Publishing and the Advancement of Science

Author: Michael Rodgers
Publisher: World Scientific
ISBN: 1783263733
Format: PDF
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Popular science books, selling in their thousands — even millions — help us appreciate breakthroughs in understanding the natural world, while highlighting the cultural importance of scientific knowledge. Textbooks bring these same advances to students; the scientists of tomorrow. But how do these books come about? And why are some of them so spectacularly successful? This is the first ever insider's account of science publishing, written by an editor intimately involved in the publication of some of the most famous bestsellers in the field. Michael Rodgers reveals the stories behind these extraordinary books, providing a behind-the-scenes view of the world of books, authors and ideas. These vivid and engaging narratives illuminate not only the challenges of writing about science, but also how publishing itself works and the creative collaboration between authors and editors that lies at its heart. The book (like many of those it describes) is intended for a wide readership. It will interest people in publishing, past and present, and also academics and students on publishing courses. Scientists exploring territories outside their own speciality will enjoy it, while there is invaluable advice for those planning their first popular book or textbook. It will also appeal to readers with a humanities background who, finding the concepts of science intriguing, want to know more about how they are developed and communicated. Contents:Foreword (Richard Dawkins)PrologueHawking, Einstein, and Popular ScienceDiscovering the World of Science and ScientistsFalling Under the Spell of the Selfish GeneThe Origins and Evolution of the College Science Textbook, and the Birth of a SuperstarA Companion to the Mind, and Science in the Vegetable Gardenr- and K-Selection, and the Extended PhenotypeThe Blind Watchmaker, and the Universe in Twenty ObjectsBill Hamilton and John Maynard Smith: Working with Two Giants of Evolutionary BiologyThe Best Textbook of Organic Chemistry I Ever Hold in My HandsScientific Anecdotes, the Ten Great Ideas of Science, ‘Science Writing at Its Best’EpilogueNotes and ReferencesIndex Readership: The general public and students who are interested in the relationship between science and publishing. Key Features:This is the first book to tell the stories behind the publishing of some key science books that became world-famous bestsellers: stories that are fascinating, providing a genuinely exhilarating read. Some of these are stories that have become important pieces of publishing historyContains practical advice for scientists contemplating writing themselves, either a popular science book or a textbook. This advice is communicated indirectly in the context of real books, not directly as in a manualThis book contains a Foreword writer Richard Dawkins together with the stories behind the writing and the publishing of several of his famous booksKeywords:Popular Science;Popularization of Science;Public Understanding of Science;Book Publishing;History of Book Publishing;History of ScienceReviews:“It is a useful source on what life used to be like in the world of serious people working to help serve serious readers, and sometimes succeeding beyond their expectations.”The Times Higher Education “This book is a helpful guide for academic authors who are poised to send a proposal to a publisher.”The Observatory Magazine “This book is unique. There are now university courses on publishing and Rodgers' book will no doubt be required reading, but it deserves a wider audience by virtue of the human interest stories, which he tells.”Chemistry & Industry “Rodgers breathes life into his reminiscences, which carry the reader along. His account offers some interesting glimpses into a little-seen world, which might inspire budding writers to start their own bestsellers.” Chemistry World “Those interested in the world of publishing, with a special interest in science, will find much to like about this book.” CERN Courier

The Extended Phenotype

Author: Richard Dawkins
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198788916
Format: PDF, Mobi
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In The Selfish Gene, Richard Dawkins crystallized the gene's eye view of evolution developed by W.D. Hamilton and others. The book provoked widespread and heated debate. Written in part as a response, The Extended Phenotype gave a deeper clarification of the central concept of the gene as theunit of selection; but it did much more besides. In it, Dawkins extended the gene's eye view to argue that the genes that sit within an organism have an influence that reaches out beyond the visible traits in that body - the phenotype - to the wider environment, which can include other individuals.So, for instance, the genes of the beaver drive it to gather twigs to produce the substantial physical structure of a dam; and the genes of the cuckoo chick produce effects that manipulate the behaviour of the host bird, making it nurture the intruder as one of its own. This notion of the extendedphenotype has proved to be highly influential in the way we understand evolution and the natural world. It represents a key scientific contribution to evolutionary biology, and it continues to play an important role in research in the life sciences.The Extended Phenotype is a conceptually deep book that forms important reading for biologists and students. But Dawkins' clear exposition is accessible to all who are prepared to put in a little effort.Oxford Landmark Science books are 'must-read' classics of modern science writing which have crystallized big ideas, and shaped the way we think.

The Future of the Academic Journal

Author: Bill Cope
Publisher: Chandos Publishing
ISBN: 1780634641
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The world of the academic journal continues to be one of radical change. A follow-up volume to the first edition of The Future of the Academic Journal, this book is a significant contribution to the debates around the future of journals publishing. The book takes an international perspective and looks ahead at how the industry will continue to develop over the next few years. With contributions from leading academics and industry professionals, the book provides a reliable and impartial view of this fast-changing area. The book includes various discussions on the future of journals, including the influence of business models and the growth of journals publishing, open access and academic libraries, as well as journals published in Asia, Africa and South America. looks at a fast moving and vital area for academics and publishers contains contributions from leading international figures from universities and publishers

Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Myths about Science and Religion

Author: Ronald L. Numbers
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674033272
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Ronald Numbers has recruited the leading scholars in this new history of science to puncture the myths, from Galileo's incarceration to Darwin's deathbed conversion to Einstein's belief in a personal God who "didn't play dice with the universe." Each chapter in Galileo Goes to Jail shows how much we have to gain by seeing beyond the myths.

Defenders of the Truth

Author: Ullica Christina Olofsdotter Segerstråle
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 9780198505051
Format: PDF, ePub
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For the last twenty-five years, sociobiologists have come under continuous attack by a group of left-wing academics, who have accused the former of dubious and politically dangerous science. Many have taken the critics' charges at face value. But have the critics been right? And what are their own motivations? This book strives to set the record straight. It shows that the criticism has typically been unfair. Still, it cannot be dismissed as "purely politically motivated". It turnsout that the critics and the sociobiologists live in different worlds of taken-for-granted scientific and moral convictions. The conflict over sociobiology is best interpreted as a drawn-out battle about the nature of "good science" and the social responsibility of the scientist, while it touches on such grand themes as the unity of knowledge, the nature of man, and free will and determinism. The author has stepped right into the hornet's nest of claims and counterclaims, moral concerns, metaphysical beliefs, political convictions, strawmen, red herrings, and gossip, gossip, gossip. She listens to the protagonists - but also to their colleagues. She checks with "arbiters". She plays the devil's advocate. And everyone is eager to tell her the truth - as they see it. The picture that emerges is a different one from the standard view of the sociobiology debate as a politically motivated nature-nurture conflict. Instead, we are confronted with a world of scientific and moral long-term agendas, for which the sociobiology debate became a useful vehicle. Behind the often nasty attacks, however, were shared Enlightenment concerns for universal truth, morality and justice. The protagonists were all defenders of the truth - it was just that everyone's truth was different. Defenders of the Truth provides a fascinating insight into the world of science. It follows the sociobiology controversy as it erupted at Harvard in 1975 until today, both in the US and the UK. But the story goes more deeply, for instance in its account of the circumstances surrounding W.D. Hamilton's famous 1964 paper on inclusive fitness, and in the connections of the sociobiology debate to the Human Genome project and the Science Wars. General readers and academics alike will find much to savour in this book.

An Appetite for Wonder

Author: Richard Dawkins
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0062225812
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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With the 2006 publication of The God Delusion, the name Richard Dawkins became a byword for ruthless skepticism and "brilliant, impassioned, articulate, impolite" debate (San Francisco Chronicle). his first memoir offers a more personal view. His first book, The Selfish Gene, caused a seismic shift in the study of biology by proffering the gene-centered view of evolution. It was also in this book that Dawkins coined the term meme, a unit of cultural evolution, which has itself become a mainstay in contemporary culture. In An Appetite for Wonder, Richard Dawkins shares a rare view into his early life, his intellectual awakening at Oxford, and his path to writing The Selfish Gene. He paints a vivid picture of his idyllic childhood in colonial Africa, peppered with sketches of his colorful ancestors, charming parents, and the peculiarities of colonial life right after World War II. At boarding school, despite a near-religious encounter with an Elvis record, he began his career as a skeptic by refusing to kneel for prayer in chapel. Despite some inspired teaching throughout primary and secondary school, it was only when he got to Oxford that his intellectual curiosity took full flight. Arriving at Oxford in 1959, when undergraduates "left Elvis behind" for Bach or the Modern Jazz Quartet, Dawkins began to study zoology and was introduced to some of the university's legendary mentors as well as its tutorial system. It's to this unique educational system that Dawkins credits his awakening, as it invited young people to become scholars by encouraging them to pose rigorous questions and scour the library for the latest research rather than textbook "teaching to" any kind of test. His career as a fellow and lecturer at Oxford took an unexpected turn when, in 1973, a serious strike in Britain caused prolonged electricity cuts, and he was forced to pause his computer-based research. Provoked by the then widespread misunderstanding of natural selection known as "group selection" and inspired by the work of William Hamilton, Robert Trivers, and John Maynard Smith, he began to write a book he called, jokingly, "my bestseller." It was, of course, The Selfish Gene. Here, for the first time, is an intimate memoir of the childhood and intellectual development of the evolutionary biologist and world-famous atheist, and the story of how he came to write what is widely held to be one of the most important books of the twentieth century.

Faraday Maxwell and the Electromagnetic Field

Author: Nancy Forbes
Publisher: Prometheus Books
ISBN: 1616149434
Format: PDF, ePub
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The story of two brilliant nineteenth-century scientists who discovered the electromagnetic field, laying the groundwork for the amazing technological and theoretical breakthroughs of the twentieth century Two of the boldest and most creative scientists of all time were Michael Faraday (1791-1867) and James Clerk Maxwell (1831-1879). This is the story of how these two men - separated in age by forty years - discovered the existence of the electromagnetic field and devised a radically new theory which overturned the strictly mechanical view of the world that had prevailed since Newton's time. The authors, veteran science writers with special expertise in physics and engineering, have created a lively narrative that interweaves rich biographical detail from each man's life with clear explanations of their scientific accomplishments. Faraday was an autodidact, who overcame class prejudice and a lack of mathematical training to become renowned for his acute powers of experimental observation, technological skills, and prodigious scientific imagination. James Clerk Maxwell was highly regarded as one of the most brilliant mathematical physicists of the age. He made an enormous number of advances in his own right. But when he translated Faraday's ideas into mathematical language, thus creating field theory, this unified framework of electricity, magnetism and light became the basis for much of later, 20th-century physics. Faraday's and Maxwell's collaborative efforts gave rise to many of the technological innovations we take for granted today - from electric power generation to television, and much more. Told with panache, warmth, and clarity, this captivating story of their greatest work - in which each played an equal part - and their inspiring lives will bring new appreciation to these giants of science.

Dragons of Eden

Author: Carl Sagan
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 9780307801005
Format: PDF, ePub
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Dr. Carl Sagan takes us on a great reading adventure, offering his vivid and startling insight into the brain of man and beast, the origin of human intelligence, the function of our most haunting legends--and their amazing links to recent discoveries. "A history of the human brain from the big bang, fifteen billion years ago, to the day before yesterday...It's a delight." THE NEW YORK TIMES From the Paperback edition.