Review by Alexandra Witze
There’s no shortage of smart, literate physicists — think Lisa Randall, Steven Weinberg or Brian Greene — whose popular writings bring the universe into sharp focus. But Neil Turok, director of Canada’s Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, also brings humanity into the mix of cosmic questions.
On some levels, The Universe Within is a typical whirlwind tour of physics’ richest discoveries, from the unification of electricity and magnetism to the discovery of the expanding universe. Turok sails through the greatest hits while tucking in nuggets such as what it’s like to work with Stephen Hawking.
On other levels, the book is a call for radical societal change. Turok frames his arguments around the power of the human mind, and his new twist is a consideration of the future. Superfast quantum computing, he predicts, will soon bec