View Full Version : Do you read science books?

2005-Feb-09, 12:31 AM
Ok, science lovers....how many of you read a science related book on a regular basis?

I just finished The Neptune File by Tom Standage

Edited to fix a spelling error - pretty bad when you consider the fact that I'm a technical writer.

2005-Feb-09, 01:29 AM
Ok, science lovers....how many of you really a science related book on a regular basis?

I just finished The Neptune File by Tom Standage

Where do I start:


on the astronomy side:

Greene, Plait ( :-) ), Sagan

on the outer side: (you have to keep up)

Arp, van Flandern
(I read von Daniken and Velikovsky as a teenager)


Gullible Jones
2005-Feb-09, 01:36 AM
Okay, so I lied, they're not all that I read... But I read every one that I can get my hands on, pretty much. :D

2005-Feb-09, 01:40 AM
Man!! I'm here with a lot of nerds!! #-o :P

I work my way through a few every year, but I have computer science as well and then there are plays, novels, biographies, poetry... too many books on too many subjects and never enough time... :-k

2005-Feb-09, 01:54 AM
Particle physics, cosmology, history, political science, and a bit of what I call social commentary (Joan Didion, Peter O'Rourke, etc.). Recent reads are The Last Three Minutes, The God Particle, On the Road, Fast Food Nation, Power & Terror. Kind of eclectic, but not really. I read 20 to 30 books per year, and only 1 or 2 will be fiction.

Brady Yoon
2005-Feb-09, 03:49 AM
If there was a choice of one every few days, I'd pick that one. :)

I think the librarian thinks I'm weird because I'm a kid checking out all those books.

2005-Feb-09, 03:53 AM
History and science is all I read. I'm not a fast reader, and I don't do it heavily, but I guess I get through 3 or 4 books per year. Last week, I picked up Cook: The Extraordinary Voyages of Captain James Cook. He's a very great uncle of mine, so I'm excited.

Brady Yoon
2005-Feb-09, 06:51 AM
Oh yeah, I also have picked up reading the Boxcar Children books (mysteries for kids). It was embarassing, having science books in one hand and 3rd grade literature in the other. :lol:

Brings back old memories..wow i sound like an old man

2005-Feb-09, 07:14 AM
I just finished Brian Greene's, "The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space Time and the Texture of Reality".

I have read a few in the fiction category lately, yes I'm one of those people who ordered my advanced copy of Harry Potter and I read the Da Vinci Code. But I prefer good science written for the non-science reader and travel adventures.

2005-Feb-09, 07:28 AM
I voted, with a little exaggeration, once a month... if you count that I am constantly re-reading a lot of stuff, it's not exaggerated at all.

Perhaps my all-time favorite science book is The Language Instinct, by the hilarious & excellent MIT professor Steven Pinker, of whose books I also read Words and Rules (I was just re-reading it today), the fabulous The Blank Slate, and How the Mind Works. You see, language and cognitive sciences are my thing.

I also love Dawkings: the Blind Watchmaker and the Selfish Gene.

On physics I have and like Einsteins Universe, dont remember the author though. Of course I also have Short History of Time.

My fave astronautics books are all recent acquisitions: Mining the Sky, Moonrush, Making Space Happen, Russia in Space and Leaving Earth.

2005-Feb-09, 12:05 PM
I usually read one or two science books a month. I get annoyed when people question whether I actually read non-fiction. As far as some people are concerned non-fiction books are for people doing reports for school - they find it odd that someone would actually read that stuff out of interest. :roll:

2005-Feb-09, 12:56 PM
I highly recommend Parliament of Whores by Peter O'Rourke, Age of Missing Information by ?, Salvador or The White Album by Joan Didion, The Closing of the American Mind by ?, Why Nations Go to War by Dye (I think). That book has one of my favorite all-time quotes, which I think really hits a lot of human behavior right on the head:

"When everybody is somebody, nobody is anybody."

2005-Feb-09, 01:00 PM
If there was a choice of one every few days, I'd pick that one. :)

I think the librarian thinks I'm weird because I'm a kid checking out all those books.

=D> =D> =D> for Brady!

BTW, most librarians think everyone's weird. The other librarians think that everyone else is trying to steal the library's books.

2005-Feb-09, 02:29 PM
I'll read just about anything, except romance novels, but I do read a pretty good percentage of science books. Right now I'm really enjoying The Big One about the New Madrid quakes. Kind of focussing on geology stuff right now, but I enjoy reading about just about any kind of science if it's written for the non-scientist.

2005-Feb-09, 02:38 PM
I just finished Neil deGrasse Tyson's Origins, the companion book to the Nova miniseries.

Bad jcsd
2005-Feb-09, 04:00 PM
I read quite alot of physics and maths books. Popular scince books can be interesting, but when I'm really inetersted in a subject I prefer to read technical books.

2005-Feb-10, 03:21 AM
I read quite alot of physics and maths books. Popular scince books can be interesting, but when I'm really inetersted in a subject I prefer to read technical books.

I'm beginning to know what you mean. I've read so many popular science books about the universe that I'm at that stage of either having to read some other topic altogether or starting to read more technical books. Not that I remember all the details in the popular science books, but it doesn't come so much as a wonderful surprise as it use too.

I've decided to expand my science range. Now reading on other topics such as code breaking, the longitute problem, etc.

mike alexander
2005-Feb-10, 04:40 AM
I like good essayists, good writers. Loren Eisley, Konrad Lorentz. ANYTHING by John McPhee, I'm sure he could do an essay on cereal boxes and make it riveting. The Flyers, nicely atmospheric book by Noah Adams about the Wrights.

A Thousand Pardons
2005-Feb-10, 01:47 PM
If there was a choice of one every few days, I'd pick that one.
Yes, a choice somewhere between "Yes, I read one about once a month." and "Yes, that's all that I read." Just because someone reads more than one a month doesn't mean that's all they read! :)

2005-Feb-10, 02:00 PM
I hear you Inferno. I've read so many books on the theories of the beginning and theories on how it will all end; that the last few have been pretty repetitive. An occassional new analogy or insight, but mostly the same stuff in another person's words. I'm not ready for the highly technical stuff (don't want to take the time for another career track), so now I read the ones that look like they'll also be entertaining; like Lederman's The God Particle. Very entertaining guy for a physicist.

I've actually started jotting down my own thoughts. It's amazing what sells these days. I've taken particular notice of all these cute little books everyone seems to be buying that are basically a bunch of interesting pictures with a cute saying, catchy quote, or some other miscellaneous words of wisdom on each page. I could have written this stuff with one hand tied behind my back. And so I am. I wonder how many copies these things sell and if the writers (if you could call them that) make any real money?

2005-Feb-10, 02:29 PM
I got counted off points in one of my Humanities courses, because the professor didn't believe me when I answered a threaded discussion question stating I have not read fiction books for the last 10 years. Her response to me was that I couldn't possibly learn critical thinking skills by limiting my reading to anything other than the "classic's". :roll:

My most recent purchases were Visions of the Cosmos - by our very own Carolyn Collins Petersen, and Greene's The Fabric of the Cosmos. I haven't read either, yet. To freaking busy with textbooks or books for research. I did enjoy my LAWS textbook (40 pages to every chapter) for some reason.

Two more classes to go. \:D/

I still haven't got through the BA's book or Bad Medicine. 8-[

I take a 3-4 month hiatus after graduation in June, then I start the Masters Program. Perhaps, I can catch up on some much needed reading during my BREAK. :D

If I get furloughed this month, then I start reading sooner.

2005-Feb-10, 02:30 PM
I read more science books than any other books, though unfortunately I only have time to read a few a year. Lately, a lot of them have been about natural history and nature.

I would highly recommend "Dr Tatiana's Sex Advice to All Creation" by Olivia Judson (amazon.com (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0805063323/qid=1108045107/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/103-2917036-8613440?v=glance&s=books)). It is an examination of the biology of sexual reproduction, but it done as advice letters to her fictional alter ego "Dr. Tatiana".... Dear Dr. T, I'm a Praying Mantis female and I have this urge to bite the heads off my males, is there something wrong with me? :D