I just checked amazon and the orange edition of Smolin's book was selling 11.3 times better than the average of the five most popular string books, on salesranks. The Smolin book's salesrank was 657 and the five most popular string books at the time were Greene fabric Greene elegant Kaku parallel Randall warped Steinhardt endless universe Their average salesrank was 7416.0. So the Smolin/string ratio was 7416.0/657 = 11.3 This was at 2 PM Pacific 15 September. It is pretty remarkable. I never saw it so high. Earlier this year, I tracked this ratio for four months to get a baseline and found it stayed around 2.5. On average, in the period February-May, the Smolin book was selling about 2.5 times better than the five most popular stringy books. That was the blue hardcover edition. Now the ratio jumps up to around TEN. I don't know what could have caused this, maybe word-of-mouth amongst students at the beginning of semester, which is a major book-buying time for college students. I don't know of any media coverage that could have influenced it. Does anyone know of anything that has happened which could explain? In case anyone is interested in more detail, the averages for that four-month period, and their ratio were 5683.8/2279.1 = 2.5. The string figure tended to be fairly stable around 5683.8 with less than 10 percent variability from month to month so I'm inclined to treat it, at least, as a baseline index of popular interest in the stringy philosophy. It would be quite surprising, to me anyway, if that number would change very much longterm. what we have now, at least temporarily, is an unusual circumstance where that number is up to around 7416.0 (plus or minus roughly ten percent to allow for random fluctuations during the day). Not doing formal statistics here but it does seem to be temporarily "up" some. Not clear if that significant, quite probably not.