Category Archives: Non-fiction

The Bible: Gutenberg’s Printing Shop, Year 1439

Books have a special appeal to me–I like the look and touch of a good book. A few years ago, when presented an opportunity to spend several evenings inside the Stanford Green Library rare books room, I leapt at the … Continue reading

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Our Founders: How Did They Do It?

“We hold these truths to be self-evident”—this remarkable assertion begins the Declaration of Independence as written by the founders of our country in 1776 after considerable heated debate and 11th hour compromises on wording. Some few years later, in 1789, … Continue reading

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Canons Reverberate in a Tiny Caribbean Harbor

The small colonial sailing vessel sailed up the roadstead towards anchorage in the harbor and readied her ceremonial cannons to fire a salute: White puffs of gun smoke over a turquoise sea followed by the boom of cannon rose from an … Continue reading

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The Lynching At Grasshopper Creek

Frederick Allen recounts the history of an unprecedented chain of executions carried out by citizen vigilantes with overwhelming public consent in A Decent Orderly Lynching—The Montana Vigilantes. This deadly episode of vigilante justice erupted in the gold fields of what … Continue reading

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Looking at Hard Times

This photo of a bleached skull was taken in May 1936 by Arthur Rothstein and appears in Mary Murphy’s history Hope in Hard Times, New Deal Photographs of Montana, 1936-1942. Today, the Great Depression of the 30s is far in … Continue reading

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Robots and Cybernetic Animals

CyberneticZoo.com is a web site dedicated to the history of cybernetic animals and early robots. I came across Cybernetic Zoo while searching for pictures of Shakey the Robot, which was developed by Stanford Research Institute in the late 60s and … Continue reading

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A Twinge in Cyberspace

The fictional characters in cyberpunk literature often have implanted electronics and connecters so that the character can jack into cyberspace. In 2002, that fiction became a reality when a British scientist became the world’s first cyborg by undergoing a medical … Continue reading

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Cyberpunks and Phone Phreaks

From my library: Cyberpunk by Katie Hafner and John Markoff; subtitled Outlaws and Hackers on the Computer Frontier. The book details the search for Kevin Mitnick, a computer hacker and phone phreak who made the top of the FBI’s most wanted … Continue reading

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Art, Zen and Self-help

Continuing the project of cleaning up my library, I begin sorting out some of the art and self-help books. (Self-help is another class of books that should do well in the eBook market). One of the first books I notice … Continue reading

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Animal Spirits Rule

The conservatives had their Voodoo Economics and now liberals have Animal Spirits. The term Animal Spirits, as an economic concept, originated in the works of John Maynard Keynes in the 1936. Keynes argued that private-sector decisions sometimes produced inefficient outcomes, … Continue reading

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