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  • Published: 1 October 2020
  • ISBN: 9780241989708
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 384

Numbers Don't Lie

71 Things You Need to Know About the World




Bill Gates' favourite scientist is on a mission to make facts matter

Is flying dangerous? How much do the world's cows weigh? And what makes people happy?

From earth's nations and inhabitants, through the fuels and foods that energize them, to the transportation and inventions of our modern world - and how all of this affects the planet itself - in Numbers Don't Lie, Professor Vaclav Smil takes us on a fact-finding adventure, using surprising statistics and illuminating graphs to challenge lazy thinking.

Packed with 'Well-I-never-knew-that' information and with fascinating and unusual examples throughout, we find out how many people it took to build the Great Pyramid, that vaccination yields the best return on investment, and why electric cars aren't as great as we think (yet). There's a wonderful mix of science, history and wit, all in bite-sized chapters on a broad range of topics.

Urgent and essential, Numbers Don't Lie inspires readers to interrogate what they take to be true in these significant times. Smil is on a mission to make facts matter, because after all, numbers may not lie, but which truth do they convey?

  • Published: 1 October 2020
  • ISBN: 9780241989708
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 384

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Praise for Numbers Don't Lie

Important

Mark Zuckerberg, on Energy

One of the world's foremost thinkers on development history and a master of statistical analysis . . . The nerd's nerd

Guardian

The best book to read to better understand our world. Once in a while a book comes along that helps us see our planet more clearly. By showing us numbers about science, health, green technology and more, Smil's book does just that. It should be on every bookshelf!

Linda Yueh, author of The Great Economists

A book for anyone confused by statistics or dubious of data in a world where numbers seem to mean everything and nothing. Vaclav Smil's new book reveals why diesel isn't as bad as you think, how much food is really being wasted, what actually makes people happy, and much more.

BBC Science Focus magazine

The human mind soaks up the images and narratives conveyed by the press, but they are a highly nonrandom sample of reality: the lurid, the sudden, the photogenic. Smil's title says it all: to understand the world, you need to follow the trendlines, not the headlines. This is a compelling, fascinating, and most important, realistic portrait of the world and where it's going

Steven Pinker

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