How to

How to

Absurd Scientific Advice for Common Real-world Problems

Book - 2019
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For any task you might want to do, there's a right way, a wrong way, and a way so monumentally bad that no one would ever try it. How To is a guide to the third kind of approach. It's full of highly impractical advice for everything from landing a plane to digging a hole.
Publisher: New York : Riverhead Books, [2019]
Copyright Date: ©2019
ISBN: 9780525537090
Branch Call Number: 500 MUN 2019-08
Characteristics: 307 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


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JessicaGma Oct 29, 2020

I always enjoy a Randall Munroe book and 'How To' is a fun read. I liked the whole section where he kept asking Chris Hatfield more elaborate scenarios, and Hatfield had an answer for every one. It's a great book for taking problems to the most ridiculous degree but I also know I would have enjoyed physics far more had we done things like this!

JCLCharlesH Sep 29, 2020

A second book of everyday physics by Randall Munroe - former NASA robotics programmer and creator of the webcomic "xkcd." Easily approachable with a mad scientist sense of humor, this was a very fun non-fiction book.

Apr 14, 2020

For someone who is not science-inclined, this book was very enjoyable. The author's drawing his ideas to their ultimate absurd end is fun, but this process is not just entertainment; he is also creating hypotheses for each of these situations, which makes this book semi-educational. I will definitely read his "What If?" book and his web comic now.

Feb 18, 2020

Completely impractical (but scientifically grounded) life advice from the author of xkcd? What more could a lifelong science geek ask for? :-)

Bizarre and entertaining. Wonderful quick read.

Jan 27, 2020

It's surprising how much solid science one can pick up when an example is stretched to its absurd extreme.

FPL_AdamL Dec 05, 2019

This book finds the humor in math, science, and life. It makes a great way to take a 15 minute break to laugh and feel smarter!

Nov 26, 2019

This book takes really simple concepts and mixes absurdity and applies real mathematical solutions to them. The forward says it all. It's a book of really bad ideas, and that's the point.

It pushes you to consider the extreme physical limitations of physics and what happens when you try to reach them. It does in a way that is the opposite of most books on physics. It uses humor and absurdity.

In using absurd humor, the book ends up sparking anyone who's even remotely curious into learning more about the subject. In some case, like in "How to Play Tag" he states that it's impossible to "WIN" at tag... you simply choose to stop playing, and then goes on to explain that eventually, the slowest person will be "IT" for an infinite amount of time. This is stuff which is obvious when you think about it, but it's something you rarely think about.

Randall has the ability to break down even the simplest thing into its core components and then proceeds to break apart those as well into even simpler things. By doing this, he makes really difficult to grasp concepts easy to digest, even if the practical application is realistically improbable.

Nov 04, 2019

Stupid. Tried to read but couldn't. Finally gave up - waste of time.

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Jan 04, 2021

LoganEva thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over


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