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The Janus Point

The Janus Point

A New Theory of Time

A radical argument that the growth of order drives the passage of time.

Time is among the universe’s greatest mysteries. Why, when most laws of physics allow for it to flow forward and backward, does it only go forward? Physicists have long appealed to the second law of thermodynamics, held to predict the increase of disorder in the universe, to explain this. In The Janus Point, physicist Julian Barbour argues that the second law has been misapplied and that the growth of order determines how we experience time. In his view, the big bang becomes the “Janus point,” a moment of minimal order from which time could flow, and order increase, in two directions. The Janus Point has remarkable implications: while most physicists predict that the universe will become mired in disorder, Barbour sees the possibility that order — the stuff of life — can grow without bound.

A major new work of physics, The Janus Point will transform our understanding of the nature of existence.
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Genre: Nonfiction / Science / Time

On Sale: December 1st 2020

Price: $32 / $40 (CAD)

Page Count: 400

ISBN-13: 9780465095469

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews


"The origin of the arrow of time is arguably the most important conceptual problem in cosmology, and the prospect that it can be solved in a universe where time flows 'backward' in the far past is as exciting as it is provocative. In this engaging book, Julian Barbour conveys this excitement admirably, complete with just a bit more detail than professional physicists usually share with the public."
Sean Carroll, author of From Eternity to Here
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