Narrative and Numbers: The Value of Stories in Business [EPUB]

Narrative and Numbers: The Value of Stories in Business [EPUB]
Narrative and Numbers: The Value of Stories in Business by Aswath Damodaran
2017 | EPUB | 6.83MB

How can a company that has never turned a profit have a multibillion dollar valuation? Why do some start-ups attract large investments while others do not? Aswath Damodaran, finance professor and experienced investor, argues that the power of story drives corporate value, adding substance to numbers and persuading even cautious investors to take risks. In business, there are the storytellers who spin compelling narratives and the number-crunchers who construct meaningful models and accounts. Both are essential to success, but only by combining the two, Damodaran argues, can a business deliver and sustain value.

Through a range of case studies, Narrative and Numbers describes how storytellers can better incorporate and narrate numbers and how number-crunchers can calculate more imaginative models that withstand scrutiny. Damodaran considers Uber's debut and how narrative is key to understanding different valuations. He investigates why Twitter and Facebook were valued in the billions of dollars at their public offerings, and why one (Twitter) has stagnated while the other (Facebook) has grown. Damodaran also looks at more established business models such as Apple and Amazon to demonstrate how a company's history can both enrich and constrain its narrative. And through Vale, a global Brazil-based mining company, he shows the influence of external narrative, and how country, commodity, and currency can shape a company's story. Narrative and Numbers reveals the benefits, challenges, and pitfalls of weaving narratives around numbers and how one can best test a story's plausibility.

God's Wolf: The Life of the Most Notorious of All Crusaders: Reynald de Chatillon [EPUB]

God's Wolf: The Life of the Most Notorious of All Crusaders: Reynald de Chatillon [EPUB]
God's Wolf: The Life of the Most Notorious of All Crusaders: Reynald de Chatillon by Jeffrey Lee
2016 | EPUB | 4.96MB

In 2010, a parcel bomb was sent from Yemen by an al-Qaeda operative with the intention of blowing up a plane over America. The device was intercepted before the plan could be put into action, but what puzzled investigators was the name of the person to whom the parcel was addressed: Reynald de Chatillon - a man who died 800 years ago.

But who was he and why was he chosen above all others? Born in twelfth-century France and bred for violence, Reynald de Chatillon was a young knight who joined the Second Crusade and rose through the ranks to become the pre-eminent figure in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem - and one of the most reviled characters in Islamic history.

In the West, Reynald has long been considered a minor player in the Crusades and is often dismissed as having been a bloodthirsty maniac. Tales of his elaborate torture of prisoners and his pursuit of reckless wars against friends and foe alike have coloured Reynald's reputation. However, by using contemporary documents and original research, Jeffrey Lee overturns this popular perception and reveals him to be an influential and powerful leader, whose actions in the Middle East had a far-reaching impact that endures to this day.

In telling his epic story, God's Wolf not only restores Reynald to his rightful position in history but also highlights how the legacy of the Crusades is still very much alive.

Big History: The Big Bang, Life on Earth, and the Rise of Humanity [TTC Video]

Big History: The Big Bang, Life on Earth, and the Rise of Humanity [TTC Video]
Big History: The Big Bang, Life on Earth, and the Rise of Humanity [TTC Video] by David Christian
Course No 8050 | AVI, XviD, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 48x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 9.28GB

About 100,000 to 60,000 years ago, a species of hominines—bipedal ape-like creatures—began to move out of its home territory in Africa and into the Asian continent. Today, homo sapiens, the descendants of those first hominines—live in nearly every ecological niche. We fly through the air in planes, communicate instantaneously over immense distances, and develop theories about the creation of the Universe. In Big History: The Big Bang, Life on Earth, and the Rise of Humanity, you’ll hear this ever-evolving story—the history of everything—in its monumental entirety from the moment the Universe grew from the size of an atom to the size of a galaxy in a fraction of a second.

Taught by historian David Christian, Big History offers a unique opportunity to view human history in the context of the many histories that surround it. Over the course of 48 thought-provoking lectures, he'll serve as your guide as you traverse the sweeping expanse of cosmic history—13.7 billion years of it—starting with the big bang and traveling through time and space to the present moment.

A Grand Synthesis of Knowledge

Have you ever wondered: How do various scholarly discourses—cosmology, geology, anthropology, biology, history—fit together?

Big History answers that question by weaving a single story from a variety of scholarly disciplines. Like traditional creation stories told by the world's great religions and mythologies, Big History provides a map of our place in space and time. But it does so using the insights and knowledge of modern science, as synthesized by a renowned historian.

This is a story scholars have been able to tell only since the middle of the last century, thanks to the development of new dating techniques in the mid-1900s. As Professor Christian explains, this story will continue to grow and change as scientists and historians accumulate new knowledge about our shared past.

Eight "Thresholds"

To tell this epic, Professor Christian organizes the history of creation into eight "thresholds." Each threshold marks a point in history when something truly new appeared and forms never before seen began to arise.

Starting with the first threshold, the creation of the Universe, Professor Christian traces the developments of new, more complex entities, including:

  • The creation of the first stars (threshold 2)
  • The origin of life (threshold 5)
  • The development of the human species (threshold 6)
  • The moment of modernity (threshold 8).

In the final lectures, you'll even gain a glimpse into the future as you review speculations offered by scientists about where our species, our world, and our Universe may be heading.

Getting the "Big" Picture

While you may have heard parts of this story before in courses on geology, history, anthropology, biology, cosmology, and other scholarly disciplines, Big History provides more than just a recap. This course will expand the scope of your perspective on the past and alter the way you think about history and the world around you.

""Because of the scale on which we look at the past, you should not expect to find in it many of the familiar details, names, and personalities that you'll find in other types of historical teaching and writing,"" explains Professor Christian. ""For example, the French Revolution and the Renaissance will barely get a mention. They'll zoom past in a blur. You'll barely see them. Instead, what we're going to see are some less familiar aspects of the past. ... We'll be looking, above all, for the very large patterns, the shape of the past.""

Thanks to this grand perspective, you'll uncover the remarkable parallels and connections among disciplines that remain to be explored when you view history on a large scale. How is the creation of stars like the building of cities? How is the big bang like the invention of agriculture? These are the kinds of connections you'll find yourself pondering as you undergo the grand shift in perspective afforded by Big History.

Fascinating Facts

Along the way, you'll encounter intriguing tidbits that put the grand scale of this story in perspective, such as:

  • The entire expanse of human civilization—5,000 years—makes up a mere 2 percent of the human experience.
  • Approximately 98 percent of human history occurred before the invention of agriculture.
  • All the matter we know of in the Universe is likely to be no more than 1 billionth of the actual matter that was originally created.
  • The Earth's Moon was probably created by a collision between the young Earth and a Mars-sized protoplanet.
  • At present, we cannot drill deeper than about 7 miles into the Earth, which is just 0.2% of the distance to the center (4,000 miles away).
  • Between 1000 C.E. and 2000 C.E., human populations rose by a factor of 24.
  • Traveling in a jet plane, it would take 5 million years to get from our solar system to the next nearest star.

The Story We Tell about Ourselves

"To understand ourselves," says Professor Christian, "we need to know the very large story, the largest story of all." And that, perhaps, is one of the greatest benefits of Big History: It provides a thought-provoking way to help us understand our own place within the Universe.

From humankind's place within the context of evolutionary history to our impact on the larger biosphere—both now and in our species' past—this course offers a broad yet nuanced examination of our place in creation. It also poses a profound question: Is it possible that our species is the only entity created by the Universe with the capacity to ponder its mysteries?

There is, perhaps, no more profound question to ask, and no better guide on this quest for understanding than Professor Christian. A pioneer in this approach to understanding history, Professor Christian has made big history his personal project for more than two decades. Working with experts in a variety of fields, he designed and taught some of the first big history courses, and has published widely on the topic.

Accept his invitation to get the big picture on Big History, and prepare for a journey through time and across space, from the first moments of existence to the distant reaches of the far future.

Big History: The Big Bang, Life on Earth, and the Rise of Humanity [TTC Video]

The Neuroscience of Everyday Life [TTC Video]

Neuroscience of Everyday Life [TTC Video]
The Neuroscience of Everyday Life [TTC Video] by Sam Wang
Course No 1540 | M4V, AVC, 640x480 | AAC, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 36x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 11.44GB

Your nervous system is you. All the thoughts, perceptions, moods, passions, and dreams that make you an active, sentient being are the work of this amazing network of cells. For many centuries, people knew that this was true. But no one was sure how it happened.

Now, thanks to the exciting new field of neuroscience, we can chart the workings of the brain and the rest of the nervous system in remarkable detail to explain how neurons, synapses, neurotransmitters, and other biological processes produce all the experiences of everyday life, in every stage of life. From the spectacular growth of the brain in infancy to the act of learning a skill, falling in love, getting a joke, revising an opinion, or even forgetting a name, something very intriguing is going on behind the scenes.

For example, groundbreaking research in the past few decades is now able to explain such phenomena as these:

  • Decisions: Studies of decision making at the level of neurons show that our brain has often committed to a course of action before we are aware of having made a decision—an apparent violation of our sense of free will.
  • Memory: Memory is composed of many systems located in different parts of the brain, which means that you can forget your car keys (information stored in the neocortex) but still remember how to drive (a learned skill requiring the striatum and cerebellum).
  • Willpower: Willpower is more than a metaphor; it's a measurable trait that draws on a finite mental resource, like a muscle. While any given individual has a consistent willpower capacity throughout life, it can be strengthened through training—again, just like a muscle.
  • Religion and spirituality: Three mental traits appear to be essential for the development of organized religion: the search for causes and effects, the ability to reason about people and motives, and language. Mystical experiences also trace to specific activities of the brain.

Opening your eyes to how neural processes produce the familiar features of human existence, The Neuroscience of Everyday Life covers a remarkable range of subjects in 36 richly detailed lectures. You will explore the brain under stress and in love, learning, sleeping, thinking, hallucinating, and just looking around—which is less about recording reality than creating illusions that allow us to function in our environment.

Your professor is distinguished neuroscientist and Professor Sam Wang of Princeton University, an award-winning researcher and best-selling author, public speaker, and TV and radio commentator. Professor Wang's insightful and playful approach makes this course a joy for anyone who wants to know how his or her own brain works. And his vivid, richly illustrated presentation assumes no background in science.

Fact or Fiction?

Professor Wang points out that a lot of what we think we know about our brains turns out to be wrong. While bringing you up to date on the latest discoveries in the field, he debunks the following persistent myths:

  • We use only 10% of our brains: Your brain is actually running at 100%! The myth about idle brain power has been promoted by self-help gurus and doesn't stand up to evidence from cases of brain damage, which always cause deficits in function.
  • Mozart makes babies smarter: Playing classical music may help calm you down around an infant, but it's not doing anything for the baby. The better strategy is to have children learn to play a musical instrument when they're older, which does improve brain development.
  • Women are moodier than men: Studies show that the sexes are tied in the moodiness contest, with men reporting just as frequent mood swings as women. However, both men and women tend to remember women's mood swings better.
  • We lose brain cells as we age: The brain is supposedly unique as an organ because it stops adding new cells after birth. In fact, some parts of the brain keep producing new neurons throughout life. The brain shrinks somewhat with age, but its neurons live on.

Tune Up Your Brain!

Operating on about the power consumed by an idling laptop, the brain has often been compared to a computer. But this, too, is a myth. Computers are logically straightforward in design, whereas the brain is a marvel of evolutionary makeshift, with layer upon layer of systems that started out with one function and then were adopted for something completely different. Some of the most primitive functions of the brain, such as the fight-or-flight response to danger, resist being overridden by the brain's powerful reasoning center, which evolved more recently.

Indeed, much of what the brain does is beyond our conscious control. Yet in some cases, there are ways to intervene. Here are some tips that Professor Wang offers to make your brain run at its optimum:

  • How to stick to a health regimen: If you use your nondominant hand to brush your teeth for two weeks, this can lead to a measurable increase in your willpower capacity. People who do this are then able to follow a diet or exercise program better.
  • Efficient learning: Don't cram! Spread out your study over several sessions. This allows your brain time to process what you've learned, which requires no additional effort on your part and greatly increases your retention of information.
  • Resetting your biological clock: The best way to beat jet lag is to use light, which cues your brain to where it is in the day/night cycle. For a flight between the United States and Europe, in either direction, a dose of afternoon sunlight after you arrive should help you adjust.
  • The best brain exercise is real exercise: Cognitive functions that normally deteriorate with age, such as memory and response time, can be boosted by aerobic exercise. The effect is largest if you are active starting in middle age, but it's never too late to start.

The Research Subject Is You

Turning from processes that are merely hidden to those that are utterly mysterious, The Neuroscience of Everyday Life also sheds light on these phenomena:

  • Love: Prairie voles are a fascinating model for studying human mating, since, unlike most other mammals, they are monogamous. For them as well as for us, the neurotransmitters oxytocin and vasopressin control the expression of pair bonding, better known as love.
  • Humor: Smiles and laughter are two emotional components of humor that have deep roots as social signals. Another component is characterized by the sudden flash of insight that occurs when we "get"a joke; brain scanners show where this happens.
  • Haunted houses: Neurological phenomena that people have associated with haunted houses, such as the feeling of an invisible presence, also occur from carbon monoxide poisoning—a once-common problem in houses lit with gas. Reports of haunted houses have dropped sharply with the decline in gas lighting.
  • Consciousness: Our conscious awareness extends to only a fraction of the stimuli registered by our brains, like a spotlight focusing on a tiny portion of a flood of data. Experiments show that we often act on unconscious information without being aware of it.

Professor Wang notes that it was his fascination with consciousness, free will, and other big ideas that led him to switch from physics, which he studied as an undergraduate, to a field he regards as even more alive with possibilities for breakthroughs that will change our worldview in fundamental ways.

That field, of course, is neuroscience. The Neuroscience of Everyday Life is your chance to explore a discipline that is now going through its golden age, with the advantage that the subject is not some abstract entity.

It's you.

Neuroscience of Everyday Life [TTC Video]

Introduction to Judaism [TTC Video]

Introduction to Judaism [TTC Video]
Introduction to Judaism [TTC Video] by Shai Cherry
Course No 6423 | AVI, XviD, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 4.36GB

What could be simpler than a single people worshiping a single God for more than 3,000 years? But Judaism is far from simple, and as a religion, culture, and civilization, it has evolved in surprising ways during its lengthy and remarkable history. Consider the following:

  • Although Judaism is defined by its worship of one God, it was not always a pure monotheism. In I Kings 8, King Solomon addresses the Lord by saying, "There is no God like You," suggesting that the Israelites recognized the existence of other gods.
  • The practice of Judaism was focused on animal sacrifice until the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in the 1st century, which forced a radically new approach to worship.
  • The political emancipation of the Jews in 18th-century Europe transformed a 1,000-year-old style of Jewish life. "You can’t find an expression of Judaism today that is just like [the way] Jews lived 300 years ago," says Professor Shai Cherry.
  • Yet for all it has changed, Judaism has maintained unbroken ties to a foundation text, an ethnicity, a set of rituals and holidays, and a land.

A Journey of Religious Discovery

In these 24 lectures, Professor Cherry explores the rich religious heritage of Judaism from biblical times to today.

He introduces you to the written Torah, and you learn about the oral Torah, called the Mishnah (which was also later written down), and its commentary, the Gemara. And you discover how the Mishnah and Gemara comprise the Talmud, and how they differ from another form of commentary called Midrash.

He teaches you about the three pillars of the world defined more than 2,000 years ago by Shimon the Righteous: Torah, worship, and deeds of loving kindness.

He takes you through the calendar of Jewish holidays, from the most important, the Sabbath, to the key holidays of Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Passover, and Pentecost (Shavuot); and to historically minor celebrations such as Channukah, which is now a more visible holiday.

You also learn about the origins and attributes of the different Jewish movements that formed in the wake of Emancipation in the late 1700s and the resulting full emergence of Judaism into Western society. These include the Reform, Conservative, Modern Orthodox, and Reconstructionist movements.

"Although Jewish history is not one long tale of travails," says Professor Cherry, "there have been several catastrophes that powerfully shaped the Jewish consciousness." He includes discussions of the impact on Jewish thought of the Babylonian exile and the destruction of the Second Temple in antiquity, and the Holocaust in the 20th century.

"We will see that for every topic that we cover we have a multiplicity of responses and a multiplicity of answers," says Professor Cherry, noting that this course could just as easily be called "An Introduction to Judaisms."

What’s in a Name?

Judaism’s sacred text is the Bible, also called the TaNaKH, the Torah, the Hebrew Bible, and, by Christians, the Old Testament. As Professor Cherry points out, these terms have different implications:

  • TaNaKH: This is the Hebrew acronym for the three sections of the Bible—the Torah (the first five books, known as the Pentateuch), Nevi’im (Prophets), and Ketuvim (Writings).
  • Torah: The word torah means "a teaching," and it can refer to the Pentateuch, the entire TaNaKH, or even the whole corpus of Jewish thought.
  • Hebrew Bible: This is a religiously neutral term used by scholars for the TaNaKH. Professor Cherry notes that his expertise is in the TaNaKH, not the Hebrew Bible, since he approaches the text from the Jewish interpretive tradition.
  • Old Testament: Christians refer to the TaNaKH as the Old Testament, since in their eyes it has been superseded by the New Testament. For Catholics, the Old Testament has a number of books that are not included in the TaNaKH.

Interpreting the Scriptures

Jews and Christians not only have different names for the Bible, they understand it very differently. For example, Christianity takes an episode that is relatively minor in Jewish tradition—the temptation of Adam and Eve—and extracts from it the doctrine of original sin.

Similarly, early rabbis took the repeated phrase, "And there was evening and there was morning," in the enumeration of the six days of creation and concluded that the day begins in the evening, which is why Jews start the celebration of their holidays at sundown.

As a case study in interpretation, Professor Cherry delves deeply into the prohibition against seething (boiling) a kid in its mother’s milk, mentioned in Exodus and Deuteronomy, which led to the kosher practice of strict separation of meat and milk products. Recently, a scholar pointed out that the original Hebrew could be interpreted to mean fat instead of milk.

A prohibition against seething a kid in its mother’s fat makes more sense, because it is another way of saying that the mother and offspring should not be slaughtered on the same day, in accord with the biblical injunction against killing two generations of the same species on the same day.

But the rabbis had very good reasons to read the passage as they did, says Professor Cherry, who shows the theological logic that has resulted in the dietary separation of meat and milk, a practice observed by traditional Jews today.

Unlocking Mysteries of Jewish Thought and Ritual

"Let’s unpack this," Professor Cherry says often during these lectures, as he takes a concept, a biblical passage, or an episode from history and explores its meaning in Jewish thought and ritual.

In doing so, he is following the footsteps of the acknowledged master of this form of analysis, the medieval Jewish philosopher Moses Maimonides, who figures prominently throughout the course and is treated in depth in Lecture 14.

There, Professor Cherry focuses on Maimonides’s Guide of the Perplexed and its discussion of creation, prayer, and the reasons for the commandments. Maimonides is filled with insights into how Judaism evolved as it did, noting, for example, that the practice of ritual animal sacrifice in early Judaism was God’s way of taking a pagan rite that the Israelites had learned from the Egyptians and redirecting it.

In a subsequent lecture, Professor Cherry shows how Maimonides’s success at putting Judaism on a logical footing set the stage for a reaction that produced the Jewish mystical system called the Kabbalah.

Professor Cherry unlocks other mysteries, such as why the first day of the seventh month (Tishrei) is the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah). It seems likely, he says, that "this was the time of the Babylonian New Year. So when the Jews were exiled to Babylonia, they saw that the Babylonians celebrated their New Year on that day, and said, ‘We’ve got some sacred occasion where we blow the trumpets, so let’s make that our New Year, too.’"

He also explores different concepts of the Messiah, profiling two controversial candidates. The first is Shabbatai Tzvi, who was proclaimed Messiah by followers in 1665, and whose travels across Eastern Europe eventually landed him in Turkey, where he converted to Islam to avoid execution by the authorities.

The other candidate is Rebbe Menachem Mendel Scheersohn, a charismatic leader of the Lubavitch Chassidim in Brooklyn, who died in 1994. Rebbe Scheersohn’s widely touted messianic credentials created intense debate and division in the Ultra-Orthodox community.

From the Decalogue to Fiddler on the Roof

From the first lecture on the Torah to the last on the Jews as the Chosen People, this course is packed with fascinating information, including:

  • Jews use the term Decalogue, instead of Ten Commandments because there are actually more than 10 commandments in the Decalogue. For instance, "On six days you shall work and the seventh day shall be a Sabbath to you." Usually that counts as one: that you should have a Sabbath on the seventh day. But there is also, "On six days you shall work."
  • The prophets in the biblical period served the same function as today’s free press. They tell the king what he doesn’t want to hear.
  • When people die in the TaNaKH, everyone goes to the same place, Sheol—a shadowy underworld that is neither heaven nor hell.
  • After crushing the Bar Kochvah revolt of the Jews in the 2nd century, the Romans changed the name of the land of Israel and Judaea to echo the Israelites’ ancient enemies, the Philistines. This is how the region came to be called Palestine.
  • Today, the designation "Temple" on a Jewish house of worship is usually a sign that it is a Reform congregation because Reform Jews no longer look toward the dream of rebuilding the Jerusalem Temple.
  • Orthodox Judaism is just as much a product of modernity as is Reform because several varieties of Orthodoxy emerged in the 19th century as a response to Emancipation, the Enlightenment, and the founding of the Reform movement.

In addition, Professor Cherry devotes several lectures to complex issues such as the problem of evil and suffering, the Zionist movement, the place of women in the Jewish world, and how Judaism understands Christianity.

Throughout, Professor Cherry is articulate, engaging, and passionate, with a gift for making a point by means of a memorable cultural reference. He calls attention to an echo of Jewish mystic Rav Kook in a Joni Mitchell song; to the Kabbalistic nature of "the force" and "the dark side" in George Lucas’s Star Wars; and to the Sabbath lesson given by Gene Wilder as an Old West rabbi in The Frisco Kid, when he dutifully dismounts his horse at sundown, risking capture by bandits.

Professor Cherry notes that when he teaches introductory Judaism at Vanderbilt University, he asks his students to see two films: Fiddler on the Roof, for its picture of the breakdown of tradition as Jews confront modernity; and Woody Allen’s Crimes and Misdemeanors, for its treatment of secular Jews grappling with contemporary issues of faith and ethics. Both films repay viewing in light of the lessons you’ll learn in this course.

In his final lecture, Professor Cherry sums up: "The Judaisms we’ve examined in this course reflect the ongoing struggles of the Jewish people from their ancient life as a sovereign nation, to the travails of exile, to the opportunities of acculturation in modernity, and finally to the re-establishment of the state of Israel. Hearing God’s words anew—receiving Torah every day—has meant reinterpreting the tradition, creatively rereading the words of the past, whether they relate to core ideas like the notion of evil and the notion of the Chosen People, or mitzvot such as the prohibition of idolatry, or the laws of marriage and divorce. Even the basis for reinterpreting the tradition, the claim that God’s words do not cease, is itself a rereading of Torah."

Introduction to Judaism [TTC Video]

Valley of the Gods: A Silicon Valley Story [EPUB]

Valley of the Gods: A Silicon Valley Story [EPUB]
Valley of the Gods: A Silicon Valley Story by Alexandra Wolfe
2017 | EPUB | 1.17MB

In a riveting, hilarious account, reporter Alexandra Wolfe exposes a world that is not flat but bubbling—the men and women of Silicon Valley, whose hubris and ambition are changing the world.

Each year, young people from around the world go to Silicon Valley to hatch an idea, start a company, strike it rich, and become powerful and famous. In Valley of the Gods, Wolfe follows three of these upstarts who have “stopped out” of college and real life to live and work in Silicon Valley in the hopes of becoming the next Mark Zuckerberg or Elon Musk. No one has yet documented the battle for the brightest kids, kids whose goals are no less than making billions of dollars—and the fight they wage in turn to make it there. They embody an American cultural transformation: A move away from the East Coast hierarchy of Ivy Leagues and country clubs toward the startup life and a new social order.

Meet the billionaires who go to training clubs for thirty-minute “body slams” designed to fit in with the start-up schedule; attend parties where people devour peanut butter-and-jelly sushi rolls; and date and seduce in a romantic culture in which thick glasses, baggy jeans, and a t-shirt is the costume of any sex symbol (and where a jacket and tie symbolize mediocrity). Through Wolfe’s eyes, we discover how they date and marry, how they dress and live, how they plot and dream, and how they have created a business world and an economic order that has made us all devotees of them.

A blistering, brilliant, and hysterical examination of this new ruling class, Valley of the Gods presents tomorrow’s strange new normal where the only outward signs of tech success are laptops and ideas.

Making Sense of Weather and Climate: The Science Behind the Forecasts [EPUB]

Making Sense of Weather and Climate: The Science Behind the Forecasts [EPUB]
Making Sense of Weather and Climate: The Science Behind the Forecasts by Mark Denny
2017 | EPUB | 11.84MB

How do meteorologists design forecasts for the next day's, the next week's, or the next month's weather? Are some forecasts more likely to be accurate than others, and why? Making Sense of Weather and Climate takes readers through key topics in atmospheric physics and presents a cogent view of how weather relates to climate, particularly climate-change science. It is the perfect book for amateur meteorologists and weather enthusiasts, and for anyone whose livelihood depends on navigating the weather's twists and turns.

Making Sense of Weather and Climate begins by explaining the essential mechanics and characteristics of this fascinating science. The noted physics author Mark Denny also defines the crucial differences between weather and climate, and then develops from this basic knowledge a sophisticated yet clear portrait of their relation. Throughout, Denny elaborates on the role of weather forecasting in guiding politics and other aspects of human civilization. He also follows forecasting's effect on the economy. Denny's exploration of the science and history of a phenomenon we have long tried to master makes this book a unique companion for anyone who wants a complete picture of the environment's individual, societal, and planetary impact.

The 7 Principles of Fat Burning: Get Healthy, Lose Weight and Keep It Off [EPUB]

The 7 Principles of Fat Burning: Get Healthy, Lose Weight and Keep It Off [EPUB]
The 7 Principles of Fat Burning: Get Healthy, Lose Weight and Keep It Off by Eric Berg
2010 | EPUB | 6.8MB

The 7 Principles of Fat Burning is the handbook to the sensational Berg Diet that has empowered thousands of people to get healthy, lose weight and keep it off. It shows how to activate your fat-burning hormones with a tailor-made eating and exercise plan for your body type.

The 7 Principles is a highly practical book that provides clear explanations-aided by dozens of charts and illustrations-of the principles of healthy weight loss. Easy-to-understand health and nutrition information and simple tests to determine your correct body type are the keys to its success. Knowledge is power and The 7 Principles of Fat Burning gives dieters the power to take command by eating the healthy diet that activates the fat-burning hormones for their body type. For years people have been told to lose weight to be healthy.

The truth is, you need to get healthy to lose weight. The Seven Principles of Fat Burning shows you how. Dr. Berg thoroughly educates readers and puts them right where they should be: in charge of their own weight.

Cook Japan, Stay Slim, Live Longer [EPUB]

Cook Japan, Stay Slim, Live Longer [EPUB]
Cook Japan, Stay Slim, Live Longer by Reiko Hashimoto
2017 | EPUB | 51.76MB

Debunking myths surrounding the complexity and accessibility of Japanese food, Reiko Hashimoto's new book is packed with delicious dishes for a slimming and sustainable healthy lifestyle.

In Cook Japan, Stay Slim, Live Longer, Reiko Hashimoto explores the benefits of the Japanese diet--including slim physique, stable blood sugar, increased joint flexibility and a longer lifespan--in detail, followed by an introduction to key Japanese fresh and store cupboard essentials.

With easy to follow instructions, the 100–120 recipes found in this book vary from basics to the more technically complex, perfect for all those wishing to perfect the art of Japanese home cooking. Brand new photography accompany the majority of the recipes, and menu plans allow the reader to plan for dinner parties and special occasions. Nutritional details give context to the recipes and allow those following a fast or calorie-based diet to enjoy the recipes.

With Japanese food so enjoyed in restaurants, from high-end gourmet to mid-price sushi and takeaways, this is the perfect book for home cooks.

The Crown Maple Guide to Maple Syrup: How to Tap and Cook with Nature's Original Sweetener [EPUB]

The Crown Maple Guide to Maple Syrup: How to Tap and Cook with Nature's Original Sweetener [EPUB]
The Crown Maple Guide to Maple Syrup: How to Tap and Cook with Nature's Original Sweetener by Robb Turner, Jessica Carbone
2016 | EPUB | 67.57MB

As a leading organic maple syrup on the market, Crown Maple produces top-quality syrups. Its syrups are so good that they’re not only carried by a host of gourmet food markets, but also used in the world’s best kitchens, including NoMad, Eleven Madison Park, Bouchon, Lincoln, and more. The Crown Maple Guide to Maple Syrup is the ultimate guide to maple syrup, with 65 sweet and savory recipes, instructions on tapping and evaporating, and an overview of the fascinating history of maple syrup in the United States.

Crown Maple owner Robb Turner offers a comprehensive look into the world of maple syrup, complete with archival images and tutorials on the process. After you learn everything you need to know about maple syrup, move into the kitchen with recipes inspired by Robb and his wife Lydia’s home kitchen. Try the maple-pecan sticky buns, the maple-glazed duck, or maple lemon bars. Beautifully designed, with a mix of detailed process illustrations from tap to bottle and enticingly photographed recipes, this book is the perfect reference and keepsake for every maple syrup lover.

Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup [EPUB]

Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup [EPUB]
Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup by Katie Webster
2015 | EPUB | 60.77MB

Maple. The very word conjures up sweet memories of rich amber-colored syrups, indulgent breakfasts, and delicate candy. But that’s just a drop in the sap bucket: this liquid gold works its magic on everything from barbecue sauce to classic cocktails to delectable desserts. Plus it’s a healthier option than other sweeteners.

So step into the sugar shack as seasoned sap-tapper Katie Webster takes you behind the scenes of her backyard maple sugaring hobby. Then try your hand at her Maple Ginger Roasted Salmon or Smoky and Sweet Turkey Chili. Pour yourself a Maple Peach Old Fashioned and enjoy a helping of Bananas Foster Bundt Cake. Explore 100 sweet and savory recipes, including plenty of vegan, gluten-free, and paleo-friendly options, all featuring the incomparable taste of maple.

Purely Pumpkin: More Than 100 Seasonal Recipes to Share, Savor, and Warm Your Kitchen [EPUB]

Purely Pumpkin: More Than 100 Seasonal Recipes to Share, Savor, and Warm Your Kitchen [EPUB]
Purely Pumpkin: More Than 100 Seasonal Recipes to Share, Savor, and Warm Your Kitchen by Allison Day
2016 | EPUB | 53.17MB

Bring these comforting, relaxing, healthy recipes to the plates, bowls, and mugs of your home this year.

The beginning of fall brings buzz and excitement around all things pumpkin. From the huggable lattes we eagerly await all year to the homemade roasted pumpkin seeds whipped up after carving a jack-o’-lantern on Halloween to the first (or third) slice of pie during the holidays, there’s a place for pumpkin in everyone’s heart.

In her new cookbook, Purely Pumpkin, Allison Day, popular blogger and creator of the award-winning YummyBeet.com, brings the cozy warmth of pumpkin into our homes with a seasonal, whole foods recipe set and earthy food photography. With savory and sweet recipes for all meals of the day—including a mouthwatering pumpkin dessert chapter—it’s the cookbook your home shouldn’t be without during the fall and winter months.

Homemade pumpkin spice latte variations along with wholesome meals ideal for every day and holidays are tucked into this plentiful pumpkin volume. Utilizing pumpkin flesh, pumpkin puree, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin spice, pumpkin seed oil, and heirloom pumpkins, there’s something in Purely Pumpkin for every craving, festivity, time constraint, and cooking level.

As enjoyable to cook from as it is to flip through while curled up next to a crackling fire, there’s no better way to celebrate, share, and savor the pumpkin harvest this season.

In Search of Time: Journeys Along a Curious Dimension [EPUB]

In Search of Time: Journeys Along a Curious Dimension [EPUB]
In Search of Time: Journeys Along a Curious Dimension by Dan Falk
2009 | EPUB | 3.6MB

An enjoyable and compelling ride through one of life’s most fascinating enigmas

“What, then, is time? If no one ask of me, I know,” St. Augustine of Hippo lamented. “But if I wish to explain to him who asks, I know not.”

Who wouldn’t sympathize with Augustine’s dilemma? Time is at once intimately familiar and yet deeply mysterious. It is thoroughly intangible: We say it flows like a river — yet when we try to examine that flow, the river seems reduced to a mirage. No wonder philosophers, poets, and scientists have grappled with the idea of time for centuries.

The enigma of time has also captivated science journalist Dan Falk, who sets off on an intellectual journey In Search of Time. The quest takes him from the ancient observatories of stone-age Ireland and England to the atomic clocks of the U.S. Naval Observatory; from the layers of geological “deep time” in an Arizona canyon to Albert Einstein’s apartment in Switzerland. Along the way he talks to scientists and scholars from California to New York, from Toronto to Oxford. He speaks with anthropologists and historians about our deep desire to track time’s cycles; he talks to psychologists and neuroscientists about the mysteries of memory; he quizzes astronomers about the beginning and end of time. Not to mention our latest theories about time travel — and the paradoxes it seems to entail. We meet great minds from Aristotle to Kant, from Newton to Einstein — and we hear from today’s most profound thinkers: Roger Penrose, Paul Davies, Julian Barbour, David Deutsch, Lee Smolin, and many more.

As usual, Dan Falk’s style combines exhaustive research with a lively, accessible, and often humorous style, making In Search of Time a delightful tour through a most curious dimension.

Inside the Artist's Studio [EPUB]

Inside the Artist's Studio [EPUB]
Inside the Artist's Studio by Joe Fig
2015 | EPUB | 40.1MB

What was your first artwork to receive recognition? What materials do you use and how did they come into your practice? What advice would you give a young artist just starting out? Joe Fig asked a wide range of celebrated and up-and-coming artists these and many other questions during the illuminating studio visits documented in Inside the Artist's Studio--the follow-up to his acclaimed Inside the Painter's Studio.

In this thought-provoking collection, twenty-four painters, video and mixed-media artists, sculptors, and photographers reveal their highly idiosyncratic techniques and philosophies, as well as their quotidian habits and strategies for getting work done: the music they listen to; the hours they keep; the relationships with gallerists and curators, friends, family, and fellow artists that sustain them outside the studio. Readers will learn how singeing off a friend's eyebrows provided the inspiration for Petah Coyne's wax pieces, how the cemeteries of Cypress Hills lured Leonardo Drew, how Judy Pfaff became a sculptor in order to avoid the painting crits at Yale, and numerous other artists' insights, advice, and stories of the art-making life.

In addition to Fig's interviews and extensive photography, Inside the Artist's Studio features Fig's own intricately constructed artworks depicting each subject's studio. Some are represented through meticulous sculptures, others through richly detailed paintings. A preface by Jonathan T. D. Neil, director of Sotheby's Institute of Art in Los Angeles and associate editor of ArtReview magazine, describes Fig's project as part of a lineage of work focusing on the artist's studio, from Diego Velázquez's Las Meninas through Hans Namuth's photographs of Jackson Pollock. Throughout this remarkable book, in images and words, Fig's investigation of the creative process forms a revealing portrait of the artist at work.

The Great Cities in History [EPUB]

The Great Cities in History [EPUB]
The Great Cities in History edited by John Julius Norwich
2016 | EPUB | 29.79MB

A portrait of world civilization told through the stories of the world's greatest cities from ancient times to the present.

Today, for the first time in history, the majority of people in the world live in cities. The implications and challenges associated with this fact are enormous. But how did we get here?

From the origins of urbanization in Mesopotamia to the global metropolises of today, great cities have marked the development of human civilization. The Great Cities in History tells their stories, starting with the earliest, from Uruk and Memphis to Jerusalem and Alexandria. Next come the fabulous cities of the first millennium: Damascus and Baghdad, Teotihuacan and Tikal, and Chang’an, capital of Tang Dynasty China. The medieval world saw the rise of powerful cities such as Palermo and Paris in Europe, Benin in Africa, and Angkor in southeast Asia. The last two sections bring us from the early modern world, with Isfahan, Agra, and Amsterdam, to the contemporary city: London and New York, Tokyo and Barcelona, Los Angeles and São Paulo.

The distinguished contributors, including Jan Morris, Michael D. Coe, Simon Schama, Orlando Figes, Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, Misha Glenny, Susan Toby Evans, and A. N. Wilson, evoke the character of each place―people, art and architecture, government―and explain the reasons for its success.

I Can Make You Thin [EPUB]

I Can Make You Thin [EPUB]
I Can Make You Thin by Paul McKenna
2016 | EPUB | 2.47MB

Would you like to eat whatever you want and still lose weight?

Would you like to feel really happy with your body? Are you unable to lose those last 10 pounds? Do you find it difficult to say no to second helpings? Do you get disheartened about your eating habits and your weight? Have you tried every diet and it made no difference long-term?

Then this amazing system is for you!

Welcome to a revolutionary new way to stop overeating, control cravings, and feel totally motivated to exercise. Paul McKenna has developed a breakthrough weight-loss system that re-patterns your thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs about yourself, your health, and food to help you easily take control of your diet and lose weight permanently.

As you use Dr. McKenna’s unique book and audio system, the latest psychological techniques will automatically help you to start losing weight right away! You can use it again and again to make you feel happier about yourself as you go all the way to your ideal shape, size, and weight.

Amazing Truths: How Science and the Bible Agree [Audiobook]

Amazing Truths: How Science and the Bible Agree [Audiobook]
Amazing Truths: How Science and the Bible Agree [Audiobook] by Dr Michael Guillen, read by the Author
2016 | M4B@64 kbps | 7 hrs 33 mins | 205.89MB

Does science discredit the Bible, God, religious faith? Absolutely not, says Dr. Michael Guillen, former Harvard physics instructor and Emmy-winning ABC News science editor. In Amazing Truths, he uses his entertaining, down-to-earth storytelling skills to reveal 10 astonishing truths affirmed by both ancient scripture and modern science that answer some of our biggest questions: Can faith really move mountains? Does absolute truth exist? Are humans truly unique? Is it possible to communicate with God? How much about the universe do we actually know? How could Jesus have been fully man and fully God?

In Amazing Truths, Dr. Guillen explains that faith is not some outdated way of thinking. Faith is a necessary part of science, Christianity, and any intelligent, comprehensive, coherent worldview - vastly more powerful than even logic. Amazing Truths will expand your mind and bolster your faith. You will see for yourself what Dr. Guillen, a theoretical physicist and devout Christian, has discovered in a lifetime of serious exploration - that science and faith are not at odds. In fact, they're the ultimate power couple.