- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Reprint edition (January 17, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0393320928
- ISBN-13: 978-0393320923
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 223 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,162 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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What Do You Care What Other People Think?: Further Adventures of a Curious Character Paperback – January 17, 2001
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“Feynman’s voice echoes raw and direct through these pages.”
- James Gleick, The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Richard P. Feynman (1918–1988) was a professor at Cornell University and CalTech and received the Nobel Prize for physics in 1965. In 1986 he served with distinction on the Rogers Commission investigating the space shuttle Challenger disaster.
Top customer reviews
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Feynman was undoubtedly one of the great names of twentieth century science, and a remarkable individual. His "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!” is an exceptional book: definitely 5++. The sequel, “What do you care what other people think?”, is perhaps not quite as good, being somewhat disjointed, but it is clearly still a solid 5 stars. A fascinating read.
The second and greater part of this book deals with Feynman's presence on the committee investigating the 1986 crash of the Space Shuttle Challenger, capturing the incredible dissatisfaction felt by him as he is plunged into the administrative bureaucracy of Washington and NASA. The descriptions of the shuttle and its faulty components are illustrated clearly with the help of figures and photographs. These illustrations help the reader visualize the circumstances of the crash and where the the major fault within the shuttle actually lay. These are particularly helpful in eliminating any ambiguity in the description of technical rocket components (O-rings, etc). Despite the serious content, this part of the book retains the strong elements of humor found within rest of the book. It manages to paint a ludicrous picture of the way things tended to be handled in NASA (e.g. NASA informing an official that the probability of failure of an manned rocket is 1 in 100,000 which implied that "you could fly the shuttle every day for an average of 300 years between accidents- every day, one flight, for 300 years- which is obviously crazy!"). He also points towards the general errors made by large organizations such as NASA due to the divide between levels of management by narrating personal conversations with the management, engineers and workers. The perspicuous manner with which he describes his involvement in the investigation almost makes the reader feel as if he were right alongside Feynman while he was dealt the task of investigating the crash.
I would strongly recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed "Surely You're Joking..." and is willing to put his mind to a bit more work to enjoy the second part of the book. Overall, it is a great book that any Feynman fan will be willing to appreciate!