by Munroe, Randall
Have you ever tried to learn more about some incredible thing, only to be frustrated by incomprehensible jargon? Randall Munroe is here to help. In Thing Explainer, he uses line drawings and only the thousand (or, rather, ten hundred ) most common words to provide simple explanations for some of the most interesting stuff there is, including:
food-heating radio boxes (microwaves)
tall roads (bridges)
computer buildings (datacenters)
the shared space house (the International Space Station)
the other worlds around the sun (the solar system)
the big flat rocks we live on (tectonic plates)
the pieces everything is made of (the periodic table)
planes with turning wings (helicopters)
boxes that make clothes smell better (washers and dryers)
the bags of stuff inside you (cells)
How do these things work? Where do they come from? What would life be like without them? And what would happen if we opened them up, heated them up, cooled them down, pointed them in a different direction, or pressed this button? InThing Explainer, Munroe gives us the answers to these questions and so many more. Funny, interesting, and always understandable, this book is for anyone age 5 to 105 who has ever wondered how things work, and why.
by Munroe, Randall
From the creator of the wildly popular webcomic xkcd, hilarious and informative answers to important questions you probably never thought to ask
Millions of people visit xkcd.com each week to read Randall Munroe's iconic webcomic. His stick-figure drawings about science, technology, language, and love have an enormous, dedicated following, as do his deeply researched answers to his fans' strangest questions.
The queries he receives range from merely odd to downright diabolical:
* What if I took a swim in a spent-nuclear-fuel pool?
* Could you build a jetpack using downward-firing machine guns?
* What if a Richter 15 earthquake hit New York City?
* Are fire tornadoes possible?
His responses are masterpieces of clarity and wit, gleefully and accurately explaining everything from the relativistic effects of a baseball pitched at near the speed of light to the many horrible ways you could die while building a periodic table out of all the actual elements.
The book features new and never-before-answered questions, along with the most popular answers from the xkcd website. What If? is an informative feast for xkcd fans and anyone who loves to ponder the hypothetical.