image : Karl Sabbagh

Karl Sabbagh

Karl Sabbagh

The Best 6 Books on Karl Sabbagh

image Karl Sabbagh

The Hair of the Dog and Other Scientific Surprises

From the dinosaurs that caused sonic booms to the irrational nature of the number pi, essays on scientific strangeness
 
Science is full of surprises, such as the peculiar peepshow beginnings of baby incubators, the unexpected positive fallout from the H-bomb, or the fifth taste sensation lurking in everyone’s taste buds which nobody knew about—except for the Japanese. While shedding light on these conundrums, Karl Sabbagh shows that seemingly trivial queries or assumptions lead to a deeper understanding of how science works. Who would have thought that scientists would turn to the hypothesis "All swans are white" to determine the stability of the entire universe? Or that if we choose to spend our hard-earned money on other people it might make us happier than if we spend it on ourselves?
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A Rum Affair: A True Story Of Botanical Fraud

A Rum Affair is an absorbing tale of scientific chicanery and academic intrigue—critically acclaimed and a finalist for the Los Angeles TimesBook Prize. In the 1940s, the eminent British botanist John Heslop Harrison proposed a controversial theory: Species of plants on the islands off the west coast of Scotland, he said, had survived the last Ice Age. His premise flew in the face of evidence that the last advance of the ice sheets extended well south of mainland Scotland, but he said he had proof—the plants and grasses found on the Isle of Rum—that would make his name in the scientific world. Harrison didn't anticipate, however, the tenacious John Raven, an amateur botanist who boldly questioned whether these grasses were truly indigenous to the area, or whether they had been transported there and planted. What seems at first a minor infringement of academic honesty soon becomes an enthralling tale of rival scientists and fraudulent science, a skillful whodunit that, in the hands of the talented Sabbagh, joins the ranks of the best narrative nonfiction.
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Twenty-First-Century Jet: The Making and Marketing of the Boeing 777

Documents the production of the passenger aircraft, examining Boeing's team management strategy, the design creation done exclusively on computer, and the unique financing plan
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Remembering our Childhood: How Memory Betrays Us

In this fascinating and sometimes disturbing book, the well-known writer Karl Sabbagh looks at psychologists' present understanding of the nature of memory, especially recollections of childhood, and how, in cases of so-called 'recovered memories', the unreliability and flexibility of memory has led to tragic consequences, destroying the lives of whole families.

All of us have memories of childhood - that special trip to the fair, or impressions, such as dappled sunlight through rustling leaves seen from the pram. Some people firmly believe that they can recall scenes from the time they were babies. But what does science tell us about the nature of memory, and memories of childhood? In the first part of this book, Sabbagh begins gently with examples he has collected from many interviews of earliest memories, and goes on to look at psychologists' and neuroscientists' understanding of memory. It becomes clear that, whatever individuals might claim, memories of the first two years or so of our lives are simply not accessible to us, while later memories are fragile, yielding to suggestion and our inclination towards a neat story. All too often, our 'memory' of an event arises from what we have been told by a relative. The book then turns to darker territory. A casual remark by a child at a nursery leads to detailed and suggestive questioning of a number of children, resulting in the arrest of a teacher accused of child abuse. She was subsequently released. Some patients with eating and mood disorders undergoing therapy have come to believe, or have been led to believe by the therapist, that their problems stem from being sexually abused as a child - memories allegedly repressed and only 'recovered' under the guidance of the therapist. Such claims have again resulted in wrongful arrest, subsequently overturned, though the damage done to the families is irreparable. Sabbagh has interviewed the distinguished psychologist Elizabeth Loftus and others involved in blowing the whistle on the 'recovered memory' movement. Throughout, the book is full of quotations from interviews and extracts from transcribed interviews presented at court, making this a powerful and vivid account.

While other books have been written on the dangers of the concept of recovered memory, Sabbagh here puts the story in the wider perspective of our growing scientific understanding of memory, and argues strongly for the critical role of scientific evidence in cases involving the memory of witnesses.
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Dr. Riemann's Zeros

Since its inception by Bernhard Riemann in 1859, every pure mathematician has longed for a proof for the Riemann hypothesis. So great is the interest in its solution that in 2001, an American foundation put up prize money of US$1 million to the first person the demonstrate that the hypothesis is correct. The Riemann hypothesis refers to prime numbers -- those that cannot be divided by any whole number except 1 (for example: 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, 13, 17, 19, 23...). For example, 19cannot be split into smaller whole numbers, in the way that an atom cannot be split into smaller atoms. Riemann's hypothesis seeks to explain where every single prime to infinity will occur. It is a mind-bending problem that encapsulates a profound mystery at the heart of our counting system, one that mathematicians speak about in awed terms. Karl Sabbagh's glorious, highly inventive book makes even the airiest peaks of maths accessible. He uses anecdotes, history and jokes and makes vivid characters out of the eccentric figures racing to solve the problem. His triumphant book, in the end, is a brilliant explanation of numbers and a profound meditation on the ultimate meaning of mathematics.
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The Riemann Hypothesis: The Greatest Unsolved Problem in Mathematics

Since 1859, when the shy German mathematician Bernhard Riemann wrote an eight-page article giving a possible answer to a problem that had tormented mathematical minds for centuries, the world's greatest mathematicians have been fascinated, infuriated, and obsessed with proving the Riemann hypothesis. They speak of it in awed terms and consider it to be an even more difficult problem than Fermat's last theorem, which was finally proven by Andrew Wiles in 1995.

In The Riemann Hypothesis, acclaimed author Karl Sabbagh interviews some of the world's finest mathematicians who have spent their lives working on the problem--and whose approaches to meeting the challenges thrown up by the hypothesis are as diverse as their personalities.

Wryly humorous, lively, accessible and comprehensive, The Riemann Hypothesis is a compelling exploration of the people who do math and the ideas that motivate them to the brink of obsession--and a profound meditation on the ultimate meaning of mathematics.

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IF YOU’D LIKE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT KARL SABBAGH, YOU CAN FIND HIM ON HIS Website, Facebook , Twitter , Instagram AND Youtube