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The Science of Doctor Who

Paul Parsons

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Almost fifty years after he first crossed the small screen, Doctor Who remains a science fiction touchstone. His exploits are thrilling, his world is mind-boggling, and that time travel machine—known as the Tardis—is almost certainly an old-fashioned blue police box, once commonly found in London.

Paul Parsons's plain-English account of the real science behind the fantastic universe portrayed in the Doctor Who television series provides answers to such burning questions as whether a sonic screwdriver is any use for putting up a shelf, how Cybermen make little Cybermen, where the toilets are in…

Almost fifty years after he first crossed the small screen, Doctor Who remains a science fiction touchstone. His exploits are thrilling, his world is mind-boggling, and that time travel machine—known as the Tardis—is almost certainly an old-fashioned blue police box, once commonly found in London.

Paul Parsons's plain-English account of the real science behind the fantastic universe portrayed in the Doctor Who television series provides answers to such burning questions as whether a sonic screwdriver is any use for putting up a shelf, how Cybermen make little Cybermen, where the toilets are in the Tardis, and much more.

Taking the show as a starting point—episode-by-episode in some cases—Parsons dissects its scientific concepts. In addition to explaining why time travel is possible and just how that blue police box works, Parsons

• discusses who the Time Lords are and how we may one day be able to regenerate just like them
• ponders the ways that the doctor's two hearts might work and introduces us to a terrestrial animal with five
• details the alien populations and cosmology of the Whovian Universe and relates them to what we currently know about our universe
• compares the robotics of the show with startlingly similar real-world applications

This slender, equation-free discussion is penned by a Ph.D. cosmologist and is ideal beach reading for anyone who loves science and watches the show—no matter which planet the beach is on.

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The Science of Doctor Who

Paul Parsons

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Reviews

Reviews

Do you have to be a Doctor Who fan to read this book? No, but it helps. And if you aren't when you begin, you will probably be one by the end.

This exploration of the long-running TV series delivers on its promise to answer the kinds of questions raised by the best of science fiction. The book takes readers on a satisfying romp through labs around the world where the show’s fantastical ideas are explained and, in some cases, shown moving closer to reality.

Anyone who enjoys reading popular science magazines should get a kick out of The Science of Doctor Who.

It had to happen that someone would write The Science of Doctor Who, and we're all very fortunate that Paul Parsons was the one who did it... If you only read one Science of XYZ book this year, make it this one.

Parsons has written an engaging work accessible to lay audiences and interesting even to those not fanatical about the long-running BBC series... Accessible and entertaining, this is suitable for public and academic libraries and possibly also high school collections.

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About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
328
ISBN
9780801895609
Illustration Description
19 line drawings
Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
The Eleven Doctors
Part I: Doctor in the Tardis
1. Who Is the Doctor?
2. Time and Relative Dimension in Space, or Tardis
3. Into the Vortex
4. Regeneration
5. One Giant Leap for DIY
6

Preface
Acknowledgments
The Eleven Doctors
Part I: Doctor in the Tardis
1. Who Is the Doctor?
2. Time and Relative Dimension in Space, or Tardis
3. Into the Vortex
4. Regeneration
5. One Giant Leap for DIY
6. Partners in Time
Part II: Aliens of London and Beyond
7. Other Worlds
8. Carnival of Monsters
9. The Cybermen
10. The Daleks
11. The Slitheen
12. The Autons
13. The Silurians and the Sea Devils
14. The Sontarans
15. Martians, Go Home!
16. The Krynoid
17. Stupid Apes
18. Exile to Earth
19. The Human Empire
20. Invasion Earth
Part III: Robot Dogs, Psychic Paper, and Other Celestial Toys
21. Scanning for Alien Tech
22. Just What the Doctor Ordered
23. K-9 and Company
24. Psychic Paper
25. Space-flight
26. Space Stations and Moonbases
27. Bombs, Bullets, and Death Rays
28. Force Fields
29. The Matrix
Part IV: Mission to the Unknown
30. Event One
31. The Eye of Harmony and Other Black Holes
32. Journeys through E-Space
33. Strange Stars and Mirror Planets
34. The More Things Change
35. The End of Time
Epilogue
List fo Episodes by Doctor
Further Reading
Index

Author Bio
Featured Contributor

Paul Parsons, Ph.D.

Paul Parsons is a scientist, journalist, and lifelong Doctor Who fan. He is a freelance contributor to various science magazines, including BBC Focus and New Scientist.