Science Guardian

Truth, beauty and paradigm power in science and society

I am Nicolaus Copernicus, and I approve of this blog

News, views and reviews measured against professional literature in peer reviewed journals (adjusted for design flaws and bias), well researched books, authoritative encyclopedias (not the bowdlerized Wiki entries on controversial topics) and the investigative reporting and skeptical studies of courageous original thinkers among academics, philosophers, researchers, scholars, authors, filmmakers and journalists.

Supporting the right of exceptional minds to free speech, publication, media coverage and funding against the crowd prejudice, leadership resistance, monetary influences and internal professional politics of the paradigm wars of cancer, HIV(not)AIDS, evolution, global warming, cosmology, particle physics, macroeconomics, information technology, religions and cults, health, medicine, diet and nutrition.

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HONOR ROLL OF SCIENTIFIC TRUTHSEEKERS

Halton C. Arp wki/obit/txt/vds/txt/txt/bk/bk, Henry Bauer txt/blg/ blg/bks/bk/txt/bk/vd, John Beard bk, Harvey Bialy bk/bk/txt/txt/rdo/vd, John Bockris bio/txt/ltr/bk, Donald W. Braben, Peter Breggin ste/fb/col/bks, Darin Brown txt/txt/txt/txt/txt/vd, Giordano Bruno bk/bio/bio, Frank R. Buianouckas, Stanislav Burzynski mov, Erwin Chargaff bio/bk/bio/prs, James Chin bk/vd, Nicolaus Copernicus bk, Mark Craddock, Francis Crick vd, Paul Crutzen, Marie Curie, Rebecca Culshaw txt/bk, Roger Cunningham, Charles Darwin txts/bk, Erasmus Darwin txt//bk/txt/hse/bks, Peter Duesberg ste/ste/bk/txt/vd/vd, Freeman Dyson, Albert Einstein, Richard Feynman bio, John Fewster, Rosalind Franklin, Bernard Forscher tx, Galileo Galilei, Walter Gilbert vd, Goethe bio/bk/bio, Nicolas Gonzalez tlk/rec/stetxt/txt, Patricia Goodson txt/bk/bk, Alec Gordon, James Hansen, Etienne de Harven bk/txt/vd, Alfred Hassig intw/txt, Robert G. Houston txt, Steven Jonas vd, Edward Jenner txt, Benjamin Jesty, Adrian Kent vd, Thomas Kuhn, Fred Kummerow, Stefan Lanka txt/txt/vd, Serge Lang, John Lauritsen vd, Paul Lauterbur vd, Mark Leggett, Richard Lindzen, James Lovelock, Andrew Maniotis, Lynn Margulis, Barbara McClintock, Christi Meyer vd, George Miklos, Marco Mamone Capria, Peter Medawar, Luc Montagnier txt/txt/vd, Kary Mullis, Linus Pauling prs/vd/vd, Eric Penrose, Roger Penrose vd, Max Planck, Rainer Plaga, David Rasnick bio/vd/bk, Robert Root-Bernstein vd, Sherwood Rowland, Otto Rossler, Harry Rubin, Marco Ruggiero txt/txt/intw/vd, Bertrand Russell Carl Sagan vd, Erwin Schrodinger, Fred Singer, Barbara Starfield txt, Gordon Stewart txt/txt, Richard Strohman, Thomas Szasz, Nicola Tesla bio/bio, Charles Thomas intw/vd, Frank Tipler, James Watson vd/vd, Alfred Wegener vd, Edward O. Wilson vd.

ACADEMICS, DOCTORS, AUTHORS, FILMMAKERS, REPORTERS AND COMMENTATORS WHO HAVE NOBLY AIDED REVIEW OF THE STATUS QUO

Jad Adams bk, Marci Angell bk/txt/txt/txt, Clark Baker ste/txt/rdo/vd, James Blodgett, Tony Brown vd, Hiram Caton txt/txt/txt/bk/ste, Jonathan Collin ste , Marcus Cohen, David Crowe vd, Margaret Cuomo, Stephen Davis BK/BK,/rdo, Michael Ellner vd, Elizabeth Ely txt/txt/ste, Epicurus, Dean Esmay, Celia Farber bio/txt/txt/txt/vd, Jonathan Fishbein txt/txt/wk, T.C.Fry, Michael Fumento, Max Gerson txt, Charles Geshekter vd, Michael Geiger, Roberto Giraldo, David Healy txt, Bob Herbert, Mike Hersee ste/rdo, Neville Hodgkinson txt /vd, James P. Hogan, Richard Horton bio/vd/vd, Christopher Hitchens, Eric Johnson, Claus Jensen vd, Phillip Johnson, Coleman Jones vds, William Donald Kelley, Ernst T. Krebs Sr txt, Ernst T. Krebs Jr. txt,/bio/txt/txt/ltr, Paul Krugman, Brett Leung MOV/ste/txt/txt/tx+vd/txt, Katie Leishman, Anthony Liversidge blg/intv/intv/txt/txts/txt/intv/txt/vd/vd, Bruce Livesey txt, James W. Loewen, Frank Lusardi, Nathaniel Lehrman vd, Christine Maggiore bk/ste/rec/rdo/vd, Rouben Mamoulian txt/txt/txt/txt/txt/doc/flm/flm, Noreen Martin vd, Robert Maver txt/itw, Eric Merola MOV, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, Michael Moore bio/MOV/MOV/MOV, Gordon Moran, Ralph Nader bk, Ralph Moss txt/blg/ste/bks, Gary Null /txt/rdo/vd, Dan Olmsted wki, Toby Ord vd, Charles Ortleb bk/txt/bk/intw/flm, Neenyah Ostrom bk, Dennis Overbye, Mehmet Dr Oz vd, Eleni Papadopulos-Eleopulos ste/vd, Maria Papagiannidou bk, Thomas Piketty bk/bk/bk/bk/bk/bk/bk/bk/bk/bk, Robert Pollin txt/vd/bk, Jon Rappoport bio/bk/bk/ste/bk/bk/vd, Janine Roberts bk/bk, Luis Sancho vd, Liam Scheff ste/txt/bk/bk/rdio/vd, John Scythes, Casper Schmidt txt/txt, Joan Shenton vd/vd, Joseph Sonnabend vd, John Stauber, David Steele, Joseph Stiglitz bk/txt, Will Storr rdo Wolfgang Streeck, James P. Tankersley ste, Gary Taubes vd, Mwizenge S. Tembo, John Tierney vd, Michael Tracey, Valendar Turner rec, Jesse Ventura bk, Michael Verney-Elliott bio/vds/vd, Voltaire, Walter Wagner, Andrew Weil vd, David Weinberger bio/bk/blg/blg/BK/bk/pds, Robert Willner bk/txt/txt/vd, Howard Zinn.

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I am Albert Einstein, and I heartily approve of this blog, insofar as it seems to believe both in science and the importance of intellectual imagination, uncompromised by out of date emotions such as the impulse toward conventional religious beliefs, national aggression as a part of patriotism, and so on.   As I once remarked, the further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.   Certainly the application of the impulse toward blind faith in science whereby authority is treated as some kind of church is to be deplored.  As I have also said, the only thing that ever interfered with my learning was my education. I am Freeman Dyson, and I approve of this blog, but would warn the author that life as a heretic is a hard one, since the ignorant and the half informed, let alone those who should know better, will automatically trash their betters who try to enlighten them with independent thinking, as I have found to my sorrow in commenting on "global warming" and its cures.
Many people would die rather than think – in fact, they do so. – Bertrand Russell.

The progress of science is strewn, like an ancient desert trail, with the bleached skeletons of discarded theories which once seemed to possess eternal life. - Arthur Koestler

One should as a rule respect public opinion in so far as is necessary to avoid starvation and to keep out of prison. – Bertrand Russell

Fraud and falsehood only dread examination. Truth invites it. - Samuel Johnson

A sudden bold and unexpected question doth many times surprise a man and lay him open. – Sir Francis Bacon (1561 – 1626)

He who knows only his own side of the case, knows little of that. – John Stuart Mill

Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to reform. – Mark Twain

Although science has led to the generally high living standards that most of the industrialized world enjoys today, the astounding discoveries underpinning them were made by a tiny number of courageous, out-of-step, visionary, determined, and passionate scientists working to their own agenda and radically challenging the status quo. – Donald W. Braben

An old error is always more popular than a new truth. — German Proverb

I am Richard Feynman and I approve of this blog

When even the brightest mind in our world has been trained up from childhood in a superstition of any kind, it will never be possible for that mind, in its maturity, to examine sincerely, dispassionately, and conscientiously any evidence or any circumstance which shall seem to cast a doubt upon the validity of that superstition. I doubt if I could do it myself. – Mark Twain

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his income depends on his not understanding it. – Upton Sinclair

A clash of doctrines is not a disaster, but an opportunity. - Alfred North Whitehead

Fraud and falsehood only dread examination. Truth invites it. – Samuel Johnson

Man’s mind cannot grasp the causes of events in their completeness, but the desire to find those causes is implanted in man’s soul. And without considering the multiplicity and complexity of the conditions any one of which taken separately may seem to be the cause, he snatches at the first approximation to a cause that seems to him intelligible and says: “This is the cause!” – Leo Tolstoy

The evolution of the world tends to show the absolute importance of the category of the individual apart from the crowd. - Soren Kierkegaard

Who does not know the truth is simply a fool, yet who knows the truth and calls it a lie is a criminal. – Bertold Brecht

How easily the learned give up the evidence of their senses to preserve the coherence of ideas in their imagination. – Adam Smith

Education consists mainly in what we have unlearned. – Mark Twain

The mind likes a strange idea as little as the body likes a strange protein and resists it with similar energy. If we watch ourselves honestly, we shall often find that we have begun to argue against a new idea even before it has been completely stated. – Arthur Koestler

Whenever the human race assembles to a number exceeding four, it cannot stand free speech. – Mark Twain

People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices. - Adam Smith

There isn’t anything so grotesque or so incredible that the average human being can’t believe it. – Mark Twain

He who knows only his own side of the case, knows little of that. – John Stuart Mill

It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere. – Voltaire

People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they have themselves discovered than by those which have come into the mind of others.- Blaise Pascal.

Illusion is the first of all pleasures. – Voltaire

The applause of a single human being is of great consequence. – Samuel Johnson

(Click for more Unusual Quotations on Science and Human Nature)

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Book Expo 2013 Richer, More Distracting Than Web

June 12th, 2013

Pot Pourri of Fetching Science Titles at University Presses

Fine Production Values Unmatched by Virtual Books

But Are Publishers Scraping the Barrel for Science Titles?

The 2013 Book Expo America at Javits presented the usual cacophony, as vibrant as ever, of booths offering every kind of author and book to trade, media and fans.

In a sign of the times, however, major booths such as Harper and Random House, showed no actual physical books at all, since all their production was now available to the trade on line. Was this a foretaste of urban life to come, where actual bookstores will be a thing of the past? Probably not, judging from the current flowering of small local bookshops.

But the days of big Barnes and Noble outlets in New York may be numbered, as Amazon crushes their margins with its cheaper (often tax free) warehouses and ruthless pricing and makes many unprofitable, and expiring ten year leases can only be renewed at forbidding cost which promises to drag them under later. The closing of Borders has not yielded an uptick in Barnes and Noble’s sales.

Such an absence would lose exactly the serendipity which makes the Book Expo such a pleasure. The only way to deal with such abundance is to look for specific kinds of books, in our case science, politics and economics.

Outstanding books

Here are our finds in that realm which seem to comprise distinctly fewer big topics than last year (has all the available ground been covered? Are we entering the End of Science Writing?):

The Polish Cultural Institute is a presence at BEA under the direction of David Goldfarb with Dorota Piotrowska. A prize offering at the Polish Cultural Institute was Artur Domoslawksi's biography of the remarkable literary journalist Ryszard Kapuscinski: A Life. (David Goldfarb Literature and Humanities Programming Polish Cultural Institute 239 7300 x 3002 david.goldfarb@instytutpolski.org PolishCulture-NYC.org).

Norton (Louise Brockett VP Exec Dir Publicity and PR 790 4266lbrockett@wwnorton.com) Fall 2013:
Shores of Knowledge by Joyce Appleby (288pp October)
Feminine Mystique by Betty Friendan intro by Gail Collins, Afterword by Anna Quindlen (592 pp, September)
Spillover: Animal Infections and the next Human Pandemic by David Quammen (592 pp, September)
The Spark of Life: Electricity in the Human Body by Frances Ashcroft (September)
Surviving Survival: The Art and Science of Resilience by Laurence Gonzales (272 pp, October, Pbk)
Double Entry: How The Merchants of Venice Created Modern Finance by Jane Glesson-White (304 pp, October Pbk)
Poems of Jesus Christ trans by Willis Bernstone (288 pp December Pbk)
E E Cummings Complete Poems 1904-1962 (September 1136 pp)
The Wasteland T.S. Eliot (intro by Paul Muldoon) (112 pp September)
The Myth of America’s Decline: Politics, Economics, and a Half Century of False Prophecies by Josef Joffe (272 pp, Liveright, November)
Stop Me If You’ve Heard This: A History and Philosophy of Jokes by Jim Holt (160 pp, Liveright, October)
George Orwell Diaries Ed by Peter Davison Intro by Christopher Hitchens (624 pp, Pbk, October)
Chess Tactics for the Tournament Player by GM Sam Palatbik and GM Lev Alburt (256 p, Pbk, September)
Recent: Short (International Anthology of Five Centuries of Short-Short Stories, Prose Poems, Brief Essays and other Short Prose Forms ((under 1250 wds) Ed by Alan Ziegler (368 pp, February)
Naked Statistics Charles Wheelan,
Mary Roach Gulp (Adventures of the Alimentary Canal) 352 pp April 2013.
Rewire: Digital Cosmopolitans in the Age of Connection by Ethan Zuckerman
Joe Stiglitz The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future
Extra Virginity: The Scandalous World of Olive Oil by Tom Mueller
Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History by Florence Williams
Neil deGrasse Tyson Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier
The Big Switch: Rewiring the World from Edison to Google by Nicholas Carr (The Definitive Guide to the Cloud Computing Revolution)

Harper Collins imprint Ecco Michael McKenzie Senior Director of Publicity

Penguin Katie Grinch Ass Dir Publicity Putnam’s 366 2574 katie.grinch@us.penguingroup.com General Tel 366 2847.

Thames and Hudson Christoper Sweet Ed Director 354 9181 csweet@thames.wwnorton.com
Are We Being Watched: The Search for Life in the Cosmos by Paul Murdin (p x).

Naked Calories and Rich Food, Poor Food by Jayson Calton (CaltonNutrition 941-882-4297 caltons@mac.com) Excellent guides by an independent author and his wife, who traveled the world to find out the truth about diet and health for themselves – curing her of very early osteoporosis in the process. Beautifully produced volumes with accurate information.

Princeton (Casey LaVela Publicity c 609-258.9491 casey_lavel@press.princeton.edu)
The Universe in Zero Words: The Story of Mathematics As Told Through Equations by Dana Mckenzie. Against the tide of editing science books which seeks to include as few equations as possible,. Dana Mackenzie, a mathematics professor turned author, fearlessly lifts the veil of mystery from mathematics and equations, traversing all the surprising, concise, consequential and universal equations that are the jewels in the crown of mathematics. Mr Mackenzie’s zeal and clarity are unmatched, and he manages to o embody his material in story telling throughout.

Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W. Bernard Carlson (Princeton, 500 pp, May 12) is a definitively thorough but readable account of the life of the sane madman who first wired the world (by inventing alternative current) which is well indexed and written by a professor of history, science, technology, engineering and society at the University of Virginia who has read every other book (good and bad) and source on Tesla, whose reputation for original genius is safe in his sober hands. Included is a nice discussion of why individuals such as Tesla are motivated to do the hard and risky work of developing disruptive technology.

ECW Press. Mad Like Tesla: Underdog Inventors and Their Relentless Pursuit of Clean Energy by Tyler Hamilton. A fine rundown on quirky clean energy inventors who follow in the tradition of Tesla, whose story of incredible mystic inventiveness in electricity is summarized very well in the opening pages, justifying his recent renaissance in reputation which now exceeds Edison in the field.


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