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John Noble Wilford

Teoksen The Mapmakers: Revised Edition tekijä

18+ teosta 1,529 jäsentä 11 arvostelua

Tietoja tekijästä

John Noble Wilford, winner of two Pulitzer Prizes, has reported on science for the New York Times since 1965

Tekijän teokset

Associated Works

The Best American Science Writing 2004 (2004) — Avustaja — 153 kappaletta

Merkitty avainsanalla




John Wilford Noble’s The Mapmakers is a terrific source of stories and information about famous mapmakers and the mapping techniques of the past. A good deal of the history is related through biographical details about the “makers” and these are nearly always interesting and even dramatic. It was a profession that attracted adventurous souls. Those souls were needed, too. If we had remained obliged to rely on “learned Europeans,” we’d have been telling each other, for example, that mountains “categorically” can’t be higher than about 25,000 feet. Hear that, Everest, K2, Kangchenjunga, and the rest?

As mapmaking became more highly technological, which is described in the latter part of the book, adventure is less prominently part of the story. If technical text makes your heart sing, why, be sure to read the entire book. If you’d honestly just rather watch cricket, then stick to the earlier chapters for the more personal drama of mapmaking.

I read the revised edition, dated 2001. Obviously, a lot has changed since then. This isn’t the right book if your focus is the more recent quite remarkable developments.
… (lisätietoja)
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dypaloh | 7 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Oct 11, 2017 |
Contains lots of interesting information, more than I really needed about cartographic and surveying techniques. The early-age historical chapters were very informative, and the later modern-age ones a little drier.

Wilford uses a straight-forward narrative, packed with detail rather than the repetition and faux-suspense that is unfortunately so prevalent in the recent History Channel productions.
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librisissimo | 7 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Apr 25, 2016 |
I have to remember not to pick up books that look interesting without researching them. I wanted to like this so bad...but it's totally boring.
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AlCracka | 7 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Apr 2, 2013 |
“The Eagle has landed.” So begins the events that culminate with those immortal words by Neil Armstrong, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” In We reach the moon, written in 1969 soon after the first lunar landing by John Noble Wilford, a space reporter for the New York Times, we find out how this all came to be and why we were glued to the TV set that day in July. Drawing on the vast resources of the Times, Wilford tells the story of the race for the moon for the average reader starting with Sputnik in 1957, the Kennedy pledge to put a man on the moon by the end of the 1960s, John Glenn’s flight, the Apollo 1 disaster and more, ending with splashdown of the Apollo 11 mission. Weaving the story of the men who made it happen, scientists, engineers, contractors and astronauts with the plans for rockets, capsules, lunar modules and scientific experiments makes for compelling and exciting reading, even when knowing the end result.

Wilford has included a 64 color insert with photographs of astronauts, spacecraft and the real scene-stealers, the earth and the moon from outer space. Unfortunately the black-and-white photos of the Apollo11 mission are grainy and hard to see, due to the rush to get this book in print. There is a chart with all the manned missions in space up to the publication date, both Russian and American, along with a list of all Apollo/Saturn contractors, a selection of radio transmissions as published by the Times, an excellent index and a short bibliography containing classics of the space age. The book has numerous simple drawings of equipment to explain engineering concepts and basic rocket design.

For those who want more up to date material, there is a marvelous series, The NASA mission reports published by Apogee Books, covering most of the NASA pioneering flights. Each title includes at least 1 CD-ROM with movies, images and extra textual material. The one covering Apollo 11 is a three volume set.

It is hard to image that we got to the moon with the primitive technology of the 60s. Their state-of-the-art computers look like toys with little power. The technology for rockets, space suits and other accoutrements has progressed beyond anything dreamed of in 1969. Yet we haven’t come much farther. A man on Mars, a goal for the end of the century, hasn’t happened. We don’t have colonies on the moon. Yet that moon walk defined a generation and led to such promise of peace and progress. Space indeed is “the final frontier” and that first step was taken 43 years ago.
… (lisätietoja)
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fdholt | 1 muu arvostelu | Jun 29, 2012 |


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