Covering nearly three-quarters of our planet, the world’s oceans are a vast and unique ecosystem from which all life on Earth originated. But each year the marine realm is more susceptible to harm by careless exploitation, and as demands for food, waste disposal, transport, and travel increase, the fate of the world’s oceans hangs in the balance. This timely guide offers the nonscientist an opportunity to appreciate the importance of this expansive—and fragile—frontier. With selections chosen for their value in identifying the multiple uses of oceans, their resources, and the hurdles they face as the world’s population continues to expand and consume their resources at a staggering rate, Oceans collects more than thirty thematically arranged articles from the past decade, including recent pieces written in the wake of the 2004 tsunami. The book features articles that investigate the origins of the world’s oceans, the diversity of life in the water, the state of global fisheries, the dangers of natural disasters, and the perils oceans face, whether induced by nature or by humans. With breadth of topics as wide as the ocean is deep, this Scientific American reader will engage general readers interested in the evolution, ecology, and conservation of the oceanic ecosystem and can be used in courses on introductory oceanography, environmental science, and marine biology.
Collects thirty of the most exciting, innovative, and significant articles on communicable illness published in the pages of Scientific American magazine since 1993. With sections devoted to viral infections, infectious disease, the immune system, and global management and treatment issues, Infectious Disease provides general readers and students with an excellent overview of recent research in the field. Roger I. Glass discusses a potential vaccine for the rotavirus--a leading cause of severe childhood diarrhea world wide and frequent killer of young children in developing nations. Jeffery K. Taubenberger and colleagues investigate the virulent strain of influenza that killed up to 40 million people in 1919 to suggest treatments and recommend preventative measures. And Paul R. Epstein looks into whether global warming could be harmful to our health, untangling research that suggests that many diseases will flourish as Earth's atmosphere heats up.
Shifting Baselines explores the real-world implications of a groundbreaking idea: we must understand the oceans of the past to protect the oceans of the future. In 1995, acclaimed marine biologist Daniel Pauly coined the term "shifting baselines" to describe a phenomenon of lowered expectations, in which each generation regards a progressively poorer natural world as normal. This seminal volume expands on Pauly's work, showing how skewed visions of the past have led to disastrous marine policies and why historical perspective is critical to revitalize fisheries and ecosystems. Edited by marine ecologists Jeremy Jackson and Enric Sala, and historian Karen Alexander, the book brings together knowledge from disparate disciplines to paint a more realistic picture of past fisheries. The authors use case studies on the cod fishery and the connection between sardine and anchovy populations, among others, to explain various methods for studying historic trends and the intricate relationships between species. Subsequent chapters offer recommendations about both specific research methods and effective management. This practical information is framed by inspiring essays by Carl Safina and Randy Olson on a personal experience of shifting baselines and the importance of human stories in describing this phenomenon to a broad public. While each contributor brings a different expertise to bear, all agree on the importance of historical perspective for effective fisheries management. Readers, from students to professionals, will benefit enormously from this informed hindsight.
A brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein: Detective Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suicide. After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, thelegendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man. You may think you know detectives, but you've never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you've never seen them under an investigation like this. Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.
From the Scopes “Monkey Trial” of 1925 to the court ruling against the Dover Area School Board’s proposed intelligent design curriculum in 2005, few scientific topics have engendered as much controversy—or grabbed as many headlines—as evolution. And since the debate shows no signs of abating, there is perhaps no better time to step back and ask: What is evolution? Defined as the gradual process by which something changes into a different and usually more complex and efficient form, evolution explains the formation of the universe, the nature of viruses, and the emergence of humans. A first-rate summary of the actual science of evolution, this Scientific American reader is a timely collection that gives readers an opportunity to consider evolution’s impact in various settings. Divided into four sections that consider the evolution of the universe, cells, dinosaurs, and humans, Evolution brings together more than thirty articles written by some of the world’s most respected evolutionary scientists. As tour guides through the genesis of the universe and complex cells, P. James E. Peebles examines the evidence in support of an expanding cosmos, while Christian de Duve discusses the birth of eukaryotes. In an article that anticipated his book Full House, Stephen Jay Gould argues that chance and contingency are as important as natural selection for evolutionary change. And Ian Tatersall makes two fascinating contributions, submitting his view that the schematic of human evolution looks less like a ladder and more like a bush. With the latest on what’s being researched at every level of evolutionary studies, from prospects of life on other planets to the inner working of cells, Evolution offers general readers an opportunity to update their knowledge on this hot topic while giving students an introduction to the problems and methodologies of an entire field of inquiry.
No one can say what quantam mechanics means (and this is a book about it) -- Quantum mechanics is not really about the quantum -- Quantum objects are neither wave nor particle (but sometimes they might as well be) -- Quantum particles aren't in two states at once (but sometimes they might as well be) -- What "happens" depends on what we find out about it -- There are many ways of interpreting quantum theory (and none of them quite make sense) -- Whatever the question, the answer is "yes" (unless it's "no") -- Not everything is knowable at once -- The properties of quantum objects don't have to be contained within the objects -- There is no "spooky action at a distance"--The everyday world is what quantum becomes at human scales -- Everything you experience is a (partial) copy of what causes it -- Schrödinger's cat has had kittens -- Quantum mechanics can be harnessed for technology -- Quantum computers don't necessarily perform "many calculations at once" -- There is no other "quantum" you -- Things could be even more "quantum" than they are (so why aren't they)? -- The fundamental laws of quantum mechanics might be simpler than we imagine -- Can we ever get to the bottom of it?
An exploration of the age-old complicity between skywatchers and warfighters, from the best-selling author of Astrophysics for People in a Hurry. In this fascinating foray into the centuries-old relationship between science and military power, acclaimed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and writer-researcher Avis Lang examine how the methods and tools of astrophysics have been enlisted in the service of war. "The overlap is strong, and the knowledge flows in both directions," say the authors, because astrophysicists and military planners care about many of the same things: multi-spectral detection, ranging, tracking, imaging, high ground, nuclear fusion, and access to space. Tyson and Lang call it a "curiously complicit" alliance. "The universe is both the ultimate frontier and the highest of high grounds," they write. "Shared by both space scientists and space warriors, it’s a laboratory for one and a battlefield for the other. The explorer wants to understand it; the soldier wants to dominate it. But without the right technology—which is more or less the same technology for both parties—nobody can get to it, operate in it, scrutinize it, dominate it, or use it to their advantage and someone else’s disadvantage." Spanning early celestial navigation to satellite-enabled warfare, Accessory to War is a richly researched and provocative examination of the intersection of science, technology, industry, and power that will introduce Tyson’s millions of fans to yet another dimension of how the universe has shaped our lives and our world.
Monthly magazine devoted to topics of general scientific interest.
This book is intended primarily for exploration geologists and post graduate students attending specialist courses in mineral exploration. Exploration geologists are engaged not only in the search for new mineral deposits, but also in the extension and re-assessment of existing ones. To succeed in these tasks, the exploration geologist is required to be a "generalist" of the Earth sciences rather than a specialist. The exploration geologist needs to be familiar with most aspects of the geology of ore deposits, and detailed knowledge as well as experience play an all important role in the successful exploration for mineral commodities. In order to achieve this, it is essential that the exploration geologist be up to date with the latest developments in the evolution of concepts and ideas in the Earth sciences. This is no easy task, as thousands of publications appear every year in an ever increasing number of journals, periodicals and books. For this reason it is also difficult, at times, to locate appropriate references on a particular mineral deposit type, although this problem is alleviated by the existence of large bibliographic data bases of geological records, abstracts and papers on computers. During my teaching to explorationists and, indeed, during my years of work as an explorationist, the necessity of having a text dealing with the fundamental aspects of hydrothermal mineral deposits has always been compelling. Metallic mineral deposits can be categorised into three great families, namely: (I) magmatic; (2) sedimentary and residual; (3) hydrothermal.
New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice • An Amazon Best Science Book of 2014 • Scientific American Recommended Read “Fascinating, informative, exhilarating.” —Wall Street Journal Deep is a voyage from the ocean’s surface to its darkest trenches, the most mysterious places on Earth. Fascinated by the sport of freediving—in which competitors descend great depths on a single breath—James Nestor embeds with a gang of oceangoing extreme athletes and renegade researchers. He finds whales that communicate with other whales hundreds of miles away, sharks that swim in unerringly straight lines through pitch-black waters, and other strange phenomena. Most illuminating of all, he learns that these abilities are reflected in our own remarkable, and often hidden, potential—including echolocation, directional sense, and the profound bodily changes humans undergo when underwater. Along the way, Nestor unlocks his own freediving skills as he communes with the pioneers who are expanding our definition of what is possible in the natural world, and in ourselves. “A journey well worth taking.” —David Epstein, New York Times Book Review “Nestor pulls us below the surface into a world far beyond imagining and opens our eyes to these unseen places.” —Dallas Morning News “This is popular science writing at its best.” —Christian Science Monitor
Traces the story of the defunct U.S. Navy program to develop a marine lab in the ocean where divers could conduct vital undersea exploration and recover lost vessels, drawing on archival materials to reveal how techniques and equipment pioneered for the Sealab program are used on commercial rigs today.
A former ocean scientist goes in pursuit of the slippery story of jellyfish, rediscovering her passion for marine science and the sea's imperiled ecosystems. Jellyfish are an enigma. They have no centralized brain, but they see and feel and react to their environment in complex ways. They look simple, yet their propulsion systems are so advanced engineers are just learning how to mimic them. They produce some of the deadliest toxins on the planet and yet are undeniably alluring. Long ignored by science, they may be a key to ecosystem stability. Juli Berwald's journey into the world of jellyfish is a personal one. Over a decade ago she left the sea and her scientific career behind to raise a family in landlocked Austin, Texas. Increasingly dire headlines drew her back to jellies, as unprecedented jellyfish blooms toppled ecosystems and collapsed the world's most productive fisheries. What was unclear was whether these incidents were symptoms of a changing planet or part of a natural cycle. Berwald's desire to understand jellyfish takes her on a scientific odyssey. She travels the globe to meet the scientists who devote their careers to jellies, hitches rides on Japanese fishing boats to see giant jellyfish in the wild, raises jellyfish in her dining room, and throughout it all marvels at the complexity of these alluring and ominous biological wonders. Gracefully blending personal memoir with crystal-clear distillations of science, Spineless reveals that jellyfish are a bellwether for the damage we're inflicting on the climate and the oceans and a call to realize our collective responsibility for the planet we share.
Shows young readers how a citizen scientist learns about butterflies, birds, frogs, and ladybugs.
Describes the work of a man who tracks trash as it travels great distances by way of ocean currents.
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Water is always flowing, from a brook to a stream, to a river to the ocean. Read and find out more about how water shapes the earth and why it is important to keep our water clean.
From Susan Casey, the New York Times bestselling author of The Wave and The Devil’s Teeth, a breathtaking journey through the extraordinary world of dolphins Since the dawn of recorded history, humans have felt a kinship with the sleek and beautiful dolphin, an animal whose playfulness, sociability, and intelligence seem like an aquatic mirror of mankind. In recent decades, we have learned that dolphins recognize themselves in reflections, count, grieve, adorn themselves, feel despondent, rescue one another (and humans), deduce, infer, seduce, form cliques, throw tantrums, and call themselves by name. Scientists still don’t completely understand their incredibly sophisticated navigation and communication abilities, or their immensely complicated brains. While swimming off the coast of Maui, Susan Casey was surrounded by a pod of spinner dolphins. It was a profoundly transporting experience, and it inspired her to embark on a two-year global adventure to explore the nature of these remarkable beings and their complex relationship to humanity. Casey examines the career of the controversial John Lilly, the pioneer of modern dolphin studies whose work eventually led him down some very strange paths. She visits a community in Hawaii whose adherents believe dolphins are the key to spiritual enlightenment, travels to Ireland, where a dolphin named as “the world’s most loyal animal” has delighted tourists and locals for decades with his friendly antics, and consults with the world’s leading marine researchers, whose sense of wonder inspired by the dolphins they study increases the more they discover. Yet there is a dark side to our relationship with dolphins. They are the stars of a global multibillion-dollar captivity industry, whose money has fueled a sinister and lucrative trade in which dolphins are captured violently, then shipped and kept in brutal conditions. Casey’s investigation into this cruel underground takes her to the harrowing epicenter of the trade in the Solomon Islands, and to the Japanese town of Taiji, made famous by the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove, where she chronicles the annual slaughter and sale of dolphins in its narrow bay. Casey ends her narrative on the island of Crete, where millennia-old frescoes and artwork document the great Minoan civilization, a culture which lived in harmony with dolphins, and whose example shows the way to a more enlightened coexistence with the natural world. No writer is better positioned to portray these magical creatures than Susan Casey, whose combination of personal reporting, intense scientific research, and evocative prose made The Wave and The Devil’s Teeth contemporary classics of writing about the sea. In Voices in the Ocean, she has written a thrilling book about the other intelligent life on the planet. From the Hardcover edition.
In this volume, the author chronicles America's maritime history and the challenges that American coastal and marine environments face today. He dives deep into the cultures of those who know the sea in myriad ways--fisherfolk, oil-rig roughnecks, hurricane forecasters, coastal developers, navy personnel, scientists, and surfers--and profiles the growing efforts by coastal citizens and local governments to restore and protect the health of our oceans in the face of wide-open development along our coasts and offshore. Demonstrating how national policymaking on the oceans is enmeshed in a welter of competing jurisdictions, he argues for strong omnibus legislation and the creation of truly protected marine wilderness reserves.