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Reinventing the Wheel

Reinventing the Wheel Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

As inventive as instructive, information wheels-or volvelles-have been used since the fourteenth century to measure, record, predict, and calculate everything form time and space to military history and recipes. In this fascinating book, designer and critic Jessica Helfand offers and in-depth look at these unique artifacts, which are not only clever and amusing-where else could you dial-in ingredients to concoct "Creamed Oysters and Celery"?-but, Helfand argues, relevant as a model for modern interactive design.From circular mathematical slide rules to Captain Marvel phonetic decoders; from nuclear bomb blast calculators to gestational breeding planners; and from astronomical planispheres to presidential trivia plotters, Reinventing the Wheel demonstrates the astonishing range and remarkable utility of these ingenious "interactive" tools.

Author Biography: Jessica Helfand is partner with William Drenttel in Jessica Helfand/William Drenttel, a design consultancy. She has been collecting wheels for several years.

Review:

This thoroughly unusual book by designer and critic Helfand will delight graphic, information, and book designers. It will equally fascinate those interested in intellectual history, history of technology, and popular culture. Helfand begins with an essay that interweaves the history of wheel charts with humanity's fascination with the circle. The earliest volvelles (graduated movable paper circles-within-circles), as they are also called, are found in Renaissance astronomy texts. They offer data on celestial cycles, movements of the heavenly bodies, and the tides. Illustrations of these early texts are beautifully reproduced here. Other volvelles, such as the planisphere, a kind of manual computer used to reveal the portion of the night sky visible from a particular spot on earth, are discussed. The 20th century saw a mass audience develop for volvelles, representing an enormous range of topics from astronomy to American history to zoology, and the major portion of this book is devoted to full-page illustrations of these. Readers interested in information design will seek this out, while those interested in book and graphic design will be thrilled by the surprise. Includes footnotes and bibliography. Library Journal Michael Dashkin, PricewaterhouseCoopers, New York Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Book News Annotation:

The origin of graphic design critic Helfand's book on every type of circular interface originates in her own extensive collection of these ubiquitous objects. Sandwiched between the lengthy introductory and concluding essays is a catalog with color plates, dimensions, manufacturer, and descriptive entry of the "movable, concentrically-aligned" wheels that allow you to dial for information of all sorts, including dial-a-weight, dial-a-word, dial-a- remedy, and dial-a-recipe.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

The origin of graphic design critic Helfand's book on every type of circular interface originates in her own extensive collection of these ubiquitous objects. Sandwiched between the lengthy introductory and concluding essays is a catalog with color plates, dimensions, manufacturer, and descriptive e

Synopsis:

From circular mathematical slide rules to Captain Marvel phonetic decoders, "Reinventing The Wheel" demonstrates the astonishing range and remarkable utility of these ingenious "interactive" tools. 120 illustrations, 100 in color.

Synopsis:

A locus for focus, a little engine, a thought generator.a a Eye

This thoroughly unusual book will delight graphic, information, and book designers. It will equally fascinate those interested in intellectual history, history of technology, and popular culture.a a Library Journal

Now available in paperback, this delightful book spins the history of the information wheel, as inventive and instructive as intriguing, that has been used since the fourteenth century to measure, record, predict, and calculate everything from time and space to military history to recipes. In this fascinating book, designer and critic Jessica Helfand offers and in-depth look at these unique artifacts, which are not only clever and amusing but, Helfand argues, relevant as a model for modern interactive design. From circular mathematical slide rules to Captain Marvel phonetic decoders, Reinventing the Wheel demonstrates the astonishing range and remarkable utility of these ingenious interactivea tools.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781568983387
Author:
Helfand, Jessica
Publisher:
Princeton Architectural Press
Author:
Helfland, Jessica
Author:
Helfand, Jessica
Location:
New York
Subject:
History - General
Subject:
Design - General
Subject:
Specific Subjects
Subject:
Circle in art.
Subject:
Wheels in art
Subject:
Subjects & Themes - General
Subject:
History : General
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Series Volume:
EPA-600/7-80-099
Publication Date:
June 2002
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
160
Dimensions:
9.81x7.85x.90 in. 1.84 lbs.

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Urban Planning
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Style and Design
Arts and Entertainment » Excess Culture » Objects

Reinventing the Wheel
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 160 pages Princeton Architectural Press - English 9781568983387 Reviews:
"Review" by , This thoroughly unusual book by designer and critic Helfand will delight graphic, information, and book designers. It will equally fascinate those interested in intellectual history, history of technology, and popular culture. Helfand begins with an essay that interweaves the history of wheel charts with humanity's fascination with the circle. The earliest volvelles (graduated movable paper circles-within-circles), as they are also called, are found in Renaissance astronomy texts. They offer data on celestial cycles, movements of the heavenly bodies, and the tides. Illustrations of these early texts are beautifully reproduced here. Other volvelles, such as the planisphere, a kind of manual computer used to reveal the portion of the night sky visible from a particular spot on earth, are discussed. The 20th century saw a mass audience develop for volvelles, representing an enormous range of topics from astronomy to American history to zoology, and the major portion of this book is devoted to full-page illustrations of these. Readers interested in information design will seek this out, while those interested in book and graphic design will be thrilled by the surprise. Includes footnotes and bibliography. Library Journal Michael Dashkin, PricewaterhouseCoopers, New York Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
"Synopsis" by , The origin of graphic design critic Helfand's book on every type of circular interface originates in her own extensive collection of these ubiquitous objects. Sandwiched between the lengthy introductory and concluding essays is a catalog with color plates, dimensions, manufacturer, and descriptive e
"Synopsis" by , From circular mathematical slide rules to Captain Marvel phonetic decoders, "Reinventing The Wheel" demonstrates the astonishing range and remarkable utility of these ingenious "interactive" tools. 120 illustrations, 100 in color.
"Synopsis" by , A locus for focus, a little engine, a thought generator.a a Eye

This thoroughly unusual book will delight graphic, information, and book designers. It will equally fascinate those interested in intellectual history, history of technology, and popular culture.a a Library Journal

Now available in paperback, this delightful book spins the history of the information wheel, as inventive and instructive as intriguing, that has been used since the fourteenth century to measure, record, predict, and calculate everything from time and space to military history to recipes. In this fascinating book, designer and critic Jessica Helfand offers and in-depth look at these unique artifacts, which are not only clever and amusing but, Helfand argues, relevant as a model for modern interactive design. From circular mathematical slide rules to Captain Marvel phonetic decoders, Reinventing the Wheel demonstrates the astonishing range and remarkable utility of these ingenious interactivea tools.

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