The Universe in a Nutshell Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Whom did Einstein later marry after his first marriage fell apart?

2. What equation shows mass and energy are equivalent?

3. What does time have?

4. Dirac's discoveries were difficult to reconcile with what?

5. What did Einstein suggest concerning the speed of light?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe imaginary time.

2. Why can't we coherently ask why the universe is the way it is?

3. What is space-time?

4. What idea about the galaxies did Einstein never take seriously?

5. What is Hawking's view about mathematical models?

6. What new sort of symmetry was discovered in the 1970s?

7. What was considered the foundation of a TOE and why did it go out of fashion?

8. What is a p = 1 brane and a p = 2 brane?

9. What changed about the way we view zero point fluctuations in the 1940s?

10. What is the no boundary condition, and what does it imply?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What are zero point fluctuations and what serious effects do they have on the quantum theory of gravity? Be sure to discuss Feynman, Schwinger and Tomonaga's work with zero point fluctuations.

Essay Topic 2

What are p-branes? What are the different levels of branes? What is the role of p-branes in supersymmetry? Answer the previous questions succinctly and be sure to explore Hawking's contributions to this field of study.

Essay Topic 3

Why is popular culture so enthralled by the relationship between mechanical devices and humans? Write an essay that seeks to explore the similarities and differences between computers and humans and why this either concerns or excites us.

(see the answer keys)

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