1: Early Ideas
2: Ole Roemer, Who Started It All
3: Measuring the Cosmos. Parallax and the Transit of Venus
4: James Bradley, Sailing On the Thames. The Best Experiment
5: The 19th Century. Light Beams Across the Rooftops of Paris
6: Faraday and Maxwell - The Grand Synthesis
7: Albert Michelson and the Aether Wind
8: Einstein: The Great Clarification
9: Radio and Telecommunications. Spacecraft
10: Faster-Than Light Schemes. Quantum Reality
John C. H. Spence FRS is Snell Professor of Physics at Arizona
State University, where he teaches condensed matter physics with
research in biophysics. He is currently Director of Science for the
National Science Foundation's eight-campus "BioXFEL" consortium.
This is devoted to applications of the recently invented hard x-ray
free-electron laser to structural biology, providing movies of
molecular machines at work with femtosecond time resolution. John
author of texts on electron microscopy, and a keen musician, pilot and sailor.
The richly illustrated study and reference book Lightspeed tells in
a pleasant and fascinating way the course of history in the search
for the natural presence of light and its physical properties.
*Jan M. Broeders, Optische Fenomenen [translated] *
In his highly informative and entertaining book Lightspeed: the Ghostly Aether and the Race to Measure the Speed of Light, John Spence recounts the history of humanity's attempts to understand light and measure its speed. This may seem like a narrow focus, but light is so fundamental to the nature of the universe that this history encompasses most of the essential developments in physics, and features all of the giants – from Galileo to Einstein to today's quantum computer scientists.
*David Appell, Physics World*
From Faraday and Maxwell describing how light propagates to Einstein showing the constancy of the speed of light and all else entailed in his theories of special and general relativity, John Spence recounts this history with a focus on the key personalities that helped it move forward, the science they did and the legacy they left behind.
*Marios Karouzos, Nature Astronomy*