One of the most intriguing questions in science is that of the mysterious arrow of time: while the basic laws of physics look the same whether time runs forward or backward, the world we live in does not. For example, a movie of the motion of atoms looks equally correct if you run it forward or in reverse, but a movie of a raw egg dropping on the floor and breaking looks absurd in reverse. Why is this so? The resolution of this paradox is due to Maxwell, Thomson and (especially) Boltzmann. These authors of course pictured the world as a classical deterministic machine while we now view it as a quantum system. Their basic insights however remain valid as the speaker shall try to elucidate.
This lecture is part of Non-equilibrium statistical physics