Traces of Bygone Biospheres – Lapo

In this post, we will see the book Traces of Bygone Biospheres by A. V. Lapo. The book is an introduction to the ideas of the biosphere which were first proposed by remarkable Soviet scientist V. I. Vernadsky.  The book explores his ideas and their long-lasting influence on a variety of disciplines.


About the book from the Preface:

A teaching of the biosphere has developed – a science which stands in its own right and cannot be reduced either to geography or biology, but makes use of their advances and results, and, in turn, influences the development of geology. The founder of this science was the brilliant Russian scientist Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky (1863-1945).

This book will describe the biosphere and the role of life in geological processes; reading it, you will leam about the scientists who dealt with these problems and, above all about V. I. Vernadsky himself. His name is bound up with the problems treated in this book, just as the name of Albert Einstein is bound up with the theory of relativity. The highest moral qualities of Vernadsky and Einstein also bring them together. And, evidently, it is not by chance that the greatest scientific discoveries of the twentieth century were made by such irreproachable personalities as Vernadsky and Einstein. “To all who knew him, even slightly, he will remain an ideal of a man of high purpose and purity of character and a scientist who never lost his interest in the search for knowledge” -this is what one of Vernadsky’s contemporaries wrote about him.

About the author (from the backcover):

Andrey Vitalyevich Lapo, Cand. Sci. (Min.), a geologist and writer on geology, now with the All-Union Geological Institute in Leningrad, is a member of the Soviet Botanical and Paleontological Societies. His interests include substance analysis of fossil fuels, and the role of life in geological processes. He is one of the originators of the phyteral analysis of fossil fuels. Lapo authored about 50 publications and co-authored Petrographic Types of Coals of the USSR (Ed. A. A. Lyuber) (USSR: Nedra) and Rational Complex of Petrographic and Chemical Methods of Investigations of Coals and Combustible Shales (USSR: Nedra).

The book was translated from the Russian by V. Purto and was first published by Mir in 1982. This book was also reprinted in the Science for Everyone series. The current scan is for the 1982 book and not the SFE series.

PDF | OCR | Cover | Bookmarked | 228 pp. | 12 MB

The Internet Archive link for the book.

Note: The scanning of the book was an adventure in itself. The pages of the book and its spine were very brittle. The pages were so brittle that just turning the pages separated them from the spine. At end of the scan, the book was almost separated into individual pages. The physical copy of the book was almost destroyed in the scanning process and I hope the creation of the electronic copy justifies it.

The white images on the cover are from Ernst Haeckel’s Kunstformen der Natur (Art Forms of Nature). Art Forms of Nature is an amazing book, if you have not seen it you must. You may explore these aesthetic and amazing drawings at the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

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The Decomposition of Figures Into Smaller Parts – Boltyanskii and Gohberg

In this post, we will see the book The Decomposition of Figures Into Smaller Parts by V. G. Boltyanskii and I. T. Gohberg. The book is part of the Popular Lectures in Mathematics Series.

About the book:

This book is devoted to some interrelated problems of a new, rapidly developing branch of mathematics called combinatorial geometry. Common to all the problems examined here is the notion of “ cutting” a geometric figure into several “smaller pieces.” There are several different criteria for what constitutes a “ smaller piece” ; hence this book necessarily treats several different problems. All the theorems proved here are very recent; the oldest of them was proved by the Polish mathematician Karol Borsuk about forty years ago. This theorem of Borsuk is the core around which all of the subsequent exposition unfolds. The most recent theorem is barely a year old.

The topics treated in this book are well within the grasp of bright and interested high school students. At the same time, the book intro­ duces the reader to a number of the unsolved problems of geometry.

This family of problems is the subject of another book by the same authors. Theorems and Problems in Combinatorial Geometry (Nauka, 1965). That book, however, deals chiefly with problems of three- dimensional and higher-dimensional spaces. The present book concerns itself only with problems of plane geometry, and can thus be used by high school mathematics clubs. Theorems and Problems in Combinatorial Geometry will be useful, however, to readers interested in continuing further.

The remarks at the end of the book are intended for the more advanced reader.

The book is part of the series Popular Lectures in Mathematics.

PDF | OCR | Bookmarked | 2.7 MB | 78 pages

All credits to the original uploader.

The Internet Archive link.


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Elements Of Applied Mathematics – Zeldovich, Myskis

In this post, we will see the book Elements Of Applied Mathematics by Ya. B. Zeldovich and A. D. Myskis.


This book is not a textbook in the ordinary sense of the word but rather a reader in the mathematical sciences. Using simple examples taken from physics and a variety of mathematical problems, we have tried to introduce the reader to a broad range of ideas and methods that are found in present-day applications of mathematics to physics, engineering and other fields. Some of these ideas and methods (such as the use of the delta function, the principle of superposition, obtaining asymptotic expressions, etc.) have not been sufficiently discussed in the ordinary run of mathematics textbooks for non-mathematicians, and so this text can serve as a supplement to such textbooks. Our aim has been to elucidate the basic ideas of mathematical methods and the general laws of the phenomena at hand. Formal proofs, exceptions and complicating factors have for the most part been dropped. Instead we have strived in certain places to go deeper into the physical picture of the processes.


The book was first published by Mir in 1976 and was translated from the Russian by George Yankovsky.

PDF | 666 pages | Cover | OCR

All credits to the original uploader Siddharth for this book.

The Internet Archive link for the book.

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Shcholkin – Physics of the Microworld

In this post, we will see the book titled Physics of the Microworld by K. I. Shcholkin. The book is an introduction to many facets of the quantum phenomena, both basic and advanced. The book is essentially a collection of a variety of essays on the theme of the quantum physics.

powm-fc copy

About the book

The back cover of the book describes the books as:

In these sketches, the late K. I. SHCHOLKIN, Corresponding Member of the USSR Academy of Sciences, gives a popular account of the structure of the atoms and atomic nuclei of matter and anti­ matter, of nuclear forces and the structure of nucleons. His book tells about strong and weak interactions, parity and its non-conservation, and vacuum polarization. Models of nuclei, nuclear fission, and fusion reactions are described, with basic information on elementary particles, and the latest technical advances of quantum physics (maser amplifiers, hydrogen-atom radiation, Mossbauer effect, etc.). There are also articles devoted to strange particles like K-mesons.

The book is in a clear and readable manner, and is intended for sixth-formers and general non-technical readers who are interested in the latest developments in nuclear and atomic physics, i.e. the physics of the microworld.

The book has had three editions in Russian and has been translated into Spanish.

There is an interesting essay on Negative absolute temperatures (p. 174)!

The book was first published by Mir in 1974 and was translated from the Russian by Michael Zimmerman.

PDF | Cover | OCR | 300 dpi (upscaled to 600 dpi) | Bookmarked | 9.8 MB

Link at the Internet Archive.


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Entertaining Electronics – E. Sedov

Posting after a long time! Hopefully, this run will continue through this summer and we will see new titles every few days.

In this post, we will see the much-awaited book by E. Sedov Entertaining Electronics. The book is an amazing introduction to electronics. Though some of the technology has changed since the time the book was published (almost no vacuum tubes now), the book nonetheless remains a classic. The way it explains many physical aspects of the variety of ideas in connection with electronics is commendable. The historical origin of many ideas used in the book is traced. The book touches upon various aspects of solid-state physics, electromagnetism, fields, waves, semiconductors, among other things. It provides a physically intuitive understanding of the topics considered.


The inside cover describes the book as such:

An unusual book in form and content, demonstrating that electronics can be fun. Acquaints the reader with the history and development of this important branch of modern science and technology since the discovery of radio. Written with humour and simplicity. Should be in every school library. The author is a graduate of the Moscow Aviation Institute and an experienced popularizer of science.

The book has some amazing line drawings which describe the physical phenomena very well. Unfortunately, the text does not provide the name of the artist who drew these illustrations.


The book was translated from the Russian by Eugene Felgenhauer and was first published in 1973. The current scan is for the third reprint in 1984.

PDF | OCR | Bookmarked | 359 pp. | Cover | 12.2 MB | 300 dpi (upscaled to 600)

Link on the Internet Archive.

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Mirtiles at The Internet Archive

In recent past we have added many of the books on The Internet Archive. The process is not complete but many have been added.

In case the old links are broken you might find them there:

Happy Reading 🙂

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Kutkha – The Raven

In this post we will see another book on fairy-tales titled Kutkha The Raven


This is a book of folk tales and fables of the peoples of the Soviet Far North, the Chukchi Nentsi, Eskimos and others, in which all the characters are animals.

According to an ancient northern custom, people gathered and made merry after a lucky hunt, or in winter when snowstorms raged and they were forced to wait for calmer weather. This was the time for story-telling.

The best story-tellers were always greatly respected, since these peoples had no written books. A story-teller had to know many fables and legends by heart. Besides, he had to tell a story well, to make it interesting. He also had to have a pleasant voice. The story-teller was treated to the best food. Many people gathered round to hear his tales. An Eskimo hunter named Kivagme was one of these fine story-tellers whose name has come down to us. Several of his tales have been included in this book.

The tundra and taiga have always been full of birds and beasts. This is why so many stories of the North are about animals and why the animals in them resemble humans in every way: they live in tents, ride in reindeer sleds and cross rivers in boats.

These stories praise honesty, courage and common-sense and disapprove of idle talk, bragging and, especially, laziness. All were handed down from generation to generation.

This edition has been illustrated by Yevgeny Rachov, People’s Artist of the RSFSR, known for his many fine illustrations of folk tales and
children’s books.

The book was translated by Fainna Solasko and the wonderful illustrations are by Illustrated by Y. Rachov. Malysh publishers first printed the book in 1981.

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Many thanks to Guptaji for this book.

You can get the book here.



THE LOST SONG. An Eskimo Story 5
HARE. A Mansi Story 11
TRY TO CATCH ME. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 14
WHY OWL HAS A SPOOKY VOICE. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 16
BEAR AND WIND. A Chukcha Story 19
SLY FOX. A Koryak Story 23
MAN AND DOG. A Nenets Story 26
VIXEN THE MERCHANT. A Chukcha Story 30
TRYING TO THINK. A Chukcha Story 32
MOUSE. A Nenets Story 35
RAVEN AND WOLF. A Chukcha Story 38
MIGHTY MOUSIE. An Eskimo Story 45
I WANT TO — DON’T WANT TO GO. A Chukcha Story 52
MOUSE THE BRAGGART. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 57
FOX CUB AND BULLHEAD. An Eskimo Story 58
MOUSE AND FOX. A Chukcha Story 60
HOW MOUSE FROZE FAST. A Chukcha Story 65
FOXY VIXEN. A Koryak Story 68
BRAVE VUVYLTU. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 72
PANCAKES. A Nenets Story 74
BEAR AND VIXEN. A Nanai Story 78
WHAT A FRIEND! An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 80
WILY TEACHES CRAFTY A LESSON. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 82
BRAVE BEAR. A Nenets Story 84
BAT. An Evenk Story 86
WHAT’LL I BE? An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 88
KUTKHA THE RAVEN. An Itelmen Story 94
POOR FROG. A Nanai Story 96
YOU’RE LUCKIER THAN WE ARE. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 99
FOX CUB AND ECHO. An Eskimo Story told by Kivagme 101
WHALE AND REINDEER. A Chukcha Story 105
WOLVERINE AND VIXEN. An Evenk Story 1-09
FOX AND THE TEALS. An Eskimo Story 113

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