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Culturing Life: How Cells Became Technologies

March 27, 2012

culturinglife

Author:
Hannah Landecker
Publisher:
Harvard University Press (2007)

Amazon | How did cells make the journey, one we take so much for granted, from their origin in living bodies to something that can be grown and manipulated on artificial media in the laboratory, a substantial biomass living outside a human body, plant, or animal? This is the question at the heart of Hannah Landecker’s book. She shows how cell culture changed the way we think about such central… read more

Power, Sex, Suicide: Mitochondria and the Meaning of Life

October 4, 2011

power-sex-suicide-mitochondria-meaning-life-nick-lane-paperback-cover-art

Author:
Nick Lane
Publisher:
Oxford University Press (2006)

Amazon | If it weren’t for mitochondria, scientists argue, we’d all still be single-celled bacteria. Indeed, these tiny structures inside our cells are important beyond imagining. Without mitochondria, we would have no cell suicide, no sculpting of embryonic shape, no sexes, no menopause, no aging.

In this fascinating and thought-provoking book, Nick Lane brings together the latest research in this exciting field to show how our… read more

Who Owns the Future?

May 7, 2013

who_owns_the_future

Author:
Jaron Lanier
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (2013)

The Dazzling New Masterwork from the Prophet of Silicon Valley

Jaron Lanier is the bestselling author of You Are Not a Gadget, the father of virtual reality, and one of the most influential thinkers of our time. For decades, Lanier has drawn on his expertise and experience as a computer scientist, musician, and digital media pioneer to predict the revolutionary ways in which technology is transforming our culture.… read more

You Are Not A Gadget: A Manifesto

July 13, 2010

You Are Not A Gadget by Jaron Lanier

Author:
Jaron Lanier
Publisher:
Knopf (2010)

Amazon | Computer scientist and Internet guru Lanier’s fascinating and provocative full-length exploration of the Internet’s problems and potential is destined to become a must-read for both critics and advocates of online-based technology and culture. Lanier is best known for creating and pioneering the use of the revolutionary computer technology that he named virtual reality. Yet in his first book, Lanier takes a step back and critiques the… read more

Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe

February 22, 2011

Biocentrism Cover Image

Author:
Robert Lanza, Bob Berman
Publisher:
BenBella Books (2010)

Amazon | Robert Lanza is one of the most respected scientists in the world — a U.S. News & World Report cover story called him a “genius” and a “renegade thinker,” even likening him to Einstein. Lanza has teamed with Bob Berman, the most widely read astronomer in the world, to produce Biocentrism, a revolutionary new view of the universe.

Every now and then a simple yet… read more

The Harvard Psychedelic Club: How Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Huston Smith, and Andrew Weil Killed the Fifties and Ushered in a New Age for America

July 7, 2010

The Harvard Psychedelic Club cover

Author:
Don Lattin
Publisher:
HarperOne (2010)

Amazon | It’s hard for folks who didn’t live through the 1960s to imagine what it was like to live in a drug and sex-soaked culture, one where traditional values were drowned in a rush of hedonism and hippiedom. Names like Timothy Leary and Ram Dass bring back all the memories and all the conflicts. In this beautifully constructed study, Lattin (Jesus Freaks) brings together four of the most… read more

The Truth in Small Doses: Why We’re Losing the War on Cancer — and How to Win It

August 26, 2013

The truth in small doses

Author:
Clifton Leaf
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (2013)

A provocative, eye-opening history of the war on cancer, The Truth in Small Doses asks why we are losing this essential fight and charts a path forward.

Over the past half century, deaths from heart disease, stroke, and so many other killers have fallen dramatically. But cancer continues to kill with abandon. In 2013, despite a four-decade “war” against the disease that has cost hundreds of billions of dollars, more… 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

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

Summa Technologiae (Electronic Mediations)

May 23, 2013

Summa Tech

Author:
Stanislaw Lem
Publisher:
Univ Of Minnesota Press (2013)

The Polish writer Stanisław Lem is best known to English-speaking readers as the author of the 1961 science fiction novel Solaris, adapted into a meditative film by Andrei Tarkovsky in 1972 and remade in 2002 by Steven Soderbergh.

Throughout his writings, comprising dozens of science fiction novels and short stories, Lem offeredread more

Lesterland: The Corruption of Congress and How To End It (TED Books)

April 3, 2013

Lesterland The Corruption of Congress and How to End It

Author:
Lawrence Lessig
Publisher:
TED Conferences (2013)

The American political system has been foundationally weakened by a corrupt campaign funding system, creating a dangerously unstable and inequitable design that could destroy our republic — if we let it. In this provocative and important book, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig takes on the deep flaws in our campaign finance system and lays out a plan for fixing it. Lessig describes a place called Lesterland, a fictional land… read more

The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload

August 25, 2014

cover

Author:
Daniel J. Levitin
Publisher:
Dutton Adult (2014)

New York Times bestselling author and neuroscientist Daniel J. Levitin shifts his keen insights from your brain on music to your brain in a sea of details.

The information age is drowning us with an unprecedented deluge of data. At the same time, we’re expected to make more—and faster—decisions about our lives than ever before. No wonder, then, that the average American reports frequently losing car keys or… read more

In the Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives

March 17, 2011

In The Plex book cover

Author:
Steven Levy
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (2011)

Amazon | Few companies in history have ever been as successful and as admired as Google, the company that has transformed the Internet and become an indispensable part of our lives. How has Google done it? Veteran technology reporter Steven Levy was granted unprecedented access to the company, and in this revelatory book he takes readers inside Google headquarters — the Googleplex — to show how Google works.

While they were… read more

Mining the Sky: Untold Riches from the Asteroids, Comets, and Planets

January 15, 2013

Mining the Sky

Author:
John S. Lewis
Publisher:
Helix Books (1996)

What would it be like if entrepreneurs could literally “mine the sky” to solve Earth’s three major fulfillment problems: energy, mineral resources, and food? That is the engaging premise of John S. Lewis’s visionary new book. What if we could chemically break down the atmosphere of Mars for substances that can be used as spacecraft propellants; hollow out asteroids to transform them into livable habitats for billions of space-bound… read more

Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect

July 9, 2013

Social Why Our brains are wired to connect

Author:
Matthew D. Lieberman
Publisher:
Crown (2013)

We are profoundly social creatures – more than we know.

In Social, renowned psychologist Matthew Lieberman explores groundbreaking research in social neuroscience revealing that our need to connect with other people is even more fundamental, more basic, than our need for food or shelter.  Because of this, our brain uses its spare time to learn about the social world – other people and our relation to them. It is… read more

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