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“Riveting… Mr. Gertner’s portraits of Kelly and the cadre of talented scientists who worked at Bell Labs are animated by a journalistic ability to make their discoveries and inventions utterly comprehensible — indeed, thrilling — to the lay reader. And they showcase, too, his novelistic sense of character and intuitive understanding of the odd ways in which clashing or compatible personalities can combine to foster intensely creative collaborations.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“One of the best innovation-focused books I've read: It's a wide-ranging, detailed, and deeply fascinating look at the New Jersey lab which has been churning out useful discoveries since the early 1900s.”—The Boston Globe
“Compelling… Gertner's book offers fascinating evidence for those seeking to understand how a society should best invest its research resources.”—The Wall Street Journal
“[F]ascinating history…the research behind The Idea Factory is astonishing.”—Slate Book Review
“[A]n expansive new history…does an impressive job of illuminating many of Bell Labs’ key technological triumphs.”—Wired.com
“Gertner provides a view of American research and development that will take engineers, scientists, and managers back to the golden age of invention in the U.S…. Gertner follows these odd and brilliant thinkers to the end of Bell Labs in the 1980s and to their own ends, providing readers with insight into management, creativity, and engineering that remain applicable today.”—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"Remarkably well researched, lucidly written."—The Seattle Times
“Gertner handles the experimentation descriptions with elegance and clarity, while proving even more engaging with his profiles of leading Bell lights.”—Newark Star Ledger
"Gertner reveals the complicated humanity at work behind the scenes and provides unprecedented insight on some of history's most important scientific and technological advances. Packed with anecdotes and trivia and written in clear and compelling prose, this story of a cutting-edge and astonishingly robust intellectual era—and one not without its controversies and treachery—is immensely enjoyable.”—Kirkus
Extremely informative on an aspect of American History not often taught in schoolPublished 15 days ago by collin oswalt
Excellent book on the process of innovation. Got me thinking about current government contractors like Lockheed and Northrop-Grumman. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Miles Traiser
Well written - a fascinating book about great research lab financed by a monopolyPublished 20 days ago by Rob Hurlston
Very detailed record following some of the major people through their careers at Bell Labs. However, the anecdotes are not always sufficient to prevent the narrative from feeling... Read morePublished 29 days ago by Amazon Customer
The Idea Factory chronicles the history of AT&T’s Bell Labs, which through the mid-20th century was at the forefront of American engineering and innovation. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Tristan C.
I learned more about what has really shaped the world we see today from this one book than I learned in 12 years of public and private education. Read morePublished 1 month ago by dangerMC5
I worked there and was always in awe of the place, the people and the environment.
Interesting that there is almost nothing on the Big Bang discovery work by Wilson and... Read more