Book mentions in this thread

  • Votes: 585

    A Brief History of Time

    by Stephen Hawking

    An anniversary edition of a now-classic survey of the origin and nature of the universe features a new introduction by the author and a new chapter on the possibility of time travel and "wormholes" in space
  • Votes: 455

    Cosmos

    by Carl Sagan

    Presents an illustrated guide to the universe and to Earth's relationship to it, moving from theories of creation to humankind's discovery of the cosmos, to general relativity, to space missions, and beyond.
  • Votes: 446

    Women in Science

    by Rachel Ignotofsky

  • Votes: 440

    Sapiens

    by Yuval Noah Harari

  • Votes: 348

    The Feynman Lectures on Physics, boxed set

    by Richard P. Feynman

  • Votes: 300

    The Elegant Universe

    by Brian Greene

  • Votes: 298

    The Selfish Gene

    by Richard Dawkins

    With a new epilogue to the 40th anniversary edition.
  • Votes: 292

    Physics of the Impossible

  • Votes: 272

    The Origin of Species

    by Charles Darwin

    States the evidence for a theory of evolution, explains how evolution takes place, and discusses instinct, hybridism, fossils, distribution and classification.
  • Votes: 271

    The Language Instinct

    by Steven Pinker

    In this classic, the world's expert on language and mind lucidly explains everything you always wanted to know about language: how it works, how children learn it, how it changes, how the brain computes it, and how it evolved. With deft use of examples of humor and wordplay, Steven Pinker weaves our vast knowledge of language into a compelling story: language is a human instinct, wired into our brains by evolution. The Language Instinct received the William James Book Prize from the American Psychological Association and the Public Interest Award from the Linguistics Society of America. This edition includes an update on advances in the science of language since The Language Instinct was first published.
  • Votes: 264

    Seven Brief Lessons on Physics

    by Carlo Rovelli

    CARLO ROVELLI'S NEW BOOK, HELGOLAND, IS NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER THE PHENOMENAL BESTSELLER 'Honestly I cannot recommend it too strongly... one of the fastest selling science titles of all time because it is so clear' Jeremy Vine, BBC Radio 2 'There's a book I've been carrying around like a small Bible, Seven Brief Lessons on Physics' - Benedict Cumberbatch Everything you need to know about modern physics, the universe and your place in the world in seven enlightening lessons These seven short lessons guide us, with simplicity and clarity, through the scientific revolution that shook physics in the twentieth century and still continues to shake us today. In this beautiful and mind-bending introduction to modern physics, Carlo Rovelli explains Einstein's theory of general relativity, quantum mechanics, black holes, the complex architecture of the universe, elementary particles, gravity, and the nature of the mind. In under eighty pages, readers will understand the most transformative scientific discoveries of the twentieth century and what they mean for us. Not since Richard Feynman's celebrated best-seller Six Easy Pieces has physics been so vividly, intelligently and entertainingly revealed.
  • Votes: 233

    A Short History of Nearly Everything

    by Bill Bryson

    The author of A Walk in the Woods traces the Big Bang through the rise of civilization, documenting his work with a host of the world's most advanced scientists and mathematicians to explain why things are the way they are. Reprint. 125,000 first printing.
  • Votes: 219

    Pale Blue Dot

    by Carl Sagan

  • Votes: 210

    The Emperor's New Mind

    by Roger Penrose

  • Votes: 15

    Six Easy Pieces

    by Richard P. Feynman

  • Votes: 9

    The Beginning of Infinity

    by David Deutsch

    A pioneer in the field of quantum computation explores the nature and progress of knowledge in the universe, arguing that humans are subject to the laws of physics but unlimited by what can be understood, controlled, and achieved.
  • Votes: 7

    Thinking, Fast and Slow

    by Daniel Kahneman

    Decisions: You make hundreds every day, but do you really know how they are made? When can you trust fast, intuitive judgment, and when is it biased? How can you transform your thinking to help avoid overconfidence and become a better decision maker? Thinking, Fast and Slow ...in 30 Minutes is the essential guide to quickly understanding the fundamental components of decision making outlined in Daniel Kahneman's bestselling book, Thinking, Fast and Slow. Understand the key ideas behind Thinking, Fast and Slow in a fraction of the time: Concise chapter-by-chapter synopses Essential insights and takeaways highlighted Illustrative case studies demonstrate Kahneman's groundbreaking research in behavioral economics In Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, best-selling author and recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economics, has compiled his many years of groundbreaking research to offer practical knowledge and insights into how people's minds make decisions. Challenging the standard model of judgment, Kahneman aims to enhance the everyday language about thinking to more accurately discuss, diagnose, and reduce poor judgment. Thought, Kahneman explains, has two distinct systems: the fast and intuitive System 1, and the slow and effortful System 2. Intuitive decision making is often effective, but in Thinking, Fast and Slow Kahneman highlights situations in which it is unreliable-when decisions require predicting the future and assessing risks. Presenting a framework for how these two systems impact the mind, Thinking, Fast and Slow reveals the far-reaching impact of cognitive biases-from creating public policy to playing the stock market to increasing personal happiness-and provides tools for applying behavioral economics toward better decision making. A 30 Minute Expert Summary of Thinking, Fast and Slow Designed for those whose desire to learn exceeds the time they have available, the Thinking, Fast and Slow expert summary helps readers quickly and easily become experts ...in 30 minutes.
  • Votes: 6

    The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

    by Thomas S. Kuhn

    A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once were—and still are. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that kind of book. When it was first published in 1962, it was a landmark event in the history and philosophy of science. Fifty years later, it still has many lessons to teach. With The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Kuhn challenged long-standing linear notions of scientific progress, arguing that transformative ideas don’t arise from the day-to-day, gradual process of experimentation and data accumulation but that the revolutions in science, those breakthrough moments that disrupt accepted thinking and offer unanticipated ideas, occur outside of “normal science,” as he called it. Though Kuhn was writing when physics ruled the sciences, his ideas on how scientific revolutions bring order to the anomalies that amass over time in research experiments are still instructive in our biotech age. This new edition of Kuhn’s essential work in the history of science includes an insightful introduction by Ian Hacking, which clarifies terms popularized by Kuhn, including paradigm and incommensurability, and applies Kuhn’s ideas to the science of today. Usefully keyed to the separate sections of the book, Hacking’s introduction provides important background information as well as a contemporary context. Newly designed, with an expanded index, this edition will be eagerly welcomed by the next generation of readers seeking to understand the history of our perspectives on science.
  • Votes: 4

    The Code Breaker

    by Walter Isaacson

  • Votes: 3

    The Whole Shebang

    by Timothy Ferris

  • Votes: 3

    The Perfectionists

    by Simon Winchester

    The revered New York Times bestselling author traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement—precision—in a superb history that is both an homage and a warning for our future. The rise of manufacturing could not have happened without an attention to precision. At the dawn of the Industrial Revolution in eighteenth-century England, standards of measurement were established, giving way to the development of machine tools—machines that make machines. Eventually, the application of precision tools and methods resulted in the creation and mass production of items from guns and glass to mirrors, lenses, and cameras—and eventually gave way to further breakthroughs, including gene splicing, microchips, and the Hadron Collider. Simon Winchester takes us back to origins of the Industrial Age, to England where he introduces the scientific minds that helped usher in modern production: John Wilkinson, Henry Maudslay, Joseph Bramah, Jesse Ramsden, and Joseph Whitworth. It was Thomas Jefferson who later exported their discoveries to the fledgling United States, setting the nation on its course to become a manufacturing titan. Winchester moves forward through time, to today’s cutting-edge developments occurring around the world, from America to Western Europe to Asia. As he introduces the minds and methods that have changed the modern world, Winchester explores fundamental questions. Why is precision important? What are the different tools we use to measure it? Who has invented and perfected it? Has the pursuit of the ultra-precise in so many facets of human life blinded us to other things of equal value, such as an appreciation for the age-old traditions of craftsmanship, art, and high culture? Are we missing something that reflects the world as it is, rather than the world as we think we would wish it to be? And can the precise and the natural co-exist in society?
  • Votes: 3

    This One Summer

    by Mariko Tamaki

  • Votes: 2

    Check This Out!

    by American Library Association

  • Votes: 2

    I Am a Strange Loop

    by Douglas R. Hofstadter

  • Votes: 2

    Cytology

    by Edmund S. Cibas MD

  • Votes: 2

    Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

    by Neil deGrasse Tyson

    Over a year on the New York Times bestseller list and more than a million copies sold. The essential universe, from our most celebrated and beloved astrophysicist. What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There’s no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson. But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day. While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.
  • Votes: 2

    Chaos

    by James Gleick

    Explains the meaning and application of chaos--the study of patterns emerging from seemingly random phenomena--and introduces the scientists responsible for major discoveries in this field.
  • Votes: 1

    A Single Thread

    by Tracy Chevalier

  • Votes: 1

    The Emperor of All Maladies

    by Siddhartha Mukherjee

    An assessment of cancer addresses both the courageous battles against the disease and the misperceptions and hubris that have compromised modern understandings, providing coverage of such topics as ancient-world surgeries and the development of present-day treatments. Reprint. Best-selling winner of the Pulitzer Prize. Includes reading-group guide.
  • Votes: 1

    The Two Cultures

    by C.P. Snow

  • Votes: 1

    The Millennium Problems

    by Keith J. Devlin

  • Votes: 1

    The Great Influenza

    by John M. Barry

    An account of the deadly influenza epidemic of 1918, which took the lives of millions of people around the world, examines its causes, its impact on early twentieth-century society, and the lasting implications of the crisis.
  • Votes: 1

    What is Life?

    by Erwin Schrodinger/Penrose

  • Votes: 1

    A Universe from Nothing

    by Lawrence M. Krauss

    Bestselling author and acclaimed physicist Lawrence Krauss offers a paradigm-shifting view of how everything that exists came to be in the first place. “Where did the universe come from? What was there before it? What will the future bring? And finally, why is there something rather than nothing?” One of the few prominent scientists today to have crossed the chasm between science and popular culture, Krauss describes the staggeringly beautiful experimental observations and mind-bending new theories that demonstrate not only can something arise from nothing, something will always arise from nothing. With a new preface about the significance of the discovery of the Higgs particle, A Universe from Nothing uses Krauss’s characteristic wry humor and wonderfully clear explanations to take us back to the beginning of the beginning, presenting the most recent evidence for how our universe evolved—and the implications for how it’s going to end. Provocative, challenging, and delightfully readable, this is a game-changing look at the most basic underpinning of existence and a powerful antidote to outmoded philosophical, religious, and scientific thinking.
  • Votes: 1

    The Wizard and the Prophet

    by Charles Mann

    From the best-selling, award-winning author of 1491 and 1493--an incisive portrait of the two little-known twentieth-century scientists, Norman Borlaug and William Vogt, whose diametrically opposed views shaped our ideas about the environment, laying the groundwork for how people in the twenty-first century will choose to live in tomorrow's world. In forty years, Earth's population will reach ten billion. Can our world support that? What kind of world will it be? Those answering these questions generally fall into two deeply divided groups--Wizards and Prophets, as Charles Mann calls them in this balanced, authoritative, nonpolemical new book. The Prophets, he explains, follow William Vogt, a founding environmentalist who believed that in using more than our planet has to give, our prosperity will lead us to ruin. Cut back! was his mantra. Otherwise everyone will lose! The Wizards are the heirs of Norman Borlaug, whose research, in effect, wrangled the world in service to our species to produce modern high-yield crops that then saved millions from starvation. Innovate! was Borlaug's cry. Only in that way can everyone win! Mann delves into these diverging viewpoints to assess the four great challenges humanity faces--food, water, energy, climate change--grounding each in historical context and weighing the options for the future. With our civilization on the line, the author's insightful analysis is an essential addition to the urgent conversation about how our children will fare on an increasingly crowded Earth.
  • Votes: 1

    Energy and Civilization

    by Vaclav Smil

  • Votes: 1

    Reality Is Not What It Seems

    by Carlo Rovelli

  • Votes: 1

    Life Ascending

    by Nick Lane

  • Votes: 1

    The Ancestor's Tale

    by Richard Dawkins

    A newly revised and expanded edition of the classic account of evolution."
  • Votes: 1

    David and Goliath

    by Malcolm Gladwell

  • Votes: 1

    Philosophy of Science

    by Samir Okasha

  • Votes: 1

    Our Mathematical Universe

    by Max Tegmark

  • Votes: 1

    Betrayal of Trust

    by Laurie Garrett

  • Votes: 1

    Behave

    by Robert M. Sapolsky

  • Votes: 1

    Something Deeply Hidden

    by Sean Carroll

  • Votes: 1

    The Fabric of the Cosmos

    by Brian Greene

  • Votes: 1

    God Created the Integers

    by Stephen Hawking

  • Votes: 1

    Seconded

    by Icon Group International

  • Votes: 1

    Grand Transitions

    by Vaclav Smil

  • Votes: 1

    Black Holes and Time Warps

    by Kip S. Thorne

  • Votes: 1

    The Vital Question

    by Nick Lane

    Why is life the way it is? Bacteria evolved into complex life just once in four billion years of life on earth-and all complex life shares many strange properties, from sex to ageing and death. If life evolved on other planets, would it be the same or completely different? In The Vital Question, Nick Lane radically reframes evolutionary history, putting forward a cogent solution to conundrums that have troubled scientists for decades. The answer, he argues, lies in energy: how all life on Earth lives off a voltage with the strength of a bolt of lightning. In unravelling these scientific enigmas, making sense of life's quirks, Lane's explanation provides a solution to life's vital questions: why are we as we are, and why are we here at all? This is ground-breaking science in an accessible form, in the tradition of Charles Darwin's The Origin of Species, Richard Dawkins' The Selfish Gene, and Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel.
  • Votes: 1

    TIME REBORN

    by Lee Smolin

  • Votes: 1

    Seventeen equations that changed the world

    by Ian STEWART

  • Votes: 1

    We Have No Idea

    by Jorge Cham

  • Votes: 1

    Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos

    by Dennis Overbye

  • Votes: 1

    The Particle at the End of the Universe

    by Sean Carroll

  • Votes: 1

    Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!

    by Richard P. Feynman

    The outrageous exploits of one of this century's greatest scientific minds and a legendary American original.
  • Votes: 1

    May I Suggest The Sausage

    by Swift Publishing

  • Votes: 1

    The Big Picture

    by Sean Carroll

    Where are we? Who are we? Do our beliefs, hopes and dreams mean anything out there in the void? Can human purpose and meaning ever fit into a scientific worldview? Acclaimed award-winning author Sean Carroll brings his extraordinary intellect to bear on the realms of knowledge, the laws of nature and the most profound questions about life, death and our place in it all. In a dazzlingly unique presentation, Carroll takes us through the scientific revolution’s avalanche of discoveries, from Darwin and Einstein to the origins of life, consciousness and the universe itself. Delving into the way the world works at the quantum, cosmic and human levels, he reveals how human values relate to scientific reality. An extraordinary synthesis of cosmos-sprawling science and profound thought, The Big Picture is Carroll’s quest to explain our world. Destined to sit alongside the works of our greatest thinkers, from Stephen Hawking and Carl Sagan to Daniel Dennett and E. O. Wilson, this book shows that while our lives may be forever dwarfed by the immensity of the universe, they can be redeemed by our capacity to comprehend it and give it meaning.
  • Votes: 1

    The Double Helix

    by James D. Watson

    The classic personal account of Watson and Crick’s groundbreaking discovery of the structure of DNA, now with an introduction by Sylvia Nasar, author of A Beautiful Mind. By identifying the structure of DNA, the molecule of life, Francis Crick and James Watson revolutionized biochemistry and won themselves a Nobel Prize. At the time, Watson was only twenty-four, a young scientist hungry to make his mark. His uncompromisingly honest account of the heady days of their thrilling sprint against other world-class researchers to solve one of science’s greatest mysteries gives a dazzlingly clear picture of a world of brilliant scientists with great gifts, very human ambitions, and bitter rivalries. With humility unspoiled by false modesty, Watson relates his and Crick’s desperate efforts to beat Linus Pauling to the Holy Grail of life sciences, the identification of the basic building block of life. Never has a scientist been so truthful in capturing in words the flavor of his work.
  • Votes: 1

    Broca's Brain

    by Carl Sagan

  • Votes: 1

    The Vertical Farm (Tenth Anniversary Edition)

    by Dr. Dickson Despommier