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Humanity Enhanced: Genetic Choice and the Challenge for Liberal Democracies

January 30, 2014

HumanityEnhanced

Author:
Russell Blackford
Publisher:
The MIT Press (2013)

Emerging biotechnologies that manipulate human genetic material have drawn a chorus of objections from politicians, pundits, and scholars. In Humanity Enhanced, Russell Blackford eschews the heated rhetoric that surrounds genetic enhancement technologies to examine them in the context of liberal thought, discussing the public policy issues they raise from legal and political perspectives.

Some see the possibility of genetic choice as challenging the values of liberal democracy. Blackford… read more

Life on the Screen: Identity in the Age of the Internet

April 9, 2009

sherry_book

Author:
Sherry Turkle
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (1997)

Life on the Screen is a book not about computers, but about people and how computers are causing us to reevaluate our identities in the age of the Internet. We are using life on the screen to engage in new ways of thinking about evolution, relationships, politics, sex, and the self. Life on the Screen traces a set of boundary negotiations, telling the story of the changing impact of… read more

Counterspace: The Next Hours of World War III

July 13, 2010

Counterspace: The Next Hours of World War III

Author:
William B. Scott, Michael J. Coumatos, William J. Birnes
Publisher:
Forge Books (2009)

Amazon | In Space Wars, Scott, Coumatos, and Birnes created a fascinating war gaming scenario of how World War III might unfold in above the Earth’s surface.  Now this thrilling team of writers reunites with Counterspace, an even more chilling fictionalized look at America’s most catastrophic fears.

What if North Korea detonated a nuclear weapon in space and silenced dozens of satellites?

What if an Iranian missile… read more

Forever For All: Moral Philosophy, Cryonics, and the Scientific Prospects for Immortality

July 16, 2010

Forever For All: Moral Philosophy, Cryonics, and the Scientific Prospects for Immortality

Author:
R. Michael Perry
Publisher:
Universal Publishers (2000)

Amazon | This book considers the problems of death and the hereafter and how these ages-old problems ought to be addressed in light of our continuing progress. A materialistic viewpoint of reality is assumed, denying the likelihood of supernatural or other superhuman assistance. Death, however, is not seen as inevitable or even irreversible; it is maintained that the problem can and should be addressed scientifically in all of its… read more

Robot Builder’s Bonanza, Third Edition

February 3, 2011

Robot Builder's Bonanza, Third Edition Cover

Author:
Gordon McComb
Publisher:
McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics (2006)

This is the ultimate guide for building and experimenting with robots.  It is also the best selling hobby robotics books.  A whopping 700 pages it contains virtually everything there is to know about modern robotics including  how to convert a toy into a robot, speech systhesis and recognition, vision/robotic eyes, collision detection and avoidance  and the computer programming required to tie everything together to make it work.… read more

Homo Evolutis

March 16, 2011

Homo Evolutis cover

Author:
Juan Enriquez, Steve Gullans
Publisher:
Amazon Digital Services (2011)

Amazon | There have been at least 25 prototype humans. We are but one more model, and there is no evidence evolution has stopped. So unless you think Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern are the be all and end all of creation, and it just does not get any better, then one has to ask what is next? Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans, two of the world’s… read more

Cycles of Time: An Extraordinary New View of the Universe

May 5, 2011

Cycles of Time book cover

Author:
Roger Penrose
Publisher:
Knopf (2011)

Amazon | From the best-selling author of The Emperor’s New Mind and The Road to Reality, a groundbreaking book that provides new views on three of cosmology’s most profound questions: What, if anything, came before the Big Bang? What is the source of order in our universe? What is its ultimate future?

Current understanding of our universe dictates that all matter will eventually thin out to zero density,… read more

Rewire Your Brain: Think Your Way to a Better Life

June 23, 2011

Rewire Your Brain book cover

Author:
John B. Arden, Ph.D.
Publisher:
Wiley (2010)

Amazon | Not long ago, it was thought that the brain you were born with was the brain you would die with, and that the brain cells you had at birth were the most you would ever possess. Your brain was thought to be “hardwired” to function in predetermined ways. It turns out that’s not true. Your brain is not hardwired, it’s “softwired” by experience. This book shows… read more

FYI (Popular Science): 229 Curious Questions Answered by the World’s Smartest People

September 1, 2011

popularsciencefyi

Author:
The Editors of Popular Science
Publisher:
Weldon Owen (2011)

Popular Science | If you’ve ever wondered… Can someone use your GPS receiver to track you? Are those paper toilet-seat covers really protecting you from anything? Should you worry about electromagnetic pulses destroying your electronics?

If you’re curious about these and other strange, mind-expanding things — this book was written for you. Popular Science FYI is bursting with surprising answers to weird and zany questions smart people love… read more

Your Brain on Food: How Chemicals Control Your Thoughts and Feelings

January 12, 2012

yourbrainonfood

Author:
Gary Wenk
Publisher:
Oxford University Press (2010)

Amazon | Why is eating chocolate so pleasurable? Can the function of just one small group of chemicals really determine whether you are happy or sad? Does marijuana help to improve your memory in old age? Is it really best to drink coffee if you want to wake up and be alert? Why is a drug like PCP potentially lethal? Why does drinking alcohol make you drowsy? Do… read more

Need, Speed, and Greed: How the New Rules of Innovation Can Transform Businesses, Propel Nations to Greatness, and Tame the World’s Most Wicked Problems

May 4, 2012

needspeedgreed

Author:
Vijay V. Vaitheeswaran
Publisher:
HarperBusiness (2012)

Amazon | Over the past few decades, globalization and Googlization have kicked off the first phase of an innovation revolution more profound and more powerful than any economic force since the arrival of Europeans on North American shores half a millennium ago. These developments have brought us such advances as the Web, social networking, 24/7 connectivity, and global markets.

But the benefits of all this progress have not… read more

A Computable Universe: Understanding and Exploring Nature as Computation

September 6, 2012
Author:
Hector Zenil
Publisher:
World Scientific Publishing Company (2012)

This volume, with a foreword by Sir Roger Penrose, discusses the foundations of computation in relation to nature.

It focuses on two main questions:

  • What is computation?
  • How does nature compute?

The contributors are world-renowned experts who have helped shape a cutting-edge computational understanding of the universe. They discuss computation in the world from a variety of perspectives, ranging from foundational concepts… read more

Robot Futures

March 20, 2013

Robot Futures

Author:
Illah Reza Nourbakhsh
Publisher:
The MIT Press (2013)

With robots, we are inventing a new species that is part material and part digital. The ambition of modern robotics goes beyond copying humans, beyond the effort to make walking, talking androids that are indistinguishable from people. Future robots will have superhuman abilities in both the physical and digital realms. They will be embedded in our physical spaces, with the ability to go where we cannot, and will have… read more

The Bequeathal: Godsent

November 27, 2013

THE bequeathal godsent

Author:
Zoran Jevtic
Publisher:
Netherworld Books (2013)

About The Bequeathal: Godsent. In a post-crash, rebooted world, Eugene Reece is one of the billions of pre-indebted citizens whose lives are augmented by the virtualized intellects of the deceased. If anything, his stats tag him average, though a notch more disillusioned and a degree less spirited than the next, permanently connected individual but his surplus dose of ironic self-derision makes him slightly discrepant.

The tedium of Eugene’s drudge… read more

Human Futures: Art in an Age of Uncertainty

July 14, 2010

Human Futures: Art in an Age of Uncertainty

Author:
Andy Miah
Publisher:
Liverpool University Press (2009)

Amazon | This innovative book, inspired by material from FACT’s Human Futures program and informed by an inquiry into the future of humanity, combines scholarly essays, images, interviews, design products, artifacts, and creative writing in order to portray how the culture of technological innovation is made and remade through bioculturally diverse forms of consumption. Human Futures addresses biological developments such as cloning, genetic modification, stem cell research alongside issues… read more

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