Author Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club  (Read 70404 times)

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Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #750 on: March 29, 2017, 05:44:10 PM »
The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Includes: Richard Leakey, Hans Bethe, E.O. Wilson, Francis Crick, Gerard K. O'Neill, B.F. Skinner, Roger Sperry, Jonas Salk, John Lilly, and eleven more.


Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #751 on: March 29, 2017, 06:06:17 PM »
The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Includes: Richard Leakey, Hans Bethe, E.O. Wilson, Francis Crick, Gerard K. O'Neill, B.F. Skinner, Roger Sperry, Jonas Salk, John Lilly, and eleven more.



I loved Omni mag as a kid. It was like a magazine version of C2C before it ever existed. ;)

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #752 on: March 29, 2017, 07:00:13 PM »
I loved Omni mag as a kid. It was like a magazine version of C2C before it ever existed. ;)

Such a great publication.  I wish I had all my old back issues.  For a brief time they were released onto archive.org's site, but were later pulled.  Had i know I'd have grabbed them all.  I love how it was a mix of hard science, fringe science, and pure sci-fi.  Plus it had some really cool art.  I actually entered a few of their puzzle contests, thinking myself rather clever for a kid, but never won. 


Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #753 on: March 29, 2017, 07:18:01 PM »
Such a great publication.  I wish I had all my old back issues.  For a brief time they were released onto archive.org's site, but were later pulled.  Had i know I'd have grabbed them all.  I love how it was a mix of hard science, fringe science, and pure sci-fi.  Plus it had some really cool art.  I actually entered a few of their puzzle contests, thinking myself rather clever for a kid, but never won.

https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7790414/OMNI_Magazine_1978--1995
https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7766357/Omni_Magazine_(the_complete_run)

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #754 on: March 30, 2017, 01:17:00 AM »
Such a great publication.  I wish I had all my old back issues.  For a brief time they were released onto archive.org's site, but were later pulled.  Had i know I'd have grabbed them all.  I love how it was a mix of hard science, fringe science, and pure sci-fi.  Plus it had some really cool art.  I actually entered a few of their puzzle contests, thinking myself rather clever for a kid, but never won.

I remember when that happened.

https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7790414/OMNI_Magazine_1978--1995
https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7766357/Omni_Magazine_(the_complete_run)

You are a gentleman and a scholar, sir.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #755 on: April 05, 2017, 08:38:23 PM »
But I think that as a result of our observations we are beginning to think of life as a property that is more and more common in the universe.  In everything there is a certain measure of life.  - Cyril Ponnamperuma

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #756 on: April 05, 2017, 11:40:10 PM »
But I think that as a result of our observations we are beginning to think of life as a property that is more and more common in the universe.  In everything there is a certain measure of life.  - Cyril Ponnamperuma

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

I've often believed this myself.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animism

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #757 on: April 06, 2017, 12:04:39 AM »
There's always the possibility that we will be invaded.*  We'd like to know for scientific reasons, but there might also be reasons of defense.  I would be surprised if it were totally beneficial or benign, whatever its nature.  - Francis Crick

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

*by extraterrestrial beings

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #758 on: April 06, 2017, 12:13:38 PM »
I was very careful in the selection of my ancestors. - Ernst Mayr

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #759 on: April 06, 2017, 01:25:50 PM »
I think those studies show not so much the great wisdom of the chimpanzee, but, rather, the great stupidity of man.  We should have realized long ago that we weren't so special.  I mean, it doesn't take a scientist to realize that a chimpanzee or a dog is an intelligent animal.  Instead, it takes a bigoted human to suggest that it's not.  - Richard Leakey

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #760 on: April 06, 2017, 03:31:01 PM »
Sometimes, big cats become man-eaters because they've been injured and can't hunt effectively.  They've become desperate.  But in Tanzania we traced the development of a man-eater, a young male lion that I watched grow up from a cub.  He apparently saw drunks walking home at night down the village road, and he started picking them off.  The unsteady walk of the drunks perhaps triggered the attacks.  When a lion hunts he will pinpoint a sick animal stumbling, and he'll go after it.  There's no easier prey in the world than man, if he doesn't have a gun. - George Schaller

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #761 on: April 06, 2017, 05:13:14 PM »
Over time, I've discovered that I'm not really in control of my own mind.  Often, I merely observe it and its machinations.  The analytic part of my mind -- the observer -- and the analogic part of my mind -- the accumulator of experience -- are in constant dialogue, challenging and testing the fit of concepts and formulations.  - Jonas Salk

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #762 on: April 06, 2017, 06:39:38 PM »
Of course men and women have entirely different attitudes toward sex, and those attitudes are due to physiological differences in the brain.  Men derive an evolutionary advantage from spreading their seed as much as possible.  Women, on the other hand, need to choose a mate who will stay around and take care of them and their offspring.  So I'd expect to find a part of the female brain that is devoted to making that kind of choice.  Women are programmed to fall in love with whomever they make love with, no matter how ludicrous the person.  - Candace Pert

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #763 on: April 06, 2017, 09:50:40 PM »
That's the problem with marriage.  You just get more jaded in all your tastes; you've got to have more refinement.  Less and less is novel.  Or, let's say, the novelty is more and more subtle, because you've got a larger and larger store of familiarity against which to match incoming impressions.  - Karl Pribram

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #764 on: April 06, 2017, 10:03:03 PM »
Omni magazine.  I hadn't thought about that magnificent publication in awhile.  It is missed.  Gloriously, but sadly, missed.


Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #765 on: April 07, 2017, 01:58:28 AM »
I never could make out what Timothy Leary really intended.  I had the feeling he was na´ve: he was so enthusiastic about LSD that he wanted to give it to everyone, even to very young people.  I told him, "No, give it only to people who are prepared for it, who have strong, stable psychic structures.  Don't give it to young people."  He said that American teen-agers are so experienced that they are like grownups in Europe.

We did not agree about this at all.
  - Albert Hoffman

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #766 on: April 07, 2017, 06:58:13 PM »
On one psychotropic drug, I have experienced states in which I can contact the creators of the universe, as well as the local creative controllers - the Earth Coincidence Control Office, or ECCO.  They're the guys who run the earth and who program us, though we're not aware of it.   - John Lilly


Consciousness, free will, and values - three old thorns in the hide of science.  Materialistic science couldn't cope with any of them, even in principle.  They're in direct conflict with the basic models.  Science has had to renounce them - to deny their existence or to say that they're beyond science.

For most of us, of course, all three are among the most important things in life.
  - Roger Sperry


I'm not going to try to explain the Guyana tragedy, or to explain the almost equal tragedies of the Moonies and Scientologists.  They're still alive - some part of them, at least - but it's a kind of behavioral death.  - B. F. Skinner

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #767 on: April 07, 2017, 07:36:10 PM »
You know, aggression, even violent aggression by itself, is not necessarily an evil thing.  All I'm saying is that with the present global situation, it clearly is to be proscribed, because it is harmful to everyone. Including ourselves.  We need to study it more and find ways of getting around it.  - E. O Wilson


A single tree may be five hundred years old, but there's no cell in that tree that's more than five years old.
  - W. Donner Denckla


The general human instinct to assert independence would require some effort to build into robots.  It doesn't seem to our advantage to make the effort.  - John McCarthy

from The OMNI Interviews (1984) edited by Pamela Weintraub

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #768 on: May 12, 2017, 08:21:26 PM »
  Beyond the Tumult is a story about the efforts of World War One British POWs to escape from the infamous Holzminden Prison.  There were a number of POWs that took part in the attempts (I say 'attempts' because a number of them were made.) but the story line basically follows three pilots who were captured after their planes were shot down.  This was a great feature of the book because it went into ample detail as to how the pilots were shot down and captured.

  There were non German employees at the prison that gave the inmates much needed supplies for the escape attempts and things like maps and compasses were smuggled in through the men's packages received from home.  Tunnel systems were used in the attempts and they were quite convoluted.  The final tunnel was accessed through a second story room, oddly enough.  The story took place back in 1917. 

  Amazon has hardbound copies of the book for sale, $2.00 plus and whatever postage.  I have read this book several times throughout the years.  Good read, and a true one.


Front cover showing an exposed tunnel.


Back cover showing the three men that the story follows.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #769 on: May 12, 2017, 08:37:07 PM »
On one psychotropic drug, I have experienced states in which I can contact the creators of the universe, as well as the local creative controllers - the Earth Coincidence Control Office, or ECCO.  They're the guys who run the earth and who program us, though we're not aware of it.   - John Lilly

Great magazine and quotes!

Didn't a recent, frequent guest Graham Hancock (I think, maybe it was someone else) claim visions of gears and machinery being run by small people under DMT (ayahuasca variety?) I recall lots of "little people" talk in an old(er) book "Varieties of the Psychadelic Experience) but more only with 'natural' varieties, but also with chemical derived DMT?

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #770 on: May 13, 2017, 02:06:37 AM »
https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7790414/OMNI_Magazine_1978--1995
https://thepiratebay.org/torrent/7766357/Omni_Magazine_(the_complete_run)

I love you...






Almost done with The Secret History of Twin Peaks, I'm at peak hype for the new season. Frost must have been a huge fan of Art Bell, he spends a lot of time weaving narrative with classic coast material. Reverse speech even gets a mention, ;) .

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #771 on: June 16, 2017, 06:12:18 PM »


The local library had a free (donation) book sale a couple of months ago and I was able to grab three or four books from it.  Did I donate?  No.  The library gets plenty of my tax dollars, and has carte blanche for raising the yearly tax rate a certain percentage for the next three or so years.  But I digress.

I have always liked Paul Harvey and his daily news and comments program.  Also his 'The Rest of the Story' feature.  I needed a break from WWI books so I gave "Good Day!" a read.  Cutting to the quick, was it worth the zero amount of money I paid for the book?  Yes, but the book was lacking in certain areas and I won't be reading it again so it's got a date with Goodwill.

The author did a fair job of  giving the reader a glimpse into Paul's life but it seems like there were only enough Paul Harvey factoids to fill a twenty page book. There was  lots of 'padding' in this book.  The author spends way too much time in describing historical events that transpired while Paul was alive, way too long biographies of the people that Paul worked with (and many that he had never met.) long transcripts of the speeches made during Angel Harvey's (Paul's wife) funeral and kind of a boring history of radio broadcasting in general.  And that's the rest of the story.

But there were some items of interest that I enjoyed reading about, and here they are:

1. When Paul Harvey was three years old, his dad (who worked with the local police dept. in administration) went out to do some night time rabbit hunting with a friend.  As they were walking by the road, a car rolled up and two bandits got out and held Paul's dad and his buddy up.  The head crook recognized the men as being part of the police dept. so he plugged the poor guys.  Paul's dad lasted the night but died the next day.  The friend was able to put the finger on the dude who did the shooting and the two men were arrested.  The townsfolk were mad and wanted a lynching, but were talked out of it...fair trial and justice be served, and all.  Yeah, right.  The two mugs did a few years of prison but were let off way too early because they didn't get a 'fair trial.'

2. Paul was covering a story that security at a local defense plant was lacking.  He tried to test the system by jumping over a wall, but he was nabbed.  Paul could have been in serious trouble but he was let off the hook after he promised to double check his news sources.

3. "The Rest of the Story" program was written and produced by Paul's son.

4. The author got to meet Paul Harvey at his (Paul's) office.  After he entered the correct floor of the building, he could hear the tap-pity tap of Paul's typewriter long before he entered the room.  Paul never used computers for anything other then checking out the progress of his stocks.

It should be noted that Paul Harvey did not have a hand in the writing of this book.  He didn't even know about it, and he died a couple of weeks previous to the book's final draft. 

There is a YouTube video that shows Paul giving one of his last speechs before a roomful of publishers or writers, I can't remember which.  It was a good speech but the thing I remember the most about it was when Paul finished up.  He grinned at the warm applause and then, with his wife, made a beeline for the exit.  He quick shook a few hands but did so on the run.  The camera followed them as they made their way to the back of the room where they disappeared into a hallway.  I don't know, I just thought that was kind of a cool move by a guy that I have long admired.       
 

 

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #772 on: July 14, 2017, 07:36:14 PM »


  Doughboy's Diary by Chester E. Baker and written by Baker, who recounts his experiences in World War One.  He was in a National Guard outfit from Pennsylvania and his reminiscences are a notch above most other great war diary's because before the war started,  he took part in the search for Pancho Villa down Mexico way.

  Nicely written book, not overly long and it has some pictures.

  Baker and his unit got over to France in time to catch the last year of the war.  He managed to dodge the direct attack style of fighting that was common to many American forces back then.  His division played more of a backup roll and it seemed to step in after the major fighting had been done.  But they still had lots of high explosive shells tossed their way.  A number of his pals were killed and he spent his fair share of time sleeping in the mud.  And the 'cooties' were there, too.

  One of the things I remember about reading the book...  Chester was standing around in a deserted village when he and some others became the target of numerous exploding shells and machine gun fire and this after they had assumed that they had the Germans on the run.  After things had quieted down, he heard a faint voice calling out for help.  He located the injured soldier and saw to his horror that it was his first cousin lying there badly wounded.  His cousin was deathly pale and all that Chester could do was slip a lit cigarette between his cousin's lips and call out for a stretcher.  Private Baker was stupefied as to what he was going to tell his aunt and uncle when his cousin would no doubt die.  He had promised them that he would look out for the boy and keep him safe.  Well, as it turned out he didn't have to worry about it because his cousin was shipped home and made a full recovery.

  Amazon sells the book.  $6.00 for a used copy or $4.99 Kindle edition.


Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #773 on: July 23, 2017, 01:17:43 PM »
Ignore the accolades ("Winner of Man Booker Prize," since I hated that book about the fake lion in a raft and that won.) Ignore the praise by the 'fake news' like NYTimes, Oprah Magazine, or NPR. Ignore the laudations from 'fake comics,' like Sarah Silverman. You can pay attention to the 'likes' by the WSJ, Penthouse, etc, if you wish.

I've started "The Sellout" by Paul Beatty and haven't laughed so hard since "Catch-22," Hunter Thompson or PJ O'Rourke stuff. Think laughing out loud and some of the descriptions and observations and spit-takes while reading. Hilarious and with insight/satire on our society, politics, and racial/class issues but in a hilarious way. Warning-very not politically-correctm but written by a black guy and stereotypes and insults to everybody. So get over it. The exact opposite of politically correct and so ridiculous, but done in a serious, way with many historical, psychological, sociological, political, and popular references which make the satire even more fun. So far, well worth reading.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22237161-the-sellout?from_search=true

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #774 on: September 02, 2017, 11:26:21 PM »
"Denying to the Grave: Why We Ignore the Facts that Will Save Us"
by:
"SARA E. GORMAN, PHD, MPH
JACK M. GORMAN, MD" (sic)

Good and interesting reading. Nothing, really, new but a good compilation of stuff (to her Kahneman is god- he is a smart guy but what have you done for me lately. Kidding.) Iinteresting. I will ignore, but quickly state, some "biases" not mentioned directly (family members writing science books together, clear political and agendas, and, just because Bellgab has become sometimes Nazi-gab lots of ((())). I kid there, in poor taste. But a good book and should be read. In all, I agree with much of it but think she/they miss some points and so I'm only going to point out the problems I had with it.
1) the whole book kept mentioning ETC therapy and a good thing but this was never brought into detail. Admittedly, so far, I haven't gone through the footnotes, yet, but at an end of a chapter or paragraph ECT would be thrown in with whatever (for example nuclear power) as good. But the arguments were made about another subject (nuclear power, not ECT) She frequently mentions the benefits and efficacy in ECT but, so far, I can't find her going into detail. (I'm not saying it ISN"T but wondering why it is thrown out there so often but not addressed in particular?)
2) on page 214 "polar bears stranded on shards of ice." Goes without saying for anyone with knowledge, even basic, of polar bear.
3) claim page 205 "Design" sources should be thought less of in they are designed poorly. I agree that she, like me, this is my heuristic also, but isn't that something she earlier was arguing against (heuristics?) She qualifies this, a bit, but then goes on to say that government sites "might not be fancy" but can be trusted.
4) on page 194- a pet-peeve. She uses the phrase "begs the question" inaccurately. Should've been reworded and she is promoting, inadvertently, the inaccurate use of that rhetorical term (petitio principii.) In a section in which she is talking about the necessity for logic, critical thinking, and scientific method be taught to children!
5) An obviously anti-gun person, fine, but statements like this "[W]hether or not LaPierre did have emotional problems..."? Have you ever stopped beating your daughter Sara, Dr. Gorman?
6) page 67. Though this is understandable considering our age and a need to sell the book and the audience. "Martin Luther King Jr was a charismatic leader....[this was a chapter, generally, criticizing or explaining charismatic leaders]..."whom we all"... "most...morally correct people who ever lived." Scholarly investigation shows plagiarism and FBI and, I recall seeing, other accounts show infidelities. All well and good, everyone has foibles and nobody is perfect but "most morally correct?" And do ALL accept that premise? Just saying, some State Legislatures didn't want a holiday etc? But she says "all?" Hardly scientific or factual. She also mentioned Gandhi who while in South Africa supported the caste system and the English war (which included concentration camps) against the Boer.
7)  page 55 "but as anyone who watches police procedural dramas on television knows..." What? Using fictional tv show dramas known not to be realistic as evidence?  And continues "...there must be a dead body in order for murder to be suspected..." Ok, wait. JUST TO BE SUSPECTED? Hardly. A missing person in a certain circumstance or amount of time is sufficient for suspicion. And people have been CONVICTED of murder with "no body" and there is precedent for it (obviously- hopefully- the prosecution need to prove and convince a jury with lots more evidence and testimony to do so, but it happens- A dingo stole my baby!)http://scocal.stanford.edu/opinion/people-v-scott-24249

8)  in general: much of the sources are interesting, and as far as I know, reliable, but she never questions, even once, the fMRI research "proving" the areas of the brain in certain thought processes and biases. Does putting someone in a machine, I know quieter now, but still somewhat intimidating (and hardly like a "real world")  in itself, alter, the results? Never mentioned, even once. (I could be wrong, if so correct me.)

9) There is a constant "appeal to authority." It could be she is correct that WHO, UN, various and sundry industry, trade-groups, and government organizations, like the FDA, are good, well-meaning organization but shouldn't her skepticism apply to those groups also?

10)  Though nuanced in many places (she praises parts of the brain "that make us human" and have emotion, art, music, etc) and scolds (though quickly and without references) things scientists and doctors did in the past, like Tuskogee, and even goes to some pains at the end to say that a simple Utilitarian model is not good, it seems grudgingly and that is what she really would like to see. Some technocratic, top-down system of administration who would know 'what is best' based on the latest, current theory and that better brain imaging and "messaging" can explain, or control, human thoughts and behavior. (I could be reading WAY too much into her. Call it my conformation bias.  ;) ) This is, obviously, an opinion. But her ideas of social manipulations, using the mind and natural cognitive biases, and social media to assert a "scientific" agenda versus whatever the one we have now is somewhat disturbing- assuming as she admits that, except for global warming  ;) - science is never settled and is always seeking to nullify their own hypotheses and come up with new and better theories (which is good and advances humanity, ideally.)

11)  There seems to be no nuance with regard to some subjects, especially, to vaccines. This is absurd and not scientific (or even according to the groups she so lauds.) For example, our own government(s) say a normal person should not get a Yellow Fever vaccine unless traveling to certain regions. Or that certain individuals, say with an allergy to eggs (since many common vaccines are cultured using them) not get certain ones prepared that way. She falls into an "all or nothing" heuristic here. Haha.

12) There is no discussion of the economics of GMO (and she neglects to mention the idea that the ban of DDT might have caused many more people to die) with regard to the people growing crops. Forget, for the moment, the safety in eating but what about the idea of not being able to grow crops from seeds, migration of the crops, etc? And, considering her- likely-, my bias, concern about population that a GMO crop once worldwide might hit some blight and then MOST of the crop would die? Versus a varied crops and breeds of animals so less likely no catastrophic die-off?

13)   To sum up as the good Doctors do. And with good candor early on:

"We think every child should receive all the vaccines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, that no one should have a gun in his or her home, that antibiotics are over-prescribed, that nuclear energy and genetically modified foods are safe and necessary when the appropriate safeguard are in place and carefully maintained, that ETC is safe and effective treatment for severe depression, and that unpasteurized milk should be out-lawed." page 32.

I recommend this book, easy read and is footnoted. But anyone already familiar with basics of social psychology, game theory, logic, probability, statistics, and science fundamentals will be bored at times, or lash out. But I could see this book getting good press in NPR, and the usual places and it is interesting her citations to Sunstein and her ideas to socially manipulate people for the "good" and for science.
https://www.amazon.com/Denying-Grave-Ignore-Facts-That/dp/0199396604/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1504412173&sr=8-1&keywords=denying+to+the+grave

ps: I have no idea why some of my numbers became emoticons but I can't seem to change them. So the ones in the sentences were intended, the others weren't. Herein ends my review/rant.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #775 on: September 03, 2017, 05:40:23 PM »
I recently read Contact by Carl Sagan.  Gee, seems he was actually a good writer!  The book was actually adapted from a treatment for the movie, but came out well before the movie sold.  Couple of funny flubs, though.  In one someone in an orbiting space station that kept the same face to Earth was said to be "on his feet", which he hadn't been before; what it could mean to be on one's feet in zero-G, I don't know, and the nano-gravity from turning once per revolution of Earth doesn't mean a thing.  Possibly an editing error if the passage had previously been intended to take place on Earth.  The other flub was the attitude that space aliens would see something awfully sinister in the telecast of the opening of the 1936 Olympics, which was just a talking head speaking a language they wouldn't know.  Because Hitler, it seems.

Then I read Two Clues by Erle Stanley Gardner, being two of his Sheriff Bill Eldon novelettes.  Interesting character who makes me wish he, rather than or in addition to Perry Mason, had been adapted for TV.

Then I finished Jack Boyle's Boston Blackie.  Amazing that such a reader-manipulative thoroughly incredible melodrama could still work, or even that it ever did, but it did on me.

Now I'm back to The Da Vinci Code, which I started reading in the library of the School for Professional Children while waiting for my tutoring client there several years ago.  Got it in epub recently, but my Kobo e-reader acted up after I read only a little more, now doesn't seem to read anything, so until I figure that out or decide to read it on desktop, that's how it stands.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #776 on: September 03, 2017, 05:46:12 PM »

Now I'm back to The Da Vinci Code, which I started reading in the library of the School for Professional Children while waiting for my tutoring client there several years ago.  Got it in epub recently, but my Kobo e-reader acted up after I read only a little more, now doesn't seem to read anything, so until I figure that out or decide to read it on desktop, that's how it stands.

Just take the hint and read something better than that drivel. I didn't think people still bothered with it anyway.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #777 on: September 03, 2017, 06:17:27 PM »
I recently read Contact by Carl Sagan.  Gee, seems he was actually a good writer!  The book was actually adapted from a treatment for the movie, but came out well before the movie sold.  Couple of funny flubs, though.  In one someone in an orbiting space station that kept the same face to Earth was said to be "on his feet", which he hadn't been before; what it could mean to be on one's feet in zero-G, I don't know, and the nano-gravity from turning once per revolution of Earth doesn't mean a thing.  Possibly an editing error if the passage had previously been intended to take place on Earth. The other flub was the attitude that space aliens would see something awfully sinister in the telecast of the opening of the 1936 Olympics, which was just a talking head speaking a language they wouldn't know.  Because Hitler, it seems.

Then I read Two Clues by Erle Stanley Gardner, being two of his Sheriff Bill Eldon novelettes.  Interesting character who makes me wish he, rather than or in addition to Perry Mason, had been adapted for TV.

Then I finished Jack Boyle's Boston Blackie.  Amazing that such a reader-manipulative thoroughly incredible melodrama could still work, or even that it ever did, but it did on me.

Now I'm back to The Da Vinci Code, which I started reading in the library of the School for Professional Children while waiting for my tutoring client there several years ago.  Got it in epub recently, but my Kobo e-reader acted up after I read only a little more, now doesn't seem to read anything, so until I figure that out or decide to read it on desktop, that's how it stands.

That must have been an oversight if the movie came out first, because that point was addressed in the movie. The aliens wouldn't know what the 1936 Olympics or who Hitler was, it was just the first major TV event broadcast over the planet and picked up.

Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #778 on: September 03, 2017, 09:17:57 PM »
I have had a somewhat productive summer reading, and figure I may as well post a few reviews.

The most recent book completed, as mentioned in the politics thread, was Rust:The longest war by Jonathan Waldman.  As far as a book on rust goes- it was a thriller and the suspense right from the first chapter really gripps you.

OK.  Not really.  But it was a well written, well researched book which included characters who are passionate about the subject.  We get to meet the man in the US DOD who heads a department charged with keeping the armed forces from rusting and falling apart.  The book mentions his films on corrosion narrated by LeVar Burton of star trek fame (at least something about this book ties into the theme of this board- I'll post a youtube clip at the end.)

It mentions the early history of stainless steel and mentions that galvanizing our infrastructure rather than painting it would save gobs of cash over the life of the asset.  There is a chapter dedicated to to Alaska pipeline and the challenges that corrosion in a pipeline put in harsh conditions carrying crude through environmentally sensitive areas poses.  I had not realized that the biggest threat to the Alaska pipeline is running low on oil (not having enough to pump fast enough) and freezing up.

The book does an excellent job of looking at the past and the discoveries made, as well as the present- where we are in terms of coatings and technology to slow corrosion.  I felt that it did not do enough to talk about the future.  Polymers, alloys, 3D printing... I don't know that we will ever build bridges or battleships out of anything but steel- but I feel that there is a shift away from basic steel for assets we wish to last- and from carbon fiber to metal impregnated epoxies there are alternatives.  I suppose that the author wished to remain focused on the concrete rather than speculate- but at least one dedicated chapter would have been appreciated.

I can tell you that after reading the book I will never look at a lowly can of coke or red bull or beer quite the same.  There is some impressive technology bringing you your favourite beverage.

In short- it was worth a read.  But don't expect to be gripped by the action in the book.  The closest you get to that is the description of sneaking around Bethlehem steel avoiding the guard...

The first in a series of seven videos...


Re: Reading Minds: The CoastGab Book Club
« Reply #779 on: September 13, 2017, 03:42:43 AM »
I read "Hell's Angels: A Strange And Terrible Saga" while waiting in airports this summer. It definitely had it's moments but I feel like a lot of the book was very repetitive, like Thompson was actually doing a lot of padding with some of the descriptions. I've also just started "The Foundation Trilogy" by Asimov but I haven't made much headway into that yet.

I don't know if comics count in the Coastgab Book Club or not, but the new Moon Knight by Jeff Lemire is really great too.