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Anthropic Cosmological Principle, The

Product no.: 0-19-282147-4
Is there any connection between the vastness of the universes of stars and galaxies and the existence of life on a small planet out in the suburbs of the Milky Way?

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Publisher's Synopsis
This book shows that there is. In their classic work, John Barrow and Frank Tipler examine the question of Mankind's place in the Universe, taking the reader on a tour of many scientific disciplines and offering fascinating insights into issues such as the nature of life, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, and the past history and fate of our universe.

The various anthropic principles start from the remark that in interpreting our observations of the cosmos, what we can expect to see is limited by the conditions necessary for our presence as observers. Even when allowance is made for this obvious fact, these conditions seem to impose extremely narrow limits - all of which, of course, are obeyed by the universe we know.

The limits, when studied, appear to be so narrow that many people have concluded there may be a causal principle at work that is outside the range of present scientific knowledge.

"...there is something about the argument that won't go away. The universe is, after all, evolving and changing, and the fact that it has evolved us ought to tell us something about the universe. To my way of thinking, Mr. Barrow and Mr. Tipler view this question through the wrong end of the telescope - especially when they insist that intelligent life must be rare in the universe, so that it may actually be we, here on earth, who bear the burden of realizing the entire universe. But seldom have I seen these arguments put forth more cogently and never more thoroughly.

The Anthropic Cosmological Principle is not for every palate. It assumes at least a college-level acquaintance with physics and astronomy, and it is riddled with equations that sometimes obscure as much as they illuminate. But it is a book that impels the reader to think, and it may alter the the terms of discourse within which it will be judged."      ~NY Times

''Our existence imposes a stringent selection effect upon the type of Universe we could ever expect to observe and document and many observations of the natural world, although remarkable a priori, can be seen in this light as inevitable consequences of our own existence.''

Author Barrow, John
Coauthor Tipler, Frank
Book Type Trade Paperback
Page Count 706 pp.
Publisher Oxford University Press 1996
Browse these categories as well: Science, Physics and the Unified Field, Quantum Physics and Superstring Theory

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