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The Way Toys Work: The Science Behind The Magic 8 Ball, Etch A Sketch, Boomerang, And More

A Selection of the Scientific American Book ClubProfiling 50 of the world’s most popular playthings—including their history, trivia, and the technology involved—this guide uncovers the hidden science of toys. Discover how an Etch A Sketch writes on its gray screen, why a boomerang returns after it is thrown, and how an RC car responds to a remote control device. Leaving no detail unrevealed, the guide includes original patent-application blueprints and photos of the “guts” of several devices. Inventors and museum curators also offer their observations of favorite gizmos while dispelling (or confirming) several toy legends. Complete with explanations of do-it-yourself experiments and tips on reverse engineering old toys to observe their interior mechanics, this entertaining and informative reference even provides pointers on how budding toy makers can build their own toys using only recycled materials and a little ingenuity.

Paperback: 178 pages

Publisher: Chicago Review Press (May 1, 2008)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1556527454

ISBN-13: 978-1556527456

Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 10 inches

Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #1,275,999 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #300 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Dolls, Toys & Figurines > Toys #5690 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Industrial, Manufacturing & Operational Systems #8703 in Books > Science & Math > Technology

This book is excellent. I'd like to think my grandson will grow up to be an engineer based on his love of how things are put together and what makes them work. The Way Toys Work is easy to understand while providing lessons in an enjoyable atmosphere.

Children above a certain age may read this book themselves. Parents (or others simply interested in product design) will read the book themselves. I can also imagine reading the book to younger children while explaining things to them (teaching them about things).

This book cover a lot of toys and their mechanisms. If you want discover how they work, it is a good choice.

A somewhat sketchy discussion of a worthy topic.Yes, I improved, to a small extent, my understanding of some of the toys discussed.No, physical explanations were too sparse: I expected to understand the principle of the friction motor, for one, as other toys were explained.Too little drawings and plates may be explained by the printed origin of this book - but of course, not relevant for the kindle version.A separate note for the kindle viewer (I use Mac, iPhone, iPad): Slow, off context rendering (plate is detached from text relating to it) plagues all kindle books I read so far.

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