- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: National Geographic; 2nd edition (September 14, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 079226956X
- ISBN-13: 978-0792269564
- Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 0.8 x 11.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,729,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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New How Things Work: From Lawn Mowers to Surgical Robots and Everthing in Between Hardcover – September 14, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
This book is both interesting and informative and would capture the curiosity of a wide group of people. One of the great parts of the book is that the machines range from simple designs, such as a non-electric lawn mower, to highly complex designs, such as space telescopes; and there is no prior knowledge required before reading any of the descriptions. When you think about the thousands of gadgets, both small and large, that makes our lives possible; it is easy to pass them by without thinking about them. This book describes these items in a fashion that keeps the readers interest and makes them want to read on. I would recommend this book to anyone with the slightest interest in the mechanical world around them.
National Geographic, renowned for its magnificent publications over the years does not falter with this volume. Instead, it is an over-sized publication dedicated to explaining technology to the lay public. The explanations are not "dumbed down" but use standard scientific terms, but not so difficult that an educated person cannot comprehend them. An example taken from the first product highlighted: "A microwave oven produces high-frequency electromagnetic waves. Passing through food, the waves reverse polarity billions of times a second" (16).
The book is arranged into eleven categories: At Home, Power and Energy, Buildings, Transportation, Agriculture, Fabrics and Fibers, Entertainment, Mining and Manufacturing, Information and Communication, and Other Worlds.
Two items from each category in order: security systems, plumbing, geothermal power, batteries, escalators, bridges, bicycles, sailboats, aquaculture, hydroponics, sewing, synthetic fibers, DVD, the zamboni, glassmaking, robotics, X-ray, implants, cell phones, internet, night vision, and military technology. An amazing list of technology whose inner workings are revealed. And many more items.
I flipped randomly to show the reader an example of how things are explained. On page 70 is an article, illustration, and photograph of various aspects of the "Chunnel" or Channel Tunnel, which traverses the English/French Channel.Read more ›
classic inventions/processes. For instance, there is a description of how wheels transmit power and motion forces. Gear teeth work on the basis of ratios. They rotate and generate motion when affixed to shafts. Motors convert electrical energy to mechanical energy.
Microwaves increase the frequency of electrical forces while waves cook the food. Refrigerators rely on coolant circulating in a cooled system. Solar power utilizes heat energy, pumped water
and an integrated process to an insulated storage tank. Fusion
power pumps plasma, manages toroidal and poloidal magets and
accomplishes these tasks via superconducting materials.
This book would be a good acquisition for any science teacher,
student or enthusiast.
Beshore in PA
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this for my elderly father (93 yrs old) who loves this type of reading, however, in this case the book was rather heavy, a little large for his lap, and the print was just... Read morePublished on March 6, 2012 by ---- Covarrubias
Writing about a wide range of subjects is difficult, especially if you want to keep your book down to a manageable thickness. Read morePublished on September 8, 2009 by David Hardison
The book doesn't actually get around to telling you how things work. Thank goodness Amazon has a liberal return policy. This book was useless to me.Published on June 19, 2008 by Dorey E. Evans
This is a DK book, and they have never disappointed me. The quality is the best, beautiful detailed photograps and the descriptions are easy to understand. Read morePublished on March 18, 2007 by Casey's Mom