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Underbug
Author :
Publisher : Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Release Date :
ISBN 10 : 0374712387
Pages : 320 pages
Rating : 4/5 (2 users)
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The award-winning journalist Lisa Margonelli, national bestselling author of Oil on the Brain: Petroleum’s Long, Strange Trip to Your Tank, investigates the environmental and economic impact termites inflict on human societies in this fascinating examination of one of nature’s most misunderstood insects. Are we more like termites than we ever imagined? In Underbug, the award-winning journalist Lisa Margonelli introduces us to the enigmatic creatures that collectively outweigh human beings ten to one and consume $40 billion worth of valuable stuff annually—and yet, in Margonelli’s telling, seem weirdly familiar. Over the course of a decade-long obsession with the little bugs, Margonelli pokes around termite mounds and high-tech research facilities, closely watching biologists, roboticists, and geneticists. Her globe-trotting journey veers into uncharted territory, from evolutionary theory to Edwardian science literature to the military industrial complex. What begins as a natural history of the termite becomes a personal exploration of the unnatural future we’re building, with darker observations on power, technology, historical trauma, and the limits of human cognition. Whether in Namibia or Cambridge, Arizona or Australia, Margonelli turns up astounding facts and raises provocative questions. Is a termite an individual or a unit of a superorganism? Can we harness the termite’s properties to change the world? If we build termite-like swarming robots, will they inevitably destroy us? Is it possible to think without having a mind? Underbug burrows into these questions and many others—unearthing disquieting answers about the world’s most underrated insect and what it means to be human.

Underbug

The award-winning journalist Lisa Margonelli, national bestselling author of Oil on the Brain: Petroleum’s Long, Strange Trip to Your Tank, investigates the environmental and economic impact termites inflict on human societies in this fascinating examination of one of nature’s most misunderstood insects. Are we more like termites than

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Oil on the Brain

Looks at the economics of the petroleum industry and traces how crude oil from fields around the world eventually becomes the gasoline for automobiles, in a new edition containing an updated epilogue. Reprint. 20,000 first printing.

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Mind vs  Matter

The year is 2067. World War III has come and gone, and the world has been carved into empires. Its people are oppressed and suffering more than ever before. When a mysterious man named Karl von Liebnitz, the leader of a shadowy organization known as Tyrannei, makes plans to take over

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What Is a Human

In a sweeping synthesis of new research in a number of different disciplines, this book argues that we humans are not who we think we are. As he explores the interconnections between cutting-edge work in bioanthropology, evolutionary biology, neuroscience, human language and learning, and beyond, James Paul Gee advances, also,

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Thereby Hangs a Tale   Stories of Curious Word Origins

THEREBY HANGS A TALE Stories of Curious Word Origins Charles Earle Funk, Litt. D. PERENNIAL LIBRARY Harper Row, Publishers New York, Cambridge, Philadelphia, San Francisco London, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Singapore, Sydney To B. M. F. Who patiently and often has listened to many of these tales, this book is

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100 Perfect Plants

Bring the beauty of National Trust gardens to your own little patch. Some 80% of people who visit NT properties do so 'to look at the garden'. And one of the glories of NT gardens are their incredible beds and borders – plants that bring colour, drama and surprises year round. In

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The Dark Side of the Hive

Honey bees have been described as exceptionally clever, well-organized, mutualistic, collaborative, busy, efficient--in short a perfect society. While the colony is indeed a marvel of harmonious, efficient organization, it also has a considerable dark side. Authors Robin Moritz and Robin Crewe write about the life history of the honey bee,

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Don t Be Such a Scientist  Second Edition

In Don't Be Such a Scientist, Randy Olson recounts the lessons from his own hilarious--and at times humiliating--evolution from science professor to Hollywood filmmaker, sharing the secrets of talking substance in an age of style. The key, he argued, is to stay true to the facts while tapping into something

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Official Stud Book and Registry of the American Quarter Horse Association

Download or read online Official Stud Book and Registry of the American Quarter Horse Association written by American Quarter Horse Association, published by Unknown which was released on 1985. Get Official Stud Book and Registry of the American Quarter Horse Association Books now! Available in PDF, ePub and Kindle.

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Climate Change and the Health of Nations

When we think of "climate change," we think of man-made global warming, caused by greenhouse gas emissions. But natural climate change has occurred throughout human history, and populations have had to adapt to the climate's vicissitudes. Anthony J. McMichael, a renowned epidemiologist and a pioneer in the field of how

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Australian Termites

Shows readers the how, which, when, where, what and why of termite and wood borer control. The previous edition of this highly-regarded and indispensable text is now out-of-date, and the new edition has been refined and rewritten as a full fledged text and reference book for pest-control technicians and the

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The Smartphone Paradox

The Smartphone Paradox is a critical examination of our everyday mobile technologies and the effects that they have on our thoughts and behaviors. Alan J. Reid presents a comprehensive view of smartphones: the research behind the uses and gratifications of smartphones, the obstacles they present, the opportunities they afford, and

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How to Walk on Water and Climb up Walls

Discovering the secrets of animal movement and what they can teach us Insects walk on water, snakes slither, and fish swim. Animals move with astounding grace, speed, and versatility: how do they do it, and what can we learn from them? How to Walk on Water and Climb up Walls

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Knight Life

More than 1,500 years after his disappearance into the mists of Avalon, King Arthur has returned. This time, he's prepared to rule the Camelot of a new millennium: New York City. Handsome, charismatic Arthur Penn is running for mayor on a platform of common sense, humor, and knightly virtues. His advisors

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Never Home Alone

A natural history of the wilderness in our homes, from the microbes in our showers to the crickets in our basements Even when the floors are sparkling clean and the house seems silent, our domestic domain is wild beyond imagination. In Never Home Alone, biologist Rob Dunn introduces us to

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