Fake Physics: Spoofs, Hoaxes and Fictitious Science by Andrew May audiobook

Fake Physics: Spoofs, Hoaxes and Fictitious Science

By Andrew May

Blackstone Publishing 9783030133139

The Science and Fiction Series

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People are used to seeing “fake physics” in science fiction—concepts like faster-than-light travel, antigravity, and time travel to name a few. The fiction label ought to be a giveaway, but some SF writers—especially those with a background in professional science—are so adept at “technobabble” that it can be difficult to work out what is fake and what is real. To confuse matters further, Isaac Asimov’s 1948 piece about the fictitious time-traveling substance thiotimoline was written, not as a short story, but in the form of a spoof research paper. The boundaries between fact and fiction can also be blurred by physicists themselves—sometimes unintentionally, sometimes with tongue-in-cheek, sometimes to satirize perceived weaknesses in research practices. Examples range from hoaxes aimed at exposing poor editorial standards in academic publications, through “thought experiments” that sound like the plot of a sci-fi movie to April Fools’ jokes. Even the latter may carry a serious message, whether about the sociology of science or poking fun at legitimate but far-out scientific hypotheses. This entertaining book is a joyous romp exploring the whole spectrum of fake physics—from science to fiction and back again.

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Summary

Summary

People are used to seeing “fake physics” in science fiction—concepts like faster-than-light travel, antigravity, and time travel to name a few. The fiction label ought to be a giveaway, but some SF writers—especially those with a background in professional science—are so adept at “technobabble” that it can be difficult to work out what is fake and what is real. To confuse matters further, Isaac Asimov’s 1948 piece about the fictitious time-traveling substance thiotimoline was written, not as a short story, but in the form of a spoof research paper.

The boundaries between fact and fiction can also be blurred by physicists themselves—sometimes unintentionally, sometimes with tongue-in-cheek, sometimes to satirize perceived weaknesses in research practices. Examples range from hoaxes aimed at exposing poor editorial standards in academic publications, through “thought experiments” that sound like the plot of a sci-fi movie to April Fools’ jokes. Even the latter may carry a serious message, whether about the sociology of science or poking fun at legitimate but far-out scientific hypotheses.

This entertaining book is a joyous romp exploring the whole spectrum of fake physics—from science to fiction and back again.

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Andrew May

Author Bio: Andrew May

Andrew May is an author who has been working as a freelance writer and defense consultant. He obtained a PhD in astrophysics from the University of Manchester and is an experienced professional with a career spanning academia, government, and private industry. He has written both authoritatively and entertainingly on the physical sciences, military technology, British history, science fiction, New Age beliefs, and the paranormal. He is the author of several titles, including Pseudoscience and Science Fiction, The Telescopic Tourist’s Guide to the Moon, and Rockets and Ray Guns: The Sci-Fi Science of the Cold War, among others.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Science
Audience: Adult
Language: English