We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. Now that the British government has announced its Space Command (after Donald Trump’s Space Force last year), this book should be given to all prospective space cadets. Devolution by Max Brooks (16 Jun). Nor are we naturally much cop at statistics, which is why they are so often used for nefarious political communication. It’s hard to know who to trust, and it’s more important than ever that the public has a basic understanding of what “science” says, so we are less likely to be deceived. So explains the Dutch economist Sanne Blauw in The Number Bias (Sceptre, £16.99), ranging from Florence Nightingale’s virtuoso use of graphs in Crimea to the darker stories of how tobacco and oil companies have deliberately twisted data in order to sow mistrust in science. Before the extraterrestrial dandelion crops are ripe, our astronauts will no doubt have to survive on freeze-dried ready meals. Scott’s argument is simple: “Equal economic treatment for women would put a stop to some of the world’s costliest evils, while building prosperity for everyone.” She backs it up with economic, environmental and evolutionary science while proposing “concrete, reasonable and effective action”. I took many days constructing a brilliant refutation of this claim, but unfortunately this column is too short to contain it. To keep their bones and muscles from wasting too much in low gravity, our Mars-bound astronauts will have to do a lot of exercise on the trip. For 20% off any of these titles, call 0844 871 1514 or visit books.telegraph.co.uk/bestbooks. Let science writers take you on one hell of a trip – from magic mushrooms to potatoes on Mars. Best science books of the year 2020 The answer to the question of life, the universe and everything could well be contained in these mind-expanding books selected by … He also stored in his computer’s voice the canned phrase, “Thanks, but did you finish it?”, for fans who approached him to compliment his book. ), Adam Kucharski’s The Rules of Contagion (Wellcome Collection) also offers great explanations of the R-number, herd immunity and mathematical modelling, but its aim is to apply the principles of epidemiology to other “infections” – from financial contagion, gun violence and the ice-bucket challenge to marketing, innovation and culture. We rely on advertising to help fund our award-winning journalism. Please review our, You need to be a subscriber to join the conversation. (We could have been a lot more ready if we’d really wanted to be. Our fanciest new technology is always thought to explain the brain, but the brain is more mind-bogglingly complex than anything we can build, and moves in ways still very mysterious. Share using Email ... the themes of religion and science are central. In 2012, WIRED US readers voted Dune the best science-fiction novel of all time. Pale Blue Dot Carl Sagan. The bestselling author of World War Z returns with a sci-fi retelling of the Bigfoot legend, told through the recovered journals from a resident of a town ravaged by a volcanic eruption. As he shows, our brains used to be thought of as marvellous hydraulic or clockwork systems. • Browse the best books of 2020 at the Guardian Bookshop. Linda Scott doubtless had some personal reasons for writing The Double X Economy: The Epic Potential of Women’s Empowerment (Faber), but the result is one of the most objective, data-led, rigorously scientific and morally persuasive books of the year. Rosenhan, it turns out, was a charismatic fraud, of the type that still crops up here and there if you know where to look. “It is forgivable as long as you’re still listening.” It illustrates perfectly that there is no such thing as “the science”, that we should question anyone who tries to claim scientific thought as their own, and that intellectual curiosity is everything. After losing a fortune in the South Sea Bubble, Isaac Newton apparently complained: “I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies but not the madness of people.”. Pragya Agarwal’s Sway: Unravelling Unconscious Bias (Bloomsbury, £16.99), meanwhile, is a useful survey of the manifold biases we can be prey to in matters racial, sexual, and other. 29:08 minutes. The Keepers by John Marrs (23 Jul). The Second World War veteran ended up raising more than £30m. The Italian physicist fuses his deep knowledge of science and the arts Published: ... the best books on life outdoors. While staying socially distant, you can take a trip to the great outdoors to unlock the mysteries of bird behaviors. Even Stephen Hawking’s brain was not a computer; fellow physicist Leonard Mlodinow provides a warm and three-dimensional portrait of a brilliant and stubborn human being, rather than simply a genius in a chair, in his Stephen Hawking: A Memoir of Friendship and Physics (Allen Lane, £20). You’ve probably heard of confirmation bias, but did you know there is a corresponding “disconfirmation bias”, according to which we “spend considerable energy in denigrating arguments that run counter to our existing beliefs”? We know now that the pre-2008 banking system had “massive potential for superspreading”, for example, and we can use “public health” theories to combat knife crime. The New ... and upbringing as a Jehovah’s Witness in a disempowered region of the UK… The topical Outbreaks and Epidemics by Meera Senthilingam (Icon), for example, is crammed with information on the history and context of diseases we think we know about. Tidy bedrooms, how to deal with future pandemics, the human side to Stephen Hawking and pictures in the sand In one of many unexpected outcomes of 2020, “the science… That doesn’t stop Wanjek from having fun with ideas such as skyhooks or railguns to hurl stuff into Earth’s orbit, and thinking seriously about what kind of crops we should grow on other planets (sweet potatoes and dandelions, he says). Politicians are claiming it, protesters are disputing it, and all of a sudden everyone is an expert on superspreader events, RNA vaccines and what happens at the bottom of an Excel spreadsheet. Find out more, The latest offers and discount codes from popular brands on Telegraph Voucher Codes, Stephen Hawking (pictured in 2018) is the subject of a touching memoir by his friend Leonard Mlodinow, Dr Pragya Agarwal, author of Sway: Unravelling Unconscious Bias, The Pink Sink, sex ‘crimes’ and the MPs who fought against appeasement, In Ready Player Two, a teenage geek turns sinister Zuckerberg mogul. “Silly thinking is something everybody is guilty of from time to time,” Yunkaporta writes. The Best Summer Science Books Of 2020. The Brain; The best science books of 2020 The Telegraph - Steven Poole. Tidy bedrooms, how to deal with future pandemics, the human side to Stephen Hawking and pictures in the sand. Politicians are claiming it, protesters are disputing it, and all of a sudden everyone is an expert on superspreader events, RNA vaccines and what happens at the bottom of an Excel spreadsheet.

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