Tag Archives: energy

Empires of Light

Empires of Light: Edison, Tesla, Westinghouse, and the Race to Electrify the World © 2004 Jill Jonnes464 pages Empires of Light is less a history of how the United States became electrified and more a biography of three electrical titans – … Continue reading

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Energy Myths and Realities

Energy Myths and Realities: Bringing Science to the Energy Debate© 2010 Vaclav Smil232 pages Nothing lasts forever, including coal and oil. Regardless of their environmental impact (as noxious fumes or released greenhouse gases), ultimately humanity will have to transition away … Continue reading

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Infrastructure: A Field Guide

Infrastructure: A Field Guide to the Industrial Landscape© 1999, 2014 Brian Hayes544 pages Here at last is a book for those of us who constantly gaze out the car window at the fixtures on utility poles, or drums mounted in … Continue reading

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The Works

The Works: Anatomy of a City© 2005  Kate Ascher240 pages Cities are, for my money, mankind’s most astonishing invention. Their complexity is stupefying — system within system, handling tons of material at any given time, whether the subject is cars … Continue reading

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Lights Out

Lights Out: A Cyberattack, a Nation Unprepared© 2015 Ted Koppell288 pages In Lights Out,  investigatory journalist Ted Koppel comments on the vulnerability of the United States’ power grid to a cyber attack,  and reviews the way government agencies, private citizens, … Continue reading

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On the Grid

On the Grid: A Plot of Land, an Average Neighborhood, and the Systems That Make Our World Work© 2010 Scott Huler256 pages If modern humans have retained a penchant for magical thinking, little wonder. Our homes accomplish marvels seemingly by the … Continue reading

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Horses at Work

Horses at Work: Harnessing Power in Industrial America© 2008 Ann Norton Greene322 pages The quintessential image of horses in American history is the cowboy, of rough men moving cattle in the wilderness on horseback. But follow the cattle, and their … Continue reading

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The Grid

The Grid: A Journey Through the Heart of Our Electrified World© 2007 Phillip Schewe310 pages In every room there sits a caged beast waiting to cause mischief, but which most of the time  is put to honest work, instead.  When … Continue reading

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Human Scale

Human Scale© 1980 Kirkpatrick Sale500 pages             Human Scale is an ambitious assault on big business, big government — the very concept of Bigness. Opening with biology, Kirkpatrick Sale first establishes his basic operating principle:  for … Continue reading

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This week: Christmas reads, science in the city, and social telegraphy

Dear readers:             A blessed Yuletide and a merry Christmas to those of you in the northern hemisphere, as we celebrate the rebirth of the Sun – or the birth of the Son, if you prefer. The library is closing … Continue reading

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