What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe

Either it’s the mind of a child, a youngster like me or an aged one, millions of questions arise which are difficult to answer and we without any investigation assume “the question doesn’t make any sense”.

So what we do is just leave it unanswered. But the reality is something far much interesting in terms of practicality as well as scientifically, mathematically, or whateverically you can imagine.

The book is based on the same concept and answer those questions.

Up-till now it would be clear to you about the idea and the main focus of the writer Randall Munroe i.e, to answer those What Ifs.

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It’s a very interesting book and is worth reading. A lot of questions answered in the book would have at least once stricken your mind. I call it interesting because of the way Munroe has answered the questions is very creative and his art (cartoons) is also fun to keep the readers’ interest in it.

Looking at the index of the book you may think that the book is somewhat complicated and would contain a lot of mathematical formulae. Yes, the writer says in the introduction that he used a lot of mathematical formulae. I don’t disagree with him as the book is written by him, he would know it better. But the way he has explained things is too simple, anyone can easily understand as well as feel them and he has merely shown any formulae, he might have used them for answering the questions but for normal readers understandability, he explained most things theoretically.

The graphics along with every explanation or I should say answers are awesome and some of them make your understanding easier and clearer if you find the reading portion to be a little weird.

The book will surprise you with every new question and will amaze you with the explanations. It will surely increase your knowledge as it also contains a lot of facts. It will also change the way you look at the day to day happenings and will enhance the way you think and approach a problem, which is basically a question. Reading it feels like we are in that particular situation and the facts, the wrong approach never fails to give goosebumps.


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The best part about the book is its simplicity and it’s easy to understand as we can easily grasp most of the things explained only in one go.

The question that I may call my favorite ones are:

  • “What if a rainstorm dropped all of its water in a single giant drop?”
  • ‘I was absentmindedly stirring a cup of hot tea, when I got to thinking, “Aren’t I actually adding kinetic energy into this cup?” I know that stirring does help to cool down the tea, but what if I were to stir it faster? Would I be able to boil a cup of water by stirring?’
  • and many more.

Overall, ‘What If?’ by Randall Munroe is a good book and deserves to be spent your time on.

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
Source: Amazon

Get ‘What If?’ by Randall Munroe on Amazon India ₹294 for or Flipkart for ₹294.

Also, if you love this kind of absurd hypothetical questions and their serious scientific answers, then do give a visit to Randall Munroe’s blog: What If?

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