Author:
James J. Callahan

ISBN 13:
9780387986418

ISBN 10:
387986413

Edition:
N/A

Publisher:
Springer

Publication Date:
2001-08-17

Format:
Hardcover

Pages:
463

List Price:
$84.95

In 1905, Albert Einstein offered a revolutionary theory—special relativity—to explain some of the most troubling problems in current physics concerning electromagnetism and motion. Soon afterwards, Hermann Minkowski recast special relativity essentially as a new geometric structure for spacetime. These ideas are the subject of the first part of the book. The second part develops the main implications of Einstein's general relativity as a theory of gravity rooted in the differential geometry of surfaces. The author explores the way an individual observer views the world and how a pair of observers collaborate to gain objective knowledge of the world. To encompass both the general and special theory, he uses the geometry of spacetime as the unifying theme of the book. To read it, one needs only a first course in linear algebra and multivariable calculus and familiarity with the physical applications of calculus.