Are Universes Thicker Than Blackberries? — Martin Gardner

Martin Gardner is absolutely brilliant on puzzles and mathematical topics, but when he moves to other topics as he does in this collection, he writes as just a smart, opinionated and slightly old-fashioned commentator. The title essay is about the multiple-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics. He thinks it’s tosh, which I tend to agree with. But somehow these pieces do not read like balanced and insightful discussions; rather, they sound like slightly irascible kvetching.

This book would be OK to dip into occasionally, but having all these pieces in one volume is a bit overwhelming (and, at the same time, underwhelming). I did read the whole thing, but by the end I was hankering to pull out my copy of Wheels, Life and Other Mathematical Amusementsthat’s the Martin Gardner for me.

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