The crystals build and grow inward towards the center, slowly filling the geode out.

Subterranean Worlds Inside Earth

Timothy Green Beckley

"What really got me thinking about this inner earth stuff was back years ago there were three miners trapped in a cave in Pennsylvania. It was all over the newspapers and radio back then. They were not expected to survive after three or four days of not being heard from. They were eventually rescued. In the hospital [they] told, about after two days or so, they saw an eerie light in the cavern where they were trapped. They followed it and came across a door that lead to beings who gave them food and water so they were able to stay alive."

Publisher: Inner Light
Paperback: 158 pages



Absolutely Mad Inventions

A.E. Brown and H.A. Jeffcott Jr.

What drives people to not only think of such outlandish things, but to go the trouble of patenting them? Included are a privy seat that consists of rollers that will throw to the ground anyone attempting to stand upon it, pince-nez-style safety goggles for a fowl, and a humane device to attach a bell to the necks of rodents “thereby frightening the other rats and causing them to flee.” In case of conflagration, there are fire- escape suspenders with a cord attachment, which allow the wearer to remove the cord and lower it to the ground in the hope that someone can pass up a rope. For a hot summer’s day, there’s a rocking chair with bellows so “the occupant may, by the act of rocking, impel a current of air upon himself.” Also included are edible stick pins, chewing-gum lockets, mechanical clothes pins, a bait trap for tapeworms, devices for producing dimples and shaping upper lips, and many more. Almost 60 inventions, all with the original illustrations as submitted to the patent office. Originally collected and published in 1932 as Beware of Imitations. TR

Publisher: Dover
Paperback: 125 pages

The Age of Intelligent Machines

Raymond Kurzweil

The author of this illuminating overview of the development of artificial intelligence approaches his subject matter not as a glib science journalist or obfuscating academic but as a hands-on pioneer in applied artificial-intelligence (AI) devices. Kurzweil is credited as the inventor of optical character recognition (OCR), the Kurzweil Reading Machine, and the polyphonic music synthesizer (at the suggestion of Stevie Wonder, who was an early reading machine client), among other advances in applying AI to technology. Kurzweil sees AI as a second Industrial Revolution, creating machines that will extend, multiply and leverage our mental abilities as opposed to physical abilities. Appropriately, he begins with an examination of the history of automation and a brief discussion of the Luddites (the only organized opposition to technology in history). The theoretical roots of AI and its basis in “logical positivist” philosophers such as Kant and Wittgenstein are also explained.
Surprisingly human tragedies emerge from amidst the logic gates and subroutines. One such account is a portrayal of Alan Turing, who built the first electromagnetic computer to crack the mechanical intelligence of the Nazi Enigma code machine, thus allowing the RAF to win the Battle of Britain. A closeted gay man, he committed suicide with a potentially brilliant career ahead of him. Then there is the Ken Russellesque drama of the obsessed Cambridge mathematician Charles Babbage, who in the 1860s created the prophetic Difference Engine and Analytical Engines (which, although mechanical, laid the theoretical basis for IBM’s Mark I). He had an ill-fated affair with the beautiful Ada Lovelace (daughter of Lord Byron and the first computer programmer).
Kurzweil hits other high points on the way to the creation of machine intelligence, such as the invention of keypunch machines for the 1890 census and the subsequent rise of IBM, the invention of the original, gigantic tube computers such as the ENIAC and the UNIVAC, Norbert Wiener and the science of cybernetics, the shift from analog to digital information, the stillborn original neural net known as the Perceptron, pixels, robotics and much more.
The compilation ends with a speculative AI chronology which demonstrates the sadly uncritical gee-whiz mentality of the generation still leading the AI assault: “Early 21st century—the entire productive sector of society is operated by a small number of technicians and professionals.” Does that mean the rest of us will be permanently on vacation? Somehow it never seems to work out that way. SS

Publisher: MIT
Hardback: 564 pages

Alice in Quantumland: An Allegory of Quantum Physics

Robert Gilmore

An entertaining layman’s guide to quantum physics, illustrated by the author. It’s Alice’s adventures revisited, only this time around, her guides through Quantumland come in the guise of Quantum Mechanic, the Three Quark Brothers and the State Agent. Instead of undergoing changes in height, this Alice experiences quantum effects on a much more radical scale. The author pares away the mathematics and makes such theories as the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, wave functions, the Pauli Exclusion Principle, virtual particles, atoms, nuclei and high energy particle physics accessible to those among us challenged by higher math and sciences. CP

Publisher: Springer-Verlag
Hardback: 184 pages

Alternative Science: Challenging the Myths of the Scientific Establishment

Richard Milton

Cold fusion, holistic medicine, non-HIV AIDS research, psychokinesis, telepathy, Bioenergy—these fields of research have one thing in common: They’re all big no-no’s according to today’s western “scientific fundamentalism.” Anyone who dares attempt serious research in any of these areas is liable to lose funding, respect and even his or her job as an increasingly intolerant scientific community goes to greater and greater lengths to quash all “heretical” inquiry, even in the face of often staggering empirical evidence. As British Fortean philosopher John Michell says on the back cover, “There is a tyranny of science devouring our lives, minds and cultures, and Richard Milton has exposed it.” Unfortunately, despite its great intentions, the book tends to bog down in its own whining, preachiness, redundancy, and ye olde English dull-dull-dullness, leaving it even more boring than your average garden-variety “non-alternative” science text. DB

Publisher: Park Street
Paperback: 272 pages

Ancient Inventions

Peter James and Nick Thorpe

Historian and archaeologist team James and Thorpe have unearthed a mountain of bizarre and astonishing accounts of inventions and discoveries made by the ancient peoples of our planet. The material— “recorded and attested to in the scientific and archaeological literature, though often ignored by textbook histories”—does not cease to amaze, and accounts of seventh-century false teeth, sixth-century iceboxes, ancient Arabian diving equipment, steam engines from Greece and electric batteries in Iraq make one wonder just how incomplete our history textbooks are. This 620-page book is one of those wonderful gems that sticks out its tongue and wiggles its ears at conventional thinking. Wildly important information on the inventions and ingenuity of the ancients. SK

Publisher: Ballantine
Paperback: 620 pages

The Anti-Gravity Handbook

Compiled by D. Hatcher Childress

This strange compilation levitates from Buck Rogers and the ancient Indians of the Rama Empire to Albert Einstein and Nikola Tesla, pursuing that technological holy grail of zero G. Highlights include ads for flying saucer-style VTOL planes from the Moller Corp. and a collection of “anti-gravity comix.”

Publisher: Adventures Unlimited
Paperback: 191 pages

Arktos: The Polar Myth in Science, Symbolism, and Nazi Survival

Joscelyn Godwin

Details mankind’s occult, religious, political, and mythological obsession with the ice-bound polar regions. Lost races, underground realms, conspiracy theories, the mystic East, UFOs and the Apocalypse are all belief systems variously tied to the shifting Poles. “Many occult systems speak of a Golden Age, associated with an ancient race that lived in the Arctic regions. Much embraced by ethnologists and Theosophists, this ‘Aryan Race’ entered the mythology of Nazi Germany with dreadful consequences.” Includes maps and drawings. GR

Publisher: Phanes
Paperback: 260 pages

Atlantis in Wisconsin: New Revelations About the Lost Sunken City

Frank Joseph

There is a lake in southern Wisconsin between the cities of Milwaukee and Madison called Rock Lake that has mysterious stones and mounds lying within its chilly waters. Frank Joseph, writer, scuba diver and researcher into lost civilizations, has been immersing himself in those waters for many years, and this book is his thesis on the origins of those conical mounds and their connection to the lands of Aztlan and Atlantis. His theory is that at one time the seafaring people of Atlantis journeyed to North America and established colonies in what are now Michigan and Wisconsin. The central focus of those colonies was mining the upper peninsula’s vast copper stores. The metal was then traded with Europeans and had a major impact on the Bronze Age. Unfortunately for the Atlanteans, a great catastrophe buried their continent beneath the surface of the Atlantic, and their former colonies declined. The people mixed with others of the area, and eventually the only remnants of this civilization were the legends of the Native American tribes and the conical and pyramid-shaped stone burial mounds. AS

Publisher: Galde
Paperback: 206 pages

Rogue Asteroids and Doomsday Comets: The Search for the Million Megaton Menace That Threatens Life in Earth

D. Steel

A research astronomer at the Anglo-Australian Observatory, the author is a leading authority on the menace of killer comets and asteroids. He sounds the alarm in unequivocal terms about the likelihood of a devastating astral collision unless we earthlings get mobilized to search and destroy oncoming comets. According to Steel, at least 2,000 objects now orbiting the Earth are large enough to hit with the force of a nuclear weapon. This seems like one scientific funding request worth taking a second look at. SS

Publisher: Wiley
Hardback: 308 pages

Science and Music

Sir James Jeans

Originally published in 1937, this book by a “noted British scientist” explains music, especially Western orchestral music, in terms of sound curves and vibrational theory. Topics covered include: transmission of sound, resonance, free vibrations of a string, harmonic synthesis, acoustics of pipe organs, the Pythagorean scale, “music of the future” and the “threshold of pain.” SS

Publisher: Dover
Paperback: 258 pages