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I have read everything I can get my hands on about Tesla. I first learned of him during my course work at University. The basic unit of magnetic field is named after him. He developed alternating current, radio transmission and FM radio, wireless transmission of electrical power; he was ahead of Roentgen in the invention of photographic process of producing x-ray. He is known for the Tesla coil, induction motor, rotary transformers, high frequency alternators, the Tesla oscillator and many more. This is the newest biographical book on Tesla. The book covers both the biographical life of Tesla but goes into greater detail about the technical aspects of his invention and theoretical work. In fact it could be titled the history of electricity in the 19th and early 20th century. The author takes the reader into the scientific mindset of the 19th century and compares it today. The book is objective and even handed about Tesla’s accomplishments and life. I find this objectivity critical to any book about Tesla as in recent decades he has been mythologized in the public imagination. The author goes into great detail about the various ways inventions are created by inventors and why some need marketing to create a demand and others do not. Professor Carlson also explained that Tesla like many inventors needed a business person to keep him focus on feasible inventions and provided the financial backing and marketing. Unfortunately for Tesla the key business man in his life died when Tesla was at his peak and Tesla was never able to replace him. But the patent attorney stayed with him for years. I enjoyed reading this book; it gave me an excellent understanding of Tesla’s inventions and theories. A caution to those readers that are less technically inclined this book is heavy into technical detail but written in an understanding way. I particularly enjoyed the last two chapters of the book, I thought Carlson did an excellent job of summarizing all the data he presented and his notes by various books about Tesla are helpful. Tesla’s work has pioneered the way for many inventions in the past few decades that we take for granted. He was a man ahead of his time. Allan Robertson did an excellent job in narrating the book.
18 of 19 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Anyone curious about why and how such genius ended up on the obscure part of history should read this book It tells of his genius, his flaws, and how he got bypassed by his obsession with charging the earth electrically to provide free electricity to all.
Who was your favorite character and why?
well, Duh! Nicolas Tesla. What a character. What a performer. What a mind.
What three words best describe Allan Robertson’s voice?
Any additional comments?
I found the presentation somewhat soporific, a problem since I do most of my listening while driving. But the story and the man, Tesla, more than make up for it to make this a must read from my point of view.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend Tesla to your friends? Why or why not?
Yes. Very interesting story about a "mad scientist", who suffered from tunnel vision and a very large ego. After his initial success with electromagnetics, it then got be be like the hammer - it sees everything as a nail, and Tesla becomes the hammer where he sees the solution to everything as one of his inventions or possible inventions.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Plenty of meat on the bones of this book. The author takes the time to explain the science and patent legalese so even an idiot like me can follow. (though in truth there a few Sciencey parts I had to hear again and Google, as Electromagnetics -or studying in general- wasn't my forte...)
Reads like a documentary, and Tesla's story is so entertaining to hear, minus all the wind being blown up his backside by other books.
This story is approachable no matter what your background and the narrator presents it with panache.