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Science & Technology Leaders

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Ryan

Ryan Somerville, MA, United States Member Since 2005

Gen-Xer, software engineer, and lifelong avid reader. Soft spots for sci-fi, fantasy, and history, but I'll read anything good.

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  • "How it was"

    Overall
    Performance
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    While I wasn’t at Id Software or any of its spin-offs, I was part of the videogame industry from the late 1990s to the mid-2000s, working at one small company that created a blockbuster hit, as well as several studios that didn’t make it. Much in this book speaks to my personal experience. Learning to program on the Apple II and IBM PC. Getting in touch with the hacker and homebrew community via BBS’s (the real predecessor to the web). Being an eager 20-something for whom coding and life were the same thing. The huge rush of making a game that connects with fans. The politics, ego battles, and emotional burnout that inevitably come with fame, high expectations, and endless project crunch. Kushner seems to have done a thorough job with his research and interviews, and the result is a very honest account of how things were during the last cowboy days of the videogame industry, when a handful of basement coders and artists with no real professional experience could still create a technologically-impressive smash hit game. (Nowadays, you need dozens of developers and tens of millions of dollars -- at least.)

    The history of Id Software itself is a definitive story for gamers and gaming. John Romero, John Carmack, and their various partners were basically just passionate young hobbyists with a dream and a lot of faith in themselves. I grew up playing their games years before DOOM came out, and it was a pleasure seeing the crew’s design and programming skills mature with each title. By the time they hit their peak of fame, they had helped push the once clunky PC into a viable gaming platform; invented the first-person shooter and online deathmatching; and opened game development up to casual hobbyists, by making their products relatively easy to customize with mods, tools, and add-ons.

    The yin-yang partnership between Carmack and Romero is the central drama here. Romero was a gamer’s gamer, a brash, trash-talking, heavy metal-loving guy bursting with ideas and enthusiasm. Carmack, meanwhile, was an introverted, Aspergian whiz kid with a drive and knack for understanding technology. I can tell you that the games business wouldn’t exist without both types of people (tempered by others), and Masters of Doom casts the two of them as friends who drove each other to greater heights, until their differences became too great for them to get along, and the partnership collapsed. In my opinion, this breakdown was probably inevitable -- fame had given Romero an inflated sense of his own prowess as a game designer, and Carmack was never that interested in game design to begin with (just coding). Both were overtaken by the industry their work had fueled, as pioneers often are. Kushner gives us all the sordid details, though. There’s Romero’s hubris and humiliating downfall post-Id, after the failure of Ion Storm proved that being a rock star doesn’t equate with knowing how to run a company. There’s Carmack’s inability to manage and easily relate to other people, not an uncommon fault in technical geniuses -- though he seems to have since softened around the edges and remains an important innovator.

    Being so specific to an era and a subculture, and full of dated technology and game references, this book will speak to some readers more than others, but I think it’s at least skim-worthy for anyone with an interest in gaming or game development. If you don’t tire of the immature antics of young geeks, there are some funny anecdotes, such as the moment when Romero hires a designer who’s a Mormon and keeps putting his foot in his mouth (“At least you’re not one of those crazy Mormons with a ton of kids.” “No, I have five children.” “Okay, well, at least it’s not ten kids and you’re not one of the ones that wears the magic underwear.” “No, I’ve got it on right here”. Etc...) And the tale of Carmack’s commitment to the rules of Dungeons & Dragons, to the point of destroying his own labored-over world after Romero acquires and unleashes a world-ending weapon, is telling.

    As a former game developer, I urge anyone aspiring to that field to absorb the lessons here. Between them, the members of Id had many instructive successes, disappointments, and failures.

    I should mention that Will Wheaton is brilliant as an audiobook narrator, his boyish enthusiasm a perfect fit for the subject matter. Sometimes he gets so carried away in his excitement, his voice actually cracks. He also does some amusing vocal affectations, from the nasally, “concerned parent” voice of an organization opposed to videogame violence, but not having much of a clue about how gamers really think or act, to a suitably cheesy “dungeon master” intonement of the bad writing in the introduction to one of Carmack’s early games.

    A riveting read for the right audience. I was tripping on memories all the way through.

    More

    Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By David Kushner
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (423)
    Performance
    (397)
    Story
    (394)

    Masters of Doom is the amazing true story of the Lennon and McCartney of video games: John Carmack and John Romero. Together, they ruled big business. They transformed popular culture. And they provoked a national controversy. More than anything, they lived a unique and rollicking American Dream, escaping the broken homes of their youth to produce the most notoriously successful game franchises in history - Doom and Quake - until the games they made tore them apart. This is a story of friendship and betrayal, commerce and artistry.

    Ryan says: "How it was"
  1. Masters of Doom: How Two ...
  2. .

A Peek at Darryl's Bookshelf

Helpful
Votes
332
 
Cedar Rapids, IA, United States 205 REVIEWS / 914 ratings Member Since 2005 15 Followers / Following 0
 
Darryl's greatest hits:
  • Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla: Biography of a Genius

    "fascinating"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    this was an incredible biography of a multifaceted genius. i came to this from old curiosity but also from recent listen to Pynchon's Against the Day in which Tesla is an element of the story. i became more interested in learning about Tesla and I did not regret the time. in fact a friend who also listened to Pynchon is following up Tesla. it is mind boggling to imagine the world we could have today if only a key turn in history or in Tesla's fortunes or temperament had gone differently. we literally could have leap-frogged the 20th century and have cleaner energy etc. the list of items and technologies he created or envisioned is ridiculous. i chose this bio because it appeared to be the most comprehensive and i'm glad i did. i highly recommend this one if you are curious in Tesla, but also in early 20th century, late 19th, history: the list of people and events connected even tangentially with Tesla is also staggering. and the narration is fine, just at times he does a couple voices that are similar and can confuse who's speaking a little, not major.

  • Hedy's Folly: The Life and Breakthrough Inventions of Hedy Lamarr, the Most Beautiful Woman in the World

    "fascinating short bio"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this. the narrator was fine, finally. I've had a bad streak of lackluster readers.

    But this story is good and there is a good bit of bio on George Antheil as well (helps to understand what he brings to the device) leading up to his and Hedy's meeting and work on the torpedo problem. (you can sample his Ballet Mechanique in itunes to see what he was up to musically, quite different).

    but i think the important thing that came across to me was again how short sighted, perhaps in this case misogynistic, men in power were and can be. anyone with the guts and the intelligence to realize what Hedy and Antheil devised could have appreciable shortened WW2. Not to mention kickstarted our electronic age 40 years earlier. It made me think of the Tesla bio Wizard and what a different world we could be living in right now. You don't get a sense of that aspect until the wrap up and that's not what this bio is about except tangentially. But the ideas are presented in a manner that makes them accessible to the layman. the first half is very much the bio aspects of the 2, but the whole thing moves quickly and is short as well so i can recommend it.

    and to think that her/their ideas, if they had retained the patent, could have made them billions.

Wolfpacker

Wolfpacker Memphis, TN 02-04-08 Member Since 2005

Curtis

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103
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3
  • "Nice Review of Important Events in ..."

    5 of 5 helpful votes

    This was a well-written and well-read book that did not drag in the least. It will particularly appeal if you enjoy science and experimental design. I think it would be almost as good even if you have other bends. The human side of the story is enjoyable while the significance of the medical breakthrough against Polio is noteworthy. The tie-ins with history events in the US with FDR and other issues in the 30's, 40's, and 50's brought the book home to me.

    More

    Splendid Solution: Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Kluger
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (152)
    Performance
    (71)
    Story
    (71)

    Salk became a cultural hero and icon for a whole generation. Now, at the fiftieth anniversary of the first national vaccination program, and as humanity is tantalizingly close to eradicating polio worldwide, comes this unforgettable chronicle. Salk's work was an unparalleled achievement, and it makes for a magnificent listen.

    Tim says: "Excellent book"

What's Trending in Science & Technology Leaders:

  • 4.8 (10 ratings)
    Legacies of Great Economists  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Timothy Taylor

    Legacies of Great Economists

    • ORIGINAL (7 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Timothy Taylor
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (7)

    When it comes to economics and economic theory, a few thinkers dominate the landscape. Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Alfred Marshall, John Maynard Keynes, and a handful of others have shaped the world of economics and influenced our lives. These 10 lectures acquaint you with the thoughts, theories, and lives of these great economists.

    PHIL says: "A fine basic survey: a home run for Prof. Taylor"
  • 4.5 (10514 ratings)
    Steve Jobs (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Dylan Baker

    Steve Jobs

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (10514)
    Performance
    (9069)
    Story
    (9029)

    Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

    Chris says: "Good Biography, Fine narrator"
  • 4.3 (3424 ratings)
    Einstein: His Life and Universe (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Edward Herrmann

    Einstein: His Life and Universe

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    Overall
    (3424)
    Performance
    (1415)
    Story
    (1423)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: You thought he was a stodgy scientist with funny hair, but Isaacson and Hermann reveal an eloquent, intense, and selfless human being who not only shaped science with his theories, but politics and world events in the 20th century as well. Based on the newly released personal letters of Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos.

    Henrik says: "Surprise: Two books in one!"
  • 4.3 (1606 ratings)
    Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! (






UNABRIDGED) by Richard P. Feynman Narrated by Raymond Todd

    Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Richard P. Feynman
    • Narrated By Raymond Todd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1606)
    Performance
    (636)
    Story
    (641)

    With his characteristic eyebrow-raising behavior, Richard P. Feynman once provoked the wife of a Princeton dean to remark, "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman!" But the many scientific and personal achievements of this Nobel Prize-winning physicist are no laughing matter. Here, woven with his scintillating views on modern science, Feynman relates the defining moments of his accomplished life.

    Steven says: "My favorite audio book"
  •  
  • 4.5 (1213 ratings)
    Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Dylan Baker, Walter Isaacson

    Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker, Walter Isaacson
    Overall
    (1213)
    Performance
    (1046)
    Story
    (1049)

    In Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography, Walter Isaacson provides an extraordinary account of Jobs' professional and personal life. Drawn from three years of exclusive and unprecedented interviews Isaacson has conducted with Jobs as well as extensive interviews with Jobs' family members and key colleagues from Apple and its competitors, this is the definitive portrait of the greatest innovator of his generation.

    john says: "More man, less tech, might have made a better book"
  • 4.5 (423 ratings)
    Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture (






UNABRIDGED) by David Kushner Narrated by Wil Wheaton

    Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By David Kushner
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (423)
    Performance
    (397)
    Story
    (394)

    Masters of Doom is the amazing true story of the Lennon and McCartney of video games: John Carmack and John Romero. Together, they ruled big business. They transformed popular culture. And they provoked a national controversy. More than anything, they lived a unique and rollicking American Dream, escaping the broken homes of their youth to produce the most notoriously successful game franchises in history - Doom and Quake - until the games they made tore them apart. This is a story of friendship and betrayal, commerce and artistry.

    Ryan says: "How it was"
  • 4.5 (263 ratings)
    Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal (






UNABRIDGED) by Nick Bilton Narrated by Daniel May

    Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Nick Bilton
    • Narrated By Daniel May
    Overall
    (263)
    Performance
    (231)
    Story
    (231)

    Twitter seems like a perfect start-up success story. In barely six years, a small group of young, ambitious programmers in Silicon Valley built an $11.5 billion business out of the ashes of a failed podcasting company. Today Twitter boasts more than 200 million active users and has affected business, politics, media, and other fields in innumerable ways.

    Ann Magor says: "A Shakespearean Drama"
  • The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA (






UNABRIDGED) by James D. Watson Narrated by Grover Gardner, Roger Clark

    The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By James D. Watson
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner, Roger Clark
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (101)
    Story
    (102)

    By identifying the structure of DNA, the molecule of life, Francis Crick and James Watson revolutionized biochemistry and won themselves a Nobel Prize. At the time, Watson was only 24, a young scientist hungry to make his mark. His uncompromisingly honest account of the heady days of their thrilling sprint against other world-class researchers to solve one of science's greatest mysteries gives a dazzlingly clear picture of a world of brilliant scientists with great gifts, very human ambitions, and bitter rivalries.

    A. Lai says: "Fabulous book!"
  • Steve Jobs (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Dylan Baker

    Steve Jobs

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (10514)
    Performance
    (9069)
    Story
    (9029)

    Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

    Chris says: "Good Biography, Fine narrator"
  • Einstein: His Life and Universe (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Edward Herrmann

    Einstein: His Life and Universe

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    Overall
    (3424)
    Performance
    (1415)
    Story
    (1423)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: You thought he was a stodgy scientist with funny hair, but Isaacson and Hermann reveal an eloquent, intense, and selfless human being who not only shaped science with his theories, but politics and world events in the 20th century as well. Based on the newly released personal letters of Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos.

    Henrik says: "Surprise: Two books in one!"
  • Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal (






UNABRIDGED) by Nick Bilton Narrated by Daniel May

    Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Nick Bilton
    • Narrated By Daniel May
    Overall
    (263)
    Performance
    (231)
    Story
    (231)

    Twitter seems like a perfect start-up success story. In barely six years, a small group of young, ambitious programmers in Silicon Valley built an $11.5 billion business out of the ashes of a failed podcasting company. Today Twitter boasts more than 200 million active users and has affected business, politics, media, and other fields in innumerable ways.

    Ann Magor says: "A Shakespearean Drama"
  •  
  • Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products (






UNABRIDGED) by Leander Kahney Narrated by Simon Vance

    Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Leander Kahney
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (128)
    Story
    (126)

    The best-selling author of Inside Steve's Brain profiles Apple's legendary chief designer, Jonathan Ive. Jony Ive's designs have not only made Apple one of the most valuable companies in the world; they've overturned entire industries, from music and mobile phones to PCs and tablets.

    Steve says: "OK, but not compelling"
  • The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters (






UNABRIDGED) by Gregory Zuckerman Narrated by Sean Pratt

    The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Gregory Zuckerman
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (53)

    Everyone knew it was crazy to try to extract oil and natural gas buried in shale rock deep below the ground. Everyone, that is, except a few reckless wildcatters - who risked their careers to prove the world wrong. Things looked grim for American energy in 2006. Oil production was in steep decline and natural gas was hard to find. The Iraq War threatened the nation’s already tenuous relations with the Middle East. China was rapidly industrializing and competing for resources.

    T. Chambless says: "Excellent Book but Mispronunciations Abound!"
  • Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! (






UNABRIDGED) by Richard P. Feynman Narrated by Raymond Todd

    Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Richard P. Feynman
    • Narrated By Raymond Todd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1606)
    Performance
    (636)
    Story
    (641)

    With his characteristic eyebrow-raising behavior, Richard P. Feynman once provoked the wife of a Princeton dean to remark, "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman!" But the many scientific and personal achievements of this Nobel Prize-winning physicist are no laughing matter. Here, woven with his scintillating views on modern science, Feynman relates the defining moments of his accomplished life.

    Steven says: "My favorite audio book"
  • Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla: Biography of a Genius (






UNABRIDGED) by Marc J. Seifer Narrated by Simon Prebble

    Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla: Biography of a Genius

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Marc J. Seifer
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    Overall
    (738)
    Performance
    (662)
    Story
    (648)

    Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), credited as the inspiration for radio, robots, and even radar, has been called the patron saint of modern electricity. Based on original material and previously unavailable documents, this acclaimed book is the definitive biography of the man considered by many to be the founding father of modern electrical technology.

    Jean says: "Tesla was a hundred years ahead of his time"
  •  
  • High Price: A Neuroscientist's Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society (






UNABRIDGED) by Carl Hart Narrated by J. D. Jackson

    High Price: A Neuroscientist's Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Carl Hart
    • Narrated By J. D. Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    A pioneering neuroscientist shares his story of growing up in one of Miami's toughest neighborhoods and how it led him to his groundbreaking work in drug addiction. As a youth, Carl Hart didn't realize the value of school; he studied just enough to stay on the basketball team. At the same time, he was immersed in street life. Today he is a cutting-edge neuroscientist - Columbia University's first tenured African American professor in the sciences.

    Matthew R. Herald says: "An excellent book to make you think"
  • The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements (






UNABRIDGED) by Sam Kean Narrated by Sean Runnette

    The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Sam Kean
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (1954)
    Performance
    (1193)
    Story
    (1198)

    Reporter Sam Kean reveals the periodic table as it’s never been seen before. Not only is it one of man's crowning scientific achievements, it's also a treasure trove of stories of passion, adventure, betrayal, and obsession. The infectious tales and astounding details in The Disappearing Spoon follow carbon, neon, silicon, and gold as they play out their parts in human history, finance, mythology, war, the arts, poison, and the lives of the (frequently) mad scientists who discovered them.

    Ethan M. says: "Excellent, if unfocused"
  • Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Dylan Baker, Walter Isaacson

    Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker, Walter Isaacson
    Overall
    (1213)
    Performance
    (1046)
    Story
    (1049)

    In Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography, Walter Isaacson provides an extraordinary account of Jobs' professional and personal life. Drawn from three years of exclusive and unprecedented interviews Isaacson has conducted with Jobs as well as extensive interviews with Jobs' family members and key colleagues from Apple and its competitors, this is the definitive portrait of the greatest innovator of his generation.

    john says: "More man, less tech, might have made a better book"
  • The Wizard of Menlo Park: How Thomas Alva Edison Invented the Modern World (






UNABRIDGED) by Randall E. Stross Narrated by Grover Gardner

    The Wizard of Menlo Park: How Thomas Alva Edison Invented the Modern World

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Randall E. Stross
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (158)
    Performance
    (137)
    Story
    (138)

    At the height of his fame Thomas Alva Edison was hailed as “the Napoleon of invention” and blazed in the public imagination as a virtual demigod. Newspapers proclaimed his genius in glowing personal profiles and quipped that “the doctor has been called” because the great man “has not invented anything since breakfast.” But Edison's greatest invention may have been his own celebrity.

    Elizabeth says: "Enlightening, but not compelling"
  • Samuel F.B. Morse (






UNABRIDGED) by H. A. Lewis Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    Samuel F.B. Morse

    • UNABRIDGED (8 mins)
    • By H. A. Lewis
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A biographical story written in 1888, this is a look at both Professor Morse as well as those who inspired him. We get to experience the frustration he felt at the initial lack of backing by the U.S. Government, and the joy he experienced at proving his theories and expanding the reach of his greatest invention - the telegraph. We also learn that, beyond a profound inventor, Morse was first known as a very gifted artist. This is a biographical sketch for all ages. Narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Alexander Graham Bell (






UNABRIDGED) by Philip G. Hurbert Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    Alexander Graham Bell

    • UNABRIDGED (7 mins)
    • By Philip G. Hurbert
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A biography of the famed inventor of the phone. We learn the very personal motivation behind his work. We also come to understand that the information comes from the pen of one who made his observations while Bell was still alive - and still inventing. Narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Minecraft: The Unlikely Tale of Markus 'Notch' Persson and the Game that Changed Everything (






UNABRIDGED) by Linus Larsson, Daniel Goldberg, Jennifer Hawkins (translator) Narrated by Jonathan Davis

    Minecraft: The Unlikely Tale of Markus 'Notch' Persson and the Game that Changed Everything

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Linus Larsson, Daniel Goldberg, Jennifer Hawkins (translator)
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (16)

    Three years ago, 32-year-old Markus "Notch" Persson of Stockholm was an unknown and bored computer programmer. Today, he is a multi-millionaire international icon. Minecraft, the "virtual Lego" game Markus crafted in his free time, has become one of the most talked about activities since Tetris. Talked about by tens of millions of people, in fact.It is the story of unlikely success, fast money, and the power of digital technology to rattle an empire. And it is about creation, exclusion, and the feeling of not fitting in.

    Susie says: "From Legos to Pixels"
  • Letters to a Young Mathematician: Art of Mentoring (






UNABRIDGED) by Ian Stewart Narrated by Jason Huggins

    Letters to a Young Mathematician: Art of Mentoring

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Ian Stewart
    • Narrated By Jason Huggins
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Mathematician Ian Stewart tells listeners what he wishes he had known when he was a student. He takes up subjects ranging from the philosophical to the practical-what mathematics is and why it’s worth doing, the relationship between logic and proof, the role of beauty in mathematical thinking, the future of mathematics, how to deal with the peculiarities of the mathematical community, and many others.

  •  
  • Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age (






UNABRIDGED) by W. Bernard Carlson Narrated by Allan Robertson

    Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By W. Bernard Carlson
    • Narrated By Allan Robertson
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (23)
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    Nikola Tesla was a major contributor to the electrical revolution that transformed daily life at the turn of the 20th century. His inventions, patents, and theoretical work formed the basis of modern AC electricity, and contributed to the development of radio and television. Like his competitor Thomas Edison, Tesla was one of America's first celebrity scientists, enjoying the company of New York high society and dazzling the likes of Mark Twain with his electrical demonstrations. An astute self-promoter and gifted showman, he cultivated a public image of the eccentric genius.

    Jean says: "A detailed examination of Tesla's work"
  • George Washington Carver: From Slave to Scientist (Heroes of History) (






UNABRIDGED) by Janet Benge, Geoff Benge Narrated by Tim Gregory

    George Washington Carver: From Slave to Scientist (Heroes of History)

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Janet Benge, Geoff Benge
    • Narrated By Tim Gregory
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    Once a kidnapped slave baby, George Washington Carver (1864?-1943) found freedom in learning everything he could about the world around him. Overcoming poverty and racism, George became a brilliant scientist and a gifted professor who dedicated his expertise to helping black farmers escape the devastating grip of poverty. George's scientific creativity knew no limits. His ingenious experimentation with peanuts and other plants helped rescue the failing Southern economy.

  • A Passion for Nature: The Life of John Muir (






UNABRIDGED) by Donald Worster Narrated by Jim Frangione

    A Passion for Nature: The Life of John Muir

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Donald Worster
    • Narrated By Jim Frangione
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    "I am hopelessly and forever a mountaineer," John Muir wrote. "Civilization and fever and all the morbidness that has been hooted at me has not dimmed my glacial eye, and I care to live only to entice people to look at Nature's loveliness. My own special self is nothing". In Donald Worster's magisterial biography, John Muir's "special self" is fully explored as is his extraordinary ability, then and now, to get others to see the sacred beauty of the natural world.

  • High Price: A Neuroscientist's Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society (






UNABRIDGED) by Carl Hart Narrated by J. D. Jackson

    High Price: A Neuroscientist's Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Carl Hart
    • Narrated By J. D. Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    A pioneering neuroscientist shares his story of growing up in one of Miami's toughest neighborhoods and how it led him to his groundbreaking work in drug addiction. As a youth, Carl Hart didn't realize the value of school; he studied just enough to stay on the basketball team. At the same time, he was immersed in street life. Today he is a cutting-edge neuroscientist - Columbia University's first tenured African American professor in the sciences.

    Matthew R. Herald says: "An excellent book to make you think"