Thing Explainer

Thing Explainer

Author: Randall Munroe

Publisher: John Murray

Published: 2015

Total Pages: 0

ISBN-13: 9781473620919

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The creator of the popular webcomic "xkcd" uses line drawings and common words to provide simple explanations for how things work, including microwaves, bridges, tectonic plates, the solar system, the periodic table, helicopters, and other essential concepts.


Xkcd

Xkcd

Author: Randall Munroe

Publisher: Xkcd

Published: 2010-08

Total Pages: 124

ISBN-13:

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Collection of strips from Xkcd, a free webcomic.


What If?

What If?

Author: Randall Munroe

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Published: 2014

Total Pages: 321

ISBN-13: 0544272994

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The creator of the incredibly popular webcomic xkcd presents his heavily researched answers to his fans' oddest questions, including “What if I took a swim in a spent-nuclear-fuel pool?” and “Could you build a jetpack using downward-firing machine guns?” 100,000 first printing.


How To

How To

Author: Randall Munroe

Publisher: Penguin

Published: 2019-09-03

Total Pages: 322

ISBN-13: 0525537090

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AN INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “How To will make you laugh as you learn…With How To, you can't help but appreciate the glorious complexity of our universe and the amazing breadth of humanity's effort to comprehend it. If you want some lightweight edification, you won't go wrong with How To.” —CNET “[How To] has science and jokes in it, so 10/10 can recommend.” —Simone Giertz The world's most entertaining and useless self-help guide from the brilliant mind behind the wildly popular webcomic xkcd, the bestsellers What If? and Thing Explainer, and What If? 2, coming September 13, 2022 For any task you might want to do, there's a right way, a wrong way, and a way so monumentally complex, excessive, and inadvisable that no one would ever try it. How To is a guide to the third kind of approach. It's full of highly impractical advice for everything from landing a plane to digging a hole. Bestselling author and cartoonist Randall Munroe explains how to predict the weather by analyzing the pixels of your Facebook photos. He teaches you how to tell if you're a baby boomer or a 90's kid by measuring the radioactivity of your teeth. He offers tips for taking a selfie with a telescope, crossing a river by boiling it, and powering your house by destroying the fabric of space-time. And if you want to get rid of the book once you're done with it, he walks you through your options for proper disposal, including dissolving it in the ocean, converting it to a vapor, using tectonic plates to subduct it into the Earth's mantle, or launching it into the Sun. By exploring the most complicated ways to do simple tasks, Munroe doesn't just make things difficult for himself and his readers. As he did so brilliantly in What If?, Munroe invites us to explore the most absurd reaches of the possible. Full of clever infographics and fun illustrations, How To is a delightfully mind-bending way to better understand the science and technology underlying the things we do every day.


Something Doesn’t Add Up

Something Doesn’t Add Up

Author: Paul Goodwin

Publisher: Profile Books

Published: 2020-02-27

Total Pages: 226

ISBN-13: 1782835490

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Some people fear and mistrust numbers. Others want to use them for everything. After a long career as a statistician, Paul Goodwin has learned the hard way that the ones who want to use them for everything are a very good reason for the rest of us to fear and mistrust them. Something Doesn't Add Up is a fieldguide to the numbers that rule our world, even though they don't make sense. Wry, witty and humane, Goodwin explains mathematical subtleties so painlessly that you hardly need to think about numbers at all. He demonstrates how statistics that are meant to make life simpler often make it simpler than it actually is, but also reveals some of the ways we really can use maths to make better decisions. Enter the world of fitness tracking, the history of IQ testing, China's social credit system, Effective Altruism, and learn how someone should have noticed that Harold Shipman was killing his patients years before they actually did. In the right hands, maths is a useful tool. It's just a pity there are so many of the wrong hands about.


The Thing About Luck

The Thing About Luck

Author: Cynthia Kadohata

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

Published: 2013-06-06

Total Pages: 193

ISBN-13: 1471116867

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'Kouun is "good luck" in Japanese, and one year my family had none of it.' Just when Summer thinks nothing else can possibly go wrong, an emergency whisks her parents away to Japan, right before harvest season. But the mortgage has to be paid, and so Summer's grandparents are going to help with harvest instead - taking Summer, her little brother Jaz and their dog Thunder with them. Obaachan and Jiichan are… well, they're old fashioned, and demanding. Between helping Obaachan cook for the workers, covering for her when her back pain worsens, and worrying about her little brother, who can't seem to make any friends, Summer has her hands full. Then one of the boys who Summer has known forever starts paying extra attention to her. But what begins as a welcome distraction from the hard work soon turns into a mess of its own… and once again Summer ends up disappointing Obaachan. But that's the thing about luck - bad luck can always get worse. And when that happens, Summer has to figure out how to change it and save her family, even if it means further displeasing Obaachan. Surely kouun is coming soon…?


Final Jeopardy

Final Jeopardy

Author: Stephen Baker

Publisher: HMH

Published: 2011-02-27

Total Pages: 293

ISBN-13: 0547519435

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The “charming and terrifying” story of IBM’s breakthrough in artificial intelligence, from the Business Week technology writer and author of The Numerati (Publishers Weekly, starred review). For centuries, people have dreamed of creating a machine that thinks like a human. Scientists have made progress: computers can now beat chess grandmasters and help prevent terrorist attacks. Yet we still await a machine that exhibits the rich complexity of human thought—one that doesn’t just crunch numbers, or take us to a relevant web page, but understands and communicates with us. With the creation of Watson, IBM’s Jeopardy!-playing computer, we are one step closer to that goal. In Final Jeopardy, Stephen Baker traces the arc of Watson’s “life,” from its birth in the IBM labs to its big night on the podium. We meet Hollywood moguls and Jeopardy! masters, genius computer programmers and ambitious scientists, including Watson’s eccentric creator, David Ferrucci. We see how Watson’s breakthroughs and the future of artificial intelligence could transform medicine, law, marketing, and even science itself, as machines process huge amounts of data at lightning speed, answer our questions, and possibly come up with new hypotheses. As fast and fun as the game itself, Final Jeopardy shows how smart machines will fit into our world—and how they’ll disrupt it. “The place to go if you’re really interested in this version of the quest for creating Artificial Intelligence.” —The Seattle Times “Like Tracy Kidder’s Soul of a New Machine, Baker’s book finds us at the dawn of a singularity. It’s an excellent case study, and does good double duty as a Philip K. Dick scenario, too.” —Kirkus Reviews “Like a cross between Born Yesterday and 2001: A Space Odyssey, Baker’s narrative is both . . . an entertaining romp through the field of artificial intelligence—and a sobering glimpse of things to come.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review


How To

How To

Author: Randall Munroe

Publisher: John Murray Press

Published: 2020-09-03

Total Pages: 304

ISBN-13: 9781473680340

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Randall Munroe is . . .'Nerd royalty' Ben Goldacre 'Totally brilliant' Tim Harford 'Laugh-out-loud funny' Bill Gates 'Wonderful' Neil Gaiman AN INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER For any task you might want to do, there's a right way, a wrong way, and a way so monumentally bad that no one would ever try it. How To is a guide to the third kind of approach. It's full of highly impractical advice for everything from landing a plane to digging a hole. Bestselling author and cartoonist Randall Munroe explains how to predict the weather by analyzing the pixels of your Facebook photos. He teaches you how to tell if you're a baby boomer or a millennial by measuring the radioactivity of your teeth. He offers tips for taking a selfie with a telescope, crossing a river by boiling it, and getting to your appointments on time by destroying the moon. And if you want to get rid of this book once you're done with it, he walks you through your options for proper disposal, including dissolving it in the ocean, converting it to a vapour, using tectonic plates to subduct it into the Earth's mantle, or launching it into the sun. By exploring the most complicated ways to do simple tasks, Munroe doesn't just make things difficult for himself and his readers. As he did so brilliantly in What If?, he invites us to explore the most absurd reaches of the possible. Full of clever infographics and amusing illustrations, How To is a delightfully mind-bending way to better understand the science and technology underlying the things we do every day.


Some Things Are Obvious

Some Things Are Obvious

Author: Glory Ralston

Publisher:

Published: 2020-07-31

Total Pages: 282

ISBN-13:

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Beth Reese has no idea what she'll do with the lazy black Labrador retriever and the drafty old farmhouse she inherited from her grandmother, to say nothing of the unplanned baby she's carrying. She travels to the Pacific Northwest, fully intending to get an abortion and sell her grandmother's house as quickly as possible. Instead, Beth falls in love with her unborn baby and the land that surrounds her grandmother's house. When a little neighborhood girl goes missing while waiting for the school bus, Beth joins in the search. As the mystery of the little girl's disappearance unfolds, Beth discovers that she can see the world in ways she never suspected. She also learns more about the strange secrets of the two women who have befriended her, and are helping look for the lost child. Some Things Are Obvious is a story about insight and awareness, and of family and friendship. It is also a reminder that in nature, things are not always as they seem, and that our belief in what is normal can and should be challenged on a regular basis. About the Author: Glory Ralston lives with her husband in the middle of the redwood forest in Northern California. The extraordinary beauty and challenging environmental issues of this area form the backdrop for her stories. Other Works by This Author: While the Music Played, a novel Found in the Woods, a novel


Words are Not Things

Words are Not Things

Author: Jack Gardner

Publisher: Foulsham

Published: 2005

Total Pages: 127

ISBN-13: 9780572030407

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My professional writing had always expressed complex ideas in expressive prose. And the notion emerged - why not compress ideas, stories, even whole novels, into single aphorisms? My collection has not been written to be quotable pearls of wisdom. They were written and rewritten again to provide food for thought. Thinking is good. Chase these ideas yourself, down and through their many alleys.