Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic
David Quammen - 2012
In this gripping account, David Quammen takes the reader along on this astonishing quest to learn how, where from, and why these diseases emerge and asks the terrifying question: What might the next big one be?
The Science of Good Cooking: Master 50 Simple Concepts to Enjoy a Lifetime of Success in the Kitchen
Cook's Illustrated - 2012
Unlike other food science books, we make a direct and practical connection between the science and the cooking. We divide the book into 50 core principles, support them through detailed yet friendly explanations, bring them alive with color illustrations and inventive experiments, and reinforce them through recipes that put the principle to work. At Cook's Illustrated, we've been asking why in the kitchen for over 20 years and often find our answers in science. We believe good science makes great food and that understanding basic science will make you a great cook.
Drugs Without the Hot Air: Minimizing the Harms of Legal and Illegal Drugs
David J. Nutt - 2012
Applying the same objective criteria to legal and illegal substances, an argument is made that legality is not a clear measure for harm. Tackling a variety of questions, such as Which is more harmful—Ecstasy or alcohol? Can addiction be cured? and Does the "War on Drugs" have serious unintended effects that can hurt children?, this analysis equips readers with the ability to make educated decisions regarding drugs both personally and in their communities. Broadening the scope of the discussion, a framework is explored for formulating national drug policies that will minimize a myriad of harms—social, medical, criminal, financial, and environmental.
Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity
Andrew Solomon - 2012
He writes about families coping with deafness, dwarfism, Down's syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, or multiple severe disabilities; with children who are prodigies, who are conceived in rape, who become criminals, who are transgender. While each of these characteristics is potentially isolating, the experience of difference within families is universal, and Solomon documents triumphs of love over prejudice in every chapter.All parenting turns on a crucial question: to what extent should parents accept their children for who they are, and to what extent they should help them become their best selves. Drawing on ten years of research and interviews with more than three hundred families, Solomon mines the eloquence of ordinary people facing extreme challenges.Elegantly reported by a spectacularly original and compassionate thinker, Far from the Tree explores how people who love each other must struggle to accept each other—a theme in every family’s life.
Little Kids First Big Book of Space
Catherine D. Hughes - 2012
These colorful pages will introduce young children to the wonders of space, with colorful illustrations by David Aguilar and simple text that is perfect for beginning readers or for reading aloud. The book will explain basic concepts of space, beginning with what is most familiar to kids and expanding out into universe.Chapters include: • Chapter 1 focuses on the Earth, moon, and sun. • Chapter 2 introduces kids to the other planets in our solar system. • Chapter 3 explains other objects in our solar system, such as dwarf planets, comets, and asteroid belts. • Chapter 4 voyages even farther afield, touching on concepts such as the universe, the Milky Way, stars, galaxies, and black holes. • The last chapter delves into space exploration: humans on the moon, spaceships, the International Space Station, etc.Releases simultaneously in Reinforced Library Binding: 978-1-4263-1015-7 , $23.90/$26.95 Can
Death at Seaworld: Shamu and the Dark Side of Killer Whales in Captivity
David Kirby - 2012
Following the story of marine biologist and animal advocate at the Humane Society of the US, Naomi Rose, Kirby tells the gripping story of the two-decade fight against PR-savvy SeaWorld, which came to a head with the tragic death of trainer Dawn Brancheau in 2010. Kirby puts that horrific animal-on-human attack in context. Brancheau’s death was the most publicized among several brutal attacks that have occurred at Sea World and other marine mammal theme parks. Death at SeaWorld introduces real people taking part in this debate, from former trainers turned animal rights activists to the men and women that champion SeaWorld and the captivity of whales. In section two the orcas act out. And as the story progresses and orca attacks on trainers become increasingly violent, the warnings of Naomi Rose and other scientists fall on deaf ears, only to be realized with the death of Dawn Brancheau. Finally he covers the media backlash, the eyewitnesses who come forward to challenge SeaWorld’s glossy image, and the groundbreaking OSHA case that challenges the very idea of keeping killer whales in captivity and may spell the end of having trainers in the water with the ocean’s top predators.
The Forest Unseen: A Year’s Watch in Nature
David George Haskell - 2012
Visiting it almost daily for one year to trace nature’s path through the seasons, he brings the forest and its inhabitants to vivid life.Each of this book’s short chapters begins with a simple observation: a salamander scuttling across the leaf litter; the first blossom of spring wildflowers. From these, Haskell spins a brilliant web of biology and ecology, explaining the science that binds together the tiniest microbes and the largest mammals and describing the ecosystems that have cycled for thousands—sometimes millions—of years. Each visit to the forest presents a nature story in miniature as Haskell elegantly teases out the intricate relationships that order the creatures and plants that call it home.Written with remarkable grace and empathy, The Forest Unseen is a grand tour of nature in all its profundity. Haskell is a perfect guide into the world that exists beneath our feet and beyond our backyards.
Our Mathematical Universe: My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality
Max Tegmark - 2012
Our Big Bang, our distant future, parallel worlds, the sub-atomic and intergalactic - none of them are what they seem. But there is a way to understand this immense strangeness - mathematics. Seeking an answer to the fundamental puzzle of why our universe seems so mathematical, Tegmark proposes a radical idea: that our physical world not only is described by mathematics, but that it is mathematics. This may offer answers to our deepest questions: How large is reality? What is everything made of? Why is our universe the way it is?Table of ContentsPreface 1 What Is Reality? Not What It Seems • What’s the Ultimate Question? • The Journey Begins Part One: Zooming Out 2 Our Place in Space Cosmic Questions • How Big Is Space? • The Size of Earth • Distance to the Moon • Distance to the Sun and the Planets • Distance to the Stars • Distance to the Galaxies • What Is Space? 3 Our Place in TimeWhere Did Our Solar System Come From? • Where Did theGalaxies Come From? • Where Did the Mysterious MicrowavesCome From? • Where Did the Atoms Come From? 4 Our Universe by NumbersWanted: Precision Cosmology • Precision Microwave-Background Fluctuations • Precision Galaxy Clustering • The Ultimate Map of Our Universe • Where Did Our Big Bang Come From? 5 Our Cosmic Origins What’s Wrong with Our Big Bang? • How Inflation Works • The Gift That Keeps on Giving • Eternal Inflation 6 Welcome to the Multiverse The Level I Multiverse • The Level II Multiverse • Multiverse Halftime Roundup Part Two: Zooming In 7 Cosmic Legos Atomic Legos • Nuclear Legos • Particle-Physics Legos • Mathematical Legos • Photon Legos • Above the Law? • Quanta and Rainbows • Making Waves • Quantum Weirdness • The Collapse of Consensus • The Weirdness Can’t Be Confined • Quantum Confusion 8 The Level III Multiverse The Level III Multiverse • The Illusion of Randomness • Quantum Censorship • The Joys of Getting Scooped • Why Your Brain Isn’t a Quantum Computer • Subject, Object and Environment • Quantum Suicide • Quantum Immortality? • Multiverses Unified • Shifting Views: Many Worlds or Many Words? Part Three: Stepping Back 9 Internal Reality, External Reality and Consensus Reality External Reality and Internal Reality • The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth • Consensus Reality • Physics: Linking External to Consensus Reality 10 Physical Reality and Mathematical Reality Math, Math Everywhere! • The Mathematical Universe Hypothesis • What Is a Mathematical Structure? 11 Is Time an Illusion? How Can Physical Reality Be Mathematical? • What Are You? • Where Are You? (And What Do You Perceive?) • When Are You? 12 The Level IV Multiverse Why I Believe in the Level IV Multiverse • Exploring the Level IV Multiverse: What’s Out There? • Implications of the Level IV Multiverse • Are We Living in a Simulation? • Relation Between the MUH, the Level IV Multiverse and Other Hypotheses •Testing the Level IV Multiverse 13 Life, Our Universe and Everything How Big Is Our Physical Reality? • The Future of Physics • The Future of Our Universe—How Will It End? • The Future of Life •The Future of You—Are You Insignificant? Acknowledgments Suggestions for Further Reading Index
The Story of Earth: The First 4.5 Billion Years, from Stardust to Living Planet
Robert M. Hazen - 2012
Hazen writes of how the co-evolution of the geosphere and biosphere—of rocks and living matter—has shaped our planet into the only one of its kind in the Solar System, if not the entire cosmos.With an astrobiologist’s imagination, a historian’s perspective, and a naturalist’s passion for the ground beneath our feet, Hazen explains how changes on an atomic level translate into dramatic shifts in Earth’s makeup over its 4.567 billion year existence. He calls upon a flurry of recent discoveries to portray our planet’s many iterations in vivid detail. Through his theory of “co-evolution,” we learn how reactions between organic molecules and rock crystals may have generated Earth’s first organisms, which in turn are responsible for more than two-thirds of the mineral varieties on the planet.The Story of Earth is also the story of the pioneering men and women behind the sciences. Readers will meet black-market meteorite hawkers of the Sahara Desert, the gun-toting Feds who guarded the Apollo missions’ lunar dust, and the World War II Navy officer whose super-pressurized “bomb”—recycled from military hardware—first simulated the molten rock of Earth’s mantle. As a mentor to a new generation of scientists, Hazen introduces the intrepid young explorers whose dispatches from Earth’s harshest landscapes will revolutionize geology.
5,000 Awesome Facts (About Everything!)
National Geographic Kids - 2012
Who knew that there were so many sweet things to learn about chocolate or that a dozen delicious details about peanut butter would show up on a page with a few splotches of jelly to whet our appetites? Keep turning and a terrifyingly toothy shark tells you all about himself, while other spreads lay out tons of tips on toys and games, mysteries of history, robots and reptiles, sports and spies, wacky words, and so much more! A visual feast of colorful photographs surrounded by swirling, tipping, expanding, and climbing bits of information in a high-energy design, this book will satisfy both the casual browser and the truly fact obsessed.
The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation
Jon Gertner - 2012
From the transistor to the laser, it s hard to find an aspect of modern life that hasn t been touched by Bell Labs. Why did so many transformative ideas come from Bell Labs? In "The Idea Factory," Jon Gertner traces the origins of some of the twentieth century s most important inventions and delivers a riveting and heretofore untold chapter of American history. At its heart this is a story about the life and work of a small group of brilliant and eccentric men Mervin Kelly, Bill Shockley, Claude Shannon, John Pierce, and Bill Baker who spent their careers at Bell Labs. Their job was to research and develop the future of communications. Small-town boys, childhood hobbyists, oddballs: they give the lie to the idea that Bell Labs was a grim cathedral of top-down command and control.Gertner brings to life the powerful alchemy of the forces at work behind Bell Labs inventions, teasing out the intersections between science, business, and society. He distills the lessons that abide: how to recruit and nurture young talent; how to organize and lead fractious employees; how to find solutions to the most stubbornly vexing problems; how to transform a scientific discovery into a marketable product, then make it even better, cheaper, or both. Today, when the drive to invent has become a mantra, Bell Labs offers us a way to enrich our understanding of the challenges and solutions to technological innovation. Here, after all, was where the foundational ideas on the management of innovation were born. "The Idea Factory" is the story of the origins of modern communications and the beginnings of the information age a deeply human story of extraordinary men who were given extraordinary means time, space, funds, and access to one another and edged the world into a new dimension."
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
William Kamkwamba - 2012
Without enough money for food, let alone school, William spent his days in the library ... and figured out how to bring electricity to his village. Persevering against the odds, William built a functioning windmill out of junkyard scraps, and thus became the local hero who harnessed the wind. Lyrically told and gloriously illustrated, this story will inspire many as it shows how—even in the worst of times—a great idea and a lot of hard work can still rock the world.
A Rock Is Lively
Dianna Hutts Aston - 2012
From dazzling blue lapis lazuli to volcanic snowflake obsidian, an incredible variety of rocks are showcased in all their splendor. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, this book introduces an array of facts, making it equally perfect for classroom sharing and family reading.
Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won't Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care
Marty Makary - 2012
Marty Makary is co-developer of the life-saving checklist outlined in Atul Gawande's bestselling The Checklist Manifesto. As a busy surgeon who has worked in many of the best hospitals in the nation, he can testify to the amazing power of modern medicine to cure. But he's also been a witness to a medical culture that routinely leaves surgical sponges inside patients, amputates the wrong limbs, and overdoses children because of sloppy handwriting. Over the last ten years, neither error rates nor costs have come down, despite scientific progress and efforts to curb expenses. Why?To patients, the healthcare system is a black box. Doctors and hospitals are unaccountable, and the lack of transparency leaves both bad doctors and systemic flaws unchecked. Patients need to know more of what healthcare workers know, so they can make informed choices. Accountability in healthcare would expose dangerous doctors, reward good performance, and force positive change nationally, using the power of the free market. Unaccountable is a powerful, no-nonsense, non-partisan diagnosis for healing our hospitals and reforming our broken healthcare system.
The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds
Julie Zickefoose - 2012
Her reward for the grueling work of rescuing birds—such as feeding baby hummingbirds every twenty minutes all day long—is her empathy with them and the satisfaction of knowing the world is a birdier and more beautiful place. The Bluebird Effect is about the change that's set in motion by one single act, such as saving an injured bluebird—or a hummingbird, swift, or phoebe. Each of the twenty five chapters covers a different species, and many depict an individual bird, each with its own personality, habits, and quirks. And each chapter is illustrated with Zickefoose's stunning watercolor paintings and drawings. Not just individual tales about the trials and triumphs of raising birds, The Bluebird Effect mixes humor, natural history, and memoir to give readers an intimate story of a life lived among wild birds.
Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease
Robert H. Lustig - 2012
Now, in this much anticipated book, he documents the science and the politics that has led to the pandemic of chronic disease over the last 30 years.In the late 1970s when the government mandated we get the fat out of our food, the food industry responded by pouring more sugar in. The result has been a perfect storm, disastrously altering our biochemistry and driving our eating habits out of our control.To help us lose weight and recover our health, Lustig presents personal strategies to readjust the key hormones that regulate hunger, reward, and stress; and societal strategies to improve the health of the next generation. Compelling, controversial, and completely based in science, Fat Chance debunks the widely held notion to prove “a calorie is NOT a calorie”, and takes that science to its logical conclusion to improve health worldwide.
What If You Had Animal Teeth!?
Sandra Markle - 2012
If you had a beaver's, you'd have orange teeth! And if you had a naked mole rat's set of teeth, you could move each one separately, like chopsticks! The animal kingdom has lots of cool teeth, but yours are pretty awesome, too!
Island: A Story of the Galápagos
Jason Chin - 2012
How did they come to inhabit the island? How long will they remain? Thoroughly researched and filled with intricate and beautiful paintings, this extraordinary book by Award-winning author and artist Jason Chin is an epic saga of the life of an island—born of fire, rising to greatness, its decline, and finally the emergence of life on new islands.
The Age of Insight: The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, and Brain from Vienna 1900 to the Present
Eric R. Kandel - 2012
Kandel, The Age of Insight takes us to Vienna 1900, where leaders in science, medicine, and art began a revolution that changed forever how we think about the human mind—our conscious and unconscious thoughts and emotions—and how mind and brain relate to art. At the turn of the century, Vienna was the cultural capital of Europe. Artists and scientists met in glittering salons, where they freely exchanged ideas that led to revolutionary breakthroughs in psychology, brain science, literature, and art. Kandel takes us into the world of Vienna to trace, in rich and rewarding detail, the ideas and advances made then, and their enduring influence today. The Vienna School of Medicine led the way with its realization that truth lies hidden beneath the surface. That principle infused Viennese culture and strongly influenced the other pioneers of Vienna 1900. Sigmund Freud shocked the world with his insights into how our everyday unconscious aggressive and erotic desires are repressed and disguised in symbols, dreams, and behavior. Arthur Schnitzler revealed women’s unconscious sexuality in his novels through his innovative use of the interior monologue. Gustav Klimt, Oscar Kokoschka, and Egon Schiele created startlingly evocative and honest portraits that expressed unconscious lust, desire, anxiety, and the fear of death. Kandel tells the story of how these pioneers—Freud, Schnitzler, Klimt, Kokoschka, and Schiele—inspired by the Vienna School of Medicine, in turn influenced the founders of the Vienna School of Art History to ask pivotal questions such as What does the viewer bring to a work of art? How does the beholder respond to it? These questions prompted new and ongoing discoveries in psychology and brain biology, leading to revelations about how we see and perceive, how we think and feel, and how we respond to and create works of art. Kandel, one of the leading scientific thinkers of our time, places these five innovators in the context of today’s cutting-edge science and gives us a new understanding of the modernist art of Klimt, Kokoschka, and Schiele, as well as the school of thought of Freud and Schnitzler. Reinvigorating the intellectual enquiry that began in Vienna 1900, The Age of Insight is a wonderfully written, superbly researched, and beautifully illustrated book that also provides a foundation for future work in neuroscience and the humanities. It is an extraordinary book from an international leader in neuroscience and intellectual history.
All Yesterdays: Unique and Speculative Views of Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Animals
John Conway - 2012
Lavishly illustrated with over sixty original artworks, All Yesterdays aims to challenge our notions of how prehistoric animals looked and behaved. As a critical exploration of palaeontological art, All Yesterdays asks questions about what is probable, what is possible, and what is commonly ignored.Written by palaeozoologist Darren Naish, and palaeontological artists John Conway and C.M. Kosemen, All Yesterdays is scientifically rigorous and artistically imaginative in its approach to fossils of the past - and those of the future.
Antarctica: An Intimate Portrait of the World's Most Mysterious Continent
Gabrielle Walker - 2012
Gabrielle Walker, author, consultant to New Scientist and regular broadcaster with the BBC has written a book unlike any that has ever been written about the continent. Antarctica weaves all the significant threads into an intricate tapestry, made up of science, natural history, poetry, epic history, what it feels like to be there and why it draws so many different kinds of people back there again and again. It is only when all the parts come together that the underlying truths of the continent emerge. Antarctica is the most alien place on Earth, the only part of our planet where humans could never survive unaided. It is truly like walking on another planet. And yet, in its silence, its agelessness and its mysteries lie the secrets of our past, and of our future.
How We Do Harm: A Doctor Breaks Ranks About Being Sick in America
Otis Webb Brawley - 2012
Otis Brawley is the chief medical and scientific officer of The American Cancer Society, an oncologist with a dazzling clinical, research, and policy career. How We Do Harm pulls back the curtain on how medicine is really practiced in America. Brawley tells of doctors who select treatment based on payment they will receive, rather than on demonstrated scientific results; hospitals and pharmaceutical companies that seek out patients to treat even if they are not actually ill (but as long as their insurance will pay); a public primed to swallow the latest pill, no matter the cost; and rising healthcare costs for unnecessary—and often unproven—treatments that we all pay for. Brawley calls for rational healthcare, healthcare drawn from results-based, scientifically justifiable treatments, and not just the peddling of hot new drugs.Brawley's personal history – from a childhood in the gang-ridden streets of black Detroit, to the green hallways of Grady Memorial Hospital, the largest public hospital in the U.S., to the boardrooms of The American Cancer Society—results in a passionate view of medicine and the politics of illness in America - and a deep understanding of healthcare today. How We Do Harm is his well-reasoned manifesto for change.
The Ocean of Life: The Fate of Man and the Sea
Callum Roberts - 2012
In the process, Roberts looks at how the taming of the oceans has shaped human civilization and affected marine life.We have always been fish eaters, from the dawn of civilization, but in the last twenty years we have transformed the oceans beyond recognition. Putting our exploitation of the seas into historical context, Roberts offers a devastating account of the impact of modern fishing techniques, pollution, and climate change, and reveals what it would take to steer the right course while there is still time. Like Four Fish and The Omnivore’s Dilemma, The Ocean of Life takes a long view to tell a story in which each one of us has a role to play.
The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries
Neil deGrasse Tyson - 2012
And with the advent of modern science, great minds have turned to testing and experimentation rather than mere thought as a way of approaching and grappling with some of the universe's most pressing and vexing dilemmas. So what is our latest picture of some of the most inexplicable features of the universe? What still remains to be uncovered? What are some of the next avenues of exploration for today's chemists, physicists, biologists, and astronomers? Pondering the answers to these and other questions is a great way to appreciate the grandeur and complexity of the world around you, better understand and discuss news and developments in science, and spark further interest in some of science's many exciting areas of study. "We know a lot about the universe. But there's even more that we don't know,"says astrophysicist and Professor Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium, an award-winning lecturer, and one of the world's foremost experts on the secrets of the universe. And his course The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries is the perfect gateway into this mind-bending and eye-opening subject. Each of these six self-contained lectures is a marvelous journey to the frontiers of the known (and unknown) universe and introduces you to tantalizing questions being addressed by the world's top scientists. Undeniably engaging and fascinating, this lecture series is a wonderful entrée to scientific pursuits that lie at the very heart of the history and nature of our universe. An Informed Scientific Conversation Central to The Inexplicable Universe is the way it takes you deep into hidden layers of the universe in a manner that is extremely accessible. Rather than a stern lecture given before a podium complete with confusing mathematics, Professor Tyson's lectures have the feel of an informed conversation that manages to be both thorough and easy to grasp. With each of the inexplicable mysteries he lays bare for you, Professor Tyson introduces you to the history behind it, lays out the science that has helped us grasp it, explains what researchers have discovered to date, and reveals what we have yet to discover. And while the topics explore subjects in everything from quantum mechanics to cosmology to string theory, you'll never feel overwhelmed by what you're learning. In fact, you're more likely to find yourself intrigued by just how much we know-and curious about what the near future will possibly reveal. Explore Fascinating Territory So what territory will you chart in this course? Here are some of the inexplicable ideas you'll investigate in these lectures. Neutrinos: Discovered in 1956, these fast-moving, ghostlike particles are made in abundance in the sun's core. They hardly interact with matter; it takes a light-year's worth of lead (5.8 trillion miles) to stop a neutrino. Not only that, but 65 billion neutrinos pass through every centimeter of your body that's facing the sun every second of every day. String theory: This astounding theory offers the hope of unifying all the particles and forces of physics. In the past several decades since the dawn of string theory, it's been imagined that all the fundamental particles we see and measure are just the manifestation in our dimension of strings vibrating in higher dimensions and at different frequencies. Quantum foam: This idea posits that when the fabric of space and time is so tightly curved on itself, space-time is less a smooth curve and more like the froth on a latte. In this state of matter and energy, quantum fluctuations can spawn entire universes, each with slightly different laws of physics within them! In addition, you'll also get a peek at what it would be like to travel through a black hole, ponder the possibility that life on Earth originated in debris from Mars, probe the supposed existence of multiple universes, and even imagine the possible end of the universe itself. A One-on-One Chat with a Renowned Science Educator Professor Tyson is renowned throughout the scientific community and the media for his vast knowledge, his penetrating insights, and his amazing ability to make even the most intimidating areas of science accessible, engaging, and-most of all-enjoyable. He brings the same inviting tone and sharp intellect to The Inexplicable Universe as he does to his range of media appearances on popular television programs. Due to its unique subject matter The Inexplicable Universe takes a highly visual approach. Many of the fascinating subjects in the course, such as black holes, string theory, and multiple universes are best demonstrated visually and Professor Tyson's lectures feature expertly crafted computer animations, explanatory diagrams, high resolution photographs, and other instructive visual elements. In order to better explain to you some of the grand, intricate ideas being discussed, Professor Tyson personally interacts with many of these animations and graphics using greenscreen technology. Please note that, due to the highly visual nature of The Inexplicable Universe, the course does not come with a guidebook. We did not believe a simple book could adequately convey the information in the course, and rather than make a guidebook that did not do the course justice, we decided to not offer one. However, we believe that you will be very excited by how we produced this course and will find it to be an enriching and fulfilling experience in your educational journey.
The Divided Brain and the Search for Meaning
Iain McGilchrist - 2012
In particular, McGilchrist suggests, the left hemisphere's obsession with reducing everything it sees to the level of minute, mechanistic detail is robbing modern society of the ability to understand and appreciate deeper human values. Accessible to readers who haven't yet read "The Master and His Emissary" as well as those who have, this is a fascinating, immensely thought-provoking essay that delves to the very heart of what it means to be human.
Machine Learning: A Probabilistic Perspective
Kevin P. Murphy - 2012
Machine learning provides these, developing methods that can automatically detect patterns in data and then use the uncovered patterns to predict future data. This textbook offers a comprehensive and self-contained introduction to the field of machine learning, based on a unified, probabilistic approach.The coverage combines breadth and depth, offering necessary background material on such topics as probability, optimization, and linear algebra as well as discussion of recent developments in the field, including conditional random fields, L1 regularization, and deep learning. The book is written in an informal, accessible style, complete with pseudo-code for the most important algorithms. All topics are copiously illustrated with color images and worked examples drawn from such application domains as biology, text processing, computer vision, and robotics. Rather than providing a cookbook of different heuristic methods, the book stresses a principled model-based approach, often using the language of graphical models to specify models in a concise and intuitive way. Almost all the models described have been implemented in a MATLAB software package—PMTK (probabilistic modeling toolkit)—that is freely available online. The book is suitable for upper-level undergraduates with an introductory-level college math background and beginning graduate students.
Bad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients
Ben Goldacre - 2012
We like to imagine that it’s based on evidence and the results of fair tests. In reality, those tests are often profoundly flawed. We like to imagine that doctors are familiar with the research literature surrounding a drug, when in reality much of the research is hidden from them by drug companies. We like to imagine that doctors are impartially educated, when in reality much of their education is funded by industry. We like to imagine that regulators let only effective drugs onto the market, when in reality they approve hopeless drugs, with data on side effects casually withheld from doctors and patients.All these problems have been protected from public scrutiny because they’re too complex to capture in a sound bite. But Dr. Ben Goldacre shows that the true scale of this murderous disaster fully reveals itself only when the details are untangled. He believes we should all be able to understand precisely how data manipulation works and how research misconduct on a global scale affects us. In his own words, “the tricks and distortions documented in these pages are beautiful, intricate, and fascinating in their details.” With Goldacre’s characteristic flair and a forensic attention to detail, Bad Pharma reveals a shockingly broken system and calls for something to be done. This is the pharmaceutical industry as it has never been seen before.
Hubble's Universe: Greatest Discoveries and Latest Images
Terence Dickinson - 2012
No other telescope combines instant name recognition with the production of consistently spectacular images. Yet few people outside of the astronomy community realize that Hubble is now at the apex of its imaging capabilities. A collection of stunningly detailed pictures, made possible by the new Wide Field Camera 3, has yet to be incorporated into a popular-level book. Until now. Hubble's Universe will be the premier venue for the Hubble Telescope's most recent visual splendors. Bestselling astronomy writer Terence Dickinson showcases extraordinary late-breaking pictures, many of which have yet to receive wide distribution as news stories or in publications outside scientific papers, and presents a breathtaking portfolio drawn from an archive of over 500,000 existing Hubble images.The accompanying text balances accuracy with accessibility, Dickinson's hallmark. And thanks to the author's familiarity with Hubble's history and discoveries and his access to top Hubble scientists for insight and accuracy, the text includes facts and tidbits not found in any other book. Combined with hundreds of brilliant images, the clear, succinct and illuminating narrative brings to life the fascinating forces at work in the universe.
Being Human: Life Lessons from the Frontiers of Science
Robert M. Sapolsky - 2012
Why do we have bad moods? Why are we capable of having such strange and vivid dreams? How can metaphors and symbols in our language hold such a powerful sway on our thoughts and actions?As we learn more about the mechanisms of human behavior through evolutionary biology, neuroscience, anthropology, psychology, sociology, and other related fields, we're discovering just how intriguing the human species is. And while scientists are continually uncovering deep similarities between our behavior and that of other animals, they're also finding a wealth of insights into everything that makes us unique from any other species on Earth.Join acclaimed neurobiologist and award-winning Professor Robert Sapolsky of Stanford University for a surprising, amusing, and undeniably fascinating study of what makes you you. Being Human: Life Lessons from the Frontiers of Science is a 12-lecture course that takes you to the front lines of scientific research and offers you a new perspective on the supposedly quirky nature of being ourselves. Thought-provoking, witty, and sometimes myth-shattering, this course is sure to have you thinking about, observing, and even appreciating your own life in novel ways.
Space Atlas: Mapping the Universe and Beyond
James S. Trefil - 2012
Three ever widening domains are presented--the planets, the stars, and the large scale universe itself--each including the ones before it and extending outward''--..Title: .Space Atlas..Author: .Trefil, James/ Aldrin, Buzz (FRW)..Publisher: .Random House Inc..Publication Date: .2012/11/06..Number of Pages: .335..Binding Type: .HARDCOVER..Library of Congress: .2012020000
Trinity: A Graphic History of the First Atomic Bomb
Jonathan Fetter-Vorm - 2012
This sweeping historical narrative traces the spark of invention from the laboratories of nineteenth-century Europe to the massive industrial and scientific efforts of the Manhattan Project. Along the way, Fetter-Vorm takes special care to explain the fundamental science of nuclear reactions. With the clarity and accessibility that only a graphic book can provide, Trinity transports the reader into the core of a nuclear reaction—into the splitting atoms themselves.The power of the atom was harnessed in a top-secret government compound in Los Alamos, New Mexico, where some of the greatest scientific minds in the world gathered together to work on the bomb. Fetter-Vorm showcases J. Robert Oppenheimer, Enrico Fermi, and General Leslie Groves, the fathers of the atomic bomb, whose insights unleashed the most devastating explosion known to humankind. These brilliant scientists wrestled daily with both the difficulty of building an atomic weapon and the moral implications of actually succeeding.When the first bomb finally went off at a test site code-named Trinity, the world was irreversibly thrust into a new and terrifying age. With powerful renderings of the catastrophic events at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Fetter-Vorm unflinchingly chronicles the far-reaching political, environmental, and ethical effects of this new discovery. Richly illustrated and deeply researched, Trinity is a dramatic, informative, and thought-provoking book on one of the most significant and harrowing events in history.
Zoobiquity: The Astonishing Connection Between Human and Animal Health
Barbara Natterson-Horowitz - 2012
Beginning with the above questions, she began informally researching every affliction that she encountered in humans to learn whether it happened with animals, too. And usually, it did: dinosaurs suffered from brain cancer, koalas can catch chlamydia, reindeer seek narcotic escape in hallucinogenic mushrooms, stallions self-mutilate, and gorillas experience clinical depression. Natterson-Horowitz and science writer Kathryn Bowers have dubbed this pan-species approach to medicine zoobiquity. Here, they present a revelatory understanding of what animals can teach us about the human body and mind, exploring how animal and human commonality can be used to diagnose, treat, and heal patients of all species.
Subliminal: How Your Unconscious Mind Rules Your Behavior
Leonard Mlodinow - 2012
The latter has long been the subject of speculation, but over the past two decades researchers have developed remarkable new tools for probing the hidden, or subliminal, workings of the mind. The result of this explosion of research is a new science of the unconscious and a sea change in our understanding of how the subliminal mind affects the way we live.Employing his trademark wit and lucid, accessible explanations of the most obscure scientific subjects, Leonard Mlodinow takes us on a tour of this research, unraveling the complexities of the subliminal self and increasing our understanding of how the human mind works and how we interact with friends, strangers, spouses, and coworkers. In the process he changes our view of ourselves and the world around us.
Paul Lockhart - 2012
An impassioned critique of K 12 mathematics education, it outlined how we shortchange students by introducing them to math the wrong way. Here Lockhart offers the positive side of the math education story by showing us how math should be done. "Measurement "offers a permanent solution to math phobia by introducing us to mathematics as an artful way of thinking and living.In conversational prose that conveys his passion for the subject, Lockhart makes mathematics accessible without oversimplifying. He makes no more attempt to hide the challenge of mathematics than he does to shield us from its beautiful intensity. Favoring plain English and pictures over jargon and formulas, he succeeds in making complex ideas about the mathematics of shape and motion intuitive and graspable. His elegant discussion of mathematical reasoning and themes in classical geometry offers proof of his conviction that mathematics illuminates art as much as science.Lockhart leads us into a universe where beautiful designs and patterns float through our minds and do surprising, miraculous things. As we turn our thoughts to symmetry, circles, cylinders, and cones, we begin to see that almost anyone can do the math in a way that brings emotional and aesthetic rewards. "Measurement" is an invitation to summon curiosity, courage, and creativity in order to experience firsthand the playful excitement of mathematical work."
Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana - Medical, Recreational and Scientific
Martin A. Lee - 2012
Martin A. Lee traces the dramatic social history of marijuana from its origins to its emergence in the 1960s as a defining force in a culture war that has never ceased. Lee describes how the illicit marijuana subculture overcame government opposition and morphed into a dynamic, multibillion-dollar industry. In 1996, California voters approved Proposition 215, legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes. Similar laws have followed in more than a dozen other states, but not without antagonistic responses from federal, state, and local law enforcement. Lee, an award-winning investigative journalist, draws attention to underreported scientific breakthroughs that are reshaping the therapeutic landscape. By mining the plant’s rich pharmacopoeia, medical researchers have developed promising treatments for cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, chronic pain, and many other conditions that are beyond the reach of conventional cures.Colorful, illuminating, and at times irreverent, this is a fascinating read for recreational users and patients, students and doctors, musicians and accountants, Baby Boomers and their kids, and anyone who has ever wondered about the secret life of this ubiquitous herb. Smoke Signals is the winner of the American Botanical Council's James A. Duke Excellence in Botanical Literature Award for 2012
Dinosaur Art: The World's Greatest Paleoart
Steve White - 2012
In Dinosaur Art, ten of the top contemporary paleoartists reveal a selection of their work and exclusively discuss their working methods and distinct styles. Filled with breathtaking artwork - some never before seen - and cutting edge paleontology, this is a treasure trove for dinosaur enthusiasts, art lovers and budding illustrators.
Knowledge is Beautiful
David McCandless - 2012
We need a way to relate to it. Enter David McCandless and his stunning infographics, simple, elegant ways to interact with information too complex or abstract to grasp any way but visually. McCandless creates visually stunning displays that blend the facts with their connections, contexts, and relationships, making information meaningful, entertaining, and beautiful. And his genius is as much in finding fresh ways to provocatively combine datasets as it is in finding new ways to show the results.Knowledge is Beautiful is a fascinating spin through the world of visualized data, all of it bearing the hallmark of David McCandless's boundary-breaking, signature style. The captivating follow-up to the bestseller The Visual Miscellaneum, Knowledge is Beautiful offers a deeper, more ranging look at the world and its history, with more connectivity between the pages, a greater exploration of causes and consequences, and a more inclusive global outlook. With a portion of its content crowd-sourced from McCandless's international following, Knowledge is Beautiful achieves a revolutionary and democratic look at the key issues from questions on history and politics, the facts of science, streams of literature, and much more.This is a project that will truly push the boundaries of books everywhere, providing insights into our world in a way never seen before.
Climate Changed: A Personal Journey through the Science
Philippe Squarzoni - 2012
With the most complicated concepts made clear in a feat of investigative journalism by artist Philippe Squarzoni, Climate Changed weaves together scientific research, extensive interviews with experts, and a call for action. Weighing the potential of some solutions and the false promises of others, this groundbreaking work provides a realistic, balanced view of the magnitude of the crisis that An Inconvenient Truth only touched on.Climate Changed is printed on FSC-certified paper from responsibly-managed, environmentally-sound sources. Find teaching guides for Climate Changed and other titles at abramsbooks.com/resources.
Nic Bishop - 2012
They use powerful venom or crushing strength to overwhelm their victims. Then they swallow them whole!With breathtaking full-page images, Sibert Medal-winning photographer Nic Bishop introduces the terrifying and beautiful world of snakes. The simple, engaging text presents both basic information and captivating details about the appearance, habits, and remarkable abilities of these amazing reptiles. An index and glossary are included, along with an author's note detailing his research and the fun stories behind the photographs.
Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think
Peter H. Diamandis - 2012
We will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp. This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and three other powerful forces are conspiring to better the lives of billions. An antidote to pessimism by tech entrepreneur turned philanthropist, Peter H. Diamandis and award-winning science writer Steven Kotler. Since the dawn of humanity, a privileged few have lived in stark contrast to the hardscrabble majority. Conventional wisdom says this gap cannot be closed. But it is closing—fast. The authors document how four forces—exponential technologies, the DIY innovator, the Technophilanthropist, and the Rising Billion—are conspiring to solve our biggest problems. Abundance establishes hard targets for change and lays out a strategic roadmap for governments, industry and entrepreneurs, giving us plenty of reason for optimism.Examining human need by category—water, food, energy, healthcare, education, freedom—Diamandis and Kotler introduce dozens of innovators making great strides in each area: Larry Page, Steven Hawking, Dean Kamen, Daniel Kahneman, Elon Musk, Bill Joy, Stewart Brand, Jeff Skoll, Ray Kurzweil, Ratan Tata, Craig Venter, among many, many others.
The Man Who Planted Trees: Lost Groves, Champion Trees, and an Urgent Plan to Save the Planet
Jim Robbins - 2012
The second best time? Today.”—Chinese proverb Twenty years ago, David Milarch, a northern Michigan nurseryman with a penchant for hard living, had a vision: angels came to tell him that the earth was in trouble. Its trees were dying, and without them, human life was in jeopardy. The solution, they told him, was to clone the champion trees of the world—the largest, the hardiest, the ones that had survived millennia and were most resilient to climate change—and create a kind of Noah’s ark of tree genetics. Without knowing if the message had any basis in science, or why he’d been chosen for this task, Milarch began his mission of cloning the world’s great trees. Many scientists and tree experts told him it couldn’t be done, but, twenty years later, his team has successfully cloned some of the world’s oldest trees—among them giant redwoods and sequoias. They have also grown seedlings from the oldest tree in the world, the bristlecone pine Methuselah. When New York Times journalist Jim Robbins came upon Milarch’s story, he was fascinated but had his doubts. Yet over several years, listening to Milarch and talking to scientists, he came to realize that there is so much we do not yet know about trees: how they die, how they communicate, the myriad crucial ways they filter water and air and otherwise support life on Earth. It became clear that as the planet changes, trees and forest are essential to assuring its survival.Praise for The Man Who Planted Trees“Absorbing, eloquent and loving . . . While Robbins’s tone is urgent, it doesn’t compromise his crystal-clear science. . . . Even the smallest details here are fascinating.”—The New York Times Book Review “This is a story of miracles and obsession and love and survival. Told with Jim Robbins’s signature clarity and eye for telling detail, The Man Who Planted Trees is also the most hopeful book I’ve read in years. I kept thinking of the end of Saint Francis’s wonderful prayer, ‘And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in the world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.’ ”—Alexandra Fuller, author of Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight “Scientists can be confined by their own thinking—they know what they know. It’s amazing for one layman to come up with the idea of saving champion trees as a meaningful way to address the issues of biodiversity and climate change. This could be a grassroots solution to a global problem. A few million people selecting and planting the right trees for the right places could really make a difference.”—Ramakrishna Nemani, earth scientist“The great poet W. S. Merwin once wrote, ‘On the last day of the world I would want to plant a tree.’ It’s good to see, in this lovely volume, that some folks are getting a head start!”—Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New PlanetThis book was printed in the United States of America on Rolland Enviro™ 100 Book, which is manufactured using FSC-certified 100% postconsumer fiber and meets permanent paper standards.
Skulls: An Exploration of Alan Dudley's Curious Collection
Simon Winchester - 2012
Presenting details about the parts of the skull (including the cranium, the mandible, the shape and positioning of the eye sockets, and species-specific features like horns, teeth, beaks and bills), information about the science and pseudoscience of skulls, and a look at skulls in religion, art and popular culture, his stories and information are riveting and enlightening.At the center of "Skulls" is a stunning, never-before-seen-in-any-capacity, visual array of the skulls of more than 300 animals that walk, swim, and fly. The skulls are from the collection of Alan Dudley, a British collector and owner of what is probably the largest and most complete private collection of skulls in the world. Every skull is beautifully photographed to show several angles and to give the reader the most intimate view possible. Each includes a short explanatory paragraph and a data box with information on the animal's taxonomy, behavior, and diet."Skulls "was published in December 2011 as an e-book for the iPad by the innovative e-book publishers Touch Press, creators of the best-selling e-books for iPad "The Elements" and "Solar System." Both books were also published in print by Black Dog & Leventhal.
Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash
Edward Humes - 2012
But our bins are just the starting point for a strange, impressive, mysterious, and costly journey that may also represent the greatest untapped opportunity of the century. In Garbology, Edward Humes investigates trash—what’s in it; how much we pay for it; how we manage to create so much of it; and how some families, communities, and even nations are finding a way back from waste to discover a new kind of prosperity. Along the way , he introduces a collection of garbage denizens unlike anyone you’ve ever met: the trash-tracking detectives of MIT, the bulldozer-driving sanitation workers building Los Angeles’ Garbage Mountain landfill, the artists residing in San Francisco’s dump, and the family whose annual trash output fills not a dumpster or a trash can, but a single mason jar. Garbology reveals not just what we throw away, but who we are and where our society is headed. Waste is the one environmental and economic harm that ordinary working Americans have the power to change—and prosper in the process.
Triumphs of Experience: The Men of the Harvard Grant Study
George E. Vaillant - 2012
The now-classic "Adaptation to Life" reported on the men's lives up to age 55 and helped us understand adult maturation. Now George Vaillant follows the men into their nineties, documenting for the first time what it is like to flourish far beyond conventional retirement.Reporting on all aspects of male life, including relationships, politics and religion, coping strategies, and alcohol use (its abuse being by far the greatest disruptor of health and happiness for the study's subjects), "Triumphs of Experience" shares a number of surprising findings. For example, the people who do well in old age did not necessarily do so well in midlife, and vice versa. While the study confirms that recovery from a lousy childhood is possible, memories of a happy childhood are a lifelong source of strength. Marriages bring much more contentment after age 70, and physical aging after 80 is determined less by heredity than by habits formed prior to age 50. The credit for growing old with grace and vitality, it seems, goes more to ourselves than to our stellar genetic makeup.
Robert Oppenheimer: A Life Inside the Center
Ray Monk - 2012
As head of the Los Alamos Laboratory, he oversaw the successful effort to beat the Nazis in the race to develop the first atomic bomb—a breakthrough that was to have eternal ramifications for mankind and that made Oppenheimer the “Father of the Atomic Bomb.” But with his actions leading up to that great achievement, he also set himself on a dangerous collision course with Senator Joseph McCarthy and his witch-hunters. In Robert Oppenheimer: A Life Inside the Center, Ray Monk, author of peerless biographies of Ludwig Wittgenstein and Bertrand Russell, goes deeper than any previous biographer in the quest to solve the enigma of Oppenheimer’s motivations and his complex personality. The son of German-Jewish immigrants, Oppenheimer was a man of phenomenal intellectual attributes, driven by an ambition to overcome his status as an outsider and penetrate the heart of political and social life. As a young scientist, his talent and drive allowed him to enter a community peopled by the great names of twentieth-century physics—men such as Niels Bohr, Max Born, Paul Dirac, and Albert Einstein—and to play a role in the laboratories and classrooms where the world was being changed forever, where the secrets of the universe, whether within atomic nuclei or collapsing stars, revealed themselves. But Oppenheimer’s path went beyond one of assimilation, scientific success, and world fame. The implications of the discoveries at Los Alamos weighed heavily upon this fragile and complicated man. In the 1930s, in a climate already thick with paranoia and espionage, he made suspicious connections, and in the wake of the Allied victory, his attempts to resist the escalation of the Cold War arms race led many to question his loyalties. Through compassionate investigation and with towering scholarship, Ray Monk’s Robert Oppenheimer tells an unforgettable story of discovery, secrecy, impossible choices, and unimaginable destruction.
Elizabeth Carney - 2012
This level two reader, written in simple language that is easy for young readers to understand, introduces children to our solar system, including all of the planets and dwarf planets, and lots of fascinating fun facts. This reader helps cultivate the explorers of tomorrow!This high-interest, educationally vetted series of beginning readers features the magnificent images of National Geographic, accompanied by texts written by experienced, skilled children's book authors. The inside back cover of the paperback edition is an interactive feature based upon the book. Level 1 books reinforce the content of the book with a kinesthetic learning activity. In Level 2 books readers complete a Cloze letter, or fun fill-in, with vocabulary words.Releases simultaneously in Reinforced Library Binding: 978-1-4263-1037-9 , $13.90/$15.95 CanNational Geographic supports K-12 educators with ELA Common Core Resources.Visit www.natgeoed.org/commoncore for more information.
Elise Gravel - 2012
The humorous text and funny illustrations will give it trade appeal, while the non-fiction content is perfect for the institutional market. The second in a series of humorous books about disgusting creatures, The Worm is a look at the earthworm. It covers such topics as the worm's habitats (sometimes they live inside other animals), its anatomy (its muscle tube is slimy and gross), and its illustrious history (worms have been on earth for 120 million years). Although silly and off-the-wall, The Worm contains real information that will tie in with curriculum.
Things That Are
Amy Leach - 2012
In a series of essays that progress from the tiniest earth dwellers to the most far flung celestial bodies—considering the similarity of gods to donkeys, the inexorability of love and vines, the relations of exploding stars to exploding sea cucumbers—Amy Leach rekindles a vital communion with the wild world, dormant for far too long. Things That Are is not specifically of the animal, the human, or the phenomenal; it is a book of wonder, one the reader cannot help but leave with their perceptions both expanded and confounded in delightful ways.
The Beetle Book
Steve Jenkins - 2012
Beetles squeak and beetles glow.Beetles stink, beetles sprint, beetles walk on water.With legs, antennae, horns, beautiful shells, knobs, and other oddities—what’s notto like about beetles?The beetle world is vast: one out of every four living things on earth is a beetle.There are over 350,000 different species named so far and scientists suspect there maybe as many as a million.From the goliath beetle that weighs one fourth of a pound to the nine inch longtitan beetle, award-winning author-illustrator Steve Jenkins presents a fascinating arrayof these intriguing insects and the many amazing adaptations they have made tosurvive.
An Epidemic of Absence: A New Way of Understanding Allergies and Autoimmune Diseases
Moises Velasquez-Manoff - 2012
But why are they on the rise? Science writer Moises Velasquez-Manoff offers a new and controversial way of thinking about autoimmune disease—one that may foster a paradigm shift in the way we think about health and hygiene. In the early twentieth century, the dawn of improved hygiene, water treatment, vaccines, and antibiotics saved countless lives, eradicating diseases that had plagued humanity for millennia. But in the wake of this triumph, a new threat arose: The human immune system began to malfunction. A growing body of evidence suggests that the very steps we took to cure these maladies have also eradicated organisms that once kept our bodies in balance. To combat this “epidemic of absence,” a group of scientists has begun deliberately reintroducing parasitic worms—helminthes—to calm the immune system of their hosts. This book takes a close look at the scientists at the vanguard of “worm therapy,” which has been proven to not only preempt immune malfunction, but to send a number of disorders—from Crohn’s Disease to multiple sclerosis to asthma—into remission. Exploring the greater context of rampant immune system dysfunction in the developed world, and its implications for developing countries, Velasquez-Manoff offers an eye-opening and elegant portrait of science’s new view of the human organism.
Life's Ratchet: How Molecular Machines Extract Order from Chaos
Peter M. Hoffmann - 2012
But molecules, such as water and sugar, are not alive. So how do our cells--assemblies of otherwise "dead" molecules--come to life, and together constitute a living being? In "Life's Ratchet," physicist Peter M. Hoffmann locates the answer to this age-old question at the nanoscale. The complex molecules of our cells can rightfully be called "molecular machines," or "nanobots"; these machines, unlike any other, work autonomously to create order out of chaos. Tiny electrical motors turn electrical voltage into motion, tiny factories custom-build other molecular machines, and mechanical machines twist, untwist, separate and package strands of DNA. The cell is like a city--an unfathomable, complex collection of molecular worker bees working together to create something greater than themselves. Life, Hoffman argues, emerges from the random motions of atoms filtered through the sophisticated structures of our evolved machinery. We are essentially giant assemblies of interacting nanoscale machines; machines more amazing than can be found in any science fiction novel. Incredibly, the molecular machines in our cells function without a mysterious "life force," nor do they violate any natural laws. Scientists can now prove that life is not supernatural, and that it can be fully understood in the context of science. Part history, part cutting-edge science, part philosophy, "Life's Ratchet" takes us from ancient Greece to the laboratories of modern nanotechnology to tell the story of our quest for the machinery of life.
The Particle at the End of the Universe: How the Hunt for the Higgs Boson Leads Us to the Edge of a New World
Sean Carroll - 2012
It had to be found. But projects as big as CERN’s Large Hadron Collider don’t happen without incredible risks – and occasional skullduggery. In the definitive account of this landmark event, Caltech physicist and acclaimed science writer Sean Carroll reveals the insights, rivalry, and wonder that fuelled the Higgs discovery, and takes us on a riveting and irresistible ride to the very edge of physics today.
The Science Delusion: Freeing the Spirit of Enquiry
Rupert Sheldrake - 2012
The fundamental questions are answered, leaving only the details to be filled in. In this book, Dr Rupert Sheldrake, one of the world's most innovative scientists, shows that science is being constricted by assumptions that have hardened into dogmas. The 'scientific worldview' has become a belief system. All reality is material or physical. The world is a machine, made up of dead matter. Nature is purposeless. Consciousness is nothing but the physical activity of the brain. Free will is an illusion. God exists only as an idea in human minds, imprisoned within our skulls. Sheldrake examines these dogmas scientifically, and shows persuasively that science would be better off without them: freer, more interesting, and more fun.In The God Delusion Richard Dawkins used science to bash God, but here Rupert Sheldrake shows that Dawkins' understanding of what science can do is old-fashioned and itself a delusion.
The Astronomy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained
Jacqueline Mitton - 2012
Featuring topics from the Copernican Revolution to the mind-boggling theories of recent science, The Astronomy Book uses flowcharts, graphics, and illustrations to help clarify hard-to-grasp concepts and explain almost 100 big astronomical ideas. Covering the biographies of key astronomers through the ages such as Ptolemy, Galileo, Newton, Hubble, and Hawking, The Astronomy Book details their theories and discoveries in a user-friendly format to make the information accessible and easy to follow.Series Overview: Big Ideas Simply Explained series uses creative design and innovative graphics along with straightforward and engaging writing to make complex subjects easier to understand. With over 7 million copies worldwide sold to date, these award-winning books provide just the information needed for students, families, or anyone interested in concise, thought-provoking refreshers on a single subject.
Pocket Guide to Interpersonal Neurobiology: An Integrative Handbook of the Mind
Daniel J. Siegel - 2012
Yet no common “framework” where each of these important perspectives can be honored and integrated with one another has been created in which a person seeking their collective wisdom can find answers to some basic questions, such as, What is the purpose of life? Why are we here? How do we know things, how are we conscious of ourselves? What is the mind? What makes a mind healthy or unwell? And, perhaps most importantly: What is the connection among the mind, the brain, and our relationships with one another?Our mental lives are profoundly relational. The interactions we have with one another shape our mental world. Yet as any neuroscientist will tell you, the mind is shaped by the firing patterns in the brain. And so how can we reconcile this tension—that the mind is both embodied and relational? Interpersonal Neurobiology is a way of thinking across this apparent conceptual divide.This Pocket Guide to Interpersonal Neurobiology is designed to aid in your personal and professional application of the interpersonal neurobiology approach to developing a healthy mind, an integrated brain, and empathic relationships. It is also designed to assist you in seeing the intricate foundations of interpersonal neurobiology as you read other books.Praise for Daniel J. Siegel's books:“Siegel is a must-read author for anyone interested in the science of the mind.” —Daniel Goleman, author of Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships “[S]tands out for its skillful weaving together of the interpersonal, the inner world, the latest science, and practical applications.” —Jack Kornfield, PhD, founding teacher of the Insight Meditation Society and Spirit Rock Center, and author of A Path With Heart “Siegel has both a meticulous understanding of the roles of different parts of the brain and an intimate relationship with mindfulness . . . [A]n exciting glimpse of an uncharted territory of neuroscience.” —Scientific American Mind “Dr. Daniel Siegel is one of the most thoughtful, eloquent, scientifically solid and reputable exponents of mind/body/brain integration in the world today.” —Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD, author of Wherever You Go, There You Are, Full Catastrophe Living, and Coming to Our Senses
American Canopy: Trees, Forests, and the Making of a Nation
Eric Rutkow - 2012
This fascinating and groundbreaking work tells the remarkable story of the relationship between Americans and their trees across the entire span of our nation’s history. Like many of us, historians have long been guilty of taking trees for granted. Yet the history of trees in America is no less remarkable than the history of the United States itself—from the majestic white pines of New England, which were coveted by the British Crown for use as masts in navy warships, to the orange groves of California, which lured settlers west. In fact, without the country’s vast forests and the hundreds of tree species they contained, there would have been no ships, docks, railroads, stockyards, wagons, barrels, furniture, newspapers, rifles, or firewood. No shingled villages or whaling vessels in New England. No New York City, Miami, or Chicago. No Johnny Appleseed, Paul Bunyan, or Daniel Boone. No Allied planes in World War I, and no suburban sprawl in the middle of the twentieth century. America—if indeed it existed—would be a very different place without its millions of acres of trees. As Eric Rutkow’s brilliant, epic account shows, trees were essential to the early years of the republic and indivisible from the country’s rise as both an empire and a civilization. Among American Canopy’s many fascinating stories: the Liberty Trees, where colonists gathered to plot rebellion against the British; Henry David Thoreau’s famous retreat into the woods; the creation of New York City’s Central Park; the great fire of 1871 that killed a thousand people in the lumber town of Peshtigo, Wisconsin; the fevered attempts to save the American chestnut and the American elm from extinction; and the controversy over spotted owls and the old-growth forests they inhabited. Rutkow also explains how trees were of deep interest to such figures as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Teddy Roosevelt, and FDR, who oversaw the planting of more than three billion trees nationally in his time as president. As symbols of liberty, community, and civilization, trees are perhaps the loudest silent figures in our country’s history. America started as a nation of people frightened of the deep, seemingly infinite woods; we then grew to rely on our forests for progress and profit; by the end of the twentieth century we came to understand that the globe’s climate is dependent on the preservation of trees. Today, few people think about where timber comes from, but most of us share a sense that to destroy trees is to destroy part of ourselves and endanger the future. Never before has anyone treated our country’s trees and forests as the subject of a broad historical study, and the result is an accessible, informative, and thoroughly entertaining read. Audacious in its four-hundred-year scope, authoritative in its detail, and elegant in its execution, American Canopy is perfect for history buffs and nature lovers alike and announces Eric Rutkow as a major new author of popular history.
What the Robin Knows: How Birds Reveal the Secrets of the Natural World
Jon Young - 2012
Unwitting humans create a zone of disturbance that scatters the wildlife. Respectful humans who heed the birds acquire an awareness that radically changes the dynamic. We are welcome in their habitat. The birds don't fly away. The larger animals don't race off. No longer hapless intruders, we now find, see, and engage the deer, the fox, the red-shouldered hawk—even the elusive, whispering wren.Deep bird language is an ancient discipline, perfected by Native peoples the world over. Finally, science is catching up. This groundbreaking book unites the indigenous knowledge, the latest research, and the author's own experience of four decades in the field to lead us toward a deeper connection to the animals and, in the end, a deeper connection to ourselves.
National Geographic 125 Years: Legendary Photographs, Adventures, and Discoveries That Changed the World
Mark Jenkins - 2012
The book reveals how much we've come to know about our fascinating world through the pages and unforgettable imagery of National Geographic, and taps key voices from the forefront of ocean and space exploration, climate science, archaeology, mountaineering, and many other disciplines to peer with us over the horizon and see where we are heading in the future.
The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors
Richard Crossley - 2012
Experienced birders use the most easily observed and consistent characteristics--size, shape, behavior, probability, and general color patterns. The book's 101 scenes--including thirty-five double-page layouts--provide a complete picture of how these features are all related. Even the effects of lighting and other real-world conditions are illustrated and explained. Detailed and succinct accounts from two of North America's foremost raptor experts, Jerry Liguori and Brian Sullivan, stress the key identification features. This complete picture allows everyone from beginner to expert to understand and enjoy what he or she sees in the field. The mystique of bird identification is eliminated, allowing even novice birders to identify raptors quickly and simply.Comprehensive and authoritative, the book covers all thirty-four of North America's diurnal raptor species (all species except owls). Each species is featured in stunning color plates that show males and females, in a full spectrum of ages and color variants, depicted near and far, in flight and at rest, and from multiple angles, all caught in their typical habitats. There are also comparative, multispecies scenes and mystery photographs that allow readers to test their identification skills, along with answers and full explanations in the back of the book. In addition, the book features an introduction, and thirty-four color maps accompany the plates.Whether you are a novice or an expert, this one-of-a-kind guide will show you an entirely new way to look at these spectacular birds.The most complete guide to North American raptors, written by some of the foremost experts The first raptor guide using Richard Crossley's acclaimed, innovative composite images that show birds as they actually appear in the field 101 stunning color plates--including thirty-five double-page layouts--composed from thousands of photographs Comparative, multispecies plates and photos of mystery species that allow readers to test their growing identification skills Complete with introduction, 34 color maps, and detailed species accounts
Discovering Statistics Using R
Andy Field - 2012
Like its sister textbook, Discovering Statistics Using R is written in an irreverent style and follows the same ground-breaking structure and pedagogical approach. The core material is enhanced by a cast of characters to help the reader on their way, hundreds of examples, self-assessment tests to consolidate knowledge, and additional website material for those wanting to learn more.
The Joy of x: A Guided Tour of Math, from One to Infinity
Steven H. Strogatz - 2012
do it? How should you flip your mattress to get the maximum wear out of it? How does Google search the Internet? How many people should you date before settling down? Believe it or not, math plays a crucial role in answering all of these questions and more.Math underpins everything in the cosmos, including us, yet too few of us understand this universal language well enough to revel in its wisdom, its beauty — and its joy. This deeply enlightening, vastly entertaining volume translates math in a way that is at once intelligible and thrilling. Each trenchant chapter of The Joy of x offers an “aha!” moment, starting with why numbers are so helpful, and progressing through the wondrous truths implicit in π, the Pythagorean theorem, irrational numbers, fat tails, even the rigors and surprising charms of calculus. Showing why he has won awards as a professor at Cornell and garnered extensive praise for his articles about math for the New York Times, Strogatz presumes of his readers only curiosity and common sense. And he rewards them with clear, ingenious, and often funny explanations of the most vital and exciting principles of his discipline.Whether you aced integral calculus or aren’t sure what an integer is, you’ll find profound wisdom and persistent delight in The Joy of x.
Consciousness: Confessions of a Romantic Reductionist
Christof Koch - 2012
This engaging book--part scientific overview, part memoir, part futurist speculation--describes Koch's search for an empirical explanation for consciousness. Koch recounts not only the birth of the modern science of consciousness but also the subterranean motivation for his quest--his instinctual (if "romantic") belief that life is meaningful.Koch describes his own groundbreaking work with Francis Crick in the 1990s and 2000s and the gradual emergence of consciousness (once considered a "fringy" subject) as a legitimate topic for scientific investigation. Present at this paradigm shift were Koch and a handful of colleagues, including Ned Block, David Chalmers, Stanislas Dehaene, Giulio Tononi, Wolf Singer, and others. Aiding and abetting it were new techniques to listen in on the activity of individual nerve cells, clinical studies, and brain-imaging technologies that allowed safe and noninvasive study of the human brain in action.Koch gives us stories from the front lines of modern research into the neurobiology of consciousness as well as his own reflections on a variety of topics, including the distinction between attention and awareness, the unconscious, how neurons respond to Homer Simpson, the physics and biology of free will, dogs, Der Ring des Nibelungen, sentient machines, the loss of his belief in a personal God, and sadness. All of them are signposts in the pursuit of his life's work--to uncover the roots of consciousness.
Life in the Ocean: The Story of Oceanographer Sylvia Earle
Claire A. Nivola - 2012
As an adult, she dives even deeper. Whether she's designing submersibles, swimming with the whales, or taking deep-water walks, Sylvia Earle has dedicated her life to learning more about what she calls "the blue heart of the planet." With stunningly detailed pictures of the wonders of the sea, Life in the Ocean tells the story of Sylvia's growing passion and how her ocean exploration and advocacy have made her known around the world. This picture book biography also includes an informative author's note that will motivate young environmentalists.Life in the Ocean is one of The Washington Post's Best Kids Books of 2012
Ocean Sunlight: How Tiny Plants Feed the Seas
Molly Bang - 2012
From tiny aquatic plants to the biggest whale or fish, Bang presents a moving, living picture of the miraculous balance sustaining each life cycle and food chain deep within our wondrous oceans.On land or in the deep blue sea, we are all connected--and we are all a part of a grand living landscape. Co-authored by award-winning M.I.T. professor Penny Chisholm, a leading expert on ocean science, OCEAN SUNLIGHT is packed with clear, simple science. This informative, joyous book will help children understand and celebrate the astonishing role our oceans play in human life.
Birds of Paradise: Revealing the World's Most Extraordinary Birds
Tim Laman - 2012
These are the most beautiful photographs of the world’s most beautiful birds. The birds’ behavior, richly described in the text, is as remarkable as their appearance. This is a book like no other book."--Jared Diamond, ornithologist and author of Guns, Germs, and Steel Eight years. Eighteen expeditions. Fifty-one field sites. Thirty-nine unique species of birds-of-paradise, all photographed in the wild for the first time in history.“We turned our passion for science, photography, and media documentation into a comprehensive vision to share an unparalleled treasure of Earth’s biodiversity with the world,” write biologists and explorers Tim Laman and Edwin Scholes. These treasures are the spectacular birds-of-paradise, native only to the remote New Guinea region but known the world around for their brilliant colors, otherworldly plumes, and elaborate courtship dances. Now, for the first and perhaps only time, all 39 species of these extraordinary birds are showcased together through the revealing words and exclusive photographs in this landmark book.
The Odyssey of KP2: An Orphan Seal, a Marine Biologist, and the Fight to Save a Species
Terrie M. Williams - 2012
But as a member of the most endangered marine mammal species in U.S. waters, Kauai Pup 2, or KP2, is too precious to lose, and he embarks on an odyssey that will take him across an ocean to the only qualified caretaker to accept the job, eminent wildlife biologist Dr. Terrie M. Williams.The local islanders see KP2 as an honored member of their community, but government agents and scientists must consider the important role he could play in gathering knowledge and data about this critically endangered and rare species. Only 1,100 Hawaiian monk seals survive in the wild; if their decline continues without intervention, they face certain extinction within fifty years. In a controversial decision, environmental officials send KP2 to Williams's marine mammal lab in Santa Cruz, California, where she and her team monitor his failing eyesight and gather crucial data that could help save KP2's species.But while this young seal is the subject of a complex environmental struggle and intense media scrutiny, KP2 is also a boisterous and affectionate animal who changes the lives of the humans who know and care for him-especially that of Williams. Even as she unravels the secret biology of monk seals by studying his behavior and training him, Williams finds a kindred spirit in his loving nature and resilient strength. Their story captures the universal bond between humans and animals and emphasizes the ways we help and rely upon one another. The health of the world's oceans and the survival of people and creatures alike depend on this ancient connection.The Odyssey of KP2 is an inside look at the life of a scientist and the role that her research plays in the development of conservation efforts, bringing our contemporary environmental landscape to life. It is also the heartwarming portrait of a Hawaiian monk seal whose unforgettable personality never falters, even as his fate hangs in the balance.
Mysteries of Modern Physics: Time
Sean Carroll - 2012
From the rising and setting of the sun to the cycles of nature, the thought processes in our brains, and the biorhythms in our day, nothing so pervades our existence and yet is so difficult to explain. Time seems to be woven into the very fabric of the universe. But why? Consider these contrasting views of time: A movie of a person diving into a pool has an obvious arrow of time. When the movie is played backward, everyone recognizes that it shows an event that would never occur in the real world. But zoom in on any part of this scene at the atomic scale and the movie can be run backward or forward and be indistinguishable. Either way, the particle interactions are consistent with the laws of physics. Why does one movie have an arrow of time moving in only one direction and the other does not? Surprisingly, the search for an answer leads through some of the most pioneering fields of physics, including thermodynamics, relativity, quantum theory, and cosmology. The key concept is called "entropy," which is related to the second law of thermodynamics, considered by many scientists to be the most secure law in all of physics. But that's only the beginning, since the quest for the ultimate theory of time draws on such exciting ideas as black holes, cosmic inflation, and dark energy, before closing in on a momentous question that until recently was considered unanswerable: What happened before the big bang? In 24 riveting half-hour lectures, Mysteries of Modern Physics: Time takes you on a mind-expanding journey through the past, present, and future, guided by Professor Sean Carroll, noted author and Senior Research Associate in Physics at the California Institute of Technology.
Bird Sense: What It's Like to Be a Bird
Tim Birkhead - 2012
What is going on inside the head of a nightingale as it sings, and how does its brain improvise? How do desert birds detect rain hundreds of kilometers away? How do birds navigate by using an innate magnetic compass?Tracing the history of how our knowledge about birds has grown, particularly through advances in technology over the past fifty years, Bird Sense tells captivating stories about how birds interact with one another and their environment. More advanced testing methods have debunked previously held beliefs, such as female starlings selecting mates based on how symmetrical the male's plumage markings are. (Whereas females can discern the difference between symmetrical and asymmetrical markings, they are not very good at detecting small differences among symmetrically marked males!)Never before has there been a popular book about how intricately bird behavior is shaped by birds' senses. A lifetime spent studying birds has provided Tim Birkhead with a wealth of fieldwork experiences, insights, and a unique understanding of birds, all firmly grounded in science. No one who reads Bird Sense can fail to be dazzled by it.
Peterson Field Guide to Moths of Northeastern North America
David Beadle - 2012
They come in a rainbow of colors, from brilliant oranges and pinks to soft greens and violets. There are moths with colorful leopardlike spots, and ones that look more like B-movie aliens; some that are as large as your hand, and others the size of a grain of rice. With helpful tips on how to attract and identify moths, range maps and season graphs showing at a glance when and where to find each species, and clear photographs that use the unique Peterson arrow system for easy identification, this guide provides everything an amateur or experienced moth-watcher needs. Let the mothing revolution begin!
Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats
Kristen Iversen - 2012
Her father's hidden liquor bottles, the strange cancers in children in the neighborhood, the truth about what was made at Rocky Flats (cleaning supplies, her mother guessed)—best not to inquire too deeply into any of it.But as Iversen grew older, she began to ask questions. She learned about the infamous 1969 Mother's Day fire, in which a few scraps of plutonium spontaneously ignited and—despite the desperate efforts of firefighters—came perilously close to a "criticality," the deadly blue flash that signals a nuclear chain reaction. Intense heat and radiation almost melted the roof, which nearly resulted in an explosion that would have had devastating consequences for the entire Denver metro area. Yet the only mention of the fire was on page 28 of the Rocky Mountain News, underneath a photo of the Pet of the Week. In her early thirties, Iversen even worked at Rocky Flats for a time, typing up memos in which accidents were always called "incidents."And as this memoir unfolds, it reveals itself as a brilliant work of investigative journalism—a detailed and shocking account of the government's sustained attempt to conceal the effects of the toxic and radioactive waste released by Rocky Flats, and of local residents' vain attempts to seek justice in court. Here, too, are vivid portraits of former Rocky Flats workers—from the healthy, who regard their work at the plant with pride and patriotism, to the ill or dying, who battle for compensation for cancers they got on the job.Based on extensive interviews, FBI and EPA documents, and class-action testimony, this taut, beautifully written book promises to have a very long half-life.
Caterpillar to Butterfly
Laura Marsh - 2012
It's hard to believe these majestic insects with impressive wingspans and beautifully colored and patterned wings were once creepy crawly caterpillars. How in the world does this transformation happen? This Level 1 Reader gives kids an up-close look at exactly how a caterpillar becomes a butterfly. With bonus information including different types of butterflies and poisonous caterpillars, this reader is one of a kind.This high-interest, educationally vetted series of beginning readers features the magnificent images of National Geographic, accompanied by texts written by experienced, skilled children's book authors.The inside back cover of the paperback edition is an interactive feature based upon the book. Level 1 books reinforce the content of the book with a kinesthetic learning activity. In Level 2 books readers complete a Cloze letter, or fun fill-in, with vocabulary words.National Geographic supports K-12 educators with ELA Common Core Resources.Visit www.natgeoed.org/commoncore for more information.
The Book of Barely Imagined Beings: A 21st Century Bestiary
Caspar Henderson - 2012
Ranging from the depths of the ocean to the most arid corners of the land, Caspar Henderson captures the beauty and bizzareness of the many living forms we thought we knew and some we could never have contemplated, inviting us to better imagine the precarious world we inhabit.A witty, vivid blend of cutting edge natural history and meditative reflections, The Book of Barely Imagined Beings is infectious and celebratory about the sheer ingenuity and variety of life.
Extremes: Life, Death and the Limits of the Human Body
Kevin Fong - 2012
Drawing on his own experiences in trauma surgery as an anaesthetist and intensive care expert, 'Extremes' is Kevin Fong's account of the way cutting-edge medicine is pushing the envelope of human survival.
What Color Is My World?: The Lost History of African-American Inventors
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - 2012
Percy Julian synthesized cortisone from soy, easing untold people's pain? These are just some of the black inventors and innovators scoring big points in this dynamic look at several unsung heroes who shared a desire to improve people's lives. Offering profiles with fast facts on flaps and framed by a funny contemporary story featuring two feisty twins, here is a nod to the minds behind the gamma electric cell and the ice-cream scoop, improvements to traffic lights, open-heart surgery, and more - inventors whose ingenuity and perseverance against great odds made our world safer, better, and brighter.
The Mighty Mars Rovers: The Incredible Adventures of Spirit and Opportunity
Elizabeth Rusch - 2012
On July 7, 2003, a twin rover named Opportunity soared through the solar system with the same mission: to find out if Mars ever had water that could have supported life.A thrilling addition to the acclaimed Scientists in the Field series, The Mighty Mars Rovers tells the greatest space robot adventure of all time through the eyes—and heart—of Steven Squyres, professor of astronomy at Cornell University and lead scientist on the mission. This suspenseful page-turner captures the hair-raising human emotions felt during the adventures with two tough rovers.
The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines
Michael E. Mann - 2012
Mann and his colleagues, demonstrating that global temperatures have risen in conjunction with the increase in industrialization and the use of fossil fuels. Here was an easy-to-understand graph that, in a glance, posed a threat to major corporate energy interests and those who do their political bidding. The stakes were simply too high to ignore the Hockey Stick--and so began a relentless attack on a body of science and on the investigators whose work formed its scientific basis.The Hockey Stick achieved prominence in a 2001 UN report on climate change and quickly became a central icon in the "climate wars." The real issue has never been the graph's data but rather its implied threat to those who oppose governmental regulation and other restraints to protect the environment and planet. Mann, lead author of the original paper in which the Hockey Stick first appeared, shares the story of the science and politics behind this controversy. He reveals key figures in the oil and energy industries and the media frontgroups who do their bidding in sometimes slick, sometimes bare-knuckled ways. Mann concludes with the real story of the 2009 "Climategate" scandal, in which climate scientists' emails were hacked. This is essential reading for all who care about our planet's health and our own well-being.
Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee l Summary & Study Guide
BookRags - 2012
This study guide includes the following sections: Plot Summary, Chapter Summaries & Analysis, Characters, Objects/Places, Themes, Style, Quotes, and Topics for Discussion.
The Unfeathered Bird
Katrina Van Grouw - 2012
And just because birds evolved from a single flying ancestor doesn't mean they are structurally all the same. With over 385 stunning drawings depicting 200 species, The Unfeathered Bird is a richly illustrated book on bird anatomy that offers refreshingly original insights into what goes on beneath the feathered surface. Each exquisite drawing is made from an actual specimen and reproduced in sumptuous large format. The birds are shown in lifelike positions and engaged in behavior typical of the species: an underwater view of the skeleton of a swimming loon, the musculature of a porpoising penguin, and an unfeathered sparrowhawk plucking its prey. Jargon-free and easily accessible to any reader, the lively text relates birds' anatomy to their lifestyle and evolution, examining such questions as why penguins are bigger than auks, whether harrier hawks really have double-jointed legs, and the difference between wing claws and wing spurs. A landmark in popular bird books, The Unfeathered Bird is a must for anyone who appreciates birds or bird art.A unique book that bridges art, science, and historyOver 385 beautiful drawings, artistically arranged in a sumptuous large-format bookAccessible, jargon-free text--the only book on bird anatomy aimed at the general readerDrawings and text all based on actual bird specimensIncludes most anatomically distinct bird groupsMany species never illustrated before
Addiction by Design: Machine Gambling in Las Vegas
Natasha Dow Schüll - 2012
"Addiction by Design" takes readers into the intriguing world of machine gambling, an increasingly popular and absorbing form of play that blurs the line between human and machine, compulsion and control, risk and reward.Drawing on fifteen years of field research in Las Vegas, anthropologist Natasha Dow Schull shows how the mechanical rhythm of electronic gambling pulls players into a trancelike state they call the "machine zone," in which daily worries, social demands, and even bodily awareness fade away. Once in the zone, gambling addicts play not to win but simply to keep playing, for as long as possible--even at the cost of physical and economic exhaustion. In continuous machine play, gamblers seek to lose themselves while the gambling industry seeks profit. Schull describes the strategic calculations behind game algorithms and machine ergonomics, casino architecture and "ambience management," player tracking and cash access systems--all designed to meet the market's desire for maximum "time on device." Her account moves from casino floors into gamblers' everyday lives, from gambling industry conventions and Gamblers Anonymous meetings to regulatory debates over whether addiction to gambling machines stems from the consumer, the product, or the interplay between the two."Addiction by Design" is a compelling inquiry into the intensifying traffic between people and machines of chance, offering clues to some of the broader anxieties and predicaments of contemporary life.
Cancer as a Metabolic Disease: On the Origin, Management, and Prevention of Cancer
Thomas N. Seyfried - 2012
It expands upon Otto Warburg's well-known theory that all cancer is a disease of energy metabolism. However, Warburg did not link his theory to the hallmarks of cancer and thus his theory was discredited. This book aims to provide evidence, through case studies, that cancer is primarily a metabolic disease requring metabolic solutions for its management and prevention. Support for this position is derived from critical assessment of current cancer theories. Brain cancer case studies are presented as a proof of principle for metabolic solutions to disease management, but similarities are drawn to other types of cancer, including breast and colon, due to the same cellular mutations that they demonstrate.
What a Plant Knows: A Field Guide to the Senses
Daniel Chamovitz - 2012
The renowned biologist Daniel Chamovitz builds on the original edition to present an intriguing look at how plants themselves experience the world—from the colors they see to the schedules they keep, and now, what they do in fact hear and how they are able to taste. A rare inside look at what life is really like for the grass we walk on, the flowers we sniff, and the trees we climb, What a Plant Knows offers a greater understanding of their place in nature.
The Speed Of Time
Sharad Nalawade - 2012
The world you live in is stranger than fiction... as you read this, you exist in other places at the same time. Do not regret having missed the chance to realize your dreams, for you may just have fulfilled it in another universe.. * Are the trillions of atoms that make you, nothing but vibrations in 10 dimensions?* Is it true that we are all connected with each other?* Can you go into the future to change the present?* Why do scientists and philosophers struggle with the concept of Time?* Can science explain consciousness through physics?* Is our fate driven by the underlying randomness in nature?* Is nature hiding the best-kept secrets which can never be unravelled by humans?The Speed of Time approaches the most complex and esoteric theories of science in lucid, clear and simple language and in the style of a thriller, leaving you wanting more... while addressing questions through the enigmatic theories in Physics such as Quantum Mechanics, Einstein's Theory of Relativity, Time, Chaos, and much more. Just start reading and you will not put it down.
How to Raise Monarch Butterflies: A Step-By-Step Guide for Kids
Carol Pasternak - 2012
nicely communicates the wonder ... Especially effective is the eight-pictured depiction of the development of the caterpillar into a chrysalis." --School Library JournalObserving a Monarch butterfly as it transforms itself from caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly is among the most thrilling experiences that nature offers. Raising Monarch butterflies is made easy with the help of this detailed guide.How to Raise Monarch Butterflies explains what threats Monarchs face today and how readers can help conserve the Monarch's feeding grounds from encroachment. Revel in one of the most remarkable miracles of nature.This updated edition contains:More than 40 new colorful and detailed photos More secrets to help you find eggs and caterpillars Instructions on how to feed a monarch and more details on their care Expanded information on varieties and propagation of milkweed New page on the diverse insects in the milkweed patch New suggestions for starting a butterfly garden, including a large photograph of an outstanding Monarch Waystation.
Citizen Scientists: Be a Part of Scientific Discovery from Your Own Backyard
Loree Griffin Burns - 2012
Just get out into a field, urban park, or your own backyard. You can put your nose to a monarch pupa or listen for raucous frog calls. You can tally woodpeckers or sweep the grass for ladybugs. This book, full of engaging photos and useful tips, will show you how.
Masters of the Planet: The Search for Our Human Origins
Ian Tattersall - 2012
Yet something about our species distinguished it from the pack, and ultimately led to its survival while the rest became extinct. Just what was it that allowed Homo sapiens to become masters of the planet? Ian Tattersall, curator emeritus at the American Museum of Natural History, takes us deep into the fossil record to uncover what made humans so special. Surveying a vast field from initial bipedality to language and intelligence, Tattersall argues that Homo sapiens acquired a winning combination of traits that was not the result of long-term evolutionary refinement. Instead, the final result emerged quickly, shocking our world and changing it forever.
Rocks and Minerals
Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld - 2012
This level two reader, written in easy-to-grasp text, will help cultivate the geologists of tomorrow!This high-interest, educationally vetted series of beginning readers features the magnificent images of National Geographic, accompanied by texts written by experienced, skilled children's book authors. The inside back cover of the paperback edition is an interactive feature based upon the book. Level 1 books reinforce the content of the book with a kinesthetic learning activity. In Level 2 books readers complete a Cloze letter, or fun fill-in, with vocabulary words.Releases simultaneously in Reinforced Library Binding: 978-1-4263-1039-3 , $13.90/$15.95 CanNational Geographic supports K-12 educators with ELA Common Core Resources.Visit www.natgeoed.org/commoncore for more information. From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Reality of ESP: A Physicist's Proof of Psychic Abilities
Russell Targ - 2012
Desperate to find her, the police called physicist Russell Targ and Pat Price, a psychic retired police commissioner. As Price turned the pages of the police mug book filled with hundreds of photos, suddenly he pointed to one of them and announced, "That's the ringleader." The man was Donald DeFreeze, who was indeed subsequently so identified. Price also described the type and location of the kidnap car, enabling the police to find it within minutes. That remarkable event is one reason Targ believes in ESP. Another occurred when his group made $120,000 by forecasting for nine weeks in a row the changes in the silver-commodity futures marketAs a scientist, Targ demands proof. His experience is based on two decades of investigations at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI), which he cofounded with physicist Harold Puthoff in 1972. This twenty-million dollar program launched during the Cold War was supported by the CIA, NASA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and Army and Air Force Intelligence. The experiments they conducted routinely presented results could have happened by chance less than once in a million. Targ describes four types of experiments:Remote Viewing, in which a person describes places and events independent of space and time. For example, while in California Price drew to scale a Soviet weapons factory at Semipalitinsk with great accuracy later confirmed by Satellite photography. In another remote viewing, Targ accurately sketched an airport in San Andreas, Columbia himself.Distant Mental Influence, where the thoughts of the experimenter can positively or negatively affect the physiology (heart rate, skin resistance, etc.) of a distant person.Whole field isolation, where someone in a state of sensory isolation accurately describes the visual experiences of someone else in another placePrecognition and retrocausality, showing that the future can affect the past. That is, the elephant you see on television in the morning can be the cause of your having dreamed about elephants the previous night.Final chapters present evidence for survival after death; explain how ESP works based on the Buddhist/Hindu view of our selves as nonlocal, eternal awareness; discuss the ethics of exercising psychic abilities,and show us how to explore ESP ourselves. "I am convinced," Targ says, "that most people can learn to move from their ordinary mind to one not obstructed by conventional barriers of space and time. Who would not want to try that?"
A World in One Cubic Foot: Portraits of Biodiversity
David Liittschwager - 2012
With every step, we disturb and move through cubic foot after cubic foot. But behold the cubic foot in nature--from coral reefs to cloud forests to tidal pools--even in that finite space you can see the multitude of creatures that make up a vibrant ecosystem. For "A World in One Cubic Foot"," "esteemed nature photographer David Liittschwager took a bright green metal cube--measuring precisely one cubic foot--and set it in various ecosystems around the world, from Costa Rica to Central Park. Working with local scientists, he measured what moved through that small space in a period of twenty-four hours. He then photographed the cube's setting and the plant, animal, and insect life inside it--anything visible to the naked eye. The result is a stunning portrait of the amazing diversity that can be found in ecosystems around the globe. Many organisms captured in Liittschwager's photographs have rarely, if ever, been presented in their full splendor to the general reader, and the singular beauty of these images evocatively conveys the richness of life around us and the essential need for its conservation. The breathtaking images are accompanied by equally engaging essays that speak to both the landscapes and the worlds contained within them, from distinguished contributors such as Elizabeth Kolbert and Alan Huffman, in addition to an introduction by E. O. Wilson. After encountering this book, you will never look at the tiniest sliver of your own backyard or neighborhood park the same way; instead, you will be stunned by the unexpected variety of species found in an area so small. "A World in One Cubic Foot" puts the world accessibly in our hands and allows us to behold the magic of an ecosystem in miniature. Liittschwager's awe-inspiring photographs take us to places both familiar and exotic and instill new awareness of the life that abounds all around.
Unusual Creatures: A Mostly Accurate Account of Some of Earth's Strangest Animals
Michael Hearst - 2012
Which animal can be found at the top of Mount Everest, 10,000 feet under the sea, and in your backyard? Which animal poops cubes? Which animal can disguise itself as a giant crab? These fascinating facts and hundreds more await curious minds, amateur zoologists, and anyone who has ever laughed at a funny-looking animal.
Technology: A Byte-Sized World!
Simon Basher - 2012
Discover the secrets behind the devices we take for granted, and learn about the amazing inventions that have transformed our lives. From the Movers and Shakers who power our physical world, to the Gizmos, Home Bodies, and High Rollers who power our vehicles, entertainment, and smartphones—and pretty much everything else around us—Technology is a compelling guide to the big-bytes whiz-kids, powerhouse motors, and other characters who drive our inventive, highly engineered world.
A Most Incomprehensible Thing: Notes Towards a Very Gentle Introduction to the Mathematics of Relativity
Peter Collier - 2012
This user-friendly self-study guide is aimed at the general reader who is motivated to tackle that not insignificant challenge. The book is written using straightforward and accessible language, with clear derivations and explanations as well as numerous fully solved problems. For those with minimal mathematical background, the first chapter provides a crash course in foundation mathematics. The reader is then taken gently by the hand and guided through a wide range of fundamental topics, including Newtonian mechanics; the Lorentz transformations; tensor calculus; the Einstein field equations; the Schwarzschild solution (which gives a good approximation of the spacetime of our Solar System); simple black holes and relativistic cosmology. Following the historic 2015 LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) detection, there is now an additional chapter on gravitational waves, ripples in the fabric of spacetime that potentially provide a revolutionary new way to study the universe. Special relativity helps explain a huge range of non-gravitational physical phenomena and has some strangely counter-intuitive consequences. These include time dilation, length contraction, the relativity of simultaneity, mass-energy equivalence and an absolute speed limit. General relativity, the leading theory of gravity, is at the heart of our understanding of cosmology and black holes.Understand even the basics of Einstein's amazing theory and the world will never seem the same again. ContentsPrefaceIntroduction1 Foundation mathematics2 Newtonian mechanics3 Special relativity4 Introducing the manifold5 Scalars, vectors, one-forms and tensors6 More on curvature7 General relativity8 The Newtonian limit9 The Schwarzschild metric10 Schwarzschild black holes11 Cosmology12 Gravitational wavesAppendix: The Riemann curvature tensorBibliographyAcknowledgementsJanuary 2019. This third edition has been revised to make the material even more accessible to the enthusiastic general reader who seeks to understand the mathematics of relativity.
Common Spiders of North America
Richard Alan Bradley - 2012
Arachnids are among the most diverse groups of terrestrial invertebrates, yet they are among the least studied and understood. This is the most comprehensive field guide to all 68 spider families in North America, with beautiful illustrations of 469 of the most commonly encountered species. Group keys enable accurate identification by web pattern, morphology, and other observable details, and species descriptions include tips to help everyday naturalists identify spiders, as well as their common names, typical habitat, geographic distribution, and behavioral notes. A concise illustrated introduction to spider biology and anatomy explains spider relationships. Featuring 82 gorgeous color plates, this book is an accessible and detailed resource for curious naturalists who want to understand this ubiquitous and ecologically critical component of our biosphere.
Weird Sea Creatures
Laura Marsh - 2012
This level two reader uses easy-to-grasp language that will keep children intrigued and learning on every page.This high-interest, educationally vetted series of beginning readers features the magnificent images of National Geographic, accompanied by texts written by experienced, skilled children's book authors. The inside back cover of the paperback edition is an interactive feature based upon the book. Level 1 books reinforce the content of the book with a kinesthetic learning activity. In Level 2 books readers complete a Cloze letter, or fun fill-in, with vocabulary words.Releases simultaneously in Reinforced Library Binding: 978-1-4263-1048-5 , $13.90/$15.95 Can
Laura Marsh - 2012
And no matter where you are—they're always lurking somewhere nearby. Wolves, the predatory puppy dogs of the wild, are feared and loved by people everywhere. But are they misunderstood? In this fascinating level 2 reader, you'll learn that there's much more to being a wolf than most people could ever believe. Did you know that each pack has a pecking order? That wolves can "talk" to each other using body language? Or that they're actually not out to attack humans, they usually leave people well enough alone? Full of incredible photographs and interesting information, NGR Wolves will appeal to all kids.
Drawn from Paradise: The Natural History, Art and Discovery of the Birds of Paradise with Rare Archival Art
David Attenborough - 2012
In Drawn from Paradise, world renowned BBC broadcaster David Attenborough and artist and author Errol Fuller share their passion for these breathtaking creatures, offering bird lovers and nature aficionados an enthralling collection of interesting facts and stunningly beautiful, very rare hand-painted images of some of the most exotic winged creatures in the world.