Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog: Scientific Discovery and Social Analysis in the Twenty-First Century

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9780226052298: Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog: Scientific Discovery and Social Analysis in the Twenty-First Century
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Gravity’s Ghost and Big Dog brings to life science’s efforts to detect cosmic gravitational waves. These ripples in space-time are predicted by general relativity, and their discovery will not only demonstrate the truth of Einstein’s theories but also transform astronomy. Although no gravitational wave has ever been directly detected, the previous five years have been an especially exciting period in the field. Here sociologist Harry Collins offers readers an unprecedented view of gravitational wave research and explains what it means for an analyst to do work of this kind.           Collins was embedded with the gravitational wave physicists as they confronted two possible discoveries—“Big Dog,” fully analyzed in this volume for the first time, and the “Equinox Event,” which was first chronicled by Collins in Gravity’s Ghost. Collins records the agonizing arguments that arose as the scientists worked out what they had seen and how to present it to the world, along the way demonstrating how even the most statistical of sciences rest on social and philosophical choices. Gravity’s Ghost and Big Dog draws on nearly fifty years of fieldwork observing scientists at the American Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and elsewhere around the world to offer an inspired commentary on the place of science in society today.

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About the Author:

Harry Collins is the Distinguished Research Professor of Sociology and director of the Centre for the Study of Knowledge, Expertise, and Science at Cardiff University, and a fellow of the British Academy.

Review:

“In part an account of sociological fieldwork among scientists in the field and part astronomy-history mystery, Collins’s book is a terrific read informed by almost forty years of research.” (Marianne de Laet Nature)

“[T]he physics junkie or philosophy of science enthusiast . . . will find lots to mull over.” (Science News)

Gravity’s Ghost and Big Dog is a fascinating and thought-provoking study of twenty-first century pioneering science, charting several years of significant recent developments in the worldwide effort to detect gravitational waves. The unique insider’s perspective that Harry Collins brings to the narrative is a key strength, skillfully interweaving sociological insight and astronomical detective story. His reflections on the denouement to the ‘Big Dog’ event capture very clearly both the inspiration and perspiration that underpin modern scientific discovery.”
(Martin A. Hendry, University of Glasgow)

“Written in Harry Collins’s usual accessible and readable style, Gravity’s Ghost and Big Dog makes for very entertaining reading.”
(Daniel Kennefick, University of Arkansas)

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2014. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English. Brand new Book. Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog brings to life science's efforts to detect cosmic gravitational waves. These ripples in space-time are predicted by general relativity, and their discovery will not only demonstrate the truth of Einstein's theories but also transform astronomy. Although no gravitational wave has ever been directly detected, the previous five years have been an especially exciting period in the field. Here sociologist Harry Collins offers readers an unprecedented view of gravitational wave research and explains what it means for an analyst to do work of this kind. Collins was embedded with the gravitational wave physicists as they confronted two possible discoveries - "Big Dog," fully analyzed in this volume for the first time, and the "Equinox Event," which was first chronicled by Collins in Gravity's Ghost. He records the agonizing arguments that arose as the scientists worked out what they had seen and how to present it to the world, along the way demonstrating how even the most statistical of sciences rest on social and philosophical choices.Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog draws on nearly fifty years of fieldwork observing scientists at the American Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and elsewhere around the world to offer an inspired commentary on the place of science in society today. Seller Inventory # AAH9780226052298

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2014. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English. Brand new Book. Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog brings to life science's efforts to detect cosmic gravitational waves. These ripples in space-time are predicted by general relativity, and their discovery will not only demonstrate the truth of Einstein's theories but also transform astronomy. Although no gravitational wave has ever been directly detected, the previous five years have been an especially exciting period in the field. Here sociologist Harry Collins offers readers an unprecedented view of gravitational wave research and explains what it means for an analyst to do work of this kind. Collins was embedded with the gravitational wave physicists as they confronted two possible discoveries - "Big Dog," fully analyzed in this volume for the first time, and the "Equinox Event," which was first chronicled by Collins in Gravity's Ghost. He records the agonizing arguments that arose as the scientists worked out what they had seen and how to present it to the world, along the way demonstrating how even the most statistical of sciences rest on social and philosophical choices.Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog draws on nearly fifty years of fieldwork observing scientists at the American Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and elsewhere around the world to offer an inspired commentary on the place of science in society today. Seller Inventory # AAH9780226052298

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2014. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English. Brand new Book. Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog brings to life science's efforts to detect cosmic gravitational waves. These ripples in space-time are predicted by general relativity, and their discovery will not only demonstrate the truth of Einstein's theories but also transform astronomy. Although no gravitational wave has ever been directly detected, the previous five years have been an especially exciting period in the field. Here sociologist Harry Collins offers readers an unprecedented view of gravitational wave research and explains what it means for an analyst to do work of this kind. Collins was embedded with the gravitational wave physicists as they confronted two possible discoveries - "Big Dog," fully analyzed in this volume for the first time, and the "Equinox Event," which was first chronicled by Collins in Gravity's Ghost. He records the agonizing arguments that arose as the scientists worked out what they had seen and how to present it to the world, along the way demonstrating how even the most statistical of sciences rest on social and philosophical choices.Gravity's Ghost and Big Dog draws on nearly fifty years of fieldwork observing scientists at the American Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory and elsewhere around the world to offer an inspired commentary on the place of science in society today. Seller Inventory # BTE9780226052298

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