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Earth-Shattering Events: Earthquakes, Nations and Civilization

Earth-Shattering Events: Earthquakes, Nations and Civilization

Andrew Robinson

$40.00
Since antiquity, on every continent, human beings in search of attractive landscapes and economic prosperity have made a Faustian bargain with the risk of devastation by an earthquake. Today, around half of the world's largest cities - as many as sixty - lie in areas of major seismic activity. Many, such as Lisbon, Naples, San Francisco, Tehran and Tokyo, have been severely damaged or destroyed by earthquakes in the past. But throughout history, starting with ancient Jericho, Rome and Sparta, cities have proved to be extraordinarily resilient: only one, Port Royal in the Caribbean, was abandoned after an earthquake. Earth-Shattering Events seeks to understand exactly how humans and earthquakes have interacted, not only in the short term but also in the long perspective of history. In some cases, physical devastation has been followed by decline.

But in others, the political and economic reverberations of earthquake disasters have presented opportunities for renewal. After its wholesale destruction in 1906, San Francisco went on to flourish, eventually giving birth to the high-tech industrial area on the San Andreas fault known as Silicon Valley. An earthquake in Caracas in 1812 triggered the creation of new nations in the liberation of South America from Spanish rule. Another in Tangshan in 1976 catalysed the transformation of China into the world's second largest economy. The growth of the scientific study of earthquakes is woven into this far-reaching history. It began with a series of earthquakes in England in 1750. Today, seismologists can monitor the vibration of the planet second by second and the movement of tectonic plates millimetre by millimetre. Yet, even in the 21st century, great earthquakes are still essentially 'acts of God', striking with much less warning than volcanoes, floods, hurricanes and even tornadoes and tsunamis.
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The Water Book

The Water Book

Alok Jha

$22.99
A biography of the strangest molecule in the universe. Alok Jha takes the most every day of subjects - water - and explodes it into a story that takes us from the Big Bang to the latest developments of modern science

Water is the most every day of substances. It pours from our taps and falls from the sky. We drink it, wash with it, and couldn't live without it. Yet, on closer examination it is also a very strange substance (it is one of only a very small number of molecules which expand when cooled). Look closer again and water reveals itself as a key to a scientific story on the biggest of canvases.

Water is crucial to our survival - life depends on it - but it was also fundamental in the origins of life on Earth. The millions of gallons of water which make up our rivers, lakes and oceans, originated in outer space. How it arrived here and how those molecules of water were formed, is a story which takes us back to the beginning of the universe. Indeed, we know more about the depths of space than we do about the furthest reaches of the oceans.

Water has also shaped the world we live in. Whether it is by gently carving the Grand Canyon over millennia, or in shaping how civilisations were built; we have settled our cities along rivers and coasts. Scientific studies show how we feel calmer and more relaxed when next to water. We holiday by the seas and lakes. Yet one day soon wars may be fought over access to water.

The Water Book will change the way you look at water. After reading it you will be able to hold a glass of water up to the light and see within it a strange molecule that connects you to the origins of life, the birth (and death) of the universe, and to everyone who ever lived.
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Atmosphere of Hope: Searching for Solutions to the Climate Crisis

Atmosphere of Hope: Searching for Solutions to the Climate Crisis

Tim Flannery

$24.99
A decade after his internationally bestselling The Weather Makers, acclaimed scientist and author Tim Flannery argues that Earth's climate system is approaching a crisis. Catastrophe is not inevitable, but time is fast running out. Atmosphere of Hope provides both a snapshot of the trouble we are in and an up-to-the-minute analysis of some of the new possibilities for mitigating climate change that are emerging now. From atmospheric carbon capture through extensive seaweed farming, CO2 snow production in Antarctica and the manufacture of carbon-rich biochar to reflecting the sun's rays by releasing sulphur into the atmosphere and painting landscapes and cities white, Flannery outlines an arrayof innovative technologies that give cause for hope.
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Hands: What We Do with Them - and Why

Hands: What We Do with Them - and Why

Darian Leader

$32.99
A fresh, thought-provoking and wide-ranging study of how mankind uses its hands Why do zombies walk with their arms outstretched? How can newborn babies grip an adult finger tightly enough to dangle unsupported from it? And why is everyone constantly texting, tapping and scrolling? For anyone curious about how human beings work, the answers are hidden in plain sight: in our hands. The history of civilization is a history of what humans do with their hands. From early tools to machinery, from fists to knives to guns, from papyrus to QWERTY to a swipeable screen, the hands have always been kept occupied. Why this incessant activity? Why can't we keep our hands still? And what might this reveal about our innermost selves? Mankind's story is marked out by profound changes in how we use our hands but also by underlying patterns that never change. And as much as the things we do with our hands reflect our psychological state, they can also change that state profondly... Drawing examples from popular culture, art history, psychoanalysis, modern technology and clinical research, Darian Leader presents a unique and fascinating odyssey through the history of what human beings do with their hands - and why.
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Dr Karl's Short Back & Science

Dr Karl's Short Back & Science

Karl Kruszelnicki

$19.99
Lean back and settle in for cutting-edge scientific snippets from the trend-setting Dr Karl Kruszelnicki. In Short Back & Science, Dr Karl combs through some of the greatest scientific conundrums of our age, such as what is killing half the bacteria on Earth every two days and why don't mole rats get cancer? Why would anyone pay $40 million for a cup of tea, and how did a toilet seat help to end the First World War? Are bananas really slippery, radioactive and loaded with potassium? What do clouds weigh? And why are there scientists running around naked in the Antarctic? Brushing aside any hype about coconuts and antioxidants, there is no one better to trim down to the facts than Australia's most trusted scientist, Dr Karl.
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Adam Spencer's Big Book of Numbers: Everything You Wanted to Know About Numbers 1 to 100

Adam Spencer's Big Book of Numbers: Everything You Wanted to Know About Numbers 1 to 100

Adam Spencer

$24.99
An hilarious, enlightening romp through the world of numbers with one of Australia's best-loved broadcasters. How can a prime number be 'sexy' and 'safe' at the same time? Why shouldn't Aussie cricketers be scared of the number 87? And how many bacteria live in your pants ...All the answers and more are in Adam Spencer's Big Book of Numbers. This is a book for readers of all ages who love numbers, who want to love numbers, or who just love to laugh and learn about the wonderful world we live in. Follow @adambspencer on twitter Adam's TED talk on prime numbers has over 1 million views - catch it here
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Black Holes: The BBC Reith Lectures

Black Holes: The BBC Reith Lectures

Stephen Hawking

$12.99
It is said that fact is sometimes stranger than fiction, and nowhere is that more true than in the case of black holes. Black holes are stranger than anything dreamed up by science fiction writers. In 2016 Professor Stephen Hawking delivered the BBC Reith Lectures on a subject that has fascinated him for decades - black holes. In these flagship lectures the legendary physicist argues that if we could only understand black holes and how they challenge the very nature of space and time, we could unlock the secrets of the universe.
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Forces of Nature

Forces of Nature

Brian Cox ,  Andrew Cohen

$39.99
A breathtaking and beautiful exploration of our planet. This groundbreaking book, which accompanies the new BBC1 TV series, provides the deepest answers to the simplest questions.

'Why is the sky blue?'
'Why is the Earth round?'
'Why is every snowflake unique?'

To answer these and many other questions, Professor Brian Cox will reveal some of the most extraordinary phenomena and events on Earth and in the Universe and beyond. From the immensity of Earth's globe to all the world's myriad snowflakes, the forces of nature shape everything we see. Pushed to extremes, the results are astonishing.

From the realm of auroras to the heart of our planet, the ingredients that make everything on Earth connect each one of us in an eternal cycle of life. Brian will reveal why Earth is the most colourful world we know, exploring the white light of the sun as it travels through the darkness of space until it hits Earth's atmosphere where it begins a new journey, splitting into a rainbow of colours.

From the great plains of the Serengeti, the volcanoes of Indonesia and the precipitous cliffs in Nepal, to the humpback whales of the Caribbean and the northern lights of the Arctic, Brian will give inspiring answers to our most searching questions that will illuminate our understanding of the planet like never before. Think you know our planet? Think again.
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Goldilocks and the Water Bears: The Search for Life in the Universe

Goldilocks and the Water Bears: The Search for Life in the Universe

Louisa Preston

$27.99
'An expert romp through the science of extraterrestrial life.' Adam Rutherford Today we know of only a single planet that hosts life: the Earth. But across a Universe of at least 100 billion possibly habitable worlds, surely our planet isn't the only one that is just right for life? As Goldilocks was searching for the perfect bowl of porridge, astrobiologists are searching for conditions throughout the Universe that are just right for life as we currently know it to exist. With the Earth as our guide, the search has begun for similar worlds sitting at the perfect distance from their Sun - within the aptly named 'Goldilocks Zone' - that would enable them to keep water as a liquid on their surface and therefore perhaps support a thriving biosphere. What might life look like on other worlds? It is possible to make best-guesses using facts rooted in biology, physics and chemistry, and by studying 'extremophiles' on Earth, organisms such as the near-indestructible water bears that can survive in the harshest conditions that Earth, and even space, can offer. Goldilocks and the Water Bears is a tale of the origins and evolution of life, and the quest to find it on other planets, on moons, in other galaxies, and throughout the Universe.
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Rain: A Natural and Cultural History

Rain: A Natural and Cultural History

Cynthia Barnett

$32.99
A natural history of rain, told through a lyrical blend of science, cultural history, and human drama.

It is elemental, mysterious, precious, destructive. It is the subject of countless poems and paintings, the top of the weather report, the source of all the world's water. Yet this is the first book to tell the story of rain.

Cynthia Barnett's Rain begins four billion years ago with the torrents that filled the oceans, and builds to the storms of climate change. It weaves together science--the true shape of a raindrop, the mysteries of colored rains - with the human story of our attempts to control rain, from ancient rain dances to the 2,203 miles of levees that attempt to straitjacket the Mississippi River. It offers a glimpse of our 'founding forecaster,' Thomas Jefferson, who measured every drizzle long before modern meteorology. Rain is also a travelogue, taking readers to Scotland to tell the surprising story of the mackintosh raincoat, and to India, where villagers extract the scent of rain from the monsoon-drenched earth and turn it into perfume.

Now, after thousands of years spent praying for rain or worshipping it, burning witches at the stake to stop rain or sacrificing small children to bring it, mocking rain with irrigated agriculture and cities built in floodplains, even trying to blast rain out of the sky with mortars meant for war, humanity has finally managed to change the rain. Only not in ways we intended. As climate change upends rainfall patterns and unleashes increasingly severe storms and drought, Barnett shows rain to be a unifying force in a fractured world. Too much and not nearly enough, rain is a conversation we share, and this is a book for everyone who has ever experienced it.
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Australia's Role in Feeding the World: The Future of Australian Agriculture

Australia's Role in Feeding the World: The Future of Australian Agriculture

Sarah Blagrove ,  Tor Hundloe ,  Hannah Ditton

$59.95
Earth's human population currently exceeds 7 billion, and by the year 2050 our planet will have at least two billion more mouths to feed. When faced with providing food for so many people, the idea is often advanced that Australia will become the 'food bowl' of Asia. Australia currently grows enough food to feed about three times its population and agricultural exports are important to our economy; however, Australia's role in feeding the world needs careful consideration. This highly topical book draws together the latest intelligence on the sustainable production and distribution of food and other products from Australian farms. It examines questions that policy-makers, farmers, politicians, agricultural scientists and the general public are asking about the potential productivity of our arable land, the environmental and economic impacts of seeking to increase productivity, and the value of becoming cleaner and greener in our agricultural output. With chapters on the emergence of new markets, consumer trends in China, the biophysical constraints on agricultural expansion, and the various products of Australian agriculture and aquaculture, Australia's Role in Feeding the World provides valuable insight into the future of agriculture in this nation.
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Building a Common Vision for Sustainable Food and Agriculture: Principles and Approaches

Building a Common Vision for Sustainable Food and Agriculture: Principles and Approaches

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations ,  Food and Agriculture Organization

$66.00
Over the coming 35 years, agriculture will face an unprecedented confluence of pressures, including a 30 percent increase in the global population, intensifying competition for increasingly scarce land, water and energy resources, and the existential threat of climate change.

To provide for a population projected to reach 9.3 billion in 2050 and support changing dietary patterns, estimates are that food production will need to increase from the current 8.4 billion tonnes to almost 13.5 billion tonnes a year. Achieving that level of production from an already seriously depleted natural resource base will be impossible without profound changes in our food and agriculture systems. We need to expand and accelerate the transition to sustainable food and agriculture which ensures world food security, provides economic and social opportunities, and protects the ecosystem services on which agriculture depends. This report is aimed primarily at policy makers and others who make or influence national and institutional decisions and actions. It is the outcome of intensive consultations and discussions aimed at developing a common approach to FAO's work on sustainability. 

That process was conducted in a climate of cross-sectoral collaboration that drew on the contributions of leading specialists in crops, livestock, forestry, fisheries, aquaculture, and natural resources. It builds on the Organization's long experience in developing sustainability concepts, approaches and tools, and offers a common vision of the agriculture sector and of the inter-sectoral synergies aiming at making agriculture more productive and sustainable.
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How Population Change Will Transform Our World

How Population Change Will Transform Our World

Sarah Harper

$31.95
Predicting the shape of our future populations is vital for installing the infrastructure, welfare, and provisions necessary for society to survive. There are many opportunities and challenges that will come with the changes in our populations over the 21st century. In this new addition to the 21st Century Challenges series, Sarah Harper works to dispel myths such as the fear of unstoppable global growth resulting in a population explosion, or that climate change will lead to the mass movement of environmental refugees; and instead considers the future shape of our populations in light of demographic trends in fertility, mortality, and migration, and their national and global impact. How Population Change Will Transform Our World looks at population trends by region to highlight the key issues facing us in the coming decades, including the demographic inertia in Europe, demographic dividend in Asia, high fertility and mortality in Africa, the youth bulge in the Middle East, and the balancing act of migration in the Americas. Harper concludes with an analysis of global challenges we must plan for such as the impact of climate change and urbanization, and the difficulty of feeding 10 billion people, and considers ways in which we can prepare for, and mitigate against, these challenges.
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Wildlife Conservation in Farm Landscapes

Wildlife Conservation in Farm Landscapes

David Lindenmayer ,  Damian Michael ,  Mason Crane ,  Sachiko Okada

$49.95
An increasing number of Australians want to be assured that the food and fibre being produced on this continent have been grown and harvested in an ecologically sustainable way. Ecologically sustainable farming conserves the array of species that are integral to key ecological processes such as pollination, seed dispersal, natural pest control and the decomposition of waste. Wildlife Conservation in Farm Landscapes communicates new scientific information about best practice ways to integrate conservation and agriculture in the temperate eucalypt woodland belt of eastern Australia. Richly illustrated, with chapters on birds, mammals, reptiles, invertebrates and plants, this book illustrates how management interventions can promote nature conservation and what practices have the greatest benefit for biodiversity. Together the new insights in this book inform whole-of-farm planning.
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Lolcatz, Santa & Death by Dog: Strange and True Tales from Science and Technology

Lolcatz, Santa & Death by Dog: Strange and True Tales from Science and Technology

Andrew Masterson

$34.99
In Lolcatz, Santa, and Death by Dog, Andrew Masterson explores the windier shores of science and technology research. Have you ever considered, for example, the influence of breasts in cyberterrorism? Or the role of cats in the Arab Spring? Did you know that there is a peer-reviewed paper describing the correct method for sticking a pin in a can of Guinness? Have you paused to wonder why our future might depend on finding sympathy for bushfire arsonists? And why male menopause is a feminist issue? In a rich collection of stories, Masterson takes a gleeful romp through the curiosities of science and tech research, pausing occasionally to interview some of the giants in the field, including cosmologist Neil deGrasse Tyson, string theorist Brian Greene, US science guy' Bill Nye, science comedian Robin Ince, and America's most wanted man, Edward Snowden. Masterson has a keen eye for an entertaining science yarn, and matches meticulous research with the ability to fascinate and entertain. His knack of uncovering the peculiar and revealing the ridiculous is second to none.' Sonya Pemberton, Emmy Awarduwinning producer of science documentaries including Immortal, Catching Cancer and Jabbed: Love, fear and vaccines.
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1001 Inventions That Changed the World

1001 Inventions That Changed the World

Jack Challoner

$39.99
Have you ever wondered who came up with a staircase that moved, leading eventually to the creation of the escalator? The genius of some inventions is their simplicity: the paperclip, rivets, boomerangs. Many of the items, processes, concepts, medical firsts, and discoveries in this book are life-saving and life-enhancing: can you imagine a world without seat-belts, antibiotics, toothbrushes, traffic signals, or scissors?..From the invention of the wheel in the fifth millennium BC to the development of the world wide web and the launch of the MP3 player, this engaging, accessible, and enlightening book reveals the origins and impact of everything from paper to the personal computer, and from penicillin to the contraceptive pill...The worlds of medicine, science, technology, industry, literature, and art have all influenced the way we live, but inventions are essentially human affairs. This book explores the fascinating stories behind the breakthroughs and traces the development of each invention from original concept to completion. 1001 Inventions That Changed The World is nothing less than an alternative history of the world through invention - a comprehensive study of human endeavour.
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Elephants on Acid: From Zombie Kittens to Tickling Machines: The Most Outrageous Experiments from the History of Science

Elephants on Acid: From Zombie Kittens to Tickling Machines: The Most Outrageous Experiments from the History of Science

Alex Boese

$19.99
Have you ever wondered if a severed head retains consciousness long enough to see what happened to it? Or whether your dog would run to fetch help, if you fell down a disused mineshaft? And what would happen if you were to give an elephant the largest ever single dose of LSD? The chances are that someone, somewhere has conducted a scientific experiment to find out...'Excellent accounts of some of the most important and interesting experiments in biology and psychology' Simon Singh If left to their own devices, would babies instinctively choose a well-balanced diet? Discover the secret of how to sleep on planes Which really tastes better in a blind tasting - Coke or Pepsi?
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Atoms Under the Floorboards: The Surprising Science Hidden in Your Home

Atoms Under the Floorboards: The Surprising Science Hidden in Your Home

Chris Woodford

$20.99
Science - the hidden power behind your home. It's rock-solid science that holds your house up in a hurricane, floods it with light at night and keeps it toasty on a crisp winter's morning. Surprisingly simple scientific ideas can also explain all those strange, baffling and sometimes downright irritating things you chance upon as you move around your home each day. From the dust on your bookshelf to the rips in your jeans, Atoms Under the Floorboards takes you on a whistle-stop tour of the home, revealing the scientific answers to niggling questions like ...Why can't you cook your dinner with a smartphone? Why can falling from a ladder hurt like a crocodile bite? Why does your laptop get hot when its only moving part is the cooling fan? Why can you see through windows but not through walls? What's the connection between a bike wheel, a suspension bridge and a wedding dress? Clearly explained throughout, and packed with facts, figures and fun, Atoms under the Floorboards answers all these questions and hundreds more - the perfect way to discover some seriously surprising science from the sofa.
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The Convergence: The Deepest Idea in the Universe

The Convergence: The Deepest Idea in the Universe

Peter Watson

$59.99
Convergence is a history of modern science with an original and significant twist. Various scientific disciplines, despite their very different beginnings, and disparate areas of interest have been coming together over the past 150 years, converging and coalescing, to identify one extraordinary master narrative, one overwhelming interlocking coherent story: the history of the universe.

Intimate connections between physics and chemistry have been revealed as have the links between quantum chemistry and molecular biology. Astronomy has been augmented by particle physics, psychology has been increasingly aligned with physics, with chemistry and even with economics. Genetics has been harmonised with linguistics, botany with archaeology, climatology with myth. This is a simple insight but one with profound consequences. Convergence is, as Nobel Prize-winning physicist Steven Weinberg has put it, 'The deepest thing about the universe.'

This book does not, however, tell the story by beginning at the beginning and ending at the end.  It is much more revealing, more convincing, and altogether more thrilling to tell the story as it emerged, as it began to fall into place, piece by piece, converging tentatively at first, but then with increasing speed, vigour and confidence. The overlaps and interdependence of the sciences, the emerging order that they are gradually uncovering, is without question the most enthralling aspect of twenty-first-century science.
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Life: The Leading Edge of Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Anthropology, and Environmental Science

Life: The Leading Edge of Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Anthropology, and Environmental Science

John Brockman

$24.99
The newest addition to John Brockman's Edge.org series explores life itself, bringing together the world's leading biologists, geneticists, and evolutionary theorists - including Richard Dawkins, Edward O. Wilson, J. Craig Venter, and Freeman Dyson. Scientists' understanding of life is progressing more rapidly than at any point in human history, from the extraordinary decoding of DNA to the controversial emergence of biotechnology. Featuring pioneering biologists, geneticists, physicists, and science writers, Life explains just how far we've come-and takes a brilliantly educated guess at where we're heading. Richard Dawkins and J. Craig Venter compare genes to digital information, and sketch the frontiers of genomic research. Edward O. Wilson reveals what ants can teach us about building a superorganism-and, in turn, about how cells build an organism. Elsewhere, David Haig reports new findings on how mothers and fathers individually influence the human genome, while Kary Mullis covers cutting edge treatments for dangerous viruses. And there's much more in this fascinating volume. We may never have all the answers. But the thinkers collected in Life are asking questions that will keep us dreaming for generations.
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How the Chicken Crossed the World: The Story of the Bird That Powers Civilisations

How the Chicken Crossed the World: The Story of the Bird That Powers Civilisations

Andrew Lawler

$24.99
Combines the range of Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel with the focus and fascinating detail of John Bradshaw's In Defence of Dogs. Queen Victoria was obsessed with it. Socrates' last words were about it. Charles Darwin and Louis Pasteur made their scientific breakthroughs using it. Hailed as a messenger of the gods, powerful sex symbol, gambling aid, all-purpose medicine and handy research tool, the humble chicken has been also cast as the epitome of evil, and the star of the world's most famous joke. Beginning with the recent discovery, that the chicken's unlikely ancestor is the T. Rex, How the Chicken Crossed the World tracks the chicken from its original domestication in the jungles of Southeast Asia some 10,000 years ago to today's Western societies, where it became the most engineered of animals, to the uncertain future of what is now humanity's single most important source of protein. In a masterful combination of historical sleuthing and journalistic exploration on four continents, Lawler reframes the way we feel and think about all domesticated animals and even nature itself.
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The Ghost in My Brain: How a Concussion Stole My Life and How the New Science of Brain Plasticity Helped Me Get it Back

The Ghost in My Brain: How a Concussion Stole My Life and How the New Science of Brain Plasticity Helped Me Get it Back

Clark A. Elliott

$27.99
In 1999, Dr Clark Elliott suffered a concussion when his car was rear-ended. Overnight his life changed from that of a rising professor to a humbled man struggling to get through a single day. In one final effort to resume a normal life, Elliott crossed paths with two brilliant Chicago-area research clinicians who used cutting-edge therapies to try and help Dr Elliott. Within weeks, the ghost of who he had been returned. The Ghost in My Brain is also an unforgettable record of recovery, one that offers new hope to those suffering from brain trauma.
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Make Way for the Superhumans: How the Science of Bio Enhancement is Transforming Our World, and How We Need to Deal with it

Make Way for the Superhumans: How the Science of Bio Enhancement is Transforming Our World, and How We Need to Deal with it

Michael Bess

$29.99
Biomedical research is changing the both the format and the functions of human beings. Very soon the human race will be faced with a choice: do we join in with the enhancement or not? Make Way for the Superhumans looks at how far this technology has come and what aims and ambitions it has. From robotic implants that restore sight to the blind, to performance enhancing drugs that build muscles, improve concentration, and maintain erections, bio-enhancement has already made massive advances. Humans have already developed the technology to transmit thoughts and actions brain-to-brain using only a computer interface. By the time our grandchildren are born, they will be presented with the option to significantly alter and redesign their bodies. Make Way for the Superhumans is the only book that poses the questions that need answering now: suggesting real, practical ways of dealing with this technology before it reaches a point where it can no longer be controlled.
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The Marine World: A Natural History of Ocean Life

The Marine World: A Natural History of Ocean Life

Frances Dipper

$89.95
This beautifully illustrated book encompasses all those organisms that live in, on and around the ocean. It includes sections on all but the most obscure marine groups, covering invertebrates, plants, fungi, bacteria, fish, reptiles, mammals and birds. It also incorporates information on identification, distribution, structure, biology, ecology, classification and conservation of each group, addressing the questions of 'what?', 'where?' and 'how?'.
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Venomous: How Earth's Deadliest Creatures Mastered Biochemistry

Venomous: How Earth's Deadliest Creatures Mastered Biochemistry

Christie Wilcox

$43.95
Wilcox takes us from the coast of lndonesia to the rainforests of Peru in search of the secrets of these mysterious animals. We encounter jellyfish that release microscopic venom-packed darts known to kill humans in just two minutes, a two-inch caterpillar with toxic bristles that trigger haemorrhaging throughout the body, and a stunning blue-ringed octopus with saliva capable of inducing total paralysis. How could an animal as simple as a jellyfish evolve such an intricate, deadly poison? And how can a snake possess enzymes that tear through tissue yet leave its own body unscathed? Wilcox meets the fearless scientists who often risk their lives studying these lethal beasts to find out, and puts her own life on the line to examine these species up close. Drawing on her own research on venom chemistry and evolution, she also shows how venom is helping us untangle the complex mechanisms of some of our most devastating diseases. Venomous reveals that the animals we fear the most actually hold the keys to a deeper understanding of evolution, adaptation, and immunity. Thrilling and surprising at every turn, Venomous will change the way you think about our natural world.
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Beetle

Beetle

Adam Dodd

$24.99
From ancient Egyptian deities to German automobiles, beetles have left an indelible mark on human cultures around the world. Comprising more than 350,000 species, beetles are among the most prolific animals on Earth, even if we rarely give them a second thought. In this book Adam Dodd explores the world of the beetle and its sometimes astounding and bizarre intersections with the world of the human being.Beetle relates this resilient insect's emergence from the 'Great Dying' extinction event some 250 million years ago, showing how it became a permanent fixture in the natural world, thriving in the inhabitation of niches. Inspiring early occult beliefs and religious myths, the beetle also finds its way into art, folklore, literature and science. Dodd uncovers the beetle's ongoing place in the aesthetic appreciation of nature, and shows how knowledge of beetle anatomy is assisting the development of cutting-edge cybernetics, blurring the boundary between science and fiction.Thoroughly illustrated, bursting with historical detail and accessibly written, this cultural and natural history of the beetle is sure to change the way readers think about their relationship with these ancient, enduringly captivating animals.
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Fluke: The Maths and Myths of Coincidences

Fluke: The Maths and Myths of Coincidences

Joseph Mazur

$29.99
Imagine this: you are browsing used books in a bookstore hundreds of miles from home when you come across a copy of Moby Dick, which you remember reading as a child. You open it and find your own name on the inside cover. What are the chances? This is the question we ask ourselves upon encountering seemingly impossible coincidences, like the woman who won the lottery four times. But from clairvoyants to financial markets, and from unique scientific discoveries to DNA evidence, if there is any likelihood that something could happen, no matter how small, it is bound to happen to someone at some time. Coupling lively anecdotes with the principles of probability, Joseph Mazur balances the fun of a great coincidence with the logical thinking of a mathematician. With a lightness of touch and a witty turn of phrase, Mazur sweeps aside pseudoscience and conspiracy theories, proving that there are rational explanations for even the most extraordinary events.
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The Invention of Numbers

The Invention of Numbers

Peter Bentley

$16.99
Numbers are at the heart of the existence of the universe and everything in it, and yet a lot of us have little understanding of their creation, let alone their part in philosophy, art, music, physics, literature, religion and computing. Dr Bentley's fascinating history of the origins of numbers will unlock the secrets of these things that we take for granted and shows how numbers seem to take on human characteristiscs - as they can be perfect or irrational, amicable or prime, real or imaginary. From zero to infinity, learn about the way numbers have shaped our world, discover amazing facts and enjoy the pure beauty of mathematical logic.
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Introductory Course on Differentiable Manifolds

Introductory Course on Differentiable Manifolds

Siavash Shahshahani

$49.95
This thorough, rigorous course on the theory of differentiable manifolds requires a strong background in undergraduate mathematics, including multivariable calculus, linear algebra, elementary abstract algebra, and point-set topology. Suitable for advanced undergraduates and graduate students, the detailed treatment is enhanced with philosophical and historical asides and includes more than 200 exercises. 2016 edition.
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How to Think Like Stephen Hawking

How to Think Like Stephen Hawking

Daniel Smith

$27.99
A unique insight into the mind of one of the world's most extraordinary thinkers. Undoubtedly the most famous scientist on the planet and the very face of physics over the last half-century, Stephen Hawking is remarkable for many reasons. Not least because he has continued to strive to achieve so much while being hindered by debilitating illness. He has demonstrated categorically that if you put your mind to it, you can achieve anything, no matter your physical state. Of course, it helps if you happen to possess a mind such as his. His work on black holes put him on the map, and he became globally famous for his A Brief History of Time, communicating the most difficult scientific ideas at a period when he'd lost the ability to speak. How to Think Like Stephen Hawking reveals the key motivations, desires and philosophies that make Hawking one of the world's most enduring talents. Studying how he overcame great adversity, fought his demons as well as his detractors and looked back to the origins of the universe, and with quotes and passages by and about him, you too can learn to think like the man who claims he can think in eleven dimensions.
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Who Cares About Particle Physics?: Making Sense of the Higgs Boson, the Large Hadron Collider and Cern

Who Cares About Particle Physics?: Making Sense of the Higgs Boson, the Large Hadron Collider and Cern

Pauline Gagnon

$50.95
CERN, the European Laboratory for particle physics, regularly makes the news. What kind of research happens at this international laboratory and how does it impact people's daily lives? Why is the discovery of the Higgs boson so important? Particle physics describes all matter found on Earth, in stars and all galaxies but it also tries to go beyond what is known to describe dark matter, a form of matter five times more prevalent than the known, regular matter. How do we know this mysterious dark matter exists and is there a chance it will be discovered soon? About sixty countries contributed to the construction of the gigantic Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN and its immense detectors. Dive in to discover how international teams of researchers work together to push scientific knowledge forward. Here is a book written for every person who wishes to learn a little more about particle physics, without requiring prior scientific knowledge. It starts from the basics to build a solid understanding of current research in particle physics. A good dose of curiosity is all one will need to discover a whole world that spans from the infinitesimally small and stretches to the infinitely large, and where imminent discoveries could mark the dawn of a huge revolution in the current conception of the material world.
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Australia's Fascinating Birds

Australia's Fascinating Birds

Don Goodsir ,  Tony Oliver ,  Nicola Oram

$26.99
Birds are fascinating, lively, colourful creatures that can be encountered almost everywhere. The presence of birds certainly brings colour and interest to our lives. They can signal the change of seasons or as in Columbus' case, the welcome presence of Land. Fascinating Australian Birds looks at both better-known and special interest birds. Many which are likely to be seen where Australians live and travel. It features beautiful full colour illustrations and handy facts about each bird's habitat, nesting habits and activities. Perfect as a gift, field guide or even for the coffee table. A must for all Australian homes.
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Cat Wars: The Devastating Consequences of a Cuddly Killer

Cat Wars: The Devastating Consequences of a Cuddly Killer

Peter P. Marra ,  Chris Santella

$49.95
In 1894, a lighthouse keeper named David Lyall arrived on Stephens Island off New Zealand with a cat named Tibbles. In just over a year, the Stephens Island Wren, a rare bird endemic to the island, was rendered extinct. Mounting scientific evidence confirms what many conservationists have suspected for some time'that in the United States alone, free-ranging cats are killing birds and other animals by the billions. As alarming are the little known but potentially devastating public health consequences of rabies and parasitic Toxoplasma passing from cats to humans at rising rates.
 
Cat Wars tells the story of the threats free-ranging cats pose to biodiversity and public health throughout the world, and sheds new light on the controversies surrounding the management of the explosion of these cats. This compelling book traces the historical and cultural ties between humans and cats from early domestication to the current boom in pet ownership, along the way accessibly explaining the science of extinction, population modeling, and feline diseases.
 
It charts the developments that have led to our present impasse' from Stan Temple's breakthrough studies on cat predation in Wisconsin to cat-eradication programs underway in Australia today. It describes how a small but vocal minority of cat advocates has campaigned successfully for no action in much the same way that special interest groups have stymied attempts to curtail smoking and climate change. Cat Wars paints a revealing picture of a complex global problem' and proposes solutions that foresee a time when wildlife and humans are no longer vulnerable to the impacts of free-ranging cats.
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