Cover: Flying Buttresses, Entropy, and O-Rings: The World of an Engineer, from Harvard University PressCover: Flying Buttresses, Entropy, and O-Rings in PAPERBACK

Flying Buttresses, Entropy, and O-Rings

The World of an Engineer

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Product Details


$32.50 • £26.95 • €29.50

ISBN 9780674306899

Publication Date: 04/01/1993

Academic Trade

272 pages

29 halftones; 31 line illustrations; 11 tables


In these witty and engrossing pages, Adams demonstrates that engineering actually can be as divine an occupation as the clergy and as soulful as an aria… Adams’ literary tour is the next best thing to visiting a hands-on engineering exhibit.—Alex Raksin, The Los Angeles Times Book Review

Adams has covered his subject well, and his book would make excellent reading for young people contemplating a career in engineering… [It is] well organized, well written and often amusing, with some very shrewd observations… [The author] deserves our thanks for an interesting and valuable book.—Michael French, The Times Higher Education Supplement

This text was written to provide a general audience with access to the subjects of engineering and technology. It is a superb book… Discussions of the Challenger tragedy, the balcony collapse at the Hyatt Regency in Kansas City, a DC-10 crash…and other technical topics make the book readable, convincing, and enjoyable.Science Books & Films

In this engaging book, the author of Conceptual Blockbusting introduces the world of engineering, from the origins of problems to design and invention; mathematics; science and research; development, testing and failure; manufacturing; money and business; and regulation.Science News

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Jacket: An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns, by Bruno Latour, translated by Catherine Porter, from Harvard University Press

Honoring Latour

In awarding Bruno Latour the 2021 Kyoto Prize for Arts and Philosophy, the Inamori Foundation said he has “revolutionized the conventional view of science” and “his philosophy re-examines ‘modernity’ based on the dualism of nature and society.” Below is an excerpt from An Inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns. For more than twenty years, scientific and technological controversies have proliferated in number and scope, eventually reaching the climate itself. Since geologists are beginning to use the term “Anthropocene” to designate the era of Earth’s history that follows the Holocene