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Mad Like Tesla: Underdog Inventors and Their Relentless Pursuit of Clean Energy
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Mad Like Tesla: Underdog Inventors and Their Relentless Pursuit of Clean Energy

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  84 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
Climate change solutions so crazy they just might work! A search for the contemporary Nikola Tesla - considered a mad scientist by his society for predicting global warming more than 100 years ago - fuels this analysis of climate issues, which introduces thinkers and inventors who are working to find possible ways out of the energy crisis. From Louis Michaud, a retired ref ...more
Paperback, 251 pages
Published September 1st 2011 by ECW Press
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Christina Vasilevski
Nov 10, 2011 Christina Vasilevski rated it really liked it
Nikola Tesla was a scientific pioneer whose inventions and predictions about the future of technological development were derided in his day by his contemporaries. Tyler Hamilton's book attempts to find current-day equivalents to Tesla working in the clean energy industry - people who have ideas that sound crazy at first, but end up being surprisingly plausible.

And boy, does he know how to pick his subjects. We've got in-depth discussions about perpetual motion machines, cold fusion, biomimicry,
Camille McCarthy
Nov 26, 2013 Camille McCarthy rated it really liked it
This book was very interesting and very useful for engineers because it is about new technologies being developed for clean energy and higher efficiency but it focuses both on the actual technology and on the complicated process of moving that technology forward so that it will actually go commercial. This is important because it gives a better idea of all the steps needed to take an invention from an idea to a commercial enterprise.
I had heard of a few of the inventions presented but there w
Jun 10, 2013 Victoria rated it it was amazing
I loved this book and I'll keep the review short! Tyler Hamilton wrote the book in a way that was beautiful, heart-warming, engaging, informative, and genuinely interesting. It really is a book about underdogs, mad scientists, and dogged inventors. Fortunately Mad Like Tesla didn't jump off into an us-versus-them mentality, where it's big oil and the status quo against the little guys. His writing was nuanced and more balanced than that, which is a huge credit to his respect for the readers and ...more
Jul 04, 2012 Bob rated it it was amazing
I really liked this book which was at once provocative, frustrating, uplifting and informative. Many amazing inventions and ideas are explored with the potential for green energy solutions that would revolutionize our world – but the opposition from established industry, the absence of sponsorship by risk takers with money, competition from other scientists, and so on prevent great ideas from going ahead. This book is about scientists and inventors working on the fringe, on their own, in their b ...more
Sep 23, 2012 Du rated it liked it
Shelves: planning
This was an interesting book. I initially grabbed it because of the Tesla name/connection. In some ways the book does evoke Tesla through the inventory and description of inventors who are not understood or appreciated now, just as Tesla was not appreciated or understood 100 years ago.

The inventions and discoveries reviewed and introduced in the book run the gamete from just around the corner to far out there. They are all energy related and after reading Too Much Magic about the futility of pr
Greg Carroll
Interesting ideas

I like the concept of looking at the underdogs. What else is up and coming in the future? I'd like to see where these guys are now.
Shawn Williamson
I don't think any of these people were quite as "mad like Tesla" (pigeons and all!!) but an intersting read ...
Jun 05, 2014 Alison rated it really liked it
Interesting read. Lots of stuff I know very little about but it was interesting to walk through some of what people are coming up with as possible solutions.
Aug 28, 2015 Sonja rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook
Loved this book. Highly recommend for anyone interested in energy. I can't believe the crazy thing people are trying, and how radically different our future could be if just one of these things actually became reality.

If someone wrote a fictional story about people trying to build a fusion reactor, or harness power from man-made tornados, no one would buy it.

The book is well written and these characters really come alive, and belief me, there are some real characters.

I wish I could give it 4.5
Sep 25, 2015 Azamali rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012

Table of Contents

A Quicker Path to Nuclear Fusion

Beaming Solar Power from Space

Turning Waste Heat Into Tornado Power

Capturing Efficiency Through Biomimicry

Making Fuel Refineries Out of Algae

Raising the Bar on Energy Storage

Changing the World with an Open Mind

Reuben Janzen-martin
Oct 04, 2015 Reuben Janzen-martin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: educational
Great read. Very inspiring to hear about the number of inventions and start-up companies that are pushing for "think-outside-the-box" solutions to the energy and climate change crisis we find ourselves in. It has been a few years since writing - it would be nice to have a follow-up to see how predictions have panned out.
Aug 09, 2012 Hans rated it liked it
A good book overall. It goes from "somewhat-more-reasonable" to "kind-of-out-there" ideas over the course of the book, which I kind of liked. I wish he had included more diagrams of many of the technologies they describe. It would have helped with understanding.
Feb 11, 2012 stinaz rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Alternative energy enthusiasts
State of the nation (as of 2010/11) of a number of alternative energy ideas and where they sit along the road from idea to research to development to commercialisation. From bio-fuels to solar to out there concepts like cold fusion and everything in between.
Robert Shedd
Feb 03, 2014 Robert Shedd rated it really liked it
A bit dated (published in 2011), but very interesting.
Science For The People
Featured on Skeptically Speaking show #134 on October 16, 2011, during an interview with author Tyler Hamilton.
Nov 28, 2015 Jim rated it it was amazing
Shelves: energy
Just linked author's blog to his home page.
Also the book has a website.....................
Jun 21, 2012 Hava rated it really liked it

Thoroughly enjoyed this. If you're interested in clean energy, it's a not to be missed book.
Aug 06, 2012 Shayne rated it liked it
Shelves: real-book
Interesting review of current efforts in alternative energy; not bad science writing.
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Tyler Hamilton is editor-in-chief of Corporate Knights magazine and a business columnist for the Toronto Star, Canada's largest daily newspaper. Clean Break, his weekly column, discusses trends, happenings and innovators in the clean technology and green energy market.
More about Tyler Hamilton...

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