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Invention by Design has ratings and 20 reviews. Babak said: Henry Petroski’s previous bestsellers have delighted readers with intriguing stories about the. Buy Invention by Design: How Engineers Get from Thought to Thing New Ed by Henry Petroski (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday. Henry Petroski is an American engineer with wide-ranging historical and sociocultural interests. He earned a Ph.D. in theoretical and applied mechanics from.

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Every case study includes well-chosen pictures and schematic drawings to clarify how inventors resolve technical difficulties, and the carefully researched text explains how they make their new creations economically feasible and socially acceptable. Petroski is, essentially, a Quotations and illustrations from patent applications are particularly fascinating and are used well.

What do economics and ecology, aesthetics and ethics, have to do with the shape of a paper clip, the tab of a beverage can, the cabin design of a turbojet, or the course of a river? In this book, Petroski delves deeper into the mystery of invention, to explore what everyday artifacts and sophisticated networks can reveal about the way engineers solve problems. Alden, The Cleveland Plain Dealer.

A professor of civil engineering and history at Duke University, Petroski is notable for writing an entire book about pencils…and making the whole pages completely fascinating. Widely recognized and supported by both the technical and humanities communities, Petroski’s work has effectively conveyed the richness and essence of engineering in its societal context for the general reader.


Refresh and try again. This arrangement explains why the book is required reading for many a student. Ostensibly written for intelligent laypersons to give some understanding of how we got to the technological world in which we now live, it will probably be read and enjoyed as much or even more by engineering and product designers.

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Iveel rated it it was ok Feb 14, Want to Read saving…. An excellent introductory book to Invention and Engineering.

inevntion I do remember that I picked it up and was immediately taken by the idea of engineering discussed in a different way: A must-read book on product design for knowledge workers and entrepreneurs.

It felt like story time every time I picked up the book, but the story lacked petfoski and princes. A new mode of electronic communication? Paper Clips and Design. Invention, Petroski has steadfastly maintained, comes from a failure of design.

Invention by Design: How Engineers Get from Thought to Thing by Henry Petroski

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Before beginning his work at Duke inhe worked at the University of Texas at Austin from and for the Argonne National Laboratory from Also here is a hint of dfsign to come, as our artifacts play an ever greater role in their own evolution.

After that, he vesign begin a study of the complex interrelationships between engineering and culture. His collection of books on ideas is a superb series for Engineers. Never thought about the design of a paper clip.


What do economics and ecology, aesthetics and ethics, have to do with the shape of a paper clip, the tab of a beverage can, the cabin design of a turbojet, or the course of a river? Case Histories of Error and Judgment in Engineering, is planned for lnvention in To view it, click here. You’ll succeed only if you can meet the types of challenges Petroski identifies in this lucid and lively book.


As someone with a design background, I found myself drawn to the picture of engineers as world-shapers, builders. For popular science collections.

Invention by design : how engineers get from thought to thing

Invention by Design takes you through the exploration of engineering methods from paper c Invention by Design started out as a random book that I picked up at a used bookstore. Students of technology will delight in one part of the book, cultural historians in another, but both groups will praise the author. Henry Petroski is a civil engineering professor at Duke University where he specializes in failure analysis.

References and Further Reading. It is wonderful read for an engineer as well as general public. Readers unfamiliar with engineering will find Petroski’s enthusiasm contagious, whether the topic is the genesis of the Ziploc baggie or the averted collapse of Manhattan’s sleekest skyscraper.