We all think we know who Steve Jobs was, what made him tick, and what made him succeed. Yet the single most important question about him has never been answered. The young, impulsive, egotistical genius was ousted in the mid-'80s from the company he founded, exiled from his own kingdom and cast into the wilderness. Yet he returned a decade later to transform the ailing Apple into the most successful company the world had ever seen.
"Great reflection of an intricate character"
In Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography, Walter Isaacson provides an extraordinary account of Jobs' professional and personal life. Drawn from three years of exclusive and unprecedented interviews Isaacson has conducted with Jobs as well as extensive interviews with Jobs' family members and key colleagues from Apple and its competitors, this is the definitive portrait of the greatest innovator of his generation.
"A fascinating insight into a flawed genius"
In this compelling memoir, Jane Hawking relates the inside story of her extraordinary marriage. As Stephen's academic renown soared, his body was collapsing under the assaults of motor neurone disease, and Jane's candid account of trying to balance his 24-hour care with the needs of their growing family is inspirational. This is a book about optimism, love and change that will resonate with listeners everywhere.
I hate every wave of the ocean', the seasick Charles Darwin wrote to his family during his five-year voyage on the H.M.S. Beagle. It was this world-wide journey, however, that launched the scientists career.
"You'll never get bored!"
Gene Kranz was present at the creation of America's manned space program and was a key player in it for three decades. As a flight director in NASA's Mission Control, Kranz witnessed firsthand the making of history. He participated in the space program from the early days of the Mercury program to the last Apollo mission, and beyond. He endured the disastrous first years when rockets blew up and the United States seemed to fall further behind the Soviet Union in the space race.
"Brings back so many memories!"
Stephen Hawking has dazzled listeners worldwide with a string of best-sellers exploring the mysteries of the universe. Now, for the first time, the most brilliant cosmologist of our age turns his gaze inwards for a revealing look at his own life and intellectual evolution. My Brief History recounts Stephen Hawking's improbable journey, from his post-war London boyhood to his years of international acclaim and celebrity.
"Why not get a narrator who can pronounce Caius?"
With his characteristic eyebrow-raising behavior, Richard P. Feynman once provoked the wife of a Princeton dean to remark, "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman!" But the many scientific and personal achievements of this Nobel Prize-winning physicist are no laughing matter. Here, woven with his scintillating views on modern science, Feynman relates the defining moments of his accomplished life.
Masters of Doom is the amazing true story of the Lennon and McCartney of video games: John Carmack and John Romero. Together, they ruled big business. They transformed popular culture. And they provoked a national controversy. More than anything, they lived a unique and rollicking American Dream, escaping the broken homes of their youth to produce the most notoriously successful game franchises in history - Doom and Quake - until the games they made tore them apart. This is a story of friendship and betrayal, commerce and artistry.
Anthony Stevens argues that Jung's visionary powers and profound spirituality have helped many to find an alternative set of values to the arid materialism prevailing Western society.
Sigmund Freud revolutionized the way in which we think about ourselves. From its beginnings as a theory of neurosis Freud developed psychoanalysis into a general psychology, which became widely accepted as the predominant mode of discussing personality and interpersonal relationships. Anthony Storr goes one step further and investigates the status of Freud's legacy today and the disputes that surround it.
Best selling author Amir Aczel God's Equation delves into the riddle of infinity, religion and science with "mad" mathematician Georg Cantor, in what Booklist calls "an indispensable book for anyone interested in the darker side of intellectual progress."
Alan Mathison Turing. Mathematician, philosopher, codebreaker, a founder of computer science, and the father of Artificial Intelligence, Turing was one of the most original thinkers of the last century - and the man whose work helped create the computer-driven world we now inhabit. But he was also an enigmatic figure, deeply reticent yet also strikingly naive. Turing's openness about his homosexuality at a time when it was an imprisonable offense ultimately led to his untimely death at the age of only 41.
One of the greatest physicists of the twentieth century, Richard Feynman possessed an unquenchable thirst for adventure and an unparalleled ability to tell the stories of his life. "What Do You Care What Other People Think?" is Feynman's last literary legacy, prepared with his friend and fellow drummer, Ralph Leighton.
Their story takes us through a maze of dead ends and exhilarating breakthroughs as they and their colleagues wrestle not only with the abstraction of code but with the unpredictability of human behavior, especially their own. Along the way, we encounter black holes, turtles, snakes, dragons, axe-sharpening, and yak-shaving - and take a guided tour through the theories and methods, both brilliant and misguided, that litter the history of software development, from the famous "mythical man-month" to Extreme Programming.
"Definitely for geeks or engineers"
Wally Schirra was the only one of the original seven NASA astronauts to command a spacecraft in all three pioneering space programs - Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo. This chronicle of his experiences takes us into space on Schirra's 1962 Mercury flight that orbited Earth six times and aboard Gemini for the first rendezvous of two manned craft in space.
"Awful sound quality"
Born to parents who were enthusiastic naturalists, and linked through his wider family to a clutch of accomplished scientists, Richard Dawkins was bound to have biology in his genes. But what were the influences that shaped his life and intellectual development? And who inspired him to become the pioneering scientist and public thinker now famous (and infamous to some) around the world? In An Appetite for Wonder we join him on a personal journey back to an enchanting childhood in colonial Africa.
"Not quite what I expected."
Nikola Tesla was a major contributor to the electrical revolution that transformed daily life at the turn of the 20th century. His inventions, patents, and theoretical work formed the basis of modern AC electricity, and contributed to the development of radio and television. Like his competitor Thomas Edison, Tesla was one of America's first celebrity scientists, enjoying the company of New York high society and dazzling the likes of Mark Twain with his electrical demonstrations. An astute self-promoter and gifted showman, he cultivated a public image of the eccentric genius.
"Interesting, lots of things I did not know"
From the author of the national best seller Chaos comes an outstanding biography of one of the most dazzling and flamboyant scientists of the 20th century that "not only paints a highly attractive portrait of Feynman but also . . . makes for a stimulating adventure in the annals of science." (The New York Times).
"A Biography/Science masterpiece"
J. Robert Oppenheimer was one of the iconic figures of the 20th century, a brilliant physicist who led the effort to build the atomic bomb but later confronted the moral consequences of scientific progress. When he proposed international controls over atomic materials, opposed the development of the hydrogen bomb, and criticized plans for a nuclear war, his ideas were anathema to powerful advocates of a massive nuclear buildup during the anti-Communist hysteria of the early 1950s.
"Spoilt by a very poor recording"
Masters and Johnson began their secret studies in a small Midwest laboratory working with prostitutes and volunteers who performed more than 10,000 sexual acts in the name of science. They soon became the top experts on sex for more than 40 years, explaining the untold mysteries of orgasm, emotional fulfillment, and sexual dysfunction to millions of Americans. Masters and Johnson were America's ideal couple, but they divorced after 20 years amid a clash of ambitions, betrayal, and jealousies.
"Great Book About An Overlong Story"
This book is a story of Miss Cannon's trip to Spain and Italy in 1893 where she visits some of the major cathedrals, mosques, and palaces in Spain. Miss Cannon also journeys to Italy to visit the childhood home of Christopher Columbus. Her book was used at the massive 1893 World's Fair held in Chicago as a promotional booklet for the Blair Camera Company.
The controversial Emanuel Revici, M.D., made the bones grow back in cancer patients, and restored health to AIDS patients as well as drug addicts and alcoholics. His medicines lifted debilitating migraines in as little as three minutes. Revici's reward? He was attacked and ostracized by the best. JAMA published false reports about his work. The American Cancer Society blasted him time and again. Meanwhile, word of mouth brought new patients to see him for decades.
This riveting biography from the American Bar Association visits the spectacular life of Edwin Land, breakthrough inventor. At the time of his death, he stood third on the list of our most prolific inventors, behind only Thomas Edison and one of Edison's colleagues. Land's most famous achievement was the creation of a revolutionary film-and-camera system that could produce a photographic print moments after the picture was taken.
In little more than half a decade, Facebook has gone from a dorm-room novelty to a company with 500 million users. It is one of the fastest growing companies in history, an essential part of the social life not only of teenagers but hundreds of millions of adults worldwide. As Facebook spreads around the globe, it creates surprising effects, even becoming instrumental in political protests from Colombia to Iran.
"Interesting and informative"
Inspired by his nearly-deaf mother and a father who developed a "visible alphabet" of all the possible sounds a human being can make, Alexander Graham Bell spent the greater part of his life trying to improve the way people communicated with one another. It was this desire that led him to create his most famous invention, the telephone, and turned him into one of the most well-known names of all time.
"I am hopelessly and forever a mountaineer," John Muir wrote. "Civilization and fever and all the morbidness that has been hooted at me has not dimmed my glacial eye, and I care to live only to entice people to look at Nature's loveliness. My own special self is nothing". In Donald Worster's magisterial biography, John Muir's "special self" is fully explored as is his extraordinary ability, then and now, to get others to see the sacred beauty of the natural world.
Three years ago, 32-year-old Markus "Notch" Persson of Stockholm was an unknown and bored computer programmer. Today, he is a multi-millionaire international icon. Minecraft, the "virtual Lego" game Markus crafted in his free time, has become one of the most talked about activities since Tetris. Talked about by tens of millions of people, in fact.It is the story of unlikely success, fast money, and the power of digital technology to rattle an empire. And it is about creation, exclusion, and the feeling of not fitting in.
In late May 1927 an inexperienced and unassuming 25-year-old Air Mail pilot from rural Minnesota stunned the world by making the first non-stop transatlantic flight. A spectacular feat of individual daring and collective technological accomplishment, Charles Lindbergh's flight from New York to Paris ushered in America's age of commercial aviation.
In My Life as a Quant, Emanuel Derman relives his exciting journey as one of the first high-energy particle physicists to migrate to Wall Street. Derman details his adventures in this fieldanalyzing the incompatible personas of traders and quants, and discussing the dissimilar nature of knowledge in physics and finance. Throughout this tale, he also reflects on the appropriate way to apply the refined methods of physics to the hurly-burly world of markets.
"Un-listenable robotic voice"
Pioneering oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer unravels the mystery of marine currents, uncovers the astonishing story of flotsam, and changes the world's view of trash, the ocean, and our global environment. Curtis Ebbesmeyer is no ordinary scientist. He's been a consulting oceanographer for multinational firms and a lead scientist on international research expeditions, but he's never held a conventional academic appointment.
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 24, 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.
"A Fascinating real life story, and well written"
Get up close and personal with science as Andrew Kessler narrates his hilarious journey inside NASA's Phoenix Mars mission - a historic enterprise manned by a motley crew of rocket scientists. The Phoenix Mars mission was the first man-made probe ever sent to the Martian arctic.
Alan Turing can be regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 20th century. But who was Turing, and what did he achieve during his tragically short life of 41 years? Best known as the genius who broke Germany's most secret codes during the war of 1939-45, Turing was also the father of the modern computer. Today, all who 'click-to-open' are familiar with the impact of Turing's ideas. Here, B. Jack Copeland provides an account of Turing's life and work, exploring the key elements of his life-story in tandem with his leading ideas and contributions.
Johannes Gutenberg was our first geek, the original technology entrepreneur, who had to grapple with all the challenges a Silicon Valley startup faces today. Jeff Jarvis tells Gutenberg's story from an entrepreneurial perspective, examining how he overcame technology hurdles, how he operated with the secrecy of a Steve Jobs, but then shifted to openness, how he raised capital and mitigated risk, and how, in the end, his cash flow and equity structure did him in.
Long before Oliver Sacks became a distinguished neurologist and best-selling writer, he was a small English boy fascinated by metals - also by chemical reactions (the louder and smellier the better), photography, squids and cuttlefish, H.G. Wells, and the periodic table. In this endlessly charming and eloquent memoir, the he chronicles his love affair with science and the magnificently odd and sometimes harrowing childhood in which that love affair unfolded.
When Peter Piot was in medical school, a professor warned, "There's no future in infectious diseases. They've all been solved." Fortunately, Piot ignored him, and the result has been an exceptional, adventure-filled career. In the 1970s, as a young man, Piot was sent to Central Africa as part of a team tasked with identifying a grisly new virus. Crossing into the quarantine zone on the most dangerous missions, he studied local customs to determine how this disease - the Ebola virus - was spreading. Later, Piot found himself in the field again when another mysterious epidemic broke out: AIDS.
All the Rave reveals the family betrayal, greed, and mismanagement that hijacked one the most fundamental innovations of the Internet era.
Named one of the three best books of 2003 by Investigative Reporters and Editors Inc., All the Rave has been out of print until now and unavailable in most electronic formats. Author and veteran technology journalist Joseph Menn also wrote 2010's Fatal System Error: The Hunt for the New Crime Lords who are Bringing Down the Internet.
In 1610, Galileo published the Siderius nuncius, or Starry Messenger, a "hurried little masterpiece" in John Heilbron's words. Presenting to the world his remarkable observations using the recently invented telescope, Galileo dramatically challenged our idea of the perfection of the heavens and the centrality of the Earth in the universe. Indeed, the appearance of the little book is regarded as one of the great moments in the history of science.
Combining elements of Rocket Boys and Elegant Universe, Time Traveler follows Mallett's discovery of Einstein's work on space-time, his study of Godel's work on a solution of Einstein's equation that might allow for time travel, and his own research in theoretical physics spanning 30 years that culminated in his recent discovery of the effects of circulating laser light and its application to time travel.
The dream of capturing and organizing knowledge is as old as history. From the archives of ancient Sumeria and the Library of Alexandria to the Library of Congress and Wikipedia, humanity has wrestled with the problem of harnessing its intellectual output. The timeless quest for wisdom has been as much about information storage and retrieval as creative genius. In Cataloging the World, Alex Wright introduces us to a figure who stands out in the long line of thinkers and idealists who devoted themselves to the task.