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On Being Certain: Believing You Are Right Even When You’re Not

February 24, 2012

onbeingcertain

Author:
Robert Burton
Publisher:
St. Martin's Griffin (2009)

You recognize when you know something for certain, right? You “know” the sky is blue, or that the traffic light had turned green, or where you were on the morning of September 11, 2001 — you know these things, well, because you just do.

In On Being Certain, neurologist Robert Burton shows that feeling certain — feeling that we know something — is a mental sensation, rather than evidence of… read 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

Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero

January 20, 2012

ThunderDog-FINAL

Author:
Michael Hingson
Publisher:
Thomas Nelson (2011)

Amazon |  A blind man and his guide dog show the power of trust and courage in the midst of devastating terror.

It was 12:30 a.m. on 9/11 and Roselle whimpered at Michael’s bedside. A thunderstorm was headed east, and she could sense the distant rumbles while her owners slept. As a trained guide dog, when she was “on the clock” nothing could faze her. But that morning,… 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

The Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self

January 12, 2012

egotunnel

Author:
Thomas Metzinger
Publisher:
Basic Books (2010)

Amazon | This is a radical rethinking of the nature of consciousness. The Ego Tunnel, a major work from one of the brightest of the new generation of philosophers of mind, proposes a simple yet radical rethinking of the nature of consciousness and a fascinating and controversial exploration of what it implies. We’re used to thinking of the self’s relation to the world as a dyad — the… 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

Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention Will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn

January 12, 2012

now-you-see-it-by-cathy-davidson

Author:
Cathy N. Davidson
Publisher:
Viking Adult (2011)

Amazon | When Cathy Davidson and Duke University gave free iPods to the freshman class in 2003, critics said they were wasting their money. Yet when students in practically every discipline invented academic uses for their music players, suddenly the idea could be seen in a new light — as an innovative way to turn learning on its head.

This radical experiment is at the heart of Davidson’s… read more

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

Is the Internet Changing the Way You Think?: The Net’s Impact on Our Minds and Future

January 12, 2012

internet

Author:
John Brockman
Publisher:
Harper Perennial (2011)

Amazon | How is the internet changing the way you think? That is one of the dominant questions of our time, one which affects almost every aspect of our life and future. And it’s exactly what John Brockman, publisher of Edge.org, posed to more than 150 of the world’s most influential minds. Brilliant, farsighted, and fascinating, Is the Internet Changing the Way You Think? is an essential guide to the… read more

Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science

January 12, 2012

reinventingdiscovery

Author:
Michael Nielsen
Publisher:
Princeton University Press (2011)

Amazon | In Reinventing Discovery, Michael Nielsen argues that we are living at the dawn of the most dramatic change in science in more than 300 years. This change is being driven by powerful new cognitive tools, enabled by the internet, which are greatly accelerating scientific discovery. There are many books about how the internet is changing business or the workplace or government. But this is the first… read more

Post Mortal Syndrome: A Science Fiction Novel

January 11, 2012

Post Mortal Syndrome cover

Author:
Damien Broderick, Barbara Lamar
Publisher:
Borgo Press (2011)

Amazon | Attorney Jill Shannon’s clients include Blick Pharmaceuticals, which is pursuing research into life-extending drugs.

Blick has reawakened the homicidal maniac Payback, whom they created twenty years earlier, to literally kill off the competition by targeting research scientists.

Jill’s boyfriend, Paul Gibson, one of the scientists, is forced to inject them with an intelligence booster. Suddenly they find themselves in the middle of a… 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

Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age

January 4, 2012

delete

Author:
Viktor Mayer-Schonberger
Publisher:
Princeton University Press (2009)

Amazon | Delete looks at the surprising phenomenon of perfect remembering in the digital age, and reveals why we must reintroduce our capacity to forget. Digital technology empowers us as never before, yet it has unforeseen consequences as well. Potentially humiliating content on Facebook is enshrined in cyberspace for future employers to see. Google remembers everything we’ve searched for and when. The digital realm remembers what is sometimes better forgotten, and… read more

The Minerva Virus

January 4, 2012

minervavirus

Author:
Brian Shuster
Publisher:
Night Candy (2006)

Amazon | In the depths of the internet, a new form of life is unleashed. Silent and invisible, the only hint of its existence is an ordinary-seeming computer virus, which the human race regards as a mere nuisance. But this virus is unlike anything mankind has seen before . . . this virus can evolve! As it explodes across the internet, a new plague begins to take control… read more

Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think

January 3, 2012

abundance

Author:
Peter H. Diamandis, Steven Kotler
Publisher:
Free Press (2012)

Amazon | Providing abundance is humanity’s grandest challenge — this is a book about how we rise to meet it. We will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp. This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and three other powerful forces… read more

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