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. Among Tesla's creations were the channeling of alternating current, fluorescent and neon lighting, wireless telegraphy, and the giant turbines that harnessed the power of Niagara Falls.
©1996 Marc J. Seifer (P)2011 Tantor
"Seifer's vivid, revelatory, exhaustively researched biography rescues pioneer inventor Nikola Tesla from cult status and restores him to his rightful place as a principal architect of the modern age." (Publishers Weekly)
This is a bare-bones story of both a genius beyond our understanding and a multi-flawed human being who we see in everywhere, every day, and sometimes even in the mirror.
Very detailed, even going into some of the details of electrical engineering. There were slow points for sure. But it's a biography and not every period in a person's life can be thrilling. I enjoy biographies however, writers tend to turn their subjects into demigods. Not here! The author stays near the center of the road as he steers through Tesla's life. Some how the author connected me emotionally to Tesla's life. So much so that at times I avoided returning to the book for a few days knowing that what was to follow was not going to be parades and roses.
There is so much information and the way it is presented lacks flow and cohesiveness. I kept wanting to stop but I was so interested in Tesla I would keep on. This was very painful. Mr. Seifer could write several books on Tesla. I just think of a few biographies I recently read and how they had a thematic flow.
While this book is full of information there is much to be wished for in the way it is organized and presented. For example, in order tonfully appreciate the battles over patents and ideas it is essential to have an at least principle understanding of the differences between operating mechanisms. The author does not provide near enough if that which makes it frustrating to hear about the litigations without a deeper understanding of the main arguments. Similarly, the author assumes often knowledge of period history I did not have. That too added to my frustration. A great example of a biography that also delivers the necessary basics of complex science is Isaacson's Einstein biography.
At number 2.
Tesla of course
He did well with the different characters and did not sound like a dufus when he did an impersonation.
The Forgotten Magician of Electricity.
I liked the book very much. This is how all biographies should be written. The book provides uninterrupted statements made by the Tesla sometimes offering more details behind them.
It is very valuable since it leaves to the reader the final judgement of Tesla's theories and statements what offers fairly unobstructed view of the wizard's mind. I even wish more materials and documents were presented in the book, it probably barely skims many topics of Tesla's interests and other achievements.
It war really extraordinary man.
This is truly a fascinating story, but very thorough. Start listening at regular speed but then kick it up to 1.5 speed or it will seem interminable.
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