Paperback cover of Science

Published by DK

RRP: $24.95

About Science

This remarkable reference book tells the story of science from earliest times to the present day, taking in everything from ancient Greek geometry to quantum physics, and the wedge to the worldwide web. Exploring science in a thematic, highly approachable manner, each spread takes as its theme a specific event, discovery, invention, experiment, theory, or individual and explains why this subject was so significant in the development of scientific thought and what its impact on history has been. In addition to providing a broad-ranging and comprehensive history of science, the book also explains how science works, employing DK's trademark clarity and visual ingenuity to render tricky scientific subjects easily comprehensible.

Science is structured chronologically with five chapters covering major phases in world history from ancient times to the present day, with an eye to the future. Within these chapters, subjects are arranged in discrete spreads, each of which takes a key scientific concept, event, discovery, or process as its subject. These spreads are framed by "Before" and "After" panels that place the subject in context, revealing the causes and consequences that surround it. Panels and feature spreads highlight key figures and inventions in the history of science, while major scientific breakthroughs are also pulled out as special features. An extensive reference section sets out key scientific principles and formula, and contains essential graphics, such as the periodic table.

Dawn of sciences (PREHISTORY to 1500)
Introduction and timeline
Fire and cooking
Bronze, copper, and iron
The wheel
Writing systems
Elements of life
Early medicine
Early surgery
The beginnings of astronomy
Greek and Arabic astronomy
Biography: Aristotle
Greek geometry
Biography: Pythagoras
Ancient ideas of the world
Ancient number systems
Levers, pulleys, and simple machines
Breakthrough: Archimedes Principle
Early algebra
Water and wind power
Navigating the oceans
Medieval Arabic and European world maps
Biography: Zhang Heng
Gunpowder and incendary devices
Printing and paper
Biography: Al-Hazen
Number theory
East meets West

Renaissance and enlightenment (1500 -1740)
Introduction and timeline
Cures for disease (Paracelsus)
Breakthrough: Sun-centered universe
Revealing the human body (Versalius)
Charting the skies
Motion and inertia
Viewing the skies
Biography: Galileo
Birth of experimental science
Logarithms and Napier's bones
Circulation of blood
Microscopic life
Biography: Robert Boyle
Cartesian coordinates
Comets and eclipses
Newton's laws forces
Breakthrough: Newton and the falling apple
Gravitational force
Biography: Newton
Measuring time
The nature of light
Splitting and bending light
A scientific community
Classification of species

The industrial revolution (1740-1890)
Introduction and timeline
Industrial revolution
Steam power to steam engine
Biography: Joseph Black
Early chemists
States of matter
Laws of pressure
Atoms and molecules
Elements and compounds
Chemistry of life
Plant respiration and photosynthesis
Advances in measurement
Static electricity
Biography: Benjamin Franklin
Breakthrough: The battery
Electric circuits
Calculating and computing
Biography: Michael Faraday
Electric motors
Types of energy
Temperature and heat
Electrical light
Internal combustion engine
Breakthrough: Age of the Earth
Dating the Earth
Rock formation
Shaping the landscape
The fossil record
Science and religion
Biography: Darwin
Breakthrough: Natural selection
Story of evolution
Laws of inheritance
Earth's atmosphere
Predicting and measuring weather
The role of vitamins
Nervous system
The brain
Safer surgery
Breakthrough: The periodic table
Periodic table explained
Chemical reactions
Speeding up reactions
Acids and alkalis
Synthetic dyes, fertilizers, explosives
Photography and film
Biography: Thomas Edison
Plant and animal cells
Bacteria and disease
Breakthrough: Vaccination
Immunization and vaccination
Natural defences
Water and sugar transportation in plants
Cycles in the biosphere
The changing climate
Shaping the landscape
Cathode ray and vacuum tubes

THE ATOMIC AGE (1890-1970)
Introduction and timeline
Nature of sound
Radio and wireless technology
Radiation and radioactivity
Biography: Marie Curie
Nobel Prize
Breakthrough: Theory of relativity
Biography: Albert Einstein
Quantum revolution and quantum mechanics
Biography: Max Planck
Chaos theory
Biography: Ernest Rutherford
Structure of the atom
Chemical bonds
Breakthrough: Nuclear fission
Fission and fusion
Science and responsibility
Life history of a star
How cells replicate
Chromosomes and inheritance
Breakthrough: Discovery of penicillin
Developing medicines
Regulating the body
Chemical analysis
Polymers and plastics
Taking flight
Rocket propulsion
Radar and microwaves
Breakthrough: The expanding universe
Big bang theory
Galaxies and superclusters
Game theory
Code-cracking computers
Biography: Alan Turing
Breakthrough: Structure of DNA
Role of DNA
Space probes
Space travel
Holograms and lasers
Microchip technology
Fibre optics
Structure of the Earth
Breakthrough: Moving continents
Tectonic plates
Earthquakes and the Richter scale
Organ transplants

THE INFORMATION AGE (1970 onwards)
Introduction and timeline
The internet, email, and worldwide web
Artificial intelligence
Journey to Mars
Biography: Richard Feynman
Subatomic particles
Genetic engineering
Breakthrough: Human fertility and IVF
GM foods
Space telescopes: Hubble and the future
New ways of diagnosing disease
Modern medical procedures
Rapidly emerging diseases (HIV etc)
Human genome project
Designer and targeted drugs
Energy generation
Renewable energy
Global warming
Climate solutions
Ultimate imaging
Large Hadron Collider

Reference section
Classification tables, formulae, symbols and charts across all disciplines