You Are Here

From the Compass to GPS, the History and Future of How We Find Ourselves

ebook / ISBN-13: 9780465080984

USD: $17.99  /  CAD: $21.99

ON SALE: April 1st 2014

Genre: Nonfiction / Science / History


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The story of the rise of modern navigation technology, from radio location to GPS-and the consequent decline of privacy

What does it mean to never get lost? You Are Here examines the rise of our technologically aided era of navigational omniscience-or how we came to know exactly where we are at all times. In a sweeping history of the development of location technology in the past century, Bray shows how radio signals created to carry telegraph messages were transformed into invisible beacons to guide ships and how a set of rapidly-spinning wheels steered submarines beneath the polar ice cap. But while most of these technologies were developed for and by the military, they are now ubiquitous in our everyday lives. Our phones are now smart enough to pinpoint our presence to within a few feet-and nosy enough to share that information with governments and corporations. Filled with tales of scientists and astronauts, inventors and entrepreneurs, You Are Here tells the story of how humankind ingeniously solved one of its oldest and toughest problems-only to herald a new era in which it’s impossible to hide.

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Reader Reviews


"A superlative choice for technology buffs who want a historical perspective on location and navigation technologies."—Library Journal
"[A] breezy history of our ever-dwindling ability to lose our way." —Wall Street Journal
"Bray provides an entertaining account of how our ancestors learned to find their way around their neighborhood, then around a larger area, then around the world."—Roanoke Times
"Bright, well-written and highly informative."—Kirkus
"This book is a fascinating journey through the development of modern navigational systems and the brilliant foresight of the inventors. Definitely an entertaining read."—John Huth, author of The Lost Art of Finding Our Way
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