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Biomimicry [Paperback]

Janine Benyus
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 2 edition (31 Jan 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060533226
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060533229
  • Product Dimensions: 20.5 x 13.5 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 87,973 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


This profound and accessible book details how science is studying nature's best ideas to solbe our toughest 21st century problems. Essential reading for anyone interested in science, nature, ecology, and conservation.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
It's not ordinary for a bare-chested man wearing jaguar teeth and owl feathers to grace the pages of The New Yorker, but these are not ordinary times. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A wasted opportunity 12 Sep 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I wanted to like this book, but it does not do anything like justice to the important ideas it is trying to introduce, and I had to stop reading it. I would not recommend it, especially to anyone with a scientific background as it is badly written, imprecise, subjective and bulked out by irrelevant and lame descriptive information, an infuriating mess through which the reader must struggle to pick out the facts. When trying to explain scientific concepts such as photosynthesis, the author seems to think that this can be done by mixing as many metaphors as possible. The author should have decided whether she was writing a book about a personal voyage of discovery or an objective factual book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
The purported subject of this book is facinating, however most of the book seems to be about something else. The author lectures about current poor ecological practices (which were "news" about ten years ago). I found very little in this book regarding actual progress in technologies that were inspired by biological systems. Rather disappointing.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Halfway finished, I am putting this book down. It's very rare that I don't finish a book. If you have a strong science background, you will be very disappointed in what this book has to offer. The alleged topic is fascinating, and I think I will go find a book that really discusses it.
The photosynthesis chapter screams for pictures and diagrams, but the author has provided none. The reader will read thousands clumsy words trying to describe complex geometries, waiting for a clarifying picture that never comes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating topic, dissappointing book 27 July 1998
By A Customer
Solar cells modeled after green plants, fibers stronger than steel, chemical factories without pollution, ceramics as hard as abalone shell. Nature has invented many things that outperform engineering feasts, and this is book about nature's innovations.
Biomimicry is a hard book to classify: it is partly a popular science book (ca. 50%) but also a manifesto for sustainable development, a collection of miniportraits of scientists, and wild speculation of future engineering applications. All of this is embedded in the Benyus' personal odyssey of figuring out what biomimetics is all about. Lack of clear focus makes this book a difficult read: in the middle materials science exposee Benyus has decided to describe rock climbing hobbies of some prominent materials scientists.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Biomimicry 24 Aug 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I liked the fact video's could be accessed and loved the lead up to all the innovative stuff and most of all it left feeling hope. A good informative book. Would now like to follow it up with earth dance.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book! Highly recommended! 19 July 2012
Have just finished reading this book. It's fantastic. The chapter on 'How will we feed ourselves now?' (over 50 pages long) has to be the best overview and analysis of what's gone wrong with our food system and how we might remedy it that I have read (and I am particularly well read in this area). The book is well worth buying for this chapter alone. Other chapters of this book also stand out - the 'How will we heal ourselves?' chapter and the 'How will we conduct business?' being just two other examples that deserve a mention.

The authors understanding of ecology and love of nature shine throughout this exceptional work and her writing syle and narrative approach makes what could have been a very high brow subject matter very accessible and interesting. Recommended!
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