My two cents worth | Book review

Invent: It’s in You
Published by
Science Centre Singapore
ISBN 978-981-08-6519-1

Unedited publications authored by engineers and scientists usually leave me cringing as I painstakingly pore over the content. But not this one! Written by an engineer, scientist and inventor, this delightful read gets a thumbs-up from me.

It’s a no-frills book that doesn’t try too hard in being all too comprehensive in any one section, but which simply teases out the nuances of invention in an endearing fashion. There is a definite structure to the book as evident in the table of contents. But this does not inhibit the reader in having to read from cover to cover. In fact, it almost seems to encourage the very opposite.

Its seamless presentation of scientific knowledge ensures there is no jarring effect for a reader who wishes to consume the book in a random way. The language and tone is friendly and accessible to a wide audience.

What makes this publication particularly endearing, is the generous use of an anecdotal style to highlight how individuals became inventors by flexing their innate skills—skills that you and I have like being observant, curious and perseverant to name but a few. The selection of accompanying images is excellent as they do a nice job of augmenting the text throughout the publication.

If all this fails to impress, the enlightening offering of information on a wide variety of inventions should do the trick. This coupled with the fact that the book is peppered with indelible quotes of inventors great and small, should appease the meaty cravings of science buffs among us.

And if you’re wondering like me, “Hey, where are the local inventions that are particular to Singapore?” You’ll be glad to note that inventions like the SAR 21 machine gun, Trek Technology thumb drive and X-mini capsule speakers have secured a worthy mention.

My final verdict is that this coffee-table publication is a definitive and creative work of art and I’d recommend it to anyone—from an aspiring inventor who needs a little encouragement and inspiration to the individual that values a refreshingly good read.

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