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To Seek Out New Life: The Biology of Star Trek Hardcover – Mar 31 1998


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Hardcover, Mar 31 1998
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 273 pages
  • Publisher: Crown (March 31 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0609603299
  • ISBN-13: 978-0609603291
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 14 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 476 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #447,019 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
The book itself should be divided into two books. One about biology which is pretty simple stuff and the other a study of the political correctness of star trek.
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Format: Paperback
I read this because of a biology project I was doing for school--a fun project. My professor recommended this book, and I think he's the best because this book really dealt with all that I was looking for.
Now, don't get scared by the title--you really don't need to have watched every Star Trek episode and series spin-off in order to have an understanding of what the author is talking about. However, being an avid trekker myself, I enjoyed her side-comments and Trek references immensely, because it just showed all the much more how much she enjoyed the subject amtter herself.
This book investigates the Star Trek universe. I've heard that THE PHYSICS OF STAR TREK started this "debunk the Trek" era, but I haven't yet read it, so I couldn't say. Anyway, Dr. Andreadis does a nice job of explaining the Trek reality, then explaining our scientific reality. She uses small words, and explains the big ones. Learn about interspecies reproduction, evolution--you name it, she's covered it.
This book was done not long ago, so it covers the happenings up until Voyager and Star Trek: First Contact. Not too bad, considering Enterprise should be covering all "old" organisms, anyway.
This was really a nice read, and I would have picked it up even had I not had to do a seminar on the biological aspects of Star Trek.
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Format: Paperback
this is a short but very rewarding read. the author, a recognized authority in her field, is a trekkie and her love of star trek comes through. that having been said, ms. andreadis's exploration of star trek biology via our present understanding of science is enlightening (maybe i don't get out as much as i should, but i haven't learned as much about science since i read gary zukav's "the dancing wu li masters"). ms. andreadis introduces us to what i'd call speculative biology and in a legitimate scientific manner dissects the "neat stuff" such as the transporter, parasites and symbionts, the universal translator (this one's GREAT!), and what the Federation really might be like. the book has no difficult vocabulary to chew through and i'd recommend it without qualification.
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Format: Paperback
This is a lively and opinionated entry in the "fill-in-the-blank of Star Trek" series and therefore one of the best, certainly up there with Physics and parsecs beyond Computers.
Andreadis brings a strong scientific and biological background as well as an encyclopedic knowledge of the franchise in all its manifestations to bear throughout. She celebrates the more reasonable ideas shown, like silicon-based life forms. But she also deconstructs the silly, unscientific ones and showing just why they're silly and unscientific. (This includes such franchise mainstays as the holodeck, the universal translator, shape-shifters, and interspecies fertility.)
Those wanting a more objective approach and annoyed by the occasional interjection of feminist and leftist commentary might find this book annoying. However, I enjoyed the fresh approach, the clever references, and the very individual and personal viewpoint. It's well worth reading both for Trekkies and for those wanting a different approach to biology.
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Format: Paperback
All right, we all acknowledge that, "realistic" or not, most of us have been influenced by the "Star Trek" phenomenon. In this volume, an Ivy League neurology professor with a doctorate in molecular biology (WHAT biology?) admits it too. Other, physicists, psychologists, you name it, admit the same. But this is from a biological perspective.
I first heard of this book from a part of it which was published in "Astronomy" magazine. In that part, the author pointed out that the "extraterrestrial" environments in Star Trek always seem to be, what a surprise, like Southern California. The article led me to the book.
For those of us who learned some "science" in our teens particularly from TOS (The Original Series), it is helpful to distinguish between the pure fantasy of Star Trek and what reality would present. Sure, everyone questions the "warp speed" concept," from Albert Einstein and Arthur C. Clarke (the latter in the intro to his book "Songs of Distant Earth"); and Carl Sagan described that a human mating with a Vulcan ala Mr. Spock would be less biologically likely than, say, a human mating with a kumquat. Dr. Andreadis describes WHY that mating is not likely to be successful. Then there's the issues of ESP/empathy, holographic doctors, and on and on. Indeed, many of the facts Dr. Andreadis cites are pretty much common sense but things we don't think about much. Such details are important to know, yet, with a person like the author describing them, they do not require us to have an in-depth knowledge of biochemistry.
The author used the text also to make some political and social comments with most or all of which I sympathize. But that's part of science too--integrity, fact vs.
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