theories. However, the purpose is not to argue that any of them are true (or false). Instead, they should only illustrate how the identified principles of progress in physics could be applied.

Ultimately, the book seeks to unravel novel approaches to problem-solving in physics, providing plenty of inspiration for the reader. And even if it fails at that, at least it’s a fun read.

Give me some more insight — what does the book say?

The book delves into many thought-provoking questions such as:

  • What role does simplification, unification, and beauty play in physics?
  • Why has there been only slow progress in fundamental physics in the last decades?
  • Can we break down the creative process required to come up with new theories?
  • What role do assumptions play in physics?
  • What are the historical lessons from major discoveries?
  • What should be our attitude toward refutations?
  • How shall we think about the way we think?
  • How is psychology relevant for progress in physics?
  • What are the right problems to work on?
  • What parallels does chess have to physics?
  • Will the new solutions be surprising?
  • Are there common traits among top physicists?
  • Will unlearning be required to reach the big new theories?
  • How can the scientific mindset be characterized?
  • How can we make physics fun?
  • What role does the subconscious mind play in generating great ideas?
  • Can mathematics be trusted as a guide for new discoveries?
  • Can we predict breakthroughs?
  • Can outsiders also contribute to progress in physics?
  • Will the next big ideas come from individuals or groups?
  • …and many more!

These questions are discussed in an easy-to-follow dialogue format between A(lice) and B(obby). To get a taste of it, please have a look at the OPIP blog.

What do others think about the book?

Some love it, and all others should go to hell!

On a more serious note, you can find the book’s ratings and reviews on RateItAll.

What does it cost?

The book is available in digital and printed versions, starting from 15.98 USD. See all options here.

Book Illustration

Selected Blog Posts

See all
Profiling Top Physicists

Profiling Top Physicists

What are the characteristics of top physicists? Are there common traits?

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Surprise, Surprise

Surprise, Surprise

Why the next big discoveries in fundamental physics will be massively surprising.

READ IT
Lessons From History

Lessons From History

What can we learn from progress in the past?

READ IT