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Brain-Computer Interfaces: Principles and Practice

January 12, 2012

braincomputer

Author:
Jonathan Wolpaw, Elizabeth Winter Wolpaw
Publisher:
Oxford University Press (2012)

Amazon | In the last 15 years, a recognizable surge in the field of Brain Computer Interface (BCI) research and development has emerged. This emergence has sprung from a variety of factors. For one, inexpensive computer hardware and software is now available and can support the complex high-speed analyses of brain activity that is essential is BCI. Another factor is the greater understanding of the central nervous… read more

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking

January 16, 2012

quiet

Author:
Susan Cain
Publisher:
Crown (2012)

Amazon | At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled “quiet,” it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society — from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention… read more

Strategic Vision: America and the Crisis of Global Power

April 27, 2012

strategicvision

Author:
Zbigniew Brzezinski
Publisher:
Basic Books (2012)

Amazon | By 1991, following the disintegration first of the Soviet bloc and then of the Soviet Union itself, the United States was left standing tall as the only global super-power. Not only the 20th but even the 21st century seemed destined to be the American centuries. But that super-optimism did not last long. During the last decade of the 20th century and the first decade of the 21st century,… read more

The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Cognitive Science

July 9, 2013

Oxford Handbook

Author:
Eric Margolis, Richard Samuels, Stephen P. Stich
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA (2012)

The philosophy of cognitive science is concerned with fundamental philosophical and theoretical questions connected to the sciences of the mind. How does the brain give rise to conscious experience? Does speaking a language change how we think? Is a genuinely intelligent computer possible? What features of the mind are innate? Advances in cognitive science have given philosophers important tools for addressing these sorts of questions; and cognitive scientists have,… read more

A Universe from Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing

February 24, 2012

auniversefromnothing

Author:
Lawrence M. Krauss
Publisher:
Free Press (2012)

Lawrence Krauss’s provocative answers to these and other timeless questions in a wildly popular lecture now on YouTube have attracted almost a million viewers. The last of these questions in particular has been at the center of religious and philosophical debates about the existence of God, and it’s the supposed counterargument to anyone who questions the need for God. As Krauss argues, scientists have, however, historically focused… read more

Fahrenheit 451: A Novel

December 14, 2013

Fahrenheit 451

Author:
Ray Bradbury
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (2012)

Ray Bradbury’s internationally acclaimed novel Fahrenheit 451 is a masterwork of twentieth-century literature set in a bleak, dystopian future. 

Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden.… read more

Rainy Brain, Sunny Brain: How to Retrain Your Brain to Overcome Pessimism and Achieve a More Positive Outlook

June 13, 2012

rainy_brain_sunny_brain

Author:
Elaine Fox
Publisher:
Basic Books (2012)

Are you optimistic or pessimistic? Glass half-full or half-empty? Do you look on the bright side or turn towards the dark? These are easy questions for most of us to answer, because our personality types are hard-wired into our brains.

As pioneering psychologist and neuroscientist Elaine Fox has discovered, our outlook on life reflects our primal inclination to seek pleasure or avoid danger — inclinations that, in many… read more

Distrust That Particular Flavor

January 3, 2012

distrust

Author:
William Gibson
Publisher:
Putnam Adult (2012)

Amazon | William Gibson is known primarily as a novelist, with his work ranging from his groundbreaking first novel, Neuromancer, to his more recent contemporary bestsellers Pattern Recognition, Spook Country, and Zero History. During those nearly thirty years, though, Gibson has been sought out by widely varying publications for his insights into contemporary culture. Wired magazine sent him to Singapore to report on one of the world’s most buttoned-up states. The New York Timesread more

Too Big to Know: Rethinking Knowledge Now That the Facts Aren’t the Facts, Experts Are Everywhere, and the Smartest Person in the Room Is the Room

February 13, 2012

toobigtoknow

Author:
David Weinberger
Publisher:
Basic Books (2012)

Amazon | We used to know how to know. We got our answers from books or experts. We’d nail down the facts and move on. But in the Internet age, knowledge has moved onto networks. There’s more knowledge than ever, of course, but it’s different. Topics have no boundaries, and nobody agrees on anything.

Yet this is the greatest time in history to be a knowledge seeker…… read more

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed

November 13, 2012

How to Create a Mind cover

Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
Viking (2012)

The bold futurist and bestselling author explores the limitless potential of reverse-engineering the human brain.

Ray Kurzweil is arguably today’s most influential, and often controversial, futurist.

In How to Create a Mind, Kurzweil presents a provocative exploration of the most important project in human-machine civilization — reverse engineering the brain to understand precisely how it works and using that knowledge to create even more intelligent machines.

Kurzweil… read more

Imagine: How Creativity Works

January 4, 2012

imagine

Author:
Jonah Lehrer
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (2012)

Amazon | Did you know that the most creative companies have centralized bathrooms? That brainstorming meetings are a terrible idea? That the color blue can help you double your creative output?

From the best-selling author of How We Decide comes a sparkling and revelatory look at the new science of creativity. Shattering the myth of muses, higher powers, even creative “types,” Jonah Lehrer demonstrates that creativity is not… read more

The Rapture of the Nerds: A Tale of the Singularity, Posthumanity, and Awkward Social Situations

September 9, 2012

rapture-nerds-cover

Author:
Cory Doctorow, Charles Stross
Publisher:
Tor Books (2012)

Tor | Welcome to the fractured future, at the dusk of the twenty-first century.

Earth has a population of roughly a billion hominids. For the most part, they are happy with their lot, living in a preserve at the bottom of a gravity well. Those who are unhappy have emigrated, joining one or another of the swarming densethinker clades that fog the inner solar system with a… read more

Artificial Culture: Identity, Technology, and Bodies

March 22, 2012

ArtificialCulture_Cover1

Author:
Tama Leaver
Publisher:
Routledge (2011)

Amazon | Artificial Culture is an examination of the articulation, construction, and representation of “the artificial” in contemporary popular cultural texts, especially science fiction films and novels. The book argues that today we live in an artificial culture due to the deep and inextricable relationship between people, our bodies, and technology at large. While the artificial is often imagined as outside of the natural order and thus also beyond… read more

Humanity 2.0: What it Means to be Human Past, Present and Future

July 13, 2013

Humanity 2.0

Author:
Steve Fuller
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan (2011)

Social thinkers in all fields are faced with one unavoidable question: what does it mean to be ‘human’ in the 21st century? As definitions between what is ‘animal’ and what is ‘human’ break down, and as emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and nano- and bio- technologies develop, accepted notions of humanity are rapidly evolving.

Humanity 2.0 is an ambitious and groundbreaking book, offering a sweeping overview of key… read more

What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite

December 14, 2011

WhatMakesYourBrainHappy

Author:
David DiSalvo
Publisher:
Prometheus Books (2011)

Amazon | Why do we routinely choose options that don’t meet our short-term needs and undermine our long-term goals? Why do we willingly expose ourselves to temptations that undercut our hard-fought progress to overcome addictions? Why are we prone to assigning meaning to statistically common coincidences? Why do we insist we’re right even when evidence contradicts us?

In What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Doread more

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