Named a Top Five Book of 2012 by Physics Today, USA.
Philip Anderson was educated at University High School in Urbana, Illinois, at Harvard (BS 1943, PhD 1949), and further educated at Bell Laboratories, where his career (1949–1984) coincided with the greatest period of that remarkable institution. Starting in 1967, he shared his time with Cambridge University (until 1975) and then with Princeton, where he continued full time as Joseph Henry Professor until 1997. As an emeritus he remains active in research, and at press time he was involved in several scientific controversies about high profile subjects, in which his point of view, though unpopular at the moment, is likely to prevail eventually. His colleagues have made him one of the two physicists most often cited in the scientific literature, for several decades.
His work is characterized by mathematical simplicity combined with conceptual depth, and by profound respect for experimental findings. He has explored areas outside his main discipline, the quantum theory of condensed matter (for which he won the 1977 Nobel Prize), on several occasions: his paper on what is now called the “Anderson-Higgs mechanism” was a main source for Peter Higgs' elucidation of the boson; a crucial insight led to work on the dynamics of neutron stars (pulsars); and his concept of the spin glass led far afield, to developments in practical computer algorithms and neural nets, and eventually to his involvement in the early years of the Santa Fe Institute and his co-leadership with Kenneth Arrow of two influential workshops on economics at that institution. His writing career started with a much-quoted article in Science titled “More is Different” in 1971; he was an occasional columnist for Physics Today in the 1980s and 1990s. He was more recently a reviewer of science and science-related books for the Times (London) Higher Education Supplement as well as an occasional contributor to Science, Nature, and other journals.
Contents:Personal Reminiscences:Introduction“BCS” and MeA Mile of Dirty Lead Wire: A Fable for the Scientifically LiterateScientific and Personal Reminiscences of Ryogo KuboHistory:IntroductionPhysics at Bell Labs, 1949–1984: Young Turks and Younger TurksIt's Not Over Till the Fat Lady SingsReflections on Twentieth Century Physics: Historical Overview of the 20th Century in Physics21st Century PhysicsY Nambu and Broken SymmetryNevill Mott, John Slater, and the “Magnetic State”: Winning the Prize and Losing the PR BattlePhilosophy and Sociology:IntroductionEmergence vs ReductionismIs the Theory of Everything the Theory of Anything?Is Measurement Itself an Emergent Property?Good News and Bad NewsThe Future Lies AheadCould Modern America Have Invented Wave Mechanics?Loose Ends and Gordian Knots of the String CultImaginary Friend, Who Art in HeavenScience Tactics and Strategy:IntroductionSolid State Experimentalists: Theory Should be on Tap, Not on TopShadows of DoubtThe Reverend Thomas Bayes, Needles in Haystacks, and the Fifth ForceEmerging PhysicsOn the Nature of Physical LawsOn the “Unreasonable Efficacy of Mathematics” — A Proposition by WignerWhen Scientists Go AstrayFurther InvestigationsGenius:IntroductionWhat Mad PursuitComplexities of FeynmanCoffee-Table ComplexitiesSearch for Polymath's Elementary ParticlesGiant Who Started the Silicon AgeThe Quiet Man of PhysicsA Theoretical PhysicistSome Thoughtful Words (Not Mine) on Research Strategy for TheoristsScience Wars:IntroductionThey Think It's All OverScience: A 'Dappled World' or a 'Seamless Web'?Reply to CartwrightPostmodernism, Politics and ReligionPolitics and Science:IntroductionPolitics and ScienceThe Case Against Star WarsA Dialogue About Star WarsNo Facts, Just the Right AnswersFuturology:IntroductionFuturologyDizzy with Future SchlockEinstein and the p-BranesForecaster Fails to Detect Any CloudsComplexity:IntroductionPhysics: The Opening to ComplexityIs Complexity Physics? Is It Science? What Is It?Complexity II: The Santa Fe InstituteWhole Truths False In PartPopularization Attempts:IntroductionWho Or What Is RVB?More on RVBBrainwashed by Feynman?Just Exactly What Do You Do, Dr Anderson?What Is a Condensed Matter Theorist?Global Economy II: Or, How Do You Follow a Great Act?Readership: Students, scientists and lay people.