The Book. The Ultimate Guide to Rebuilding a Civilization (digital version)
Have you ever imagined visiting the past with full knowledge of modern information and technology? If you told people from the Middle Ages or Ancient Egypt about a telephone, a car, or electricity, they would take you for a deity or a superhero. But do you actually know how these things work?
As a child, before bed, I used to imagine with my dad what things like bowstrings would be made of in ancient times. In the morning, looking it up, we would be startled to discover that bowstrings were made of veins and if you wanted instead to make one from gunpowder ingredients you had to urinate on hay!
As I got older, I got into mechanics and discovered that many apparently simple things are based on brilliant ideas. All the discoveries and inventions that seemed incredible and almost magical when I was a child actually were just as fantastical as I imagined!
I realized that most people knew very little about how such inventions of our civilization as a plow, a mill, a blast furnace or glass are made and how they work. I began making a list of the most amazing inventions I would like to tell my children about. Later I added illustrations, which became more and more bizarre and mysterious. After some time, I finished a draft of The Book of Incredible Inventions and Discoveries.
Now I want to share this book with everyone who hasn’t lost their juvenile curiosity and love for mystery. If you are as fascinated by technical, military, medical and artistic inventions as I am, you definitely will love The Ultimate Guide to Rebuilding Civilization. This book is an illustrated encyclopedia of mechanisms, processes and materials that have played a significant role in human history.
Vsevolod Co-founder of The Book
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The Book. The Ultimate Guide to Rebuilding a Civilization (digital version)
Here are some sections you'll find in the book of incredible inventions and discoveries
This section is all about how to be healthy, cheerful, and fresh. Here you’ll find out how to give mouth-to-mouth resuscitation without getting punched in the nose. You’ll learn how to remove your appendix if you don’t need it anymore. We’ll tell you which mushrooms are tasty and which mushrooms are fun (what are mushrooms and what are shrooms). We’ll teach you yoga and Chinese needle therapy. Believe us, all of this knowledge will come in handy in the ruins of the post-apocalyptic world! (not to mention in the modern world, given the cost of medical insurance). We’ll also explain how to make gypsum, glue, penicillin or even all three together from scratch.
The whole world is a big chemistry lab and the only limit here is your lack of knowledge. If there’s sand under your feet, you can make glass. If you see trees around you, it’s a step from there to making paper. The magic of our civilization, which is electricity, can also be made from easily accessible materials. There are tons of ways to make it and we’ll reveal the most original one.
Researchers have concluded that human brain development was always influenced by laziness and greed. We want to have as much as possible with minimal effort and that’s what makes us geniuses. Mills and water pumps will do the work for you. The combustion engine will help you in traveling any distance. Cameras made of boxes and paper with photosensitive surfaces will immortalize your successes.
In all the worlds of the Multiverse in which this book will be published, we’ve agreed that killing people isn’t cool. We wish these inventions never appeared, but still….The trebuchet is pretty darn good. To create saltpeter, which is the main gunpowder component, all it takes is hay and human urine. How long will you have to pee in the pit full of hay? You’ll find this out in The Ultimate Guide. By the way, did you know that the alchemist who discovered gunpowder thought he was creating the elixir of life? Well, if you throw pots full of gunpowder at your enemies, you’ll become immortal (for a while).
Hearth and Home
The home of ancient man began from fire, so if you don’t want to be dumber than your ancestors you need to learn how to use flint and steel. If all goes smoothly, you’ll be able to build a log house, weave a rug, mould houseware out of clay and build a boat. You’ll learn the art of tying knots and using natural dyes. But above all, you’ll learn how to construct a unique top-class mousetrap, so rodents won’t have any chance. (Failing to do that, read about cat domestication in the Farming section.)
It’s said that wheat domesticated humans rather than the opposite. Agriculture made us who we are today, so in this book you’ll find a detailed description of grain types and animal farming principles. You’ll learn to make fishing nets, help to deliver calves, procure salt and honey. But first you should learn to brew the best-ever wheat beer (which will literally be the best beer in the world since you’ll be the only brewer after the fall of civilization).
Life is not only about surviving; it’s also about not dying of boredom. There will be fewer fights in your survivor camp if you give people cards and chess. Your children won’t set fire to your house (built thanks to the instructions of the Hearth and Home section) because they will be playing ball or flying a kite. You’ll become a local movie mogul if you make a phenakistiscope, a device that creates the illusion of motion. By the way! We’ll tell you how to make a vibrator.
There is nothing similar to the sound of the Australian didg. It’s literally the voice of spirits. This musical instrument exists in all the worlds of the Multiverse, so make sure to read a manual on how to make it. The same applies to the jaw harp, which can be found in the history of any nation on the earth and beyond. During your interworld journey a sitar and a bell will come in handy too. Tell whomever you meet about the music theory of our world and don’t forget to ask about their notation too.
Rituals, traditions, and etiquette are as significant as mechanisms and materials. The most basic and peculiar inventions of human communication were collected in The Ultimate Guide. How do you tie a tie to make a good impression? What is the philosophy behind fashion? What are the rules of setting a table and marking the road? How exactly do you carry out seppuku in the way that will most impress others?
A Dutch philosopher Johan Huizinga in his book Homo Ludens proved that games appeared long before culture. People enjoyed games and invented a gillion of different games in the ensuing thousand years. Many games also keep arcane knowledge. For example, card suits depict archetypes of the human psyche, chessmen talk about the social organization and hierarchy. You’ll be able to rule the whole world if you know how the main games of humanity, such as football or Monopoly, work and what rules they have.
People had not yet invented writing when they discovered that fried meat was much better than raw and that fermented fruit juice dissipated sorrow and made them sleep like a baby. Over time, cooking has become a real art that requires imagination and ingenuity. Asians held raw fish in a pressing machine for weeks to make sushi. Arab nomads occasionally discovered cheese recipe by keeping milk in bags made of sheep’s stomachs. And don’t forget to learn the recipe of the main food invention, which is bread. Without bread you won’t be able to make your new world fully civilized.
What makes THE BOOK special?
The intriguing illustrations that combine engineering drawings and medieval art depict the structure of devices and materials in many forms throughout the many worlds of the Multiverse. What does it mean? According to The Ultimate Guide, people find new ideas in the world’s information realm rather than come up with new ones. This means that development of these ideas isn’t connected to anything really. They can appear out of the blue in different worlds of the Multiverse.