Leadership In Innovation
Like many of my generation, I was enthralled by the flights of Mercury, Gemini, and especially Apollo. The passion continued with the shuttle and International Space Station. I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to write numerous books about the history of space exploration, and more recently, how it relates to innovation. It's been a wonderfully rewarding experience.
It is my deepest hope that I can impart some of the thrill and enchantment I have experienced to you.
"Innovation the NASA Way" was released in May and has been selling briskly. The genesis of the book was my two-year participation in the creation of an executive leadership education program at NASA's Johnson Space Center. This experience rekindled my fascination with the innovative nature of NASA's enterprise, and this book is the direct result. The agency has been incredibly effective in the last 60 years at solving large problems with elegant and ingenious solutions, often within severe budgetary constraints. From the Apollo moon landings to the Curiosity Mars rover, NASA has provided fertile ground for innovation and invention in all its various guises. It is an inspiring set of lessons from which we can all benefit, regardless of our area of endeavor.
“A gripping history of NASA. . . . Riveting . . . [the] writing is superb.”
– Library Journal
"A unique and absorbing book..."
– Leonard David, Space.com
"In “Innovation the NASA Way”, Rod Pyle reminds us of many less-well-known examples of NASA innovation. Pyle identifies specific challenges NASA has faced and then outlines the ultimate solutions worked out by the agency’s talented workforce. Each of these examples is a compelling story of innovation as he reminds us that 'sometimes innovation is not a technology, not machines and not anything material. Sometimes it is a thing of the spirit, a core belief and strength.' My belief is that NASA’s primary value to society is as an engine of innovation. Reading this book is an affirmation of that belief."
– Lori Garver, NASA Deputy Administrator
From building rocket engines to exploring Mars and beyond, Rod Pyle has written a very readable and eminently practical volume that documents the challenges, solutions, and lessons learned from NASA’s storied history. To read it is to be inspired to recreate in today’s challenging world NASA’s daring, boldness and passion.
– Steven J. Dick, Former NASA Chief Historian
"Curiosity: An Inside Look at the Mars Rover Mission and the People Who Made it Happen," is my newest book and was released in mid-July. The interest in this book has, as you might imagine, been quite high, and my sincere hope is that it will do its small part to inspire people to support planetary exploration. The book has received very good reviews, and perhaps more important to me, praise from many involved with the MSL program.
“Nothing is more human than curiosity—looking around the next corner, the next mountain . . . the next planet. This sense of undaunted wonder is brought to life in Rod Pyle’s tour of our fascinating love affair with Mars.”
—David Brin, astronomer, NASA consultant, author of Existence and The Postman
"Pyle's own fascination with the high adventure of Mars exploration comes through in this highly approachable account of one of the most audacious scientific endeavors of all time."
—Mike Okuda, recipient of the NASA Exceptional Public Service Medal, 2009
“Reading Curiosity is like having a class with your favorite professor. Rod Pyle is passionate, is knowledgeable, and has a great sense of humor.”
—Pat Kilbane, comedic actor, MADtv, Seinfeld
NEWS AND UPDATES:
Rod's Interview on "Innovation the NASA Way" on PBS's "Between the Lines"
Nationwide this week beginning Sunday AM. Check your local PBS channel for airtimes.
The Washington Post on "Innovation the NASA Way"
A feature interview with Tom Fox of The Washington Post on how NASA keeps innovating, and the lessons this holds for businesses and organizations worldwide.
"Learning to Innovate Like NASA" Cover Story in Federal Computer Week
Rod's interview in Federal Computer Week magazine on "Innovation the NASA Way" was July's cover story.
APOLLO 11: 45 Years and Counting
A half-century after the first steps on the moon, NASA is creating a new rocket capable of returning. Here's my video homage to the mission over at Space.com
The Guardian lists "Curiosity: An Inside Look at the Mars Rover Mission" as a Top Ten Science and Tech Book for July.
Rave Reviews: Natural History, NATURE, The Washington Post and many others...
Wide praise for "Destination Mars" from NATURE, Publisher's Weekly, The Washington Post and Natural History (featured here).
"Destination Mars" video trailer.
Click here to view.
"The best recent overview of Mars missions!" -- The Washington Post
"Destination Mars is a factual retelling of this amazing story that reads like an adventure novel. This is a book that no Mars enthusiast will want to miss." -- Ken Kramer, Los Angeles County Library System.
"The enigmatic Red Planet does not easily give up its secrets. Yet Rod Pyle's Destination Mars takes the reader on a first-class journey to this new world, one that continues to be a magnet for inquisitive scientists and space engineers. This is a superb, fact-filled, up-to-date book that portrays the legacy of spacecraft and personalities—from cheerleaders to unsung heroes—that have opened up the terra incognito that is Mars to extraordinary exploration." --Leonard David, SPACE.com
"Destination Mars brings to life an extraordinary part of human exploration—the preliminary reconnaissance of the planet of dreams over the last fifty years. Enlivened by interviews with many of the participants, you will feel as if you are exploring the planet with them." --Steven J. Dick, former NASA Chief Historian
"Mars has long held a special fascination for Americans, perhaps it might even be a planet that harbors life. Rod Pyle has written a fine account of this fascination; outlining the history of the robotic space probes sent to the red planet and the knowledge gained through these expeditions." --Roger D. Launius, PhD, senior curator, Division of Space History, National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution
"Tarawa: War Without Mercy" is sobering and saddening, yet inspiring and insightful. It is a documentary you will not soon forget. Coming soon.
"Destination Moon" Online
Now available as an online read from the nice folks at HarperCollins.
© 2009-2014 Rod Pyle, rodpylebooks.com