Books by NalakaG

I’m more a columnist and feature writer for newspapers and magazines than a writer of books. I occasionally edit books, and also contribute chapters to multi-author books.

Here’s an incomplete list of such efforts (starting with the most recent and going back in time):

Kaala Bomba One Kara Thibe - by Nalaka Gunawardene - front cover

Kaala Bomba One Kara Thibe – by Nalaka Gunawardene – front cover

කාල බෝම්බ ඕනෑ කර තිබේ! (Kaala Bomba One Kara Thibe = Wanted: Time Bombs of the Mind!) Sinhala. Non-fiction. 2014. 300 pages. Illustrated.
Published by Ravaya Publishers, Sri Lanka.

This is the third collection of my weekly column Sivu Mansala Kolu Getaya contributed to the Ravaya newspaper during 2013-14. The 44 columns in this book offer personalised insights and non-technical analysis on current issues and topics in science, technology, sustainable development, information society and popular culture.

Written in an easy, conversational Sinhala rich in metaphor and analogy, I try to connect the local with global and also bridge the sciences and humanities. This collection touches on pharmaceuticals, organic farming, tobacco control, slow food, rationalism, citizen journalism and social media among many other topics.

Read more about this book:

Wanted: Time Bombs of the Mind! My third collection of Ravaya columns

කාල බෝම්බ ඕනෑ කර තිබේ! සිවුමංසල කොලූ ගැටයා අළුත්ම තීරු ලිපි එකතුව එළි දකියි

 

Tharu Atharata Giya Daruwa: Sinhala book on the childhood of Arthur C Clarke, by Nalaka Gunawardene (2014)

Tharu Atharata Giya Daruwa: Sinhala book on the childhood of Arthur C Clarke, by Nalaka Gunawardene

තරු අතරට ගිය දරුවා: ආතර් සී. ක්ලාක්ගේ ළමා කාලය

Tharu Atharata Giya Daruwa: Childhood of Arthur C Clarke

Sinhala. Non-fiction. 2014. 120 pages. Fully illustrated.

Published by Suratha Publishers, Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka

This book traces the formative years of Sir Arthur C Clarke (1917 – 2008), author, undersea explorer and futurist. His literary and scientific accomplishments are much better known than his humble origins and early inspirations in life.

The book documents the first 20 years of young Clarke, who was born in Minehead, Somerset, rural England as the First World War was ending, and spent his childhood years close to the sea. His experiences were shaped largely by growing up on the family farm, exploring the local beach, and working part-time at the village post office.

Arthur was the eldest in a family of four, who were raised by their dynamic mother, widowed at a young age. Despite having to cycle 20 km to school and back and helping on the farm, he excelled in studies and pursued serious hobbies – star gazing, mechanical experiments and nature observations.

Chapters are devoted to young Arthur’s pursuits like avid reading, fiction writing, rocket building, movie watching and his elaborate pranks. The book, written in story-telling style in conversational Sinhala, is suitable for readers of all ages, and especially for parents, teachers and children.

Read more: තරු අතරට ගිය දරුවා: ආතර් සී. ක්ලාක්ගේ ළමා කාලය පොතක් ලෙසින්

Childhood of Arthur C Clarke Revisited: New Sinhala book reveals the making of a 20th Century Genius

 

Sivu Mansala Kolu Getaya Book 2 by Nalaka Gunawardene, pub Sep 2013වදකහ සුදියේ සිට ලෝක විනාශය දක්වා (End of the World and Other Myths)

Sinhala. Non-fiction. 2013. 340 pages. Illustrated.
Published by Ravaya Publishers, Sri Lanka.

This is a collection of my weekly column Sivu Mansala Kolu Getaya contributed to the Ravaya newspaper during 2012-13. The 54 columns in this second book offer personalised insights and non-technical analysis on current issues and topics in science, technology, sustainable development and information society in the Lankan context.

In particular, this book probes how and why Lankan society is increasingly prone to peddling conspiracy theories without critical examination or rational discussion. From astrological hype linked to end of the world in 2012 to claims of mass poisoning via agrochemicals, the book seeks to separate facts from hype, conjecture and myth.

Read more:

End of the World and Other Conspiracies: Columnist Tackles Inconvenient Truths

‘වදකහ සුදියේ සිට ලෝක විනාශය දක්වා’: සිවුමංසල කොලූ ගැටයා දෙවැනි පොත එළි දකියි

Cover of Arthur C Clarke Chintana Charika - by Nalaka Gunawardene, 2012‘ආතර් සී. ක්ලාක් චින්තන චාරිකා’
(Mind Journeys with Arthur C Clarke).

Sinhala. Non-fiction. 2012. 272 pages. Illustrated.
Published by Wijesooriya Book Centre, Sri Lanka.

This is a collection of articles, media columns and interviews based on the late Sir Arthur C Clarke’s formidable intellectual output. The book is divided into five sections: highlights of his illustrious life; astronomy and space travel; information and communications technology; futuristic visions; and his long association with Sri Lanka.

Read Details

Review (in Sinhala): Silumina, 17 March 2013: විද්‍යාව පිටු දැක මිථ්‍යාව මාකට් කිරීම

Review (in Sinhala): Vidusara, 20 March 2013: ගවේෂණශීලී චින්තන චාරිකාවක්

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Sivu Mansala Kolu Getaya book coverසිවුමංසල කොලූ ගැටයා
(Dispatches from a Busy Intersection)

Sinhala. Non-fiction. 2012. 270 pages. Illustrated.
Published by Ravaya Publishes, Sri Lanka.

This is an edited collection of my weekly Sinhala columns by the same name, contributed to the Ravaya Sunday broadsheet newspaper in Sri Lanka during 2011-12.

Beginning in February 2011, I have sustained a Sunday column that touches on many and varied topics related to popular science, human development, mass media and information society. The book compiles 44 of these columns.

Read details

More about the Ravaya column

Review (in Sinhala) by science writer Chamara Sumanapala

>>
Communicating Disasters book coverCommunicating Disasters: An Asia Pacific Resource Book
Edited by Nalaka Gunawardene & Frederick Noronha
Foreword by Sir Arthur C Clarke
English. Non-fiction. 2007. 160 pages. Illustrated.
Co-published by TVE Asia Pacific and UNDP Regional Centre in Bangkok.

This is a multi-author book that discusses how information, education and communication can help create disaster resilient communities across the Asia Pacific region, home to half of humanity. It also takes a critical look at the communication lessons of the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004, and explores the role of good communications before, during and after disasters.

The book comprises contains 19 chapters authored by 21 contributors, plus 7 appendices.

Read more about the book


Read and/or download the entire book in pdf format for free

National Human Development Report (Sri Lanka): Promoting ICT for Human Development in Asia

National Human Development Report (Sri Lanka) Promoting ICT for Human Development in AsiaAuthors: Chanuka Wattegama, Nalaka Gunawardene and Hasitha Wickremasinghe
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), 2004. English. 110 pages

This country report analyzes the past accomplishments, current trends and future potential of information and communications technology (ICT) in pursuit of the Millennium Development Goals in Sri Lanka. It is based on a survey of Sri Lanka’s ICT initiatives and consultations with key stakeholders active in the development of ICT policies.

This was part of a multi-country study that led to a synthesis Regional Report, while individual country reports were also published as stand-alone documents.

Full Report: http://www.unapcict.org/ecohub/resources/national-human-development-report-2013-promoting-1

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