Friday, 3 December 2010

The Solar System (3 Vol. Set)

This book features essential coverage of all major aspects of Earth's solar system, from every feature of the major planets to their satellites, small bodies, interplanetary phenomena, and cosmological context. Designed to meet the needs of both general readers and students, this completely revised and updated edition covers 180 major topics on Earth's solar system as it is understood from the latest perspectives. For this new edition, 58 new topics have been added and every essay has been thoroughly expanded, from the text through bibliographies, to bring it up to date in view of the many interplanetary missions that have expanded our knowledge of the solar system - from Pioneer and Voyager through the missions of Galileo, Cassini-Huygens, the Hubble Space Telescope, and the latest Mars probes as of 2009. Scope and coverage: No reference dedicated to the solar system is this detailed or complete and up to date

The Seventh Landing: Going Back to the Moon, This Time to Stay

It's been thirty-five years since people last trod the dusty plains of the Moon. Over the course of six landings from 1969 to 1972, twelve men explored, four-wheeled, dug and hiked across the lunar surface. Now, NASA has plans for a seventh landing on the Moon. This time, they want to stay. NASA's plans, dubbed the Constellation architecture, involve the largest launch vehicle ever built, new types of propulsion, and a six-person vehicle to ferry crews from Earth to the Moon. But NASA's plans go far beyond Luna. Eventually, the lessons learned on the Moon's outpost at Shackleton Crater will teach us how to live—permanently—on the most Earthlike world in our solar system, Mars. NASA will have company: plans for future lunar exploration are being drawn by Europe, Japan, China and India.

While specific hardware and mission details will be in flux for some time, the overarching goals, strategies and inspiration for the seventh landing will not change. This book will choose a typical scenario for getting to the Moon that embraces the spirit of exploration embodied by NASA's Constellation architecture. Each chapter moves from a general description to the specific nuts-and-bolts of engineering and science. The Seventh Landing reveals the very latest strategies for how we'll get to the Moon, what we know today, what we want to find out, and what life will be like at the first true outposts on the Moon and Mars.

Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces that Shape the Universe

How did a single “genesis event” create billions of galaxies, black holes, stars and planets? How did atoms assemble—here on earth, and perhaps on other worlds—into living beings intricate enough to ponder their origins? What fundamental laws govern our universe?This book describes new discoveries and offers remarkable insights into these fundamental questions. There are deep connections between stars and atoms, between the cosmos and the microworld. Just six numbers, imprinted in the “big bang,” determine the essential features of our entire physical world. Moreover, cosmic evolution is astonishingly sensitive to the values of these numbers. If any one of them were “untuned,” there could be no stars and no life. This realization offers a radically new perspective on our universe, our place in it, and the nature of physical laws.

The Life of Stars:

This beautifully illustrated book describes the birth and evolution of the theory of stellar structure through the vehement controversy between biology (as presented by Darwin) and physics (as presented by Kelvin) about the age of the Earth, which culminated with Rutherford suggesting radioactive dating. Shaviv analyzes critically many proclaimed scientific results, showing how and why they were wrong, and explains why it took decades to find the now accepted scientific answers - where there are such - and why there remains much more to be done before we can say we fully understand what happens up there in the heavens.
The Life of the Stars pres fascinating reading for all those interested in the stars, in the history of astronomy and in what their story tells us about how science progresses. Moreover, it will bring readers up-to-date on current problems in astrophysics.

Solar Sails: A Novel Approach to Interplanetary Travel

Solar sailing is a topic of growing popular and media interest. Solar sail propulsion will make space exploration more affordable and offer access to destinations within (and beyond) the solar system that are currently beyond our reach. This book describes solar sails, how they work and what they will be used for in the exploration of space in an easily readable manner which does not necessitate any prior knowledge of physics or solar sailing. It discusses current plans for solar sails and also describes how advanced technology, such as nanotechnology, might enhance solar-sail performance. Much has been accomplished recently to make solar sail technology very close to becoming an engineering reality and it will soon be used by the world’s space agencies in the exploration of the solar system and beyond.

Encyclopedia of Science & Technology, 10 edition

A tradition of excellence continues with the long-awaited Tenth Edition of McGraw-Hill's Encyclopedia of Science & Technology The definitive source for keeping up with the amazing changes in science and technology - complete with more than 1,700 new and updated articles Free supplemental website available to all users! Featuring entries written by international leaders in science and technology selected by McGraw-Hill's distinguished board of consulting editors, no other reference so thoroughly and dynamically chronicles the expanding frontier, facts, and trends so vital to students, professionals, and general readers. For more than four decades, McGraw-Hill's Encyclopedia of Science & Technology has provided readers with the information they need in an understandable, authoritative way that invites critical inquiry and captures the imagination. There is truly nothing else like it and no library can be called complete without it.

Surviving 1000 Centuries: Can We Do It?

The circumstances that will shape the long-term future of our planet will be constrained by what is physically possible and what is not. This book provides a quantitative view of our civilization over the next 100,000 years, in comparison to the 40-60,000 years it took for modern humans to emerge from Africa, on the basis of contemporary scientific and technological knowledge. The first 5 chapters provide the general scientific background, starting with a brief history of our planet, from its formation 4.5 billion years ago until the present day. The evolution of the Earth’s atmosphere and the origin of water are highlighted as being the most important factors for the emergence and the development of life, especially in comparison to Earth’s neighbours, Venus and Mars. The authors then consider both cosmic and natural hazards, pointing out that scientific information provided by satellites and communication systems on the ground could prevent many unnecessary casualties by forward planning and the installation of elementary precautions.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Living Without God: New Directions for Atheists, Agnostics, Secularists, and the Undecided

Ronald Aronson has a mission: to demonstrate that a life without religion can be coherent, moral, and committed. In the last few years the "New Atheists"--Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens--have created a stir by criticizing religion and the belief in God. Aronson moves beyond the discussion of what we should not believe, proposing contemporary answers to Immanuel Kant's three great questions: What can I know? What ought I to do? What can I hope? Grounded in the sense that we are deeply dependent and interconnected beings who are rooted in the universe, nature, history, society, and the global economy, Living Without God explores the experience and issues of 21st-century secularists, especially in America. Reflecting on such perplexing questions as why we are grateful for life's gifts, who or what is responsible for inequalities, and how to live in the face of aging and dying, Living Without God is also refreshingly topical, touching on such subjects as contemporary terrorism, the war in Iraq, affirmative action, and the remarkable rise of Barack Obama. Optimistic and stirring, Living Without God is less interested in attacking religion than in developing a positive philosophy for atheists, agnostics, secular humanists, skeptics, and freethinkers--as well as for all those of us who, whatever we call ourselves, manage to live fundamentally secular lives and are searching for bearings today.

A Short History of Nearly Everything (Audiobook)

From primordial nothingness to this very moment, A Short History of Nearly Everything reports what happened and how humans figured it out. To accomplish this daunting literary task, Bill Bryson uses hundreds of sources, from popular science books to interviews with luminaries in various fields. His aim is to help people like him, who rejected stale school textbooks and dry explanations, to appreciate how we have used science to understand the smallest particles and the unimaginably vast expanses of space. With his distinctive prose style and wit, Bryson succeeds admirably.

The Space Book: Activities for Experiencing the Universe and the Night Sky

Grab your space suit and helmet, step into the flight deck, and strap yourself in. You’re about to blast off from Earth to take an incredible tour of the Moon, the Sun, and the planets, plus galaxies, nebulae, and other wonders of space. Featuring more than 50 awesome hands-on activities, The Space Book introduces you to the surprises and mysteries that our solar system and outer space have to offer. You’ll observe Venus and mars, test your space IQ, find the Big Dipper and the North Star, calculate your weight on Pluto, and learn how to cover up a trillion stars with just one penny! You can even help scientists by searching for extraterrestrials from your home computer. So hold on for the ride of your life, check your seat belt one last time, and get ready for liftoff!

Entanglement: The Greatest Mystery in Physics

Will "beam me up, Scotty" become reality? Quantum mechanics suggests it may . . . and soon.
Since cyberspace -- a word coined by a science fiction writer -- became reality, the lines between "science" and "science fiction" have become increasingly blurred. Now, the young field of quantum mechanics holds out the promise that some of humanity's wildest dreams may be realized. Serious scientists, working off of theories first developed by Einstein and his colleagues seventy years ago, have been investigating the phenomenon known as "entanglement," one of the strangest aspects of the strange universe of quantum mechanics.

Charles Darwin and The Origin of Species

In 1859, an amateur British naturalist published a book of findings that shook the scientific community to its core and changed the structure of religion and science as we know them. The Origin of Species challenged the popular belief that species could not evolve and argued that species can adapt to their environment and develop accordingly. Although other scientists had observed some of the phenomena that Charles Darwin addressed, he was the first to theorize that natural selection, and later, evolution, were viable explanations for the origins of life. the implications of Darwin's findings still reverberate today, in the classroom, in the courtroom, and at the highest legislative levels.
Lively thematic chapters explore how Darwin came to the conclusions published in The Origin of Species and in later works such as The Descent of Man from his early years at Cambridge, to his observations of species on the HMS Beagle voyages, through the 20 years of research that culminated in Origin. Also included is an insightful discussion of Darwin's impact as it is felt today, from movies and popular culture to the current Intelligent Design controversy. Biographies of influential figures, primary source letters and selections from Origin, a glossary of terms, and an extensive annotated bibliography round out this accessible work.

The Story of the Solar System

The bodies of our Solar System have orbited continuously around the Sun since their formation, but they have not always been there, and conditions have not always been as they are today. The Story of the Solar System explains how our Solar System came into existence, how it has evolved and how it might end billions of years from now

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

The (true) Origins of "Christmas"

From Santa Clause to Christmas Cards, this programme traces our modern Yuletide traditions back to their earliest roots in Roman celebrations and pagan rituals.

An excellent documentary showing that christmas has very little to do with christianity.

The majority of the holiday customs (and the holiday itself) come from pagan origins which have been co-opted by christianity.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language

Why is it that among all the primates, only humans have language? According to Professor Robin Dunbar's new book, Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language, humans gossip because we don't groom each other. Dunbar builds his argument in a lively discussion that touches on such varied topics as the behavior of gelada baboons, Darwin's theory of evolution, computer-generated poetry, and the significance of brain size. He begins with the social organization of the great apes. These animals live in small groups and maintain social cohesion through almost constant grooming activities. Grooming is a way to forge alliances, establish hierarchy, offer comfort, or make apology. Once a population expands beyond a certain number, however, it becomes impossible for each member to maintain constant physical contact with every other member of the group. Considering the large groups in which human beings have found it necessary to live, Dunbar posits that we developed language as a substitute for physical intimacy.

Whether or not you accept Dunbar's premise, his book is worth reading, if only for its animated prose and wealth of scientific information. An obvious choice for science buffs, Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language is a wonderful book for anyone with an inquiring mind and an interest in what makes the world go round

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Bertrand Russell - Religion and Science - Audiobook

Bertrand Russell--agnostic, pacifist, great humanitarian, and Nobel Prize laureate--reviews in this volume the conflict between science and traditional religion during the last four centuries, and attempts to estimate the influence of present-day science upon present-day theology.

Secret Origins of the Bible

From one of the authors of Skeptic Magazine

This book demonstrates that the stories and themes of the Bible were part of the great mythic systems of the ancient world by u sing comparative mythology, tell tale verses in the Bible and archaeology. The abstract God of modern monotheistic Judaism, Christianity and Islam is a comparatively recent creation. In later times the myth of a messianic deliverer was combined with that of the pagan god-man who suffered a horrible, excruciating death but was physically resurrected to produce the Christ myth
. Amazon

BBC – Hawking (2004)

The story of Professor Stephen Hawking’s early years is told for the first time in a major drama for BBC Two.

It is 1963, and our young cosmologist celebrates his 21st birthday. At the party is a new friend, Jane Wilde – there is a strong attraction between the two. Jane is intrigued by Stephen’s talk of stars and the Universe. But she realises that there is something very wrong when Stephen suddenly finds that he is unable to stand up.

Hawking stars Benedict Cumberbatch as the young Stephen Hawking who, as a bright and ambitious 21-year-old PhD student at Cambridge University, is diagnosed with the debilitating motor neurone disease and given two years to live. Against the odds, he goes on to achieve scientific success and worldwide acclaim, in particular with his best-selling book A Brief History Of Time.
PASS: Atilla82

Volcanoes: Global Perspectives

Volcanoes are a vital presence in our world, and play a key role in maintaining the human eco-environment through soil enrichment and atmospheric inputs. They are also hazardous features, whose eruptions have not only killed many hundreds of thousands of people in recorded history, but have also greatly influenced both the development of human culture and the evolution of human species. Volcanoes commonly form beautiful landscapes, and form the principal features of national parks all over the world, serving as magnets that attract millions of visitors each year. Hundreds of millions of other people live on or in the shadows of active volcanoes. Most of these people have only a shallow, passing interest in the volcanoes they see, but there is a certain large, enthusiastic cohort of these people whose fascination with volcanoes leads them to travel to see volcanoes close-up, and to seek authoritative volcanological information.
Four color throughout with many superb color photographs

Moral Minds: How Nature Designed Our Universal Sense of Right and Wrong

"One of the hottest new topics in intellectual life: the psychology and biology of morals...full of fascinating new material." -- Steven Pinker

Marc D. Hauser, a Harvard University psychologist, wants to do for morality what Massachusetts Institute of Technology linguist Noam Chomsky did for language—he wants to discover the universal "moral grammar." Chomsky suggested that humans are born with a "universal grammar," a cognitive capacity that helps us acquire language and shapes the way we apply language rules. Hauser thinks our moral grammar works the same way, helping us isolate moral lessons from our culture and make judgments about right and wrong. In Moral Minds, Hauser reviews what we already know about innate human faculties—for instance, that even infants seem to understand that people and animals have intentions, whereas inanimate objects do not. And he presents evidence that our universal morality is probably based on rules about fairness, proportionality and reciprocity, among other things. The material is captivating and ranges from philosophy to anthropology to psychology, including some of Hauser’s own original work. Scientific American

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

From Dust To Stars: Studies of the Formation and Early Evolution of Stars

Studies of stellar formation in galaxies have a profound impact on our understanding of the present and the early universe. The book describes complex physical processes involved in the creation of stars and during their young lives. It illustrates how these processes reveal themselves from radio wavelengths to high energy X-rays and gamma -rays, with special reference towards high energy signatures. Several sections devoted to key analysis techniques demonstrate how modern research in this field is pursued.

Monday, 8 November 2010

The Plausibility of Life: Resolving Darwin's Dilemma

We all know Darwin's theory of evolution—natural selection favors some adaptations over others. But where do new adaptations come from? This problem baffled Darwin and is the main point of attack for opponents of evolution. Kirschner and Gerhart, professor at Harvard and UC-Berkeley, respectively, present their solution to the problem and take a few timely shots at the advocates of intelligent design. The key to understanding the development of complex structures, they say, is seeing that body parts as seemingly different as eyes and elbows are formed from the same basic molecular mechanisms. Thus, the authors propose, the metabolic building blocks of life functions can be rearranged and linked in novel ways with less chance of fatal variations than random mutation of DNA would allow.

How Science Was Born in 300 BC and Why it Had to Be Reborn

The third and second centuries BC witnessed, in the Greek world, a scientific and technological explosion. Greek culture had reached great heights in art, literature and philosophy already in the earlier classical era, but it was in the age of Archimedes and Euclid that science as we know it was born, and gave rise to sophisticated technology that would not be seen again until the 18th century. This scientific revolution was also accompanied by great changes and a new kind of awareness in many other fields, including art and medicine.
What were the landmarks in the meteoric rise of science 2300 years ago? Why are they so little known today, even among scientists, classicists and historians? How do they relate to the post-1500 science that we are familiar with from school? What led to the end of ancient science? These are the questions that this book discusses, in the belief that the answers bear on choices we face today.

Einstein's Enigma or Black Holes in My Bubble Bath

Einstein's Enigma or Black Holes in My Bubble Bath is a humourous and informal rendition of the story of gravitation theory from the early historic origins to the latest developments in astrophysics, focusing on Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity and black-hole physics. Through engaging conversations and napkin-scribbled diagrams come tumbling the rudiments of relativity, spacetime and much of modern physics, narrated with high didactic and literary talent, and each embedded in casual lessons given by a worldly astrophysicist to his friend. Join the intellectual fun and exalt in the frothy ideas while vicariously taking relaxing baths in this magical bathtub.

Lives Per Gallon: The True Cost of Our Oil Addiction

How much would you pay for a gallon of gas? $4.00? $10.00? Would you pay with the health of your lungs or with years taken from your lifespan?
The infamous "pain at the pump" runs much deeper than our wallets, argues Terry Tamminen, former Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency and current Special Advisor to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Petroleum may power our cars and heat our homes, but it also contributes to birth defects and disorders like asthma and emphysema, not to mention cancer.

In Lives Per Gallon, Tamminen takes a hard look at these and other health, environmental, and national security costs hidden in every barrel of oil.
While the petroleum industry is raking in huge profits, Tamminen shows, it is studiously avoiding measures that would lessen the hazards of its products. Using the successful lawsuits by state governments against big tobacco as a model, the author sets forth a bold strategy to hold oil and auto companies accountable and force industry reform. He also offers a blueprint for developing alternative energy sources based on California's real world experiences.

Certain to be controversial, Lives Per Gallon is an unblinking assessment of the true price of petroleum and a prescription for change. The choice is clear: continuing paying with our health, or kick our addiction and evolve beyond an oil-dependent economy.

Foundations of Modern Cosmology

Recent discoveries in astronomy, especially those made with data collected by satellites such as the Hubble Space Telescope and the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe, have revolutionized the science of cosmology. These new observations offer the possibility that some long-standing mysteries in cosmology might be answered, including such fundamental questions as the ultimate fate of the universe. Foundations of modern cosmology provides an accessible, thorough and descriptive introduction to the physical basis for modern cosmological theory, from the big bang to a distant future dominated by dark energy.

The Faith Factor: How Religion Influences American Elections

Covering three areas of religion that tend to influence election outcomes, Green illuminates the meaning of religious belonging, behaving, and believing in current political context. Each of these aspects of religion affects the way people vote and their views of issues, ideology, and partisanship. He reviews the importance of "moral values" in the major party coalitions and discusses the role religious appeals have in presidential campaigns. In addition, he compares the influence of religion to other factors such as gender, age, and income. Given the emphasis on the influence of religion on American politics and elections in recent years, this book serves as a cogent reminder that the situation is not new, and offers a careful analysis of the real role faith plays in the electing of government officials.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


According to a recent poll 68 % of all Americans said they think the devil exists.

In 2007 Pope Benedict ordered his bishops to set up exorcism squads to fight against Satanic forces.

The Science of Scams

This series reveals paranormal phenomena and gives basic information on the subject. It's probably better to call it "Understanding Pseudoscience for Beginners".

The video titles:
Intro to Science of Scams
Brickbreaking Revealed
Chi Energy Revealed
Ghost on Film Revealed
Ouija Board Revealed
Psi Wheel Revealed with Intro
Psi Wheel Revealed
Psychic Readings Revealed
Telekinesis Revealed Revealed
Why We Believe Revealed

Bad Universe: Alien Attack! (S01E02)

Phil Plait asks one of the most profound questions in modern science: Are we alone in the Universe? He'll be looking under rocks on Mars, listening for ET's cosmic phone call and abusing extremophiles in an attempt to find an answer to this age-old question in the second instalment of "Bad Universe."

    In this special Discovery News Wide Angle, we'll also explore the possibilities of an alien encounter (and hope they're friendly).

Monday, 25 October 2010


Inside the Milky Way takes viewers on an astounding journey across 100,000 light-years to witness key moments in the history of the Milky Way. Using the latest science, NGC constructs a 3-D state-of-the-art CGI model of our galaxy. We’ll peer into the heart of the Milky Way on the hunt for super-massive black holes, watch how stars are born and die, fly out and above the plane of our galaxy to understand its true shape and scour its dusty spiral arms for the possibility of life.

Rapidshare (200mb Links)
Hotfile (Interchangeable)

Monday, 18 October 2010

Science - 15 October 2010

Science is the academic journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and is considered one of the world's most prestigious scientific journals. The peer-reviewed journal, first published in 1880 is circulated weekly and has a print subscriber base of around 130,000. Because institutional subscriptions and online access serve a larger audience, its estimated readership is one million people.

Science Channel - Through the Wormhole - Beyond the Darkness (2010)

What is the universe made of? If you answered stars, planets, gas and dust, you'd be dead wrong. Thirty years ago, scientists first realized that some unknown dark substance was affecting the way galaxies moved. Today, they think there must be five times as much dark matter as regular matter out there. But they have no idea what it is — only that it's not made of atoms, or any other matter we are familiar with. And Dark Matter is not the only strange substance in the Universe — a newly discovered force, called Dark Energy, seems to be pushing the very fabric of the cosmos apart.

The New Science of Learning: Brain Fitness for Kids

A child's brain is an amazing structure, the more we discover about the brain, the more we are able to affect how children use their brains, and thus improve their potential for the future. The latest neuroscience has shown how plastic the brain actually is. We can train this amazing structure to help children become more fit and ready for lifelong learning, and the earlier in life we start with such exercise, the better.

The End Of God A Horizon Guide To Science And Religion

Thomas Dixon delves into the BBC’s archive to explore the troubled relationship between religion and science, from the creationists of America to the physicists of the Large Hadron Collider

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Westboro Baptist Church

Truly unbelievable. This is as extreme as it gets with Christian fundamentalists. The real hardcore lunatics. The child abuse happening here really should be confronted. Shocking stuff.

BBC - Jimmy Doherty in Darwin's Garden (complete)

A truly wonderful 3 part Series. Highly recommended!

Charles Darwin came up with some ingenious experiments to prove his theory of evolution. Jimmy Doherty attempts to recreate some of these investigations

Biography Channel - Charles Darwin Evolution's Voice

He had to battle prejudice, ignorance and his own fear in his search for the truth. More than any other scientist, he changed mankind's view of the world and our place in it. Charles Darwin's theory of evolution stands as one of the most important discoveries in the history of science. Yet in his lifetime, Darwin was reluctant to reveal what he had learned for fear that it would make him and his family despised outcasts. He was right to worry; more than a century later, there are those who cannot accept his findings. At the time, they were viewed by many as heresy. From his historic voyage on the Beagle to his personal anguish over publicizing his findings, this is a fascinating profile of the life and times of the great naturalist. Excerpts from his journals detail his discoveries while leading scientists and scholars, including the author of Charles Darwin: Evolution of a Naturalist, shed light on his private life, public persona and monumental legacy.

Richard Dawkins and S.E. Cupp on Real Time with Bill Maher 8th Oct 2010

Richard Dawkins with Bill Maher, 8th October 2010 on ‘Real Time with Bill Maher’ to discuss religion and evolution. Maher quickly asked Dawkins what he thought of Christine O’Donnell’s recent comments that “evolution is a myth” and “if monkeys are evolving why aren’t they still evolving?”. Dawkin’s replied by saying what O’Donnell said was “spectacularly stupid”.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

hAlLoWeEn Is CoMiNg!!

Read this for a bunch of bullshit:
How bizarre that xstians think the use of masks etc at Halloween is a celebration of "evil". The practice in Celtic mythology was actually to ward off evil, and to "protect" those alive from those dead by dressing up as the dead and blending in. Halloween was the time between the Celtic old year and the new year where the Celts believed the dead could walk the earth in the crossover. Of course, the xstians hijacked the festival (all saints day) on Nov 1st and made it their own - Just like Easter (Celtic also) and the Winter Solstice/Saturnalia/Yule at "Christmas" Me? I love Halloween! And if something about it annoys the Xstians, then so much the better! Muhahahahahaha :)

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Summer for the Gods

If you haven't seen the film version of Inherit the Wind, you might have read it in high school. And even people who have never heard of either the movie or the play probably know something about the events that inspired them: The 1925 Scopes "monkey trial," during which Darwin's theory of evolution was essentially put on trial before the nation. Inherit the Wind paints a romantic picture of John Scopes as a principled biology teacher driven to present scientific theory to his students, even in the teeth of a Tennessee state law prohibiting the teaching of anything other than creationism. The truth, it turns out, was something quite different. In his fascinating history of the Scopes trial, Summer for the Gods, Edward J. Larson makes it abundantly clear that Truth and the Purity of Science had very little to do with the Scopes case. Amazon

Hubble, 15 Years of Discovery

Hubble: 15 Years of Discovery forms a key element of the European Space Agency’s 15th anniversary celebration activities for the 1990 launch of the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. As an observatory in space, Hubble is one of the most successful scientific projects of all time, both in terms of scientific output and its immediate public appeal. Hubble continues to have an enormous impact by exploiting a unique scientific niche where no other instruments can compete. It consistently delivers super-sharp images and clean, uncontaminated spectra over the entire near-infrared and ultraviolet regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. This has opened up new scientific territory and resulted in many paradigm-breaking discoveries.
PW: misterdanger

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Nearest Star: The Surprising Science of Our Sun

Taking advantage of the increased attention as the sun reaches the peak of its 11-year sunspot cycle, Harvard-Smithsonian astrophysicist Golub and Williams College astronomy professor Pasachoff deliver a clear, detailed and broadly informative overview of the scientific study of our “nearest star” and its effects on our planet. This book shines in its discussion of the properties of the sun’s turbulent outer layers (chromosphere, photosphere and corona). It provides space- and astronomy-loving readers in-depth information about the many challenging projects that produced or are producing that knowledge, about advanced projects on the drawing board or in conceptual stages and about Web sites where readers can find more details and up-to-date developments. On the human level, the authors describe practical techniques to enhance the thrill of observing a total solar eclipse. The book ends with a discussion of the interaction between solar and terrestrial phenomena, comparing human contributions to climate change to the climatic influence of solar variation

Stumbling on Happiness - AudioBook

From Publishers Weekly

Not offering a self-help book, but instead mounting a scientific explanation of the limitations of the human imagination and how it steers us wrong in our search for happiness, Gilbert, a professor of psychology at Harvard, draws on psychology, cognitive neuroscience, philosophy and behavioral economics to argue that, just as we err in remembering the past, so we err in imagining the future. "Our desire to control is so powerful, and the feeling of being in control so rewarding, that people often act as though they can control the uncontrollable," Gilbert writes, as he reveals how ill-equipped we are to properly preview the future, let alone control it. Unfortunately, he claims, neither personal experience nor cultural wisdom compensates for imagination's shortcomings. In concluding chapters, he discusses the transmission of inaccurate beliefs from one person's mind to another, providing salient examples of universal assumptions about human happiness such as the joys of money and of having children. He concludes with the provocative recommendation that, rather than imagination, we should rely on others as surrogates for our future experience.

An Introduction to Relativity

Cambridge University Press | 2010 | ISBN: 0521735610 | 372 pages | PDF | 4 MB

General relativity is now an essential part of undergraduate and graduate courses in physics, astrophysics and applied mathematics. This simple, user-friendly introduction to relativity is ideal for a first course in the subject. Beginning with a comprehensive but simple review of special relativity, the book creates a framework from which to launch the ideas of general relativity. After describing the basic theory, it moves on to describe important applications to astrophysics, black hole physics, and cosmology.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Almost Everyone's Guide To Science - AUDIOBOOK

John Gribbin, one of the world's great popularizers of science, is that rare creature, a scientist blessed with the ability to explain complex subject matter in a way which is comprehensible to non-scientists. Almost Everyone's Guide to Science is an essential book for the reader who is interested in science but doesn't know where to start. Gribbin gives a broad overview of physics and biology, starting with the atom before building up to larger objects: humans, the earth, the solar system and the universe. He also explains how scientific concepts are linked together--what evolutionary theory has to say about the way we think, how chaotic uncertainty and quantum uncertainty affect each other, and how sub-atomic particles came into being in the big bang.

The Stars of Heaven

Do a little armchair space travel, rub elbows with alien life forms, and stretch your mind to the furthest corners of our uncharted universe. With this astonishing guidebook, you don't have to be an astronomer to explore the mysteries of stars and their profound meaning for human existence. Clifford A. Pickover tackles a range of topics from stellar evolution to the fundamental reasons why the universe permits life to flourish. He alternates sections that explain the mysteries of the cosmos with sections that dramatize mind-expanding concepts through a fictional dialog between futuristic humans and their alien peers (who embark on a journey beyond the reader's wildest imagination). This highly accessible and entertaining approach turns an intimidating subject into a scientific game open to all dreamers. Told in Pickover's inimitable blend of fascinating state-of-the-art science and whimsical science fiction, and packed with numerous diagrams and illustrations, The Stars of Heaven unfolds a world of paradox and mystery, one that will intrigue anyone who has ever pondered the night sky with wonder.

Unintelligent Design: Why God Isn't as Smart as She Thinks She Is

Providing a humorous argument against creationism, this witty book debunks popular theories of intelligent design while showing how science can explain nearly everything, including sinus pain, hedonism, hernias, and morality. This critique of conservatism is supported by concrete scientific evidence and uses clever syllogisms to ask Why make the earth, the solar system, our galaxy, and all the rest when the Garden of Eden was all that was wanted? and If man is made in God’s image, does God ever get a back ache? Contending that intelligent design is a political movement that limits intellectual freedom, this book will fuel the current debate among fundamentalists, scientists, politicians, and the rest

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

The Making of the Fittest - AUDIOBOOK

What do dolphins, colobus monkeys and microbes have in common with each other? They all demonstrate how deeply evolution is etched in DNA and by looking at popular animals like them, geneticist Sean B. Carroll provides a fascinating insight into the genetic basis for evolution.