Saturday, November 18, 2006

25 Greatest Science Books

Discover Magazine has listed the 25 Greatest Science Books of All Time. I guess if anyone should know... It surprised me how many of these I've actually read. They put Darwin at Number 1 and 2, which surprised me a bit. I would have put him right after Newton's Principia Mathematica, which I would have made number 1. Gallileo is, oddly enough, right above Copernicus at 4 and 5 respectively; I might have switched that around. Aristotle's Physics is number 6, which actually makes a lot of sense. It's not exactly the most accurate work; but it's the beginning of empirical science, so let's give Aristotle a hand for that.

They've also got Einstein's explanation of the special and general theories of Relativity, The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins, and a favorite of Claire and myself, The Man who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. The Feynman Lectures on Physics are here, which are pretty good reading, and they also include Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, which was previously listed in that dreadful list of the Most Dangerous Books I made fun of a while back. So, it's pretty good stuff all the way around, although I suppose the geologists might well be pissed off a bit.

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