The frustrating component of life known as Murphy's (or
Sod's) Law is no respecter of persons. The more you are
desperate for things to go right, the more they go wrong. But,
is that really the case, and, if so, is there a rational explanation?
So: when you drop the toast how do you know it will land
butter-side down? Why does the queue you're in always go
slowest? That tune you hate - isn't it the one you can't get out
of your head? However odd it seems, there is generally a
scientific explanation. Much of Murphy's Law stems from the
way the mind works - its physical limitations, evolutionary
biases and social impressionability. In this fascinating book,
popular-science presenter Richard Robinson teases out the
answers, accessibly and entertainingly.
Richard Robinson is the author of 10 books of popular science including the Science Magic series (Oxford University Press) which was shortlisted for the Aventis Science Prize. He works full-time as a science presenter, and is regularly invited to perform demonstrations around the world at science festivals, universities and schools. He has performed at festivals ranging from the Edinburgh Science Festival to the Korean Science Festival, and lectured at universities ranging from the UK to the Ukraine. He holds a BSc in psychology. Illustrator Kate Charlesworth has drawn regularly for New Scientist and has illustrated a wide variety of publications including The Cartoon History of Time.