By James Trefil Physics Professor
James Trefil takes the reader on an exhilarating travel around the borders of present medical knowledge-from astronomy to genetics, from details expertise to cosmology, the nice contested questions that preoccupy researchers this day and should turn into headlines the next day. In based, witty three-page summations, Dr. Trefil "makes experience of technological know-how for the remainder of us" (Washington Post).
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Extra resources for 101 Things You Don't Know About Science and No One Else Does Either
It would be as if we had discovered not only that all the buildings were made of bricks but also that if we looked closely enough, all the different fasteners nails, glue, mortar, and so onwere made of one kind of material. Mortar is one way that constituent parts interact to form larger structures. In the universe the role of mortar is played by the forces that govern the way one bit of matter interacts with another. On first glance, there appear to be four such forces in nature the familiar forces of gravity and electromagnetism and, on the atomic scale, the strong force (which holds the nucleus together) and the weak force (which governs some kinds of radioactive decay).
Every cell in your body can be thought of as a complex chemical refinery, with thousands of different kinds of molecules zipping around carrying out their missions. The second fact about living systems is that the workings of all of these molecules depends on their threedimensional geometry and a few other simple features. For two molecules to combine to form a third, for example, they must be shaped so that the atoms on their surfaces can form bonds to lock the molecules together. The function of a molecule in a living system depends on its shape.
In the universe the role of mortar is played by the forces that govern the way one bit of matter interacts with another. On first glance, there appear to be four such forces in nature the familiar forces of gravity and electromagnetism and, on the atomic scale, the strong force (which holds the nucleus together) and the weak force (which governs some kinds of radioactive decay). What physicists have learned is that if you look at these forces at a high enough magnification, they appear to become identical.
101 Things You Don't Know About Science and No One Else Does Either by James Trefil Physics Professor