“Teardowns: Learn How Electronics Work by Taking Them Apart,” by Bryan Bergeron; $25 from Tab Books, mhprofessional.com.

The title covers it all, but not the pure joy of wrecking. The technology minded should never throw a broken gadget away without taking it apart – might even find out how to fix it. And if you’re sure what you’re looking at inside, this book will tell you. For instance: there’s a lot less than you think inside an electric guitar. This could inspire you to design your own. Learn how strain gauges work in a digital scale. How about ultrasonic transducers? Whoa, there’s a techie subject. The back of the book has a list of places to go for components. There’s a royal precedence for this kind of exploration: Louis XVI liked to take apart locks to see how they worked, and clocks too, we think. He kept it in perspective and didn’t lose his head over it.

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