Anything about Richard Feynman is sure to find a ready audience of
people interested in science, and people interested in the greatest
scientist of his generation. The latest addition to the canon is
something of a curiosity - the 'lost lecture' is one that was left
out of the famous lectures on physics in the 1960s, and deals with
the motions of planets around the sun. The book is filled out with
background material on the importance of Newton's discovery of the
explanation for the elliptical orbits of the planets, and a
touching reminiscence by David Goodstein, one of Feynman's
colleagues at Caltech. (Kirkus UK)
The great theoretical physicist and Nobel Prize winnder, Richard Feynman, left an indelible imprint on scientific thought. On 14 March 1964 he delivered a remarkable lecture which, until now, was believed to be lost. His lecture was about a single fact, though by no means a small one. When a planet or a comet or any other body arcs through space under the influence of gravity, it traces out one of a very special set of mathematical curves, known as the conic sections. But why does nature choose to describe those, and only those, elegant geometrical constructions ? In this book Feynman's lost lecture has been reconstructed and explained in meticulous, accessible detail, together with a history of ideas of the planets' motions.
It can be enjoyed by the specialist and non-specialist alike and provides us all with an invaluable insight into the mind of one of this century's greatest scientists.
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