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Technology and science related posts are included in this category.

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Bring Your Own Geiger Counter

prospecting for atomic materials cover

Prospecting for Atomic Minerals
Knoerr and Lutjen
1955

Those of you looking to change your career, here is an option to consider. Why not collect all those fancy minerals they use in an atomic bomb? It’s perfectly safe and easy for anyone to just pick up a shovel and start digging. You will be rich before you know it! What could possibly go wrong?

Worldcat shows only a handful of public libraries. Most holding are in university collections, especially those with technical programs related to engineering and mining. My copy looked like it had been doing field work given the condition of the cover and all the markings inside.

A few years ago we posted a similar book that had a more “get rich quick” tone compared to this book. I guess dropping the bomb is also a business opportunity in the making. I think these odd books have value just in the weirdness, and would probably be a fun display. Amateur mining sounds a bit outside the scope of my service population, however.

Mary

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Wonders of Dust

Wonders of Dust

 

Wonders of Dust
McFall
1980

I can just picture the publisher pitch¬† meeting: “What we really need is a book about dust!” It just seems like a random topic that you wouldn’t need (or care) to read a book about. Sort of like this book about wax.

It’s not actually a bad book, though it is horribly old and outdated. It talks about asbestos, dust on the surface of the moon, different kinds of dust particles, the Dust Bowl, dust clouds that hang over cities…all kinds of fascinating details about dust. It is a juvenile book written with very adult terminology and in a very dry style, so all those interesting ideas are really lost in it’s boring cover and format. A kid might actually be interested in dust if the book came in a more exciting package.

-Holly

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Lasers Work Like This

Lasers cover

 

Lasers Work Like This
Larsen
1969

 

Lasers! What a great topic for a children’s non-fiction book! This was pretty cutting edge stuff in 1969 when the book was published. Some of the topics are still relevant, such as lasers used in surgery, but the technology has been finessed a lot since 1969. The cover was one of those plain, rebound types with no title on it, so what you see here is the title page. The whole thing is presented in such a boring way, and the information shared is so old-fashioned, that kids will surely be disappointed.

Also, they really buried the lead in the postscript on death rays. They should have led with that to spark a kid’s interest.

Lame! Weed and replace.

-Holly

 

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