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Book Review: The Big Idea: How Breakthroughs of the Past Shape The Future by National Geographic

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The Big Idea: How Breakthroughs of the Past Shape The Future is an excellent work on the emerging technologies in nanotechnology, regenerative medicine, nuclear power generation at the neighborhood level, underwater submersible vehicles and much more. The format of the presentation is by order of advances in medicine, transportation, communications technologies, biochemistry and the
environment. The Big Idea traces how global human life expectancy has evolved from 30 years to nearly 70 years of age in just 2000 years.

Many of the newest ideas in science are discussed together with the people who gave birth to the ideas. For instance, Nicola Tesla conceived of the wireless transfer of energy. Thomas Edison set forth all encompassing ideas in electrical engineering and the nationwide power grid.

Medical advances in nanocapsules include an antibiotic immersed in a dye. Tiny capsule bursts occur when exposed to toxins secreted by pathogenic bacteria. Just the right amount of antibiotic is delivered to the site of the pathogens to avoid overburdening the body with powerful medications.

The idea behind CytImmune’s tumor-targeted delivery of TNF is attributable to the miniscule size and composition of the nanoparticles. TNF and PEG-Thiol bind to the surface of gold (AU)  nanoparticles. The therapeutic payload travels safely through the blood. Immune detection is bypassed. The payload is delivered to the disease site expeditiously. Aurimune, a mere 27 nanometers leaves the circulatory system via leaky, newly formed vasculature at tumor sites. Gaps in the blood vessel walls are bypassed .

Regenerative medicine is reaching an advanced stage; whereby, sheets of skin can be grown to graft onto wounds. Lab grown bladders are being contemplated, as well as stem cells to regrow cardiac muscle damaged by severe heart attacks.

The Hyperion Power Generator produces a 25 megawatt reactor. It costs nearly 50 million dollars and can be transported easily by truck. Less engineering maintenance is involved than a standard fossil fuel plant. One module provides energy for 25 thousand homes. The generator is housed in an underground vault for security purposes.

A digital logic gate inserted into bacteria turns a living organism into a microprocessor. Underwater submersible vehicles study the ocean floor and allow humans to explore mid-ocean ridges and places where the crust of the earth was created. These new vehicles provide the means to obtain better data on earthquakes, as well as current and future potential cataclysmic events.
In addition, the submersible vehicles may be used to repair oil platform
infrastructure at the bottom of ocean.

The Big Idea: How Breakthroughs of the Past Shape The Future is a wonderful book which anticipates a robust scientific future for humankind with many labor-saving devices in the biological, chemical and engineering sciences. The presentation is easy to read and understand. Many full color pictures are contained throughout the work.

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About Dr Joseph S Maresca

I've taught approx. 34 sections of collegiate courses including computer applications, college algebra, collegiate statistics, law, accounting, finance and economics. The experience includes service as a Board Director on the CPA Journal and Editor of the CPA Candidates Inc. Newsletter. In college, I worked as a statistics lab assistant. Manhattan College awarded a BS in an allied area of operations research. The program included courses in calculus, ordinary differential equations, probability, statistical inference, linear algebra , the more advanced operations research, price analysis and econometrics. Membership in the Delta Mu Delta National Honor Society was granted together with the degree. My experience includes both private account and industry. In addition, I've worked extensively in the Examinations Division of the AICPA from time to time. Recently, I passed the Engineering in Training Exam which consisted of 9 hours of examination in chemistry, physics, calculus, differential equations, linear algebra, probability/ statistics, fluids, electronics, materials science/structure of matter, mechanics, statics, thermodynamics, computer science, dynamics and a host of minor subject areas like engineering economics. A very small percentage of engineers actually take and pass the EIT exam. The number has hovered at circa 5%. Several decades ago, I passed the CPA examination and obtained another license in Computer Information Systems Auditing. A CISA must have knowledge in the areas of data center review, systems applications, the operating system of the computer, disaster recovery, contingency planning, developmental systems, the standards which govern facility reviews and a host of other areas. An MBA in Accounting with an Advanced Professional Certificate in Computer Applications/ Information Systems , an Advanced Professional Certificate in Finance and an Advanced Professional Certificate in Organizational Design were earned at New York University-Graduate School of Business (Stern ). In December of 2005, an earned PhD in Accounting was granted by the Ross College. The program entrance requires a previous Masters Degree for admittance together with a host of other criteria. The REGISTRAR of Ross College contact is: Tel . US 202-318-4454 FAX [records for Dr. Joseph S. Maresca Box 646 Bronxville NY 10708-3602] The clinical experience included the teaching of approximately 34 sections of college accounting, economics, statistics, college algebra, law, thesis project coursework and the professional grading of approx. 50,000 CPA examination essays with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Additionally, membership is held in the Sigma Beta Delta International Honor Society chartered in 1994. Significant writings include over 10 copyrights in the name of the author (Joseph S. Maresca) and a patent in the earthquake sciences.