Motion Mountain -  Fall, Flow and Heat: Volume I of The Adventure of Physics
Christoph Schiller
Science & Math
Motion Mountain - Fall, Flow and Heat: Volume I of The Adventure of Physics

This book series is for anybody who is curious about motion in nature. How do hings, people, animals, images and empty space move? The answer leads o many adventures; this volume presents the best ones about everyday motion. Carefully observing everyday motion allows us to deduce six essential statements: everyday motion is continuous, conserved, relative, reversible, mirror-invariant – and lazy. Yes, nature is indeed lazy: in every motion, it minimizes change. This text explores how these six results are deduced and how they fit with all those observations that seem to contradict them.

Using this book
Advice for learners
Advice for teachers
Fall, Flow and Heat
1 Why should we care about motion?
Does motion exist?
How should we talk about motion?
What are the types of motion?
Perception, permanence and change
Does the world need states?
Galilean physics in six interesting statements
Curiosities and fun challenges about motion
Summary on motion
2 From motion measurement to continuity
What is velocity?
What is time?
Why do clocks go clockwise?
Does time flow?
What is space?
Are space and time absolute or relative?
Size – why length and area exist, but volume does not
What is straight?
A hollow Earth?
Curiosities and fun challenges about everyday space and time
Summary about everyday space and time
3 How to describe motion – kinematics
Throwing, jumping and shooting
Enjoying vectors
What is rest? What is velocity?
From objects to point particles
Legs and wheels
Curiosities and fun challenges about kinematics
Summary of kinematics
4 From objects and images to conservation
Motion and contact
What is mass?
Momentum and mass
Is motion eternal? – Conservation of momentum
More conservation – energy
The cross product, or vector product
Rotation and angular momentum
Rolling wheels
How do we walk and run?
Curiosities and fun challenges about mass, conservation and rotation
Summary on conservation in motion
5 From the rotation of the earth to the relativity of motion
How does the Earth rotate?
Does the Earth move?
Is velocity absolute? – The theory of everyday relativity
Is rotation relative?
Curiosities and fun challenges about rotation and relativity
Legs or wheels? – Again
Summary on Galilean relativity
6 Motion due to gravitation
Gravitation as a limit to uniform motion
Gravitation in the sky
Gravitation on Earth
Properties of gravitation: G and g
The gravitational potential
The shape of the Earth
Dynamics – how do things move in various dimensions?
The Moon
Orbits – conic sections and more
Can light fall?
Mass: inertial and gravitational
Curiosities and fun challenges about gravitation
Summary on gravitation
7 Classical mechanics, force and the predictability of motion
Should one use force? Power?
Forces, surfaces and conservation
Friction and motion
Friction, sport, machines and predictability
Complete states – initial conditions
Do surprises exist? Is the future determined?
Free will
Summary on predictability
From predictability to global descriptions of motion
8 Measuring change with action
The principle of least action
Lagrangians and motion
Why is motion so often bounded?
Curiosities and fun challenges about Lagrangians
Summary on action
9 Motion and symmetry
Why can we think and talk about the world?
Symmetries and groups
The symmetries and vocabulary of motion
Reproducibility, conservation and Noether's theorem
Parity inversion and motion reversal
Interaction symmetries
Curiosities and fun challenges about symmetry
Summary on symmetry
10 Simple motions of extended bodies – oscillations and waves
Waves: general and harmonic
Water waves
Waves and their motion
Why can we talk to each other? – Huygens' principle
Wave equations
Why are music and singing voices so beautiful?
Measuring sound
Is ultrasound imaging safe for babies?
Solitary waves and solitons
Curiosities and fun challenges about waves and oscillation
Summary on waves and oscillations
11 Do extended bodies exist? – Limits of continuity
Mountains and fractals
Can a chocolate bar last forever?
The case of Galileo Galilei
How high can animals jump?
Felling trees
Little hard balls
The sound of silence
How to count what cannot be seen
Experiencing atoms
Seeing atoms
Curiosities and fun challenges about solids and atoms
Summary on atoms
12 Fluids and their motion
What can move in nature? – Flows of all kinds
The state of a fluid
Laminar and turbulent flow
The atmosphere
The physics of blood and breath
Curiosities and fun challenges about fluids
Summary on fluids
13 On heat and motion reversal invariance
Thermal energy
Why do balloons take up space? – The end of continuity
Brownian motion
Why stones can be neither smooth nor fractal, nor made of little hard balls
Entropy from particles
The minimum entropy of nature – the quantum of information
Is everything made of particles?
The second principle of thermodynamics
Why can't we remember the future?
Flow of entropy
Do isolated systems exist?
Curiosities and fun challenges about reversibility and heat
Summary on heat and time-invariance
14 Self-organization and chaos – the simplicity of complexity
Appearance of order
Self-organization in sand
Self-organization of spheres
Conditions for the appearance of order
The mathematics of order appearance
Curiosities and fun challenges about self-organization
Summary on self-organization and chaos
15 From the limitations of physics to the limits of motion
Research topics in classical dynamics
What is contact?
What determines precision and accuracy?
Can all of nature be described in a book?
Something is wrong about our description of motion
Why is measurement possible?
Is motion unlimited?
A Notation and conventions
The Latin alphabet
The Greek alphabet
The Hebrew alphabet and other scripts
Numbers and the Indian digits
The symbols used in the text
People Names
Abbreviations and eponyms or concepts?
B Units, measurements and constants
SI units
The meaning of measurement
Curiosities and fun challenges about units
Precision and accuracy of measurements
Limits to precision
Physical constants
Useful numbers
C Sources of information on motion
Challenge hints and solutions
Film credits
Image credits
Name index
Subject index
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