History of the Universe

History of the Universe eBook. 398 pages, 300 illustrations only £5.99

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Summary of the Story

We are not sure how or why the Universe began, but we have a good understanding of events a fraction of a second later, namely, a Big Bang which released radiation, particles and clouds of atoms.

Gravity condensed the atoms into galaxies where stars appeared. Stars created new types of atoms when they grew old and exploded as supernovae. The new atoms were released back to the galaxy, and joined together into cosmic dust and molecules.

New stars, such as the Sun, formed from these materials in the spiral arms of the Galaxy. The dust and molecules formed planets such as Earth.

Life appeared on Earth (we are not sure how) and soon evolved into bacteria (germs). The evolution of life was played out upon the moving stage formed by continental drift.

Single cells with a well-formed nucleus appeared and plants such as algae and animals such as protozoa evolved. These single cells began to live together in colonies to form more complex algae and invertebrate animals.

Vertebrates such as fish appeared about the same time as the plants began to live on land , rapidly followed by the invertebrates. Later types of vertebrates (called amphibians) evolved to live out of water and reptiles dominated the land for millions of years.

Plants, insects and vertebrates evolved into flowers, bees and mammals all at about the same time.

People appeared very recently and rapidly dominated and transformed the entire planet, also learning how to leave it. There are vast resources in our Solar System and huge amounts of energy. Once humankind learns to capture these resources we will become wealthy beyond our wildest dreams.

People have also created computers, and software is now being developed which can learn and evolve. If computers ever learn how to develop other computers, they might become completely independent of their human inventors. Independent computers might rapidly colonize this corner of the Galaxy. But we are so far away from even then next nearest galaxy that it is unlikely that people or computers will ever spread very far into the Universe.

The Sun will eventually burn up the Earth, but by that time organic life will probably be largely irrelevant.

The Universe will probably end by cooling and expanding to almost empty space.

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