The Greatest Show on Earth

The Evidence for Evolution by Richard Dawkins, 2009, 470 pages, amazon I never doubted evolution so you might ask why would I read a book like this. For the same reason why I read Darwin’s Origin of Species or plan to read Schrodinger’s What is Life? Life, it’s origin and development, consciousness, these all fascinate me. And plus, I like…

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Zabudni na Everest

Od Jarýka Stejskala a Milana Vranku, 1989, 176 strán, olejar Tri osemtisícovky; Lhoce Šar, Dhaulágirí, Čho Oju; a jedna, tá najvyššia, nevylezená Čo svet svetom stojí, žijú jednotlivci, ktorí svoj život spájajú s vyhľadávaním ťažkostí. Dobrodružstvo, riziko, zdanlivo nemožné činy ich lákajú, vábia a neodbytne priťahujú. A oni idú. Napriek tomu, že ostatní v ich konaní nevidia logiku, rozumné dôvody……

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The Aims of Education

By A. N. Whitehead, 1929, 247 pages, amazon At the beginning of this semester prof. Kriegsmann, who teaches us Asymptotics II, was gone for a few lectures and prof. Booty was filling up for him. I have to admit that the fluid flow problem that he went over with us during that time was not too interesting for me. But…

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Guns, Germs and Steel

By Jared Diamond, 1997, 480 pages, amazon Or The Fates of Human Societies This is a very insightful book, which attempts to explain why certain societies seemed to have advantages over others when the two met – especially, why it were the Europeans who conquered the Americas and not vice versa. In order to answer this question, the author goes…

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Beyond The Blue Event Horizon

By Frederik Pohl, 2000, 336 pages, amazon This book is the second one in the (sci-fi) Heechee saga (preceded by Gateway). Even though it is quite self-contained and can be read separately, I would not recommend doing that. In fact, I would not recommend the book at all, read the Gateway instead. Why? Not quite sure, it just doesn’t feel…

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Pushed

By Jennifer Block, 2007, 336 pages, amazon The Painful Truth About Childbirth and Modern Maternity Care This book is not an easy reading. It brings tears and fear. Not of childbirth, but of US hospitals. Belongs to the same category as the movie The Business of Being Born. Why is it so scary? Because it tells stories of women who…

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Useless Arithmetic

By Orrin H. Pilkey & Linda Pilkey-Jarvis, 2006, 221 pages, amazon Or why environmental scientists can’t predict the future? The answer given by the authors is simple. Because the scientists are trying to find exact answers to quantitative questions using models in which many parameters and interactions are still unknown. They demonstrate this using various examples from fishing industry, sea-level…

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Bringing Down the House

By Ben Mezrich, 2002, 257 pages, partial text, amazon Even tough the book boasts that this is “The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions” and was listed in the non-fiction list when it became a bestseller, large portion of it is indeed fiction. But even knowing this it is a very catchy reading. “So you…

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A Mathematician’s Apology

By G. H. Hardy, 1940, 153 pages, partial text, amazon I propose to put forward an apology for mathematics; and I may be told that it needs none, since there are now few studies more generally recognized, for good reason or bad, as profitable or priceworthy… A mathematician does need not now consider himself on the defensive… The public does…

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Does God Play Dice?

By Ian Stewart, 1989, 317 pages, partial text, amazon This is a book about chaos. Not the chaos you have in your closet after three years of not cleaning it up but the mathematical chaos. And it is written with almost no equations at all, which makes it highly readable for non-mathematicians, but leaves the mathematicians somewhat hungry by not…

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