The Things We Make
The Unknown History of Invention from Cathedrals to Soda Cans
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Discover the secret method used to build the world…
For millennia, humans have used one simple method to solve problems. Whether it's planting crops, building skyscrapers, developing photographs, or designing the first microchip, all creators follow the same steps to engineer progress. But this powerful method, the "engineering method", is an all but hidden process that few of us have heard of—let alone understand—but that influences every aspect of our lives.
Bill Hammack, a Carl Sagan award-winning professor of engineering and viral "The Engineer Guy" on Youtube, has a lifelong passion for the things we make, and how we make them. Now, for the first time, he reveals the invisible method behind every invention and takes us on a whirlwind tour of how humans built the world we know today. From the grand stone arches of medieval cathedrals to the mundane modern soda can, Hammack explains the golden rule of thumb that underlies every new building technique, every technological advancement, and every creative solution that leads us one step closer to a better, more functional world. Spanning centuries and cultures, Hammack offers a fascinating perspective on how humans engineer solutions in a world full of problems.
A book unlike any other, The Things We Make is a captivating examination of the method that keeps pushing humanity forward, a spotlight on the achievements of the past, and a celebration of the potential of our future that will change the way we see the world around us.
- Case Count: 28
"Hammack writes with admirable clarity, authority, and wisdom." — Kirkus Reviews
"A fascinating case that engineering isn't the same as science in this sweeping history... Hammack brilliantly delineates the role of trial and error in human progress, and presents a knockout argument that a perfect understanding of the world is not a prerequisite to innovation. This clever and curious account delivers."" — Publishers Weekly