Nikola Tesla (1856-1943), credited as the inspiration for radio, robots, and even radar, has been called the patron saint of modern electricity. Based on original material and previously unavailable documents, this acclaimed book is the definitive biography of the man considered by many to be the founding father of modern electrical technology. Among Tesla's creations were the channeling of alternating current, fluorescent and neon lighting, wireless telegraphy, and the giant turbines that harnessed the power of Niagara Falls.
The book is illustrated with sixteen pages of photographs, including the July 20, 1931, Time magazine cover for an issue celebrating the inventor's career.
"[Wizard] brings the many complex facets of [Tesla's] personal and technical life together in to a cohesive whole.... I highly recommend this biography of a great technologist." --A.A. Mullin, U.S. Army Space and Strategic Defense Command, COMPUTING REVIEWS
"[Along with A Beautiful Mind] one of the five best biographies written on the brilliantly disturbed." --WALL STREET JOURNAL
"Wizard is a compelling tale presenting a teeming, vivid world of science, technology, culture and human lives." --NEW SCIENTIST
"Marc Seifer is an excellent writer and scholar, who has produced a wonderfully readable and illuminating biography of one of the most intriguing men of this century... mak[ing] us understand not only the man, but also the times in which he lived. . . . [A] masterpiece." --NELSON DEMILLE
"The author presents much new material... [and] bases his book on a large number of archival and primary sources.... Underneath the layers of hero worship, the core of Seifer's book is a serious piece of scholarship." --Ronald Kline, SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN
"Seifer has done a remarkable job going through all the Tesla manuscripts... ferret[ing] out hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles in which he traces out Tesla's public image [and] offers a reasonable reconstruction of Tesla's emotional world. . . . Seifer has significantly advanced our understanding of Tesla." --Bernard Carlson, author of Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age, for ISIS
"It is my opinion that Dr. Seifer leads the world as the most authoritative of all the Tesla researchers." --J.W. McGINNIS,President, International Tesla Society
"Far and away the best job among Tesla biographies." --Jeffrey D. Kooistra, INFINITE ENERGY
"Wizard is ... utterly absorbing with chapters charting all stages of Tesla's life.... Seifer treats his prodigious subject with sympathy and realism." --NEXUS
"Wizard... presents a much more accurate... picture of Tesla.... [It] is thorough, informative, entertaining and a valuable addition to electrotechnological history, past and future." --ELECTRONIC ENGINEERING TIMES
"In modern times, Tesla may be enjoying a comeback thanks to books like Wizard." --THE NEW YORK TIMES
"Here is a deep and comprehensive biography of a great engineer of early electrical science. Indeed, it is likely to become the definitive biography of the Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla. .... Highly recommended." --AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE
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Marc J. Seifer teaches psychology at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island, and is the author of more than seventy scientific writings.
One of AudioFile magazine's Golden Voices, Simon Prebble has received over twenty Earphones Awards and five Listen-Up Awards, and he has been a finalist fourteen times for an Audie Award. In 2006, Publishers Weekly named him Narrator of the Year, and he was named Booklist's 2010 Voice of Choice.
Seifer's vivid, revelatory, exhaustively researched biography rescues pioneer inventor Nikola Tesla from cult status and restores him to his rightful place as a principal architect of the modern age. Based largely on firsthand documents including Tesla's writings, his patents and those of competitors, it credits the Croatian-born Serb, who moved to New York in 1884, with the invention of the induction motor, long-distance electrical power distribution, fluorescent and neon lights, the first true radio tube and remote control, besides making vital contributions to the technology underlying television, wireless communication, robotics, lasers, the facsimile machine and particle-beam weaponry anticipating the space-based "Star Wars" defensive shield. Though often depicted as a recluse, flamboyant nouveau-riche Tesla (1856-1943) lived in Manhattan's Waldorf-Astoria Hotel for two decades, and hobnobbed with architect Sanford White, Mark Twain, Rudyard Kipling, conservationist John Muir, mogul John Jacob Astor III, Swami Vivekananda. Yet the electronic wizard, who competed fiercely with Marconi and with his one-time employer Edison, became swamped in debt, abandoned by a world he helped create, ending his days in seedy poverty, a bitter, anorexic eccentric obsessed with feeding pigeons and avoiding germs. Seifer, who teaches psychology at Community College of Rhode Island, attributes Tesla's downfall partly to his megalomaniacal, neurotic, self-destructive tendencies, partly to a quagmire of litigation and also to his Faustian pact with his ambivalent benefactor, Wall Street financier J. Pierpont Morgan, to whom he relinquished control of several patents. Morgan, suggests Seifer, stymied Tesla's visionary scheme for a global, wireless power-distribution system because, if realized, it would jeopardize electrical, lighting and telephone monopolies. Seifer provides the fullest account yet of Tesla as an entrepreneur, experimental physicist and inventor. Photos.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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