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Old 05-02-2009, 12:54 PM   #1
djgreedo
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Any science (non-fiction) recommendations?

Anyone have any science ebook recommendations that meet the following criteria?

1) not overly technical (I don't have a science degree)
2) available without DRM (and preferably in a format that suits the PRS-700 without conversion).
2a) Must be available to buy from Australia
3) I've just read 'A Brief History of Time' and want some more books with a similar tone.
4) Not a text book


Any science topic is welcome, especially evolution, space exploration, anything to do with the brain/mind.

I couldn't find anything on Fictionwise. I like the sound of the Bill Bryson book but can't find it without DRM.
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Old 05-02-2009, 01:31 PM   #2
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I'd reccomend just about anything by Dr. Michio Kaku. I don't know how available they are in Australia, I know Fictionwise sells 2 of them.
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Old 05-02-2009, 01:54 PM   #3
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There are more popular science ebooks available now than in the past, but they are almost all DRM-laden. One I recommend is The Selfish Gene: 30th Anniversary Edition by Richard Dawkins. It is available as a Secure Adobe PDF from ebooks.com. They actually have a nice selection of recent mainstream popular science ebooks, but all with DRM.
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Old 05-02-2009, 02:10 PM   #4
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Prof. Dawkins has written quite a couple of very interesting books - I dont know which are available as ebooks, but I recommend them ntl.
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Old 05-02-2009, 05:52 PM   #5
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Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything. Love everything he does but this one is particularly good.

Mary Roach - Particularly "Stiffs". The only nonfiction book about cadavers that will make you laugh out loud? Is that inappropriate? ...sigh....

Also, if you are all environmentally minded "The World Without Us" by Arthur Weisman (I think). Not as good as Bryson's (Bryson is quite humorous) but an interesting concept. National Geographic did a great documentary similar to this which was quite good.

Mel

ETA Just noticed you already know about the Bill Bryson. Sorry can't help you out with drm free.
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Old 05-02-2009, 07:39 PM   #6
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If you're not averse to listening to science lectures, I recommend audiobook courses from The Teaching Company ( http://www.teach12.com ) - on very wide range of subjects, and almost always very interesting to listen to. As far as I know, they're not released as ebooks, but since I found them, I prefer to listen to such course to reading a science ebook.
Another company offering similar range of insteresting courses is Modern Scholar.
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Old 05-02-2009, 10:16 PM   #7
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Would Guns, Germs, and Steel qualify?
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Old 05-02-2009, 10:27 PM   #8
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I would 2nd Bill Bryson's 'A Short History of Nearly Everything'.

He has other technical books but have I have not read them yet.
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Old 05-03-2009, 12:46 AM   #9
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You might look into Steven Pinker
(The Stuff of Thought: Language As a Window Into Human Nature)
(The Language Instinct - How the Mind Creates Language)

and Edward O. Wilson
(The Diversity of Life)
(On Human Nature)
or
(The Future of Life)

All very readable. And also Wilson's autobiography (Naturalist)

oh, and also Richard Feynman's (Surely You're Joking Mr. Feynman!)

Last edited by wayspooled; 05-03-2009 at 12:54 AM.
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Old 05-03-2009, 02:58 AM   #10
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If you enjoyed A Brief History of Time, you might enjoy The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene (I've no idea if it's available as an ebook, and it's Sunday arvo, so if you want to go looking, be my guest ). It becomes "technical" of sorts, as it progresses, but its beauty is that it leads logically and gently into it, such that it doesn't feel like you're drowning in conceptual mindwarps (which is a nifty trick, considering the subject matter ). I actually found it a more enjoyable and a bit easier (though much longer) read than A Brief History of Time (and that's without denigrating the latter at all).

Cheers,
Marc
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Old 05-03-2009, 04:05 AM   #11
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"The origins of species" (6th ed.) by Charles Darwin. Free download from Feedbooks.
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Old 05-03-2009, 04:15 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Ea;
I'd not spotted that one - thank you
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Old 05-03-2009, 04:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montsnmags View Post
If you enjoyed A Brief History of Time, you might enjoy The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene (I've no idea if it's available as an ebook, and it's Sunday arvo, so if you want to go looking, be my guest ). It becomes "technical" of sorts, as it progresses, but its beauty is that it leads logically and gently into it, such that it doesn't feel like you're drowning in conceptual mindwarps (which is a nifty trick, considering the subject matter ). I actually found it a more enjoyable and a bit easier (though much longer) read than A Brief History of Time (and that's without denigrating the latter at all).

Cheers,
Marc
Yep, they're both excellent books.

I also enjoyed Marcus Chown's 'The Magic Furnace' about the origin of atoms. (I keep meaning to look for more by him.)

Richard Fortey's 'Life: an unauthorised biography' is a fascinating account of life on Earth.
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Old 05-03-2009, 04:34 AM   #14
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Search out "The Tao of Physics" by Fritof Capra. Delightful book, not technical, and doing a wonderful job of explaining Physics, Metaphysics, Taoism, and how they all seem to be the same damn thing!

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Old 05-04-2009, 10:55 PM   #15
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Also from Brian Greene, The Fabric of the Cosmos would be a good read. (If you enter code EBOOKS you can still get 25% off at cyberread.com - which is a tad cheaper than Amazon.)
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