The Geek Atlas: 128 Places Where Science and Technology Come Alive

Overview

The history of science is all around us, if you know where to look. With this unique traveler's guide, you'll learn about 128 destinations around the world where discoveries in science, mathematics, or technology occurred or is happening now. Travel to Munich to see the world's largest science museum, watch Foucault's pendulum swinging in Paris, ponder a descendant of Newton's apple tree at Trinity College, Cambridge, and more.

Each site in The Geek Atlas focuses on discoveries ...

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The Geek Atlas: 128 Places Where Science and Technology Come Alive

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Overview

The history of science is all around us, if you know where to look. With this unique traveler's guide, you'll learn about 128 destinations around the world where discoveries in science, mathematics, or technology occurred or is happening now. Travel to Munich to see the world's largest science museum, watch Foucault's pendulum swinging in Paris, ponder a descendant of Newton's apple tree at Trinity College, Cambridge, and more.

Each site in The Geek Atlas focuses on discoveries or inventions, and includes information about the people and the science behind them. Full of interesting photos and illustrations, the book is organized geographically by country (by state within the U.S.), complete with latitudes and longitudes for GPS devices.

Destinations include:

  • Bletchley Park in the UK, where the Enigma code was broken
  • The Alan Turing Memorial in Manchester, England
  • The Horn Antenna in New Jersey, where the Big Bang theory was confirmed
  • The National Cryptologic Museum in Fort Meade, Maryland
  • The Trinity Test Site in New Mexico, where the first atomic bomb was exploded
  • The Joint Genome Institute in Walnut Creek, California

You won't find tedious, third-rate museums, or a tacky plaque stuck to a wall stating that "Professor X slept here." Every site in this book has real scientific, mathematical, or technological interest — places guaranteed to make every geek's heart pound a little faster. Plan a trip with The Geek Atlas and make your own discoveries along the way.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596523206
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/28/2009
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 544
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

John Graham-Cumming is a wandering programmer who's lived in the UK, California, New York and France. Along the way he's worked for a succession of technology start-ups, written the award-winning open source POPFile email program and churned out articles for publications such as The Guardian newspaper, Dr Dobbs, and Linux Magazine. His previous effort writing a book was the obscure and self-published computer manual 'GNU Make Unleashed' which saturated its target market of 100 readers. Because he has a doctorate in computer security he's deeply suspicious of people who insist on being called Dr., but doesn't mind if you refer to him as a geek. He is the proud owner of a three-letter domain name where he hosts his web site: http://www.jgc.org.

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Table of Contents

Introduction;
A Mind Forever Voyaging;
Conventions Used in This Book;
We'd Like to Hear from You;
Safari® Books Online;
Chapter 1: Parkes Radio Telescope, Parkes, Australia;
1.1 The Dish;
1.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 2: Zentralfriedhof, Vienna, Austria;
2.1 A Scientist Among the Composers;
2.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 3: Atomium, Brussels, Belgium;
3.1 An Iron Crystal;
3.2 The Delta Allotrope of Iron;
3.3 Carbon Allotropes;
3.4 Practical Information;
Chapter 4: Baddeck, Nova Scotia, Canada;
4.1 Alexander Graham Bell's Summer Home;
4.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 5: Mendel Museum of Genetics, Brno, Czech Republic;
5.1 Ten Years of Observing Peas;
5.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 6: Galápagos Islands, Ecuador;
6.1 The Second Voyage of the Beagle;
6.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 7: Airbus, Toulouse, France;
7.1 The A380;
7.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 8: The Arago Medallions, Paris, France;
8.1 François Arago and the Paris Meridian;
8.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 9: Beaumont-de-Lomagne, France;
9.1 Pierre de Fermat;
9.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 10: Château du Clos Lucé, Amboise, France;
10.1 The Final Home of Leonardo da Vinci;
10.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 11: Institut Pasteur, Paris, France;
11.1 The Founder of Immunology;
11.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 12: The Jacquard Museum, Roubaix, France;
12.1 The Punched Card;
12.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 13: Le Panthéon, Paris, France;
13.1 To the Great Men the Grateful Homeland;
13.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 14: Millau Viaduct, Millau, France;
14.1 The World's Highest Road Bridge;
14.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 15: Musée Curie, Paris, France;
15.1 Radium;
15.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 16: Musée de l'Air et de l'Espace, Le Bourget, France;
16.1 "Concorde Lives On, She Is Only Sleeping";
16.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 17: Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris, France;
17.1 Science Before and After the French Revolution;
17.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 18: The Eiffel Tower, Paris, France;
18.1 The Great Men of Science;
18.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 19: Deutsches Museum, Munich, Germany;
19.1 The German Museum of Masterpieces of Natural Science and Technology;
19.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 20: Peenemünde Historical Technical Information Center, Peenemünde, Germany;
20.1 The Fieseler Fi 103 and the A-4;
20.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 21: Röntgen Museum, Remscheid, Germany;
21.1 The Discovery of the X-Ray;
21.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 22: Stadtfriedhof, Göttingen, Germany;
22.1 An Elephant's Graveyard;
22.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 23: The Gutenberg Museum, Mainz, Germany;
23.1 Movable Type;
23.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 24: Jantar Mantar, Jaipur, India;
24.1 An Enormous Observatory in Stone;
24.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 25: Broom Bridge, Dublin, Ireland;
25.1 Mathematical Equations As Urban Grafitti;
25.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 26: Tempio Voltiano, Como, Italy;
26.1 A Temple to Alessandro Volta;
26.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 27: Akashi-Kaikō Bridge, Kobe, Japan;
27.1 The World's Longest Suspension Bridge;
27.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 28: Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan;
28.1 Electric Town;
28.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 29: The Escher Museum, The Hague, Netherlands;
29.1 The Escher Museum;
29.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 30: Tesla Museum, Belgrade, Serbia;
30.1 The Man Who Lit Up the World;
30.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 31: Solúcar PS10 Power Station, Sanlúcar la Mayor, Spain;
31.1 The Tower of Power;
31.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 32: CERN, Geneva, Switzerland;
32.1 High-Energy Physics;
32.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 33: Historisches Museum Bern, Bern, Switzerland;
33.1 Albert Einstein's Annus Mirabilis (Miracle Year);
33.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 34: Taipei 101, Taipei, Taiwan;
34.1 The 660-Tonne Golden Ball;
34.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 35: 14 India Street, Edinburgh, Scotland;
35.1 James Clerk Maxwell;
35.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 36: Air Defence Radar Museum, RAF Neatishead, England;
36.1 It's Bigger Than You Think;
36.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 37: Albury Church, Albury, England;
37.1 William Oughtred;
37.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 38: Alexander Fleming Laboratory Museum, London, England;
38.1 Fleming's Cramped Laboratory;
38.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 39: Anderton Boat Lift, Northwich, England;
39.1 A Hydraulic Boat Lift;
39.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 40: Bletchley Park, Bletchley, England;
40.1 ULTRA;
40.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 41: British Airways Flight Training, Hounslow, England;
41.1 As Close As You're Likely to Get;
41.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 42: Bunhill Fields Cemetery, London, England;
42.1 The Non-conformists;
42.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 43: Down House, Downe, England;
43.1 Charles Darwin's Home and Garden Laboratory;
43.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 44: Edward Jenner Museum, Berkeley, England;
44.1 From Variolation to Vaccination;
44.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 45: Elsecar Heritage Centre, Elsecar, England;
45.1 129 Years of Steam;
45.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 46: Farnborough Air Sciences Museum, Farnborough, England;
46.1 Making Aircraft Move;
46.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 47: Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, England;
47.1 Stained-Glass Scientists;
47.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 48: Goonhilly Satellite Earth Station, Goonhilly, England;
48.1 The "Arthur" Parabolic Dish;
48.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 49: Greenwich, London, England;
49.1 Royal Observatory and National Maritime Museum;
49.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 50: Hovercraft Museum, Lee-on-the-Solent, England;
50.1 The World's Biggest Collection of Air-Cushion Vehicles;
50.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 51: Jodrell Bank Observatory, Cheshire, England;
51.1 The Big Ear;
51.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 52: Kelvedon Hatch Nuclear Bunker, Kelvedon Hatch, England;
52.1 Three Months of Underground Autonomy;
52.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 53: Kempton Park Waterworks, Kempton Park, England;
53.1 Triple Expansion Steam Power;
53.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 54: Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire, England;
54.1 William Henry Fox Talbot;
54.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 55: Manchester Science Walk, Manchester, England;
55.1 The Atomic Theory;
55.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 56: Museum of the History of Science, Oxford, England;
56.1 A Hidden Oxford Treasure;
56.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 57: Napier University, Edinburgh, Scotland;
57.1 John Napier and Napier's Bones;
57.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 58: National Museum of Computing, Bletchley, England;
58.1 Colossus;
58.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 59: National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, Scotland;
59.1 Dolly the Sheep;
59.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 60: National Railway Museum, York, England;
60.1 Chariots of Fire;
60.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 61: Natural History Museum, London, England;
61.1 The Stuffed Museum;
61.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 62: Poldhu, Cornwall, England;
62.1 The First Transatlantic Radio Transmission;
62.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 63: Porthcurno Telegraph Museum, Porthcurno, England;
63.1 Nerve Center of the Empire;
63.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 64: Royal College of Surgeons Hunterian Museum, London, England;
64.1 Surgery Laid Bare;
64.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 65: Royal Gunpowder Mills, Waltham Abbey, England;
65.1 Practical Information;
Chapter 66: Sackville Street Gardens, Manchester, England;
66.1 "IEKYF ROMSI ADXUO KVKZC GUBJ";
66.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 67: Sound Mirrors, Dungeness, England;
67.1 Echoes from the Sky;
67.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 68: SS Great Britain, Bristol, England;
68.1 Iron Hulled and Propeller Powered;
68.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 69: The Apple Tree, Trinity College, Cambridge, England;
69.1 The System of the World;
69.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 70: The Brunel Museum, London, England;
70.1 The Thames Tunnel;
70.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 71: The Eagle Pub, Cambridge, England;
71.1 "We Have Found the Secret of Life";
71.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 72: The Falkirk Wheel, Falkirk, Scotland;
72.1 Raising and Lowering Canal Boats Using Just 1.5 Kilowatts;
72.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 73: The Hunterian Museum, Glasgow, Scotland;
73.1 William Hunter and Lord Kelvin;
73.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 74: The Iron Bridge, Ironbridge, England;
74.1 Birthplace of the Industrial Revolution;
74.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 75: The Royal Institution of Great Britain, London, England;
75.1 Furthering the Public Understanding of Science;
75.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 76: The Science Museum, Swindon, England;
76.1 The Little-Known Outpost;
76.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 77: The Science Museum, London, England;
77.1 A National Treasure;
77.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 78: Thinktank, Birmingham, England;
78.1 The Smethwick Engine;
78.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 79: Westminster Abbey, London, England;
79.1 The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster;
79.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 80: Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, Ukraine;
80.1 Aftermath of the Chernobyl Disaster;
80.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 81: Aurora Borealis, Fairbanks, AK;
81.1 The Northern Lights;
81.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 82: Trans-Alaska Pipeline Visitor Center, Fox, AK;
82.1 TAPS;
82.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 83: Titan Missile Museum, Sahuarita, AZ;
83.1 "Skybird, this is Dropkick with a red dash alpha message";
83.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 84: 391 San Antonio Road, Mountain View, CA;
84.1 Shockley Semiconductor;
84.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 85: 844 E. Charleston Road, Palo Alto, CA;
85.1 Fairchild and the Fairchildren;
85.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 86: The Computer History Museum, Mountain View, CA;
86.1 Silicon Valley's Finest;
86.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 87: Goldstone Deep Space Communications Complex, Fort Irwin, CA;
87.1 Apollo Valley;
87.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 88: Joint Genome Institute, Walnut Creek, CA;
88.1 Gattaca;
88.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 89: 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA;
89.1 Visiting the Mothership;
89.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 90: The HP Garage, Palo Alto, CA;
90.1 367 Addison Avenue;
90.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 91: U.S. Navy Submarine Force Museum, Groton, CT;
91.1 "Underway on Nuclear Power";
91.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 92: National Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC;
92.1 The Best Air and Space Museum in the World;
92.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 93: National Museum of American History, Washington, DC;
93.1 The Collections;
93.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 94: Kennedy Space Center, Merritt Island, FL;
94.1 Not the Magic Kingdom;
94.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 95: Kalaupapa National Historic Park, Molokai, HI;
95.1 The Leper Colony;
95.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 96: Experimental Breeder Reactor No. 1, Arco, ID;
96.1 The First Nuclear Power;
96.2 Nuclear Aircraft Engines;
96.3 Practical Information;
Chapter 97: Fermilab, Batavia, IL;
97.1 The Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory;
97.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 98: MIT Museum, Cambridge, MA;
98.1 Ideas in the Making;
98.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 99: Gaithersburg International Latitude Observatory, Gaithersburg, MD;
99.1 An Innocuous White Building;
99.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 100: National Electronics Museum, Linthicum, MD;
100.1 Electronic Defense and Countermeasures;
100.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 101: National Cryptologic Museum, Fort Meade, MD;
101.1 Looking Backward at the NSA;
101.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 102: The Henry Ford, Dearborn, MI;
102.1 "America's Greatest History Attraction";
102.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 103: Gateway Arch, St. Louis, MO;
103.1 Gateway to the West;
103.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 104: Horn Antenna, Holmdel, NJ;
104.1 Evidence for the Big Bang;
104.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 105: Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, NJ;
105.1 "Small and Plastic";
105.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 106: Trinity Test Site, White Sands Missile Range, NM;
106.1 July 16, 1945;
106.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 107: Very Large Array, Socorro, NM;
107.1 A Virtual Antenna;
107.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 108: White Sands Missile Range Museum, White Sands Missile Range, NM;
108.1 Operation Paperclip;
108.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 109: Atomic Testing Museum, Las Vegas, NV;
109.1 History of the Nevada Test Site;
109.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 110: Nevada Test Site, NV;
110.1 1,021 Explosions;
110.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 111: Zero G, LasVegas, NV;
111.1 Not the Vomit Comet;
111.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 112: Glenn H. Curtiss Museum, Hammondsport, NY;
112.1 The Lesser-Known Aviator and Fastest Man on Earth;
112.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 113: John M. Mossman Lock Collection, New York, NY;
113.1 Where the Tourists Aren't;
113.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 114: Sagan Planet Walk, Ithaca, NY;
114.1 The Sciencenter;
114.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 115: Early Television Museum, Hillard, OH;
115.1 What's In, Not On, the Box;
115.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 116: NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH;
116.1 Little-Known NASA;
116.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 117: Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum, McMinnville, OR;
117.1 The Spruce Goose;
117.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 118: Joseph Priestley House, Northumberland, PA;
118.1 Oxygen, Soda Water, and More;
118.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 119: Arecibo Observatory, Arecibo, Puerto Rico;
119.1 The Biggest Dish;
119.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 120: X-10 Graphite Reactor, Oak Ridge, TN;
120.1 The World's First Viable Nuclear Reactor;
120.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 121: Kryptos Sculpture, Langley, VA;
121.1 An Unbroken Code;
121.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 122: Shot Tower Historical State Park, Austinville, VA;
122.1 The Science of the Simple;
122.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 123: American Museum of Radio and Electricity, Bellingham, WA;
123.1 CQD;
123.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 124: Grand Coulee Dam, Coulee Dam, WA;
124.1 The Largest Hydroelectric Plant in North America;
124.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 125: Reber Radio Telescope, Green Bank, WV;
125.1 The Homemade Telescope;
125.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 126: The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, WV;
126.1 The VIP Bunker;
126.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 127: Magicicada Brood X, East Coast, U.S.;
127.1 2021, 2038, 2055, ...;
127.2 Practical Information;
Chapter 128: Magnetic North Pole;
128.1 Somewhere in Canada;
128.2 Practical Information;
Acknowledgments;
Colophon;

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  • Posted August 23, 2009

    Number one on my favorite gifts to give list

    What a treasure! This book is now number one on my favorite gifts to give list. Whether used as a travel planner, an overview of important discoveries or just to curl up with on the couch for a few minutes of relaxation, this book is a delight.

    The Geek Atlas covers 128 places to visit that are science/math/technology related. Graham-Cumming's book focuses on sites where contributions are presented in a serious manner and skips places that portray science as fluffy entertainment based. This is both a good resource for travelers, geeks, and science buffs, as well as a great read. The chapters are an average of four pages long and packed with interesting, well organized information. They contain a description of the location, a related technical subject and visiting details. Links to associated websites are also included. Best of all, the science is explained in an easy to understand manner. We'll all be waiting impatiently for a second edition. Thank you, John Graham-Cumming!

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