A penetrating exploration of the new physics, including time travel, quantum computers, and the multiverse – as referenced in the film “Avengers: Endgame”
For David Deutsch, a young physicist of unusual originality, quantum theory contains our most fundamental knowledge of the physical world. Taken literally, it implies that there are many universes “parallel” to the one we see around us. This multiplicity of universes, according to Deutsch, turns out to be the key to achieving a new worldview, one which synthesizes the theories of evolution, computation, and knowledge with quantum physics. Considered jointly, these four strands of explanation reveal a unified fabric of reality that is both objective and comprehensible, the subject of this daring, challenging book.
The Fabric of Reality explains and connects many topics at the leading edge of current research and thinking, such as quantum computers (which work by effectively collaborating with their counterparts in other universes), the physics of time travel, the comprehensibility of nature and the physical limits of virtual reality, the significance of human life, and the ultimate fate of the universe. Here, for scientist and layperson alike, for philosopher, science-fiction reader, biologist, and computer expert, is a startlingly complete and rational synthesis of disciplines, and a new, optimistic message about existence.
Philosophy, biology, computer science and quantum physics all converge in this ambitious theoretical work by Deutsch, an expert in quantum computation at Oxford University. Interweaving the four disciplines, Deutsch provides a model of reality that is as provocative as it is complex. Building on such diverse topics as the evolution of knowledge, biological Darwinism, time travel, virtual reality and parallel universes, Deutsch describes a reality where parallel universes are "stacked like a pack of playing cards" to comprise a "multiverse," with computers communicating between them, where the mechanics and likelihood of time travel exist and where the universe comes to an end. Though many of Deutsch's conclusions and their core assumptions are controversial--which to his credit, he acknowledges--the work remains an intellectually stimulating read for the science-literate and motivated lay person, in the tradition of Hawking's A Brief History of Time and Hofstadter's Godel, Escher, Bach. The author exhibits not only a thorough knowledge of his subject matter but a genuine desire to draw the lay reader into the complexities, paradoxes and possibilities surrounding quantum physics. In a particularly effective manner, each chapter begins by outlining basic scientific history or concepts before delving into the complex, and ends with a glossary and summary, both invaluable tools for the lay reader. In a field where scientific inquiry challenges not only our imagination but basic assumptions about our physical world, this volume provides the essential information needed for future debates, regardless of whether Deutsch's conclusions are ever accepted as scientific doctrine.
A Masterclass on The Theory of Knowledge
I recommend reading prior to The Beginning of Infinity or after to cement comprehension.