Based on fifteen years of research, Glock is the riveting story of the weapon that has become known as American’s gun. Today the Glock pistol has been embraced by two-thirds of all U.S. police departments, glamorized in countless Hollywood movies, and featured as a ubiquitous presence on prime-time TV. It has been rhapsodized by hip-hop artists, and coveted by cops and crooks alike.
Created in 1982 by Gaston Glock, an obscure Austrian curtain-rod manufacturer, and swiftly adopted by the Austrian army, the Glock pistol, with its lightweight plastic frame and large-capacity spring-action magazine, arrived in America at a fortuitous time. Law enforcement agencies had concluded that their agents and officers, armed with standard six-round revolvers, were getting "outgunned" by drug dealers with semi-automatic pistols. They needed a new gun.
When Karl Water, a firearm salesman based in the U.S. first saw a Glock in 1984, his reaction was, “Jeez, that’s ugly.” But the advantages of the pistol soon became apparent. The standard semi-automatic Glock could fire as many as 17 bullets from its magazine without reloading (one equipped with an extended thirty-three cartridge magazine was used in Tucson to shoot Gabrielle Giffords and 19 others). It was built with only 36 parts that were interchangeable with those of other models. You could drop it underwater, toss it from a helicopter, or leave it out in the snow, and it would still fire. It was reliable, accurate, lightweight, and cheaper to produce than Smith and Wesson’s revolver. Made in part of hardened plastic, it was even rumored (incorrectly) to be invisible to airport security screening.
Filled with corporate intrigue, political maneuvering, Hollywood glitz, bloody shoot-outs—and an attempt on Gaston Glock’s life by a former lieutenant—Glock is at once the inside account of how Glock the company went about marketing its pistol to police agencies and later the public, as well as a compelling chronicle of the evolution of gun culture in America.
The Russian Federation nuclear powered submarine sank in August 2000 with the loss of all 118 lives on board. In May 2001 the Russian Federation entered into a contract with the Dutch consortium Mammoet-Smit for the recovery of the on the condition that it had to be completed within that year. The consortium prepared for this World-first salvage of a nuclear powered and conventionally armed submarine that was very substantially damaged lying at 110m in the icy waters of the Barents Sea. Working at sometimes breathtaking pace, Mammoet-Smit prepared, lifted and transported the wreckage of the delivering her to a floating dock at Rosljakovo, about 200km south of the foundering site, in just over six months from the contract date. This paper tracks how the nuclear and other hazards of the , its nuclear reactors and weaponry were assessed and monitored throughout the recovery and salvage program, and it provides an insight into the reasons why the sank.
TWENTY-FIVE YEARS after its initial publication, remains the seminal and complete story of how the bomb was developed, from the turn-of-the-century discovery of the vast energy locked inside the atom to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan.
Few great discoveries have evolved so swiftly—or have been so misunderstood. From the theoretical discussions of nuclear energy to the bright glare of Trinity, there was a span of hardly more than twenty-five years. What began as merely an interesting speculative problem in physics grew into the Manhattan Project, and then into the bomb, with frightening rapidity, while scientists known only to their peers—Szilard, Teller, Oppenheimer, Bohr, Meitner, Fermi, Lawrence, and von Neumann—stepped from their ivory towers into the limelight.
Richard Rhodes gives the definitive story of man’s most awesome discovery and invention. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail, is a narrative and a document with literary power commensurate with its subject.
On October 4 1957, at the height of the Cold War, the Soviet Union secretly launched Sputnik, the Earth’s first ever artificial moon. No bigger than a basketball, this tiny satellite was powered by a car battery. Yet for all its simplicity, Sputnik transformed science fiction into reality, passing over the stunned American continent once every 101 minutes and propelling the USSR from backward totalitarian regime to cutting-edge superpower and pioneer of the Space Age. The United States, desperate to catch up, trailed the Soviets into the space race the following year, with a controversial space programme masterminded by former Nazi rocket scientists.
The immediate human toll of the 1994 Flight 427 disaster was staggering: all 132 people aboard died on a Pennsylvania hillside. The subsequent investigation was a maze of politics, bizarre theories, and shrouded answers. Bill Adair, an award-winning journalist, was granted special access to the five-year inquiry by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) while its investigators tried to determine if the world’s most widely used commercial jet, the Boeing 737, was really safe. Their findings have had wide-ranging effects on the airline industry, pilots, and even passengers. Adair takes readers behind the scenes to show who makes decisions about airline safety—and why.
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Russell Gold, a brilliant and dogged investigative reporter at , has spent more than a decade reporting on one of the biggest stories of our time: the spectacular, world-changing rise of “fracking.” Recognized as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and a recipient of the Gerald Loeb Award for his work, Gold has traveled along the pipelines and into the hubs of this country’s energy infrastructure; he has visited frack sites from Texas to North Dakota; and he has conducted thousands of interviews with engineers and wildcatters, CEOs and roughnecks, environmentalists and politicians. He has also sifted through reams of engineering reports, lawsuit transcripts, and financial filings. The result is an essential book—a commanding piece of journalism, an astounding study of human ingenuity, and an epic work of storytelling.
Fracking has vociferous critics and fervent defenders, but the debate between these camps has obscured the actual story: Fracking has become a fixture of the American landscape and the global economy. It has upended the business models of energy companies around the globe, and it has started to change geopolitics and global energy markets in profound ways. Gold tells the story of this once-obscure oilfield technology—a story with an incredible cast of tycoons and geologists, dreamers and drillers, speculators and skeptics, a story that answers a critical question of our time: Where will the energy come from to power our world—and what price will we have to pay for it?
THE STORY OF A GREAT AMERICAN BUILDER
Gibbs was an American original, on par with John Roebling of the Brooklyn Bridge and Frank Lloyd Wright of Fallingwater. Forced to drop out of Harvard following his family’s sudden financial ruin, he overcame debilitating shyness and lack of formal training to become the visionary creator of some of the finest ships in history. He spent forty years dreaming of the ship that became the S.S.
William Francis Gibbs was driven, relentless, and committed to excellence. He loved his ship, the idea of it, and the realization of it, and he devoted himself to making it the epitome of luxury travel during the triumphant post–World War II era. Biographer Steven Ujifusa brilliantly describes the way Gibbs worked and how his vision transformed an industry. is a tale of ingenuity and enterprise, a truly remarkable journey on land and sea.
No one writes about cars like Jeremy Clarkson. While most correspondents are too buys diving straight into BHP, MPG and MPH, Jeremy appreciates that there are more important things to life. Don’t worry, we’ll get to the cars. Eventually. But first we should consider:
• The case for invading France
• The overwhelming appeal of a nice sit-down
• The inconvenience of gin and tonic
• Why clothes are no better than ice cream
• Spot-welding with the Duchess of Kent
• And why Denmark is the best place in the world
Armed only with conviction, curiosity, enthusiasm and a stout pair of trousers, Jeremy hurtles around the world – along motorway, autoroute, freeway and autobahn – in search of answers to life’s puzzles and ponderings without forethought or fear for his own safety. What, you have to ask, could possibly go wrong…
The contents of this book first appeared in Jeremy Clarkson’s column. Read more about the world according to Clarkson every week in .
Elon Musk is the most daring entrepreneur of our time
There are few industrialists in history who could match Elon Musk’s relentless drive and ingenious vision. A modern alloy of Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Howard Hughes, and Steve Jobs, Musk is the man behind PayPal, Tesla Motors, SpaceX, and SolarCity, each of which has sent shock waves throughout American business and industry. More than any other executive today, Musk has dedicated his energies and his own vast fortune to inventing a future that is as rich and far-reaching as a science fiction fantasy.
In this lively, investigative account, veteran technology journalist Ashlee Vance offers an unprecedented look into the remarkable life and times of Silicon Valley’s most audacious businessman. Written with exclusive access to Musk, his family, and his friends, the book traces his journey from his difficult upbringing in South Africa to his ascent to the pinnacle of the global business world. Vance spent more than fifty hours in conversation with Musk and interviewed close to three hundred people to tell the tumultuous stories of Musk’s world-changing companies and to paint a portrait of a complex man who has renewed American industry and sparked new levels of innovation—all while making plenty of enemies along the way.
In 1992, Elon Musk arrived in the United States as a ferociously driven immigrant bent on realizing his wildest dreams. Since then, Musk’s roller-coaster life has brought him grave disappointments alongside massive successes. After being forced out of PayPal, fending off a life-threatening case of malaria, and dealing with the death of his infant son, Musk abandoned Silicon Valley for Los Angeles. He spent the next few years baffling his friends by blowing his entire fortune on rocket ships and electric cars. Cut to 2012, however, and Musk had mounted one of the greatest resurrections in business history: Tesla, SpaceX, and SolarCity had enjoyed unparalleled success, and Musk’s net worth soared to more than $5 billion. At a time when many American companies are more interested in chasing easy money than in taking bold risks on radical new technology, Musk stands out as the only businessman with enough dynamism and vision to tackle—and even revolutionize—three industries at once. Vance makes the case that Musk’s success heralds a return to the original ambition and invention that made America an economic and intellectual powerhouse. Elon Musk is a brilliant, penetrating examination of what Musk’s career means for a technology industry undergoing dramatic change and offers a taste of what could be an incredible century ahead.
An unflinching look at the aspiring city-builders of our smart, mobile, connected future.
From Publishers Weekly
Technology forecaster Townsend defines a smart city as an urban environment where information technology is combined with infrastructure, architecture, everyday objects, and even our bodies to address social, economic, and environmental problems. They're already being made, usually piecemeal but sometimes wholesale (as in planned automated cities like South Korea and Cisco's somewhat ill-fated Songdo), and involve refashioning old systems like the electricity grid as well as deploying the latest infrastructure—such as the network of radio waves operating our wireless gadgets—and much more. Of interest to urban planners and designers, tech leaders, and entrepreneurs, Townsend's globe-hopping study examines the trend toward smart cities while addressing pros and cons, as top-down corporate models develop alongside communitarian and entrepreneurial initiatives. Skeptical of the vision and influence of tech giants, Townsend points to smaller stories in making the case that local ingenuity should lead the way, albeit in concert with the corporate innovation and power. The author's perspective is based partly on direct experience (among other things, he was an organizer, in 2002, of NYCwireless, an open-source group distributing free Wi-Fi access in Manhattan). The autobiographical passages and close readings of other scrappy innovators are the most enjoyable part of this impressive survey, which tries to secure democratic impulses amid a new gold rush. Agent: Zoë Pagnamenta, Zoë Pagnamenta Agency. (Oct.)
Everyone these days is familiar with smartphones and smart homes (even if most can’t afford the latter), but how many people are familiar with smart cities? While there is no master controller—at least not yet—who manipulates apps that keep a city running, increasingly such things as traffic patterns, sewage flow, and street lighting are all being guided by sophisticated software. In this far-reaching overview of all the ways computer technology is transforming life for today’s metropolitan dwellers, urban planning specialist Townsend takes a look at how modern cities around the world are upgrading their infrastructure for the Internet age. From New York to Beijing, city mayors are partnering with organizations like Siemens and IBM to strengthen networks, communications, and crisis-intervention tools such as monitoring flu outbreaks. Although the omnipresent surveillance that accompanies this interconnectivity may make some readers nervous, Townsend persuasively demonstrates how ubiquitous information resources can provide more protection, as it did in the Boston marathon bombing case, and facilitate a more comfortable, less stress-inducing city-living experience. --Carl Hays
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