Michio Kaku, physicist, author, and nearly omnipresent TV science dude, is speaking at the U of M bookstore today. I am thinking about going to hear him talk (presumably about his new book, The Physics of the Impossible). I am not sure that there is a Q&A session accompanying the talk, but if you have any good questions that I should ask, let me know in the comments.
Kaku’s book Hyperspace was one of the first physics books that I read as a kid, after Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time. I don’t remember a whole lot about what he wrote about, but I know that it piqued my interest in physics, and got me wondering about higher dimensions, so in that sense it was an important book in my life. I haven’t read it in years, and I never read any of his other books.
I have started to notice Kaku popping up a lot on TV science programs a lot lately, saying what appears to be some outlandish stuff, or at least giving a lot of credence to ideas that are not as accepted as he makes them sound. Of course, a lot of a scientist’s intent can be molded by the producers and editors of the shows, so it would be unfair to judge him based solely on that. But throw in a snide comment or two on various physics blogs, and I have to start to wonder about this man who helped draw me in to physics. Is he a kook who’s on the fringes of the physics community? Or is he just a little more willing to push the boundaries and fudge the successes of certain theories in order to reach out to a larger popular audience?
I’m hoping to skim a little bit of Hyperspace tomorrow before the talk, and see if I can form an opinion from there.
Please feel free to share your opinions and your questions in the comments.