bookshelf by year

Conversations with the Future: 21 visions for the 21st century

March 20, 2017

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author |
Nikola Danaylov
year published |
2017

For generations, humanity stared at the vastness of the oceans and wondered, “What if?” Today, having explored the curves of the Earth, we now stare at endless stars and wonder, “What if?” Our technology has brought us to the make-or-break moment in human history.

We can either grow complacent, and go extinct like the dinosaurs, or spread throughout the cosmos, as Carl Sagan dreamed… read more

Rhythms of the Brain

August 3, 2010

Rhythms of the Brain

author |
Gyorgy Buzsaki
year published |
2006

Amazon | Studies of mechanisms in the brain that allow complicated things to happen in a coordinated fashion have produced some of the most spectacular discoveries in neuroscience. This book provides eloquent support for the idea that spontaneous neuron activity, far from being mere noise, is actually the source of our cognitive abilities. It takes a fresh look at the co-evolution of structure and function in the mammalian brain,… read more

Makers: The New Industrial Revolution

October 1, 2012

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author |
Chris Anderson
year published |
2012

Wired magazine editor and bestselling author Chris Anderson takes you to the front lines of a new industrial revolution as today’s entrepreneurs, using open source design and 3-D printing, bring manufacturing to the desktop.  In an age of custom-fabricated, do-it-yourself product design and creation, the collective potential of a million garage tinkerers and enthusiasts is about to be unleashed, driving a resurgence of American manufacturing.  A generation of “Makers”… read more

The Technological Singularity: Managing the Journey (The Frontiers Collection)

October 13, 2017

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author |
Victor Callaghan (Editor), James Miller (Editor), Roman Yampolskiy (Editor), Stuart Armstrong (Editor)
year published |
2017

This volume contains a selection of authoritative essays exploring the central questions raised by the conjectured technological singularity. In informed yet jargon-free contributions written by active research scientists, philosophers and sociologists, it goes beyond philosophical discussion to provide a detailed account of the risks that the singularity poses to human society and, perhaps most usefully, the possible actions that society and technologists can take to manage the journey to any… read more

Our Uncertain Future: When Digital Evolution, Global Warming and Automation Converge

November 12, 2013

Our Uncertain Future

author |
David M Mills Ph.D.
year published |
2013

There are many different predictions about our future.  Some experts predict an incredible future propelled by digital technology and other advances, others predict destruction due to climate change, yet others predict automation will cause massive unemployment and economic collapse.  We have been told of advantages and warned of dangers of artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, genetic engineering, and other technologies.  Each author has largely ignored the other points of view.  But, there can be only… read more

Humans 3.0: The Upgrading of the Species

February 5, 2015

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author |
Peter Nowak
year published |
2015

Our species is entering a new era. Millions of years ago, we created tools to change our environment. Caves became huts, fires became ovens, and clubs became swords. Collectively these tools became technology, and the pace of innovation accelerated. Now we’re applying the latest advancements to our own biology, and technology is becoming part of the process. But is that a good thing? Not if media scare pieces about… read more

The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress

November 5, 2012

The World As It Is

author |
Chris Hedges
year published |
2011

Drawing on two decades of experience as a war correspondent and based on his numerous columns for Truthdig, Chris Hedges presents The World As It Is, a panorama of the American empire at home and abroad, from the coarsening effect of America’s War on Terror to the front lines in the Middle East and South Asia and the continuing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Underlying his reportage is a constant… read more

The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge

February 15, 2016

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author |
Matt Ridley
year published |
2015

The New York Times bestselling author of The Rational Optimist and Genome returns with a fascinating, brilliant argument for evolution that definitively dispels a dangerous, widespread myth: that we can command and control our world.

The Evolution of Everything is about bottom-up order and its enemy, the top-down twitch—the endless fascination human beings have for design rather than evolution, for direction rather than emergence. Drawing on anecdotes from… read more

Warnings: Finding Cassandras to Stop Catastrophes

July 24, 2017

warnings-cover

author |
Richard A. Clarke, R.P. Eddy
year published |
2017

Warnings is the story of the future of national security, threatening technologies, the U.S. economy, and possibly the fate of civilization.

In Greek mythology Cassandra foresaw calamities, but was cursed by the gods to be ignored. Modern-day Cassandras clearly predicted the disasters of Katrina, Fukushima, the Great Recession, the rise of ISIS, and many more. Like the mythological Cassandra, they were ignored. There are others right now warning… read more

2012 State of the Future

October 24, 2012

2012-stateofthefuture

author |
Jerome C. Glenn, Theodore J. Gordon
year published |
2012

The 2012 State of the Future is a concise, readable overview of the global situation, problems, solutions, and prospects for the future. It covers the global landscape with two-page overviews with regional considerations of 15 global challenges such as energy, food, science & technology, ethics, development, water, organized crime, health, decisionmaking, gender relations, demographics, war & peace, and others. These together with the executive summary are ideal… read more

The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

November 27, 2012

The Better Angels of Our Nature

author |
Steven Pinker
year published |
2012

A provocative history of violence, from New York Times bestselling author of The Stuff of Thought and The Blank Slate.

Today we may be living in the most peaceful moment in our species’ existence. In his gripping and controversial new work, author Steven Pinker shows that despite the ceaseless news about war, crime, and terrorism, violence has actually been in decline over long stretches of history.

Exploding myths about humankind’s inherent… read more

Redesigning Humans: Choosing Our Genes, Changing Our Future

November 22, 2013

Redesigning humas

author |
Gregory Stock
year published |
2003

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | A groundbreaking work, Redesigning Humans tackles the controversial subject of engineering the human germline — the process of permanently altering the genetic code of an individual so that the changes are passed on to the offspring. Gregory Stock, an expert on the implications of recent advances in reproductive biology, has glimpsed the inevitable future of biomedical engineering.

Within decades, Stock asserts, technological advances will bring… read more

The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent

October 3, 2012

The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent

author |
Vivek Wadhwa
year published |
2012

Many of the United States’ most innovative entrepreneurs have been immigrants, from Andrew Carnegie, Alexander Graham Bell, and Charles Pfizer to Sergey Brin, Vinod Khosla, and Elon Musk. Nearly half of Fortune 500 companies and one-quarter of all new small businesses were founded by immigrants, generating trillions of dollars annually, employing millions of workers, and helping establish the United States as the most entrepreneurial, technologically advanced society on earth.… read more

Nanomedical Device and Systems Design: Challenges, Possibilities, Visions

May 1, 2013

Nanomedical Device and Systems Design

author |
Frank Boehm
year published |
2013

This unique book addresses issues pertaining to nanomedical devices and systems design in terms of challenges, possibilities, and future vision. It examines what it takes to design, fabricate, and functionalize autonomous micron-scale, robotic medical devices (having nanometric-scale components) and what perceived hurdles must be overcome to foster their development and implementation. The book investigates device deployment and recovery strategies, as well as protocols for their safe and failsafe operation… read more

Biopunk: DIY Scientists Hack the Software of Life

April 25, 2011

biopunk

author |
Marcus Wohlsen
year published |
2011

The most disruptive force on the planet resides in DNA. Biotech companies and academic researchers are just beginning to unlock the potential of piecing together life from scratch.

Champions of synthetic biology believe that turning genetic code into Lego-like blocks to build never-before-seen organisms could solve the thorniest challenges in medicine, energy, and environmental protection.

But as the hackers who cracked open the potential of the personal… read more

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