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Bad Science: The Short Life and Weird Times of Cold Fusion [Hardcover]

Gary Taubes

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.7 out of 5 stars  13 reviews
27 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The History of Cold Fusion -- In Depth 18 Feb 2001
By "bhb6" - Published on
This book is excellent. It describes in amazing detail the events leading up to and following the "Cold Fusion" news conference. It's the story of how two scientists fooled themselves into believing that they were onto something so big that they had to claim credit for it -- fast. And it's the story of how the least qualified researchers quickly "confirmed" Cold Fusion, and how the best qualified researchers found nothing. If you're interested in how science is done, both well and poorly, read this book.
12 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, but protracted 5 Jun 1998
By Erick N. Larson - Published on
The author does an excellent job in chronicling the saga and travail of cold fusion. The "lessons learned" are applicable to numerous technical fields, particularly where conclusions are drawn far ahead of substantiating evidence and critical peer review.
12 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 20+ years later and Cold Fusion has yet to change the world. 14 Jan 2011
By Jeff Box - Published on
I read the book a few years after it came out and have referred back to it many times since. I view it as the story of greed running amuck with hack "scientists" taking many short cuts trying to cash on in a world changing bonanza. Yet, here we are 20+ years later and I have yet to see a public cold fusion demo running so much as a single light bulb.

Tip of the hat to Mr. Taubes for laying out the story. The 18 years since publication are pretty strong evidence that his conclusions were and still are on target.

I also view it as thought provoking for investors when they see some of the energy scams on Wall Street.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book on cold fusion 26 July 2013
By Fadl Saadi - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book having only a cursory understanding of the subject matter (full disclosure: I am a PhD student in electrochemistry) and I thought that the book did a very good job explaining this strange story without getting too bogged down with details.

I personally believe that this should be a must read for all scientists as a lesson on how good people can fall into a hole and become blind to evidence staring them in the face. It also does a great job hammering in the importance of reproducing work and of properly doing controls. I honestly believe I have become a better scientist after reading this story.
4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Taube's witch hunt destroyed career of prominent scientists who were right all along 14 Dec 2013
By John Smith - Published on
This book is an example of what happens when a Journalist decides to go to battle with scientists in a politicized arena of the press, and yellow press.

With this book and his other efforts Taubes helped destroy the career of Dr. Bockris (RIP), an esteemed Texas electrochemist, who had early, unexpected Tritium results from his LENR replication study. Now many labs including several national labs (Los Alamos, US Navy SPAWARS, China Lake) have replicated tritium production and destruction from energized metal hydrides.

Due in great part to the hysteria Taubes' created, Dr. Stanley Pons and Dr. Martin Fleishmann were denied serious academic review of their work.

See [...] for a compilation of evidence showing Taubes' self serving fabrications.

Now that we know how serious climate change is getting, the loss of 24 years head start getting clean safe nuclear power going really bites. Gary Taubes has a lot to answer for.
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