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Marshall Brain's How Stuff Works Hardcover – September 29, 2001


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Product Details

  • Series: Marshall Brain's How Stuff Works
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (September 29, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764565184
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764565182
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 0.9 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,061,422 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

From the award-winning Web site visited by more than 2.5 million people every month comes How Stuff Works, the definitive guide to the inner workings of everyday items. In this fun and infinitely informative guide, Marshall Brain and staff of "stuff" experts at HowStuffWorks, Inc. unravel the mysteries of more than 135 intriguing topics. You'll be fascinated by the world around you!

In Marshall Brain's trademark easy-to-understand language, complemented by beautiful full-color illustrations, you'll discover the basic mechanisms behind everything from toasters to turbochargers, dieting to DVD players, and cell phones to submarines.

Technology and scientific principles are all around you: whether in the chips needed to execute commands on your computer, or in determining how many calories you need to burn in order to lose five pounds. This exciting book explains—in a way you can easily grasp—how technology is a part of everyday life.

How Stuff Works contains:

  • More than 135 articles written in Marshall Brain's award-winning style
  • Hundreds of original color drawings that illuminate the incisive text
  • "Cool Facts," "Did You Know?," and "And Another Thing..." sidebars that give you extra, insider information
  • Color photographs
No matter what your age, if you're intrigued by how stuff works, you won't be able to put down How Stuff Works!

From the Back Cover

"A+" —Entertainment Weekly

1999 50 Best of the Web —Popular Science Magazine

Best of the Web 2000 —Forbes Magazine

"A+" —Washington Post Online

Pick of the Week —Yahoo!

Super Site —TBS Superstation

1999 Reference Site of the Year —LibrarySpot.com

Have you ever wondered...

  • How helicopters are able to fly sideways?
  • Why you crave chocolate and caffeine?
  • What stops a car when you step on the break pedal?
  • Where email messages go after you press the Send button?
In this definitive, generously illustrated guide, Marshall Brain and the experts at the award-winning Web site HowStuffWorks.com explain the magic behind everyday items and processes. You'll learn what the Internet really is, how airplanes stay up and submarines stay down, what GPS is and why you might need it, and how a whole film can be captured on a tiny DVD.

With this eye-opening book, you'll never look at a toaster, cell phone, or tattoo parlor the same way again!

  • Hundreds of full-color illustrations and photos showing step-by-step images of how stuff works.
  • More than 135 informative articles show you how the items you use every day work.
  • All explained in Marshall Brain's trademark down-to-earth voice.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
67%
4 star
17%
3 star
17%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
See all 12 customer reviews
Our whole family loves this book.
Jesus Freak II
The authors of these articles have a great gift for taking quite complex notions and explaining them in easy to understand terms - while not watering them down.
charles c dimsdale
This book is a great book for the amateur scientist or anyone who has an inquisitive nature.
Sandra D. Peters

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 50 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 24, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Overall this is a good book, filled with all kinds of interesting information. However, I felt that the level of editing polish was poor. Typos and illustration errors are frequent, and the writing style is uneven and awkward at times. It's also clear that the authors of each article did not read the other articles, because the same information is sometimes redundantly discussed in two or three separate articles. What's worst, though, is the number of outright factual errors: a proton does not have neutral charge, the abbreviation for microseconds is not ms, etc. My advice is to wait for the second edition, or buy one of the many similar books from other publishers instead.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Sandra D. Peters on September 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is a great book for the amateur scientist or anyone who has an inquisitive nature. If you know someone who likes to take things apart to see how the "really" work or is forever asking "how" and "why" things work the way they do, this book is especially for that type of individual.
From airplanes and cell phones to viruses and other areas of interest, the book contains a wealth of informative facts and trivia. A terrific book for the money; it is quite in-depth but easy to read and understand.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 9, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book is a wealth of information that everyone should have at their fingertips. No you don't really need to know all this stuff by memory, but it is wonderful to be able open a reference book such as this to find out How Stuff Works. I love the website, and this book is a welcome addition to my home.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By charles c dimsdale on September 18, 2001
Format: Hardcover
While I have not actually read the physical book, I have read the online version of it online at howstuffworks.com. I intend to purchase the physical book in the very near future.
The authors of these articles have a great gift for taking quite complex notions and explaining them in easy to understand terms - while not watering them down. I would highly suggest reading the online version at howstuffworks.com before you purchase this book to see what high quality stuff you'll be getting. Highly reccommended.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 29, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Generally a really good book, although the transition from the website to book is not exactly the most smooth one. It feels like a lot of the good stuff is lost, and it doesn't really seem like the same quality as on the website.
There are 124+ topics ranging from airplanes to dieting. There is lots of information and little sidebars with all kinds of interesting facts. You?ll learn everything from how nuclear power works to how turbochargers work and even learn how to decode all those zero?s and ones in the Mice, bits, and Bytes section. You?ll walk out knowing way more then when you walked in and when anyone says I wonder how this works, you?ll come out looking like a genius.
But it also has a few minor problems. The writing can get a little confusing, and there aren?t as many visual aids to help you understand (It might just be me, I?m a visual learner). The articles sometimes don't feel complete, you might reach the end and think ?that?s it!? Many times you find yourself returning to the website because you didn't understand the article. This might not be a bad thing after all because at most, you?ll start learning all kinds of new stuff anyways.
Overall, it does have its problems, but it's good outweighs it's bad and is highly recommended.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on January 5, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Based on the amazing aggregate of information collected upon the famous web site HowStuffWorks.com, How Stuff Works is an exciting reference as suitable for curious adults as it is for inquiring children that explains, in practical terms that any lay reader can easily understand, the functional principle or mechanism behind a vast array of common inventions, tools, and ideas. The casual browser will learn a wealth of information from how four-stroke gasoline engines work to how file compression works, clearly illustrated with detailed diagrams and enhanced with sidebar commentary. The more serious reader will come away from How Stuff Works with a notably higher understanding and appreciation of the technological innovations so many others simply use and take for granted. How Stuff Works is superb for educational leisure reading, and is a highly recommended gift book for any friend or family member who is curious about what makes everything around them tick!
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