#BookReview: Force by Henry Petroski

Solid Exposition Of Applied Physics. This book truly is one of the better written, more approachable books on applied physics for the “layman” that I’ve come across. It takes most every easily observed physical force, from a simple push to gravitational to magnetic to torque and beyond, and explains the basics of the known history and science behind them all, and it does this in a very conversational and even, at times, humorous tone. Truly, a great book on the subject for those who either don’t know much or simply want an easy and lighthearted look and things they mostly already know.

The two star deductions are more of a standard form for me, and don’t actually speak to the overall nature of this book *too* harshly: The first is because of the COVID discussions in both the early and late parts of the text. *I DO NOT WANT TO READ ABOUT COVID. PERIOD.* And I am waging a one-man war against the topic everywhere I encounter it in booklandia. The single star deduction is really the only weapon I have in this war, so it is used where applicable. The other deduction is the short-ish bibliography, clocking in at just 14% of the text here when 20-30% is more normal of such texts in my experiences.

Ultimately this really was a great and engaging look at its topic, and it is very much recommended.

This review of Force by Henry Petroski was originally written on September 11, 2022.

#BookReview: Humble Pi by Matt Parker

The Daily Show for Math. In this hilarious and sometimes tragic book about math in the real world – some instances discussed include the deaths of hundreds of people, but most discussions are of a humorous bent – Parker does a truly phenomenal job of showing just how easy it is to get math wrong, and what can happen in the real world in that situation. From bridge collapses to programming errors to planes running out of fuel midair and all kinds of other situations, Parker truly does an excellent job of looking across the spectrum of math errors and showing both what should have been the correct result and what happened with the wrong one. Truly hilarious, and very much recommended.

This review of Humble Pi by Matt Parker was originally written on February 1, 2020.