Sunday, September 17, 2017

Books: Meet the author behind the intriguing Paradox: Fascinating Anomalies of Science

PARADOX - Fascinating Anomalies of Science brings a fresh perspective to many of today’s hottest topics in science. The paradox is frequently ignored by scientists and writers alike. Here the reader will find a fearless exploration of science, providing a unique view and a deeper understanding of life’s puzzles. PARADOX will engage you from the start, helping you explore ideas in new, thought provoking ways. Did you know that the more fuel a star has, the faster it will burn out and die? Or that even though a child’s brain is smaller, it has 25% more neurons, and 200% more synaptic connections than an adult’s? Did you know that our brains have substantially decreased in size since the Ice Age? Are they becoming more efficient like our technology, or are we less intelligent than we used to be? During the exploration of these paradoxes and many more, you will discover a world of interesting anomalies along the way. Add to this the inclusion of entertaining stories throughout, and you’ll find PARADOX to be a science book you won’t want to put down.

We talked to Ted Weimann, the author, to find out more about his background and how he came about writing such an intriguing book. Read on to satisfy your curiosity!

Where are you from and what's your background?

I grew up in the Northeast U.S., studied Wildlife Biology at the University of Vermont (UVM), and I now live in the mountainous Pacific Northwest. I’ve always thought of myself as a scientist, and my passion for science has steadily grown over the years. I was planning to ultimately research predator ecology, preferably cougars. While at UVM, former U.S. President Gerald Ford came to speak to an invitation-only audience. I had an environmental question I wanted to ask him. But, I wasn’t invited. After I kept beating the Secret Service in their security protocols, the supervisor changed from being angry with me, to trying to talk me into a career with the them, as one of their Special Agents.  If you’d like to read more about that and one of my cases as a Special Agent for Homeland Security Investigations, you can read about it at the link below to an article by an Associated Press reporter.

I obviously choose to become a federal agent over a predator ecologist, but if I was going to do that, I wanted to live near the wilderness with beautiful mountains to climb.  I’m kind of an adrenaline junkie.  I enjoy mountaineering, rock climbing, mixed martial arts, motocross, cliff diving, etc.

You have an impressive background! When did you realize you wanted to write and when did you start writing?

My wife is a published author. After I awoke a couple of times with the entire outline in my head for a book on athletic speed, I took her advice to write it. That book, Warrior Speed, was published in 2000. It detailed the science of developing athletic speed, specifically geared towards martial artists. It’s not easy finding the time to do all the research and write a book while working full time as a federal agent.  So, for Paradox, once I came up with the idea for the book, I started collecting idea topics and research over the years.  I subscribe to science magazines and read a lot of non-fiction in my futile attempt to keep up with the latest in my areas of interest. Once I retired from law enforcement, I was able to work full time on research and writing.

I guess that already answers the next questions, but how much research did you do before publishing the book?

A lot. But I love to learn, so it was fun.  

The subject is definitely interesting. What compelled you to write a science book?

I was compelled to write Warrior Speed because I wasn’t aware of any book that talked about the
physics, exercise physiology, nutrition, psychology etc., of athletic speed. Especially for martial artists.  I wrote Paradox simply because I love the topics discussed. It sounds corny, but every time I edited it, I’d think “man this stuff is cool”, as I read it.  I loved doing the research. I especially loved figuring out the implications of some of the laws of physics, and thus new areas to study, on my own. It was a fun process.

It's great that you liked what you were writing! What was the most interesting fact that you found out while researching for the book?
The light cylinder of rapidly rotating neutron stars is fascinating.  I didn’t even know they existed until I did the math on the rotational rate of a collapsing neutron star.  That’s one example of where I ran into a violation of physics, special relativity. So is the evidence that France will suffer more flooding than Iceland if Greenland’s Icecap melts.  That’s due to a decrease in gravitational attraction upon the ocean by the missing Icecap, and to glacial rebound.

Indeed, these are fascinating! Do you think your book can motivate people to learn more about science?

I hope so. I believe in the importance of understanding how and why the world around us behaves as it does. I tried to write it in a manner that made it understandable to non-scientists, and interesting to scientists. I hope I accomplished that goal.

That's very important and I'm sure you've accomplished your goal! What do you perceive as the most important scientific breakthrough of our times?

That’s easy, our understanding of climate change.  Imagine where we would be in 200 years if we were to never develop an understanding of climate change, and therefore continued burning fossil fuels at increasing rates.

A scary thought! What are you working on now?

Healing.  I sustained a serious groin injury trying to turn a bouldering move into a gymnastics move.  I need to respect the science of aging more.

Hope you heal fast and write another book! Where can we find out more about you and your writing?

Is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers?

Thank you for giving my book a try.  I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks for sharing your work with us and much success with your books!

To purchase Paradox, please click on one of the links below:

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