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Klaus

Princeton, NJ, USA

29
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 43 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Jared Diamond
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    Overall
    (1316)
    Performance
    (263)
    Story
    (268)

    In this groundbreaking work, evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history by revealing the environmental factors actually responsible for history's broadest patterns. It is a story that spans 13,000 years of human history, beginning when Stone Age hunter-gatherers constituted the entire human population. Guns, Germs, and Steel is a world history that really is a history of all the world's peoples, a unified narrative of human life.

    Lorac says: "Badly Abridged"
    "a bit repetitive"
    Overall

    In this book, the author makes a (lengthy) argument for his main thesis, namely an explanation for why the European culture at the end of the Middle Ages (and later) appeared "superior" in some ways over many other cultures such as eg the Native Americans or peoples in Africa or Australia.
    I won't tell you what his explanation is though because you should read the book for that :)
    The writing is easy to follow and logical and the conclusion is convincing. It is overall entertaining and at times somewhat boring.
    One keeps wondering why the author needs so many pages for something that could be explained on a few.
    Despite of that, it is overall worthwhile reading and it is also a famous book so good to have it in your library.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • ENIAC: The Triumphs and Tragedies of the World's First Computer

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Scott McCartney
    • Narrated By Adams Morgan
    Overall
    (267)
    Performance
    (83)
    Story
    (91)

    The world's first programmable computer was the legendary ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer), built by John Mauchly and Presper Eckert. Based on original interviews with surviving participants and the first study of Mauchly and Eckert's personal papers, ENIAC is a dramatic human story and a vital contribution to the history of technology, and it restores to the two inventors the legacy they deserve.

    Glenn says: "Fascinating history..."
    "computing history is made here!"
    Overall

    This book is on the history of the world's first "real" computer, ENIAC. It portrays in
    fascinating ways the times, circumstamce, and the peope involved in this veritable arithmetic monster. i still can hardly believe they eventually accomplished what they did. but not only that, successor computers populated academia, govenment and business for many decades to come. it also tells a little bit about the patent law suit with a rival company and related intellectual property issues whihc is a timely topic.
    it's a fascinating, interesting, deep book that every computer lover should read.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Practicing the Power of Now: Teachings, Meditations, and Exercises from the Power of Now

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Eckhart Tolle
    • Narrated By Eckhart Tolle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (627)
    Performance
    (279)
    Story
    (280)

    Practicing the Power of Now is a carefully arranged series of excerpts from the The Power of Now that directly gives us those exercises and keys. Return to those words, reflect on the words, reflect even on the space between the words and - maybe over time, maybe immediately - you'll discover something of life-changing significance.

    Jan says: "Excellent Refresher"
    "how to let go of future and past"
    Overall

    Tolle is a spiritual master and his books are documents of this mastery. This book is one of his shorter ones and introduces you to the idea of the NOW which is, in Tolle's view, the only thing that really exists. Past and future have no intrinsic reality to them.
    He explains also how to live in the now and what could prevent you from doing so and how to overcome these obstacles.
    Tolle's somewhat monotonous, but warm and almost hypnotizing voice makes particularly the audio book a true spiritual experience that you don't want to miss.
    This book might as well change the way you approach life. And be assured it will be a change you will like.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Message of the Sphinx: A Quest for the Hidden Legacy of Mankind

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs)
    • By Graham Hancock, Robert Bauval
    • Narrated By Nick Ullett
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (42)
    Story
    (42)

    Sophisticated computer techniques are beginning to unravel the riddles posed by Egypt's great monuments of stone. Now this tour de force of historic and scientific detective work provides a startling new vision of mankind's true history.

    Klaus says: "a bit contrived"
    "a bit contrived"
    Overall

    The author has a certain idea in mind of what the Sphinx and the Pyramid mean and he brings forth a series of arguments for his idea.
    While I think that the idea is worthwhile considering, many of his arguments are quite doubtful and debatable. Also the writing tends to be lengthish and boring at times.
    If you are an Egypt freak you might get something out of that audio book, otherwise leave it alone.

    11 of 20 people found this review helpful
  • Portuguese Irregular Verbs

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    Overall
    (121)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (37)

    From New York Times best-selling author Alexander McCall Smith, creator of the phenomenally popular No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency novels and winner of the inaugural Saga Award for Wit, comes the first wonderfully entertaining novel starring Professor Doctor Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, distinguished philologist, and frequently inept human.

    E. Pearson says: "A Delightful Read"
    "tries to be funny, some success"
    Overall

    Another one of McCall-Smith's hilarious series on the German professor Moritz Maria von Igelfeld.
    If the name doesn't make you laugh already, you
    will do so shortly after.
    The book described the adventures of the weird professor, mostly on his vacation in Italy. I think that it is a bit less funny than the "Sausage Dog" volume but still worth a read.
    Don't forget the Kleenex to wipe your tears! :)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Einstein: His Life and Universe

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    Overall
    (160)
    Performance
    (62)
    Story
    (61)

    Based on the newly released personal letters of Albert Einstein, Walter Isaacson explores how an imaginative, impertinent patent clerk, a struggling father in a difficult marriage who couldn't get a teaching job or a doctorate, became the mind reader of the creator of the cosmos, the locksmith of the mysteries of the atom and the universe. His success came from questioning conventional wisdom and marveling at mysteries that struck others as mundane.

    Klaus says: "excellent"
    "excellent"
    Overall

    This bio is a must read for all fans of Einstein,
    all interested in physics, science, history of science, and in Einstein's theories.
    Although this is the abridged version (7 vs 21 hours) you don't feel there's much left out, so much detail is contained in this book.
    It covers all aspects of Einstein's life, personal as well as scientific and describes to some detail the steps of thought Einstein was going thru to develop his theories.
    It should be easily understood by the non-physicist and bring insights also to the "expert".
    I truly enjoyed the read and maybe some time go for the unabridged one :)

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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