The Physics of Everyday Things: The Extraordinary Science Behind an Ordinary Day
If you like science, particularly physics, The Physics of Everyday Things will give you weeks of fascinating reading and information. James Kakalios is an excellent writer and provides easy-to-read text and a few sketches to help you understand the concepts under discussion. His book organization is also fascinating: he has an imaginary person starting his day by waking up to his smartphone alarm (here Kakalios discusses the physics of smartphones and his grandmother’s pendulum clock). Then the man smells the coffee that’s brewing in the kitchen thanks to his programmed coffee maker (and again Kakalios discusses the physics of timers, toasters, and the many things that are part of our morning rituals). Kakalios goes through the daily routine of the person, chapter by chapter, while he drives to the city, visits his doctor, goes to the airport to check in for his flight to a business meeting, gives a presentation, and checks into his hotel. Kakalios also has small-font notes below many pages that further explain things like GPS relying on thirty-two US satellites (used by the rest of the world except China). The text runs like that, and his information is awesome throughout.