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Bios & Memoirs > Science & Technology Leaders

Science & Technology Leaders

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Chris

Chris Woodland Hills, CA, United States Member Since 2005
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  • "Good Biography, Fine narrator"

    Overall
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    Story

    I'm a little less than a third of the way through and find the book quite interesting. It seems to be a fair portrait of Jobs, blemishes and all. I'm writing this before finishing, though, in defense of the narrator, who seems to be taking quite a few hits on this page for, apparently, not sounding enough like Steve Jobs.

    Here's my take: The narrator is just fine, and does a clean, professional job, comparable to what you get in many of the best biographies. I've heard "terrible" narrators; this fellow is not one. His reading is nothing that would normally raise complaints. He does not do a Steve Jobs impersonation, which is exactly the way I, personally, would like him to approach it. But Jobs was such a public personality, with a nearly cult-like following, that some listeners seem to be taking their obsession with Jobs out on the narrator because he is not Jobs. I don't think that is reasonable.

    So, I'm enjoying the book. I hope you will as well.

    More

    Steve Jobs

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (11387)
    Performance
    (9854)
    Story
    (9826)

    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"
  1. Steve Jobs
  2. .

A Peek at Rick's Bookshelf

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16 REVIEWS / 272 ratings 13 Followers / Following 0
 
Rick's greatest hits:
  • Steve Jobs

    "Fine narration and a compelling story."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and, as I cannot improve on the many positive comments, I write in defense of the narrator. As a longtime Audible subscriber, I've listened to many of the best (and some of the worst) narrators in the Audible world. Frankly, I find some of the negative comments for this book's narration to be over the top and a few are downright mean spirited. That said, all are entitled to their own opinion. I found the narrator to be well-paced with a clear, pleasant voice and nice inflection, Do not be put off. This is a great book about a true visionary in our own time. Narrator, Dylan Baker, does a fine job with this much anticipated Audible release. Enjoy!

  • iWoz: How I Invented the Personal Computer and Had Fun Along the Way

    "A good solid read all around."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Excellent narration captures the "gee whiz" approach to life that seems to be the core of Woz. Clearly he was and is a kid at heart as well as the extremely intelligent engineer that created the original Apple 1 and 2. Without a doubt, his work helped to revolutionize how people live, work and play on a global scale. What came though for me was that Woz the engineer could neither communicate effectively with non-engineers nor could he envision how to market his products. I can see where some might think the story self-indulgent but it is, after all, an autobiography. Woz, ever the engineer, takes the logical approach of telling his story straight out, make of it what you will. What some find self-indulgent I took as Woz believing in himself and his accomplishments and wanting to get his side of the story on the record. The book was made more poignant for me as I was about halfway though when Apple announced that Steve Jobs had died. Woz was clearly a gifted engineer but without the marketing vision of Jobs, Woz might have remained just another engineer in the backroom. I was a high school student in 1970 and actually used most of the computers discussed in the book. It brought back some great memories. I found it to be a compelling, interesting story very well read by Patrick Lawlor.

Ryan

Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 08-27-13 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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14
  • "How it was"

    12 of 12 helpful votes

    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
    (575)
    Performance
    (540)
    Story
    (540)

    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"

What's Trending in Science & Technology Leaders:

  • 4.5 (11387 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
    (11387)
    Performance
    (9854)
    Story
    (9826)

    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"
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    Einstein: His Life and Universe (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Edward Herrmann

    Einstein: His Life and Universe

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    Henrik says: "Surprise: Two books in one!"
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    Steven Petersen says: "My favorite audio book"
  • 4.6 (1293 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
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    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 (575 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
    (575)
    Performance
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    Story
    (540)

    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"
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    Ann Magor says: "A Shakespearean Drama"
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    Jeffrey Schwartz says: "A different perspective but..."
  • 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
    (11387)
    Performance
    (9854)
    Story
    (9826)

    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"
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UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Edward Herrmann

    Einstein: His Life and Universe

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    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3725)
    Performance
    (1671)
    Story
    (1682)

    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!"
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    Jean says: "Tesla was a hundred years ahead of his time"
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UNABRIDGED) by Richard P. Feynman Narrated by Raymond Todd

    Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!

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    • By Richard P. Feynman
    • Narrated By Raymond Todd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    Steven Petersen says: "My favorite audio book"
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    Ruth says: "Absolutely inspiring!"
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    Hatching Twitter: A True Story of Money, Power, Friendship, and Betrayal

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Nick Bilton
    • Narrated By Daniel May
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    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"
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    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Scott Rosenberg
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  •  
  • 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
    (1293)
    Performance
    (1114)
    Story
    (1120)

    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"
  • Steve Jobs. La Biografía (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Roberto Medina

    Steve Jobs. La Biografía

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Roberto Medina
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    La biografía definitiva de Steve Jobs, el fundador de Apple, escrita con su colaboración.Tras más de cuarenta entrevistas con Steve Jobs y con un centenar de personas de su entorno, familiares, amigos, adversarios y colegas, esta es la biografía definitiva de uno de los iconos indiscutibles de nuestro tiempo, del genio cuya creatividad, energía y perfeccionismo revolucionaron seis industrias: informática, películas de animación, música, teléfonos, tabletas y edición digital.Cuando el mundo buscaba cómo construir las bases de una economía digital, Jobs fue un símbolo de la inventiva.

  • 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
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    Performance
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    Story
    (42)

    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.

    Linda Glisson says: "Great "biography" of the brain(s) behind Minecraft"
  • 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
    (575)
    Performance
    (540)
    Story
    (540)

    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"
  • Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner (






UNABRIDGED) by Judy Melinek, MD, T. J. Mitchell Narrated by Tanya Eby

    Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Judy Melinek, MD, T. J. Mitchell
    • Narrated By Tanya Eby
    Overall
    (14)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (14)

    Just two months before the September 11 terrorist attacks, Dr. Judy Melinek began her training as a New York City forensic pathologist. With her husband and their toddler holding down the home front, Judy threw herself into the fascinating world of death investigation-performing autopsies, investigating death scenes, and counseling grieving relatives. Working Stiff chronicles Judy's two years of training, taking listeners behind the police tape of some of the most harrowing deaths in the Big Apple.

    Barbara says: "An interesting glimpse"
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UNABRIDGED) by Jeffrey Rothfeder Narrated by Mel Foster

    Driving Honda: Inside the World’s Most Innovative Car Company

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Rothfeder
    • Narrated By Mel Foster
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    For decades there have been two iconic Japanese auto companies. One has been endlessly studied and written about. The other has been generally underappreciated and misunderstood. Until now. Since its birth as a motorcycle company in 1949, Honda has steadily grown into the world’s fifth largest automaker and top engine manufacturer, as well as one of the most beloved, most profitable, and most consistently innovative multinational corporations.

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    Neil Armstrong: A Life of Flight

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Jay Barbree
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
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    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Much has been written about Neil Armstrong, America's modern hero and history's most famous space traveler. Yet, shy of fame and never one to steal the spotlight, Armstrong was always reluctant to discuss his personal side of events. Here for the first time is the definitive story of Neil's life of flight he shared for five decades with a trusted friend - Jay Barbree.

    Brenda says: "Best book I've read in years!"
  • Steve Jobs. La Biografía (






UNABRIDGED) by Walter Isaacson Narrated by Roberto Medina

    Steve Jobs. La Biografía

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Roberto Medina
    Overall
    (4)
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    La biografía definitiva de Steve Jobs, el fundador de Apple, escrita con su colaboración.Tras más de cuarenta entrevistas con Steve Jobs y con un centenar de personas de su entorno, familiares, amigos, adversarios y colegas, esta es la biografía definitiva de uno de los iconos indiscutibles de nuestro tiempo, del genio cuya creatividad, energía y perfeccionismo revolucionaron seis industrias: informática, películas de animación, música, teléfonos, tabletas y edición digital.Cuando el mundo buscaba cómo construir las bases de una economía digital, Jobs fue un símbolo de la inventiva.

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  • Turing: Pioneer of the Information Age (






UNABRIDGED) by B. Jack Copeland Narrated by Kaleo Griffith

    Turing: Pioneer of the Information Age

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By B. Jack Copeland
    • Narrated By Kaleo Griffith
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    Alan Turing can be regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 20th century. But who was Turing, and what did he achieve during his tragically short life of 41 years? Best known as the genius who broke Germany's most secret codes during the war of 1939-45, Turing was also the father of the modern computer. Today, all who 'click-to-open' are familiar with the impact of Turing's ideas. Here, B. Jack Copeland provides an account of Turing's life and work, exploring the key elements of his life-story in tandem with his leading ideas and contributions.

  • Sally Ride: America's First Woman in Space (






UNABRIDGED) by Lynn Sherr Narrated by Pam Ward

    Sally Ride: America's First Woman in Space

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Lynn Sherr
    • Narrated By Pam Ward
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    A member of the first astronaut class to include women, NASA chose her for the seventh shuttle mission, inspiring several generations of women. After a second flight, Ride served on the panels investigating the Challenger explosion and the Columbia disintegration that killed all aboard. In both instances, she faulted NASA's rush to meet mission deadlines and its organizational failures. She also cofounded a company promoting science and education for children, especially girls.

    Jean says: "Captivating"
  • The Man Who Knew Too Much: Alan Turing and the Invention of the Computer (






UNABRIDGED) by David Leavitt Narrated by Paul Michael Garcia

    The Man Who Knew Too Much: Alan Turing and the Invention of the Computer

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By David Leavitt
    • Narrated By Paul Michael Garcia
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    To solve one of the great mathematical problems of his day, Alan Turing proposed an imaginary computer. Then, attempting to break a Nazi code during World War II, he successfully designed and built one, thus ensuring the Allied victory. Turing became a champion of artificial intelligence, but his work was cut short. As an openly gay man at a time when homosexuality was illegal in England, he was convicted and forced to undergo a humiliating "treatment" that may have led to his suicide.

    Rush D. Austin says: "First Audible Book I Returned"