Tesla: Man Out Of Time By Margaret Cheney: Book Review

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Nicola Tesla is a popular scientist, famous inventor and modern visionary, who is known for his work on the modern-day AC current we use. He also worked on several more popular inventions which have made our lives easier today.

Tesla was born in Croatia, where he learned about modern engineering along with principles of physics through informal training. He mastered electrical and mechanical techniques through his work in various companies after he immigrated to the United States. Eventually, he earned enough to finance his own inventions which he later patented.

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His later work focused on wireless communication. Although he could not complete his work in his lifetime, his ingenious workings were the blueprint for the technology we have today. After his death, the SI unit for magnetic flux density was termed ‘Tesla’, as an honour to his scientific contributions.

He was not very popular during his lifetime or even after his death. However, recently his workings have come to light and the science community has renewed its interest in his work. This has given rise to many books on him, some of which are reviewed below:

1. My Inventions: The Autobiography of Nikola Tesla

This is an extensive autobiography of the great scientist. It is as detailed as it could be in a first-hand account. He was a genius and this book is enough proof of this.

His early life, his training and his working on numerous inventions are the main content of this book. His narrations are engaging and his work fascinating making it hard to put it down once you start it. His narration of his own life is gripping in a unique way.

Since his work has been underground for very long, this autobiography is ideal for someone who wants to find out more about his life. He was a very gifted scientist, with a wicked sense of humour. This is a highly recommended book for those who are interested in science and history.

2. Tesla: Man Out of Time

This is a comprehensive biography of the wizard scientist, Nicola Tesla. His early life, through his life’s peak years, and up to his death are covered in detail by the author. His amazing story has been told as intriguingly as it could possibly have.

Tesla had developed an outlook of a mad scientist during his work. His theories, inventions and incomplete experiments were famous for being extraordinary, somewhat dangerous, and definitely ahead of his time. It was for this reason he never gained a good popularity until at least the 1990, when we started understanding his works’ true potential.

The author has shined a bright light on the misunderstood genius in this masterpiece. How he spent his life making a mark for centuries to come it is definitely worth a read!

3. Tesla: The Lost Inventions (Tesla Technology Series)

Nicola Tesla was unfairly famous more for his dangerous theories and less for his amazing contribution to development of AC current and sources of renewable energy. His experiments include fascinating machines and blueprints for inventions that are termed dangerous even today.

This book is a unique read in that it describes some of these inventions and their mechanisms. It includes inventions which have never been actually developed physically, but have a lot of interest due to their potential benefits for the modern world. Tesla believed there is infinite energy in the universe available anywhere and his inventions made use of such sources.

This book is a like dream come true for science buffs. Its contents make it highly desirable for scientists, students and fans of the amazing mind.

4. Nikola Tesla: A Life From Beginning to End (Biographies of Innovators Book 1)

One of the many biographies on his life, this one follows through his birth in Croatia, to his later life spent in the United States. It is short but covers all the major events in his life, right up to the point of his death. Some of his work is also discussed to give perspective to his life.

The author walks us through how Nicola Tesla developed an interest in the field of engineering as well as in physics, his work with various companies, his inventions and his later life being misunderstood and even feared by his generation. It goes into important details becoming monotonous and boring.

The crisp, to the point and relevant information given in this book is ideal for someone who wants to know more about Tesla’s life, his discoveries, theories and his inventions, without going into unnecessary details or drama.

5. Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla: Biography of a Genius

Yet another biography on the amazing work of Nicola Tesla, this one focuses entirely on his inventions and theories, and how he was deprived of several patents due to politics and conspiracies.

It is widely known now that many inventions that are originally the work of Tesla have been wrongly attributed to other people. Further, many of his working blueprints have yet to be given a physical form or even considered for use in modern times. All such unfortunate details form the main content of this volume.

Tesla’s unique personality traits and his inability to make a name for himself during his lifetime add an interesting personal touch to this book. His unfair treatment and falling victim to conspiracy theories are very interesting making this book a must-have for fans.

6. Who Was Nikola Tesla?

Targeted towards younger audience of primary school age, this book introduces Nicola Tesla to the young scientists. It covers the working life of Tesla after he arrived in the United States and his numerous inventions and discoveries of the electric current and wireless communication.

Tesla had a short working relationship with another famous, more widely known scientist of the time, Thomas Edison. This biography talks about their work and eventual separation. Young children would be fascinated to know more about how Tesla contributed to the modern machines and wireless communication that we take for granted today.

If you have a young kid interested in science, or teach primary school, this one is highly recommended as a fair and interesting introduction to one of the most innovative minds of the twentieth century.

7. The Problem of Increasing Human Energy

Written by the genius himself, this book is a piece of art from Tesla. He talks about how mankind is living on this planet and using up energy resources, and how he can optimise his living with renewable energy resources.

The contents of this book prove that Nicola Tesla was not just a scientist or an inventor, but a smart visionary as well. His correct understanding of where human activities are leading the world to and his proposed solutions show how much he cared about the human race. It also shows how misunderstood he was in his time.

For those who care about the planet and the diminishing energy resources, this book is a must-read. It has been written by one of the most genius minds of modern times, which warrants a fair consideration.

8. Tesla: Inventor of the Modern

Nicola Tesla is the man behind almost every technology or machine we use today, whether directly or indirectly. He invented the induction motor, the AC current, wireless communication, cell phones, internet, robots and remote control, amongst many others. Some of his work even gives details on death-ray weapons and interstellar communication, both of which have not yet been developed into their physical forms.

Given all this, it is fair to conclude that he is the man behind all modern inventions. This book depicts just this fact. It talks about his unmatched role in development of the modern world. His mind was way ahead of its time and his work are a true depiction of an almost miraculous standard.

This book reinforces the true visionary image that we should have of the great scientist, but unfortunately his genius was covered up in political controversies.

9. Prodigal Genius: The Extraordinary Life of Nikola Tesla

Going into more personal details rather than focusing on his work, this biography is unique in its approach. It talks about how Tesla’s mind worked; how he developed an interest in engineering, learned the subject, and went on to invent mind-blowing technologies.

The author relates very interesting stories about Tesla’s life. Very few people know how Tesla was robbed of accreditation to several of his inventions, which even led to missing out on the Nobel Prize. The conspiracies and politics around his life sadly prevented him to the reach the fame he deserved.

The true beauty of his genius mind and the sad reality of how he was defamed and ridiculed, not to mention ignored in the books of history, presents a sad and tragic fairy tale of what mad scientists have to face.

10. Tesla: The Life and Times of an Electric Messiah (Oxford People)

With a great mind come greater challenges. Tesla is widely known as the inventor of the alternating current we use today. He is also responsible for radio signals, robots, fluorescent lights and several other modern everyday items that we take for granted.

However, few know the unique challenges he faced for being a misunderstood genius in his time. Although he had a photographic memory and could do complicated calculus and physics calculations in his head, he also suffered from hallucinations and what would today be diagnosed as obsessive compulsive disorder.

This book offers a unique perspective on how difficult life is for extraordinary minds. The challenges faced by geniuses such as Tesla cannot be comprehended by the common man. This book is therefore a must-read for those who sympathise with the modern ‘mad scientists’.

11. The Inventions, Researches and Writings of Nikola Tesla: With Special Reference to His Work in Polyphase Currents and High Potential Lighting

This book is an interesting collection of some of the most important works of Nicola Tesla. His useful inventions, extensive researches and engaging writings have all been compiled in one volume. A special attention has been given to his most important invention to date: the electricity we use today.

The works have all been included as images in their original form, meaning we get to see exactly how Tesla worked through and his thought process. Due accreditations have been added with legal copyright information referring to the libraries where his working papers are originally held.

This compilation presents a unique tribute to one of the true geniuses the world has seen. Since it is Tesla’s own writings, the originality of the scientist is preserved. It is a must-have book for science buffs and avid readers alike.

12. The Wall of Light: Nikola Tesla and the X-12 Spaceship

Nicola Tesla was an eccentric believer of the extra-terrestrial. He claimed to see and hear voices and even have met alien lifeforms. One of these meetings has been described in this book by his friend, the author.

Tesla claimed to have met a couple from Venus, “Frank and Frances”, who are claimed to be Commander Thor and his wife Deena. The author gives an account of this meeting and the incidents that followed. It was believed that his work was influenced by this meeting encounter, and the author has focused on this belief while narrating the happenings.

Although there are many who do not believe in the existence of extra-terrestrial life, and therefore disregard this book as being a work of fiction, several also claim that Tesla himself was out of his world because of his unique genius.

13. Nikola Tesla: Prophet Of The Modern Technological Age

Tesla was a man way ahead of his time. His work on various inventions was nothing short of near-miracle genius. His inventions while welcomed by many were also feared and even envied by several.

This book goes into the details of Tesla’s friendship with Mark Twain, competition with Thomas Edison, strained ties with J. P. Morgan and furious enmity with Albert Edison. His relationship with the other famous geniuses of his time, narrated in the words of the author, is a very intriguing read.

Tesla led a troubled life due to his eccentricities and almost super-human intelligence. However, his life workings left us with many technologies making our lives easier. His inventions are considered advanced even in today’s world. A fair tribute to his life, this book is highly recommended.14. Electrical Wizard: Candlewick Biographies: How Nikola Tesla Lit Up the World

This book tells the story of the young Tesla working hard on all his inventions, despite opposition from his would-be mentor, Thomas Edison. He succeeded in developing the alternating current even in such a situation, and also invented many smart machines still in use today.

He was a man of many eccentricities. He liked to display his inventions with flair. Some of his famous shows include demonstrating the AC current at the Chicago World Fair and using the energy from Niagara Falls to produce electricity for New York. The stories and their aftermath are discussed engagingly in this interesting book.

The book narrates the incident almost like a storybook, which are aptly supported with bright attractive pictures of the inventions. This biography is an important addition to the many books written on the great man.

15. Inventions, Researches and Writings of Nikola Tesla (Barnes & Noble Omnibus Leatherbound Classics) (Barnes & Noble Leatherbound Classic Collection)

This book records the many, many inventions, research and narratives of the great scientist. His working on inventing technologies like the electricity we have today, the various motor designs, wireless transmissions, X-rays etc. are exemplary and are stated in this book in detail.

His findings in the field of engineering are quite astonishing, unique to the point where scientists are baffled even today. His intelligence outshined many geniuses of the times, and it was for this reason he has been misunderstood, envied and even shunned by the science community.

This beautiful compilation lists many of his working papers, inventions and ideas, which form a fascinating read for the scientists of today. Few men are as gifted as Tesla was and his futuristic work is valid proof of that.


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