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Resilience: Why Things Bounce Back
What causes one system to break down and another to rebound? Are we merely subject to the whim of forces beyond our control? Or, in the face of constant disruption, can we build better shock absorbers - for ourselves, our communities, our economies, and for the planet as a whole? Reporting firsthand from the coral reefs of Palau to the back streets of Palestine, Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy relate breakthrough scientific discoveries, pioneering social and ecological innovations, and important new approaches to constructing a more resilient world. Zolli and Healy show how this new concept of resilience is a powerful lens through which we can assess major issues afresh: from business planning to social development, from urban planning to national energy security-circumstances that affect us all. Provocative, optimistic, and eye-opening, Resilience sheds light on why some systems, people, and communities fall apart in the face of disruption and, ultimately, how they can learn to bounce back.
Speed. In 1947, it represented the difference between victory and annihilation.After Hiroshima, the ability to deliver a nuclear device to its target faster than one’s enemy became the singular obsession of American war planners. And so, in the earliest days of the Cold War, a highly classified program was conducted on a desolate air base in California’s Mojave Desert. Its aim: to push the envelope of flight to new frontiers. There gathered an extraordinary band of pilots, including Second World War aces Chuck Yeager and George Welch, who risked their lives flying experimental aircraft to reach Mach 1, the so-called sound barrier, which pilots called “the demon.”Shrouding the program in secrecy, the US military reluctantly revealed that the “barrier” had been broken two months later, after the story was leaked to the press. The full truth has never been fully revealed - until now.Chasing the Demon, from decorated fighter pilot and acclaimed aviation historian Dan Hampton, tells, for the first time, the extraordinary true story of mankind’s quest for Mach 1. Here, of course, is twenty-four-year-old Captain Chuck Yeager, who made history flying the futuristic Bell X-1 faster than the speed of sound on October 14, 1947. Officially Yeager was the first to achieve supersonic flight, but drawing on new interviews with survivors of the program, including Yeager’s former commander, as well as declassified files, Hampton presents evidence that a fellow American - George Welch, a daring fighter pilot who shot down a remarkable sixteen enemy aircraft during the Pacific War - met the demon first, though he was not favored to wear the laurels, as he was now a civilian test pilot and was not flying the Bell X-1.Chasing the Demon sets the race between Yeager and Welch in the context of aviation history, so that the reader can learn and appreciate their accomplishments as never before.
Science and the City: The Mechanics Behind the Metropolis (Sigma)
Science is secretly at work behind the scenes of major cities of the world and will continue to be so. Technological advances in fields as diverse as quantum mechanics, electronics, and nanotechnology are proving increasingly important to city life, and the urban world will turn to science to deliver solutions to the problems of the future; more than 50 percent of the world's population now lives in cities, and that proportion is growing fast. Can engineering provide the answer to a viable megacity future?Science and the City starts at your front door and guides you through the technology of everyday city life: how new approaches to building materials help to construct the tallest skyscrapers in Dubai, how New Yorkers use light to treat their drinking water, how Tokyo commuters' footsteps power gates in train stations. Uncovering the science and engineering that shapes our cities, Laurie Winkless reveals how technology will help us meet the challenges of a soaring world population--from an ever-increasing demand for power, water, and internet access, to simply how to get about in a megacity of tens of millions of people.
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