Ushan

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The Secret of Our Success by Joseph Henrich
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Humans pride ourselves on being smart, rational animals. However, several times in history, European explorers found themselves in food-rich unfamiliar environments: the Arctic, the Australian outback, the American Southwest, and either starved to de ...more
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We Almost Lost Detroit by John G. Fuller
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I knew this story from Charles Perrow's Normal Accidents, mentioned it in a conversation with a coworker, and decided to read a book about it. Almost all of the hundreds of nuclear reactors throughout the world are either light water or heavy water r ...more
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The Time Machine by H.G. Wells
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I re-read it to get Evolution by Stephen Baxter out of my system. This classic novel is sublime. Unlike the Baxter novel, so much is unresolved that one is led to imagine. When was the Palace of Green Porcelain built? How did it remain undisturbed fo ...more
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Evolution by Stephen Baxter
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Imagining of human evolution from a proto-primate that witnessed the extinction of dinosaurs to a far-future primate-plant symbiont, with some science-fictional inventions (e.g. a stratospheric bug-eating pterosaur that never fossilized, which is why ...more
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Одноэтажная Америка by Ilya Ilf
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In 1935-1936, Soviet writers Ilya Ilf and Yevgeny Petrov visited the United States, driving from New York to California and back with Latvia-born retired General Electric engineer Solomon Trone and his young American wife Florence, who left their tod ...more
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Secondhand Time by Svetlana Alexievich
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I was familiar with the genre from Studs Terkel's and John Bowe's books, but this book's monologues have apparently been edited to resemble literature more than radio interviews. The end of Communism in Russia, like its beginning, has been a great tr ...more
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Cool Gray City of Love by Gary Kamiya
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I lived in San Francisco in 1989-1993. A month ago, I visited California again, drove through Richmond, Golden Gate Park and Sunset, and walked through Tenderloin, Chinatown and North Beach, so I decided to read this travel book. It is a collection o ...more
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The Fifth Head of Cerberus by Gene Wolfe
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If I hadn't known who wrote this, I would have guessed Ursula Le Guin. An anthropologist, a colonial society with slavery and advanced biotechnology, pre-Stone Age(!) shape-shifting humanoids who share a planet with another humanoid race - it is as g ...more
The Fifth Head of Cerberus by Gene Wolfe
"An old favourite... Enigmatic, elliptical, intelligent, oblique--- three linked pieces that set up a whole series of mysteries about identity and otherness and what counts as alien. Very much recommended."
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Voyage by Stephen Baxter
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A retelling of the Apollo Project story as a "super-Apollo" going to Mars after the Moon in an alternate universe where Lee Harvey Oswald merely wounded JFK and didn't kill him. Read real books about Apollo instead.

I loved the systems engineering par
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