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Atila

  • 7
  • reviews
  • 68
  • helpful votes
  • 35
  • ratings
  • Social Physics

  • How Good Ideas Spread - The Lessons from a New Science
  • By: Alex Pentland
  • Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
  • Length: 6 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 162
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 137
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 137

From one of the world’s leading data scientists, a landmark tour ofthe new science of idea flow, offering revolutionary insights into the mysteries of collective intelligence and social influence.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent intro, but overly ambitious conclusions

  • By Rick on 02-14-14

The most self-promoting book I've read.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-02-14

This is all I take from this book. Some great ideas, but the author just ignores anyone else's contribution to any filed and talks mostly about how he and his students created start-ups to explore those ideas. Don't get me wrong, there's great content there, but I read a conscious effort to downplay the whole field in order to make the author's contributions sound like the only good ideas ever developed.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Proof

  • The Science of Booze
  • By: Adam Rogers
  • Narrated by: Sean Runnette
  • Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,191
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,072
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,068

A spirited narrative on the fascinating art and science of alcohol, sure to inspire cocktail party chats on making booze, tasting it, and its effects on our bodies and brains. Drinking gets a lot more interesting when you know what's actually inside your glass of microbrewed ale, single-malt whisky, or Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. All of them begin with fermentation, where a fungus called yeast binges on sugar molecules and poops out ethanol. Humans have been drinking the results for 10,000 years. Distillation is a 2,000-year-old technology - invented by a woman - that we're still perfecting today.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great listening to all about booze

  • By Atila on 08-02-14

Great listening to all about booze

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-02-14

I love how this book touches all aspects of alcohol. From the making (and our discovery on how to do so) to fermentation, distillation, storage and ageing in barrels and drinking. I'm a scientist and have a background in every aspect os booze making, and still enjoyed new facts and science based content. I don't have one single reason not to recommend this book.

47 of 50 people found this review helpful

  • My Beloved Brontosaurus

  • On the Road with Old Bones, New Science, and Our Favorite Dinosaurs
  • By: Brian Switek
  • Narrated by: Brian Switek
  • Length: 6 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 53
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 47
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47

Dinosaurs, with their awe-inspiring size, terrifying claws and teeth, and otherworldly abilities, occupy a sacred place in our childhoods. They loom over museum halls, thunder through movies, and are a fundamental part of our collective imagination. In My Beloved Brontosaurus, the dinosaur fanatic Brian Switek enriches the childlike sense of wonder these amazing creatures instill in us. Investigating the latest discoveries in paleontology, he breathes new life into old bones.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good story, bad reading!

  • By J. D. Botet on 06-16-13

A passionate update on Dinosaurs

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-21-13

Ever since I left my dinomania behind, I still love dinosaurs, but don't have the time to read all the new science that has been produced in the last years about them. And it is so much new stuff. Brian Switek does exactly this, puts us up to date to what is currently known about dinos. He is a great science writer that I have followed for many years thorough the blog Laelaps and is completely qualified for this role.

Narrated by himself, you can hear how he came to love dinosaurs and kept this passion until adulthood, and how much about what we thought about dinosaurs changed. How they evolved, what colours they had, what sound they maid, how they behaved, how they grew so much, how they made sex and more. Well written, well explained and citing scientific sources, a great reading. My only complain is that it left me wanting more.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Toms River

  • A Story of Science and Salvation
  • By: Dan Fagin
  • Narrated by: Dan Woren
  • Length: 18 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 294
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 266
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 266

One of New Jersey’s seemingly innumerable quiet seaside towns, Toms River became the unlikely setting for a decades-long drama that culminated in 2001 with one of the largest legal settlements in the annals of toxic dumping. A town that would rather have been known for its Little League World Series champions ended up making history for an entirely different reason: a notorious cluster of childhood cancers scientifically linked to local air and water pollution.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Toms River Resident

  • By Beezie Reader on 04-22-13

Great story+Excellent scientific review

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-02-13

A really great science book with a engaging background story. This books tells how a small town suffered of ambiental pollution while recounting the emergence of the modern industry chemical giants, the development of cancer epidemiology, environmental pollution and much more. The "scientific intermissions" among the story are very well explained and really contribute to the comprehension of how the public understanding of environment pollution, economic development and health came to change from the 1950's to modern times.

I was surprised with the quality and description of science intermingled with the town story. It is a dense and long listening, full of names, chemistry and dates, but told and read in such a competent way that it is easy to follow. The author has picked the perfect time period and health drama to tell the development of the discovery of the link between cancer, environment and epidemiology. I see this book as a half way between The Imortal Life of Henrietta Lacks–with more science and a less personal touch on the human story–and The Emperor of All Maladies–with less about cancer, more about the comprehension of the environmental factors associated to its emergence and a more engaging human side.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Rabid

  • A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus
  • By: Bill Wasik, Monica Murphy
  • Narrated by: Johnny Heller
  • Length: 8 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,279
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,141
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,145

The most fatal virus known to science, rabies kills nearly 100 percent of its victims once the infection takes root in the brain. From Greek myths to zombie flicks, from the laboratory heroics of Louis Pasteur to the contemporary search for a lifesaving treatment, Rabid is a fresh, fascinating, and often wildly entertaining look at one of mankind’s oldest and most fearsome foes.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • My favorite science read this year.

  • By Sparkly on 10-06-12

I didn't know rabies had such importance

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-01-12

A great description of the importance of rabies in human history and culture, as it was the first infectious disease to have the mechanism of transmission understood. I had no idea that rabies had caused such a deep impression in human culture as described (sometimes to extensively, in my opinion). Overall a great book about disease, if you don't mind its specificity.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Napoleon's Buttons

  • 17 Molecules That Changed History
  • By: Penny Le Couteur, Jay Burreson
  • Narrated by: Laural Merlington
  • Length: 11 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 213
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 189
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 191

Napoleon's Buttons is the fascinating account of 17 groups of molecules that have greatly influenced the course of history. These molecules provided the impetus for early exploration, and made possible the voyages of discovery that ensued. The molecules resulted in grand feats of engineering and spurred advances in medicine and law; they determined what we now eat, drink, and wear. A change as small as the position of an atom can lead to enormous alterations in the properties of a substance.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Wish one of the authors would have read this book

  • By A.J. on 03-09-12

Best Chemistry popular book

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-01-12

I have listened to two other great chemistry books (The Disappearing Spoon and uncle Tungsten), and this one is the best. The Disappearing Spoon is the most complete, with more elements and much more about the creation of the Periodical Table, and Uncle Tungsten is much more personal and anecdotal. But Napoleon's Button had the greatest descriptions and historical context to the chosen molecules. The importance of each molecule explained and the role it played in human history is clear and very well explained.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Dodger

  • By: Terry Pratchett
  • Narrated by: Steven Briggs
  • Length: 9 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 175
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 166
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 168

Dodger is a tosher – a sewer scavenger living in the squalor of Dickensian London. Everyone who is nobody knows Dodger. Anyone who is anybody doesn’t.But when he rescues a young girl from a beating, suddenly everybody wants to know him.And Dodger’s tale of skulduggery, dark plans and even darker deeds begins.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Familiar faces, even if it's not Discworld

  • By Jennifer on 09-17-12

Nice Pratchett story, unfortunately not Discworld

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-01-12

What made the experience of listening to Dodger the most enjoyable?

I just love Briggss' narration.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

I have the impression that Pratchett's last books (like Snuff) had a more complex and entertaining plot. This one has a simple straightforward story, above Pratchett's average in my opinion, but compensates with the historical references to old London. Can't be disappointed with Pratchett stories.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful