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Farmer Buckley's Exploding Trousers: And other odd events on the way to scientific discovery [Paperback]

New Scientist
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
RRP: 10.99
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Book Description

26 May 2011
In August 1931, New Zealand farmer Richard Buckley hit the local headlines - or rather his trousers did. One minute they were drying in front of the fire; the next there was a huge blast and a ball of flames. Farmer Buckley's trousers had exploded. The culprit? A popular pesticide of the day, which when combined with clothing fibres unexpectedly formed a highly combustible compound. This incendiary story is a striking example of how scientific advances meant to improve people's lives can sometimes backfire. Contrary to the widespread belief that science and technology move steadily on from one discovery to the next, the fascinating stories in this entertaining collection present some of the unfamiliar characters and events that litter the path of scientific progress, where setbacks and mishaps are the norm, and breakthroughs are the exception.

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Farmer Buckley's Exploding Trousers: And other odd events on the way to scientific discovery + Nothing: From absolute zero to cosmic oblivion - amazing insights into nothingness + Will We Ever Speak Dolphin?: and 130 other science questions answered (New Scientist)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Profile Books (26 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846685087
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846685088
  • Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 13.5 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 55,312 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'Entertainingly told' --Daily Mail

'Entertainingly told in clear, non-technical prose from the pages of the New Scientist' --Daily Mail

`An enjoyable romp' --BBC Focus

Book Description

The all-but-forgotten heroes and highlights of everyday science

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was a fascinating book of science related facts. I particularly found it nice to have on Kindle and read on my phone kindle app on the train.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars dangerous times! 22 Jun 2011
A great book that can be read at random if so wished. The trousers do not appear until well inside but the reader is informed about many other instances of how science may not be our best servant. This reader was fascinated due to having experimented as a young boy with the very chemicals that caused such consternation to Farmer Buckley, but, happily, without dire consequences! Highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Informative 26 Sep 2013
By Rachel
An interesting and informative book about different scientific discoveries and how they came about. Very easy to read in small chunks as each discovery covers no more than about 4 pages. However, it didn't have the same type of charm and enjoyment for me as the New Scientist Question books such as Will We Ever Speak Dolphin?: and 130 other science questions answered (New Scientist) and I cannot really put my finger on why. I think it is probably because it is stating why has happened already and doesn't have the same kind of humour because it doesn't contain personal ideas and opinions. Still a very worthy addition to the New Scientist collection.
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5.0 out of 5 stars educated book 27 Nov 2012
By mopc
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
i love all the new scientist books. I do subscribe the magazine as well. So funny and educated book that everyone can read and have a good laugh at the same time.
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3.0 out of 5 stars One for the beach collection 15 Sep 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A slightly patchy collection, quality-wise, but lots in it to entertain and therefore well worth taking on holiday. I'll not be keeping it ont' Kindle though.
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