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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

Python for Kids: A Playful Introduction to Programming

January 31, 2013

Python for Kids

Author:
Jason R. Briggs
Publisher:
No Starch Press (2012)

For Kids Aged 10+ (And Their Parents)
The code in this book runs on almost anything: Windows, Mac, Linux, even an OLPC laptop or Raspberry Pi!

Python is a powerful, expressive programming language that’s easy to learn and fun to use! But books about learning to program in Python can be kind of dull, gray, and boring, and that’s no fun for anyone.

Python for Kids brings Python… read more

Biopolitics: A Transhumanist Paradigm

May 1, 2014

cover

Author:
Stefano Vaj
Publisher:
La Carmelina Edizioni (2014)

This seminal and controversial essay, the Italian original of which appeared in print in 2003, contains a coherent and passionate pro-tech discussion of most issues relevant to biopolitics and “wet” transhumanism, in the light of continental philosophies of Becoming — namely those of Nietzschean, Futurist and posthumanist descent, as the crucial questions of our age and collective destinies.

As such, it offers a transhumanist and Promethean perspective on what… read more

The Lucifer Principle: A Scientific Expedition into the Forces of History

November 7, 2014

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Author:
Howard Bloom
Publisher:
Atlantic Monthly Press (1997)

The Lucifer Priciple is a revolutionary work that explores the intricate relationships among genetics, human behavior, and culture to put forth the thesis that “evil” is a by-product of nature’s strategies for creation and that it is woven into our most basic biological fabric.

Logicomix: An Epic Search for Truth

September 28, 2009

Logicomix

Author:
Apostolos Doxiadis, Christos Papadimitriou
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA (2009)

Amazon | This exceptional graphic novel recounts the spiritual odyssey of philosopher Bertrand Russell. In his agonized search for absolute truth, Russell crosses paths with legendary thinkers like Gottlob Frege, David Hilbert, and Kurt Gödel, and finds a passionate student in the great Ludwig Wittgenstein. But his most ambitious goal–to establish unshakable logical foundations of mathematics–continues to loom before him. Through love and hate, peace and war, Russell persists… read more

The Spike: How Our Lives Are Being Transformed By Rapidly Advancing Technologies

July 16, 2010

The Spike: How Our Lives Are Being Transformed By Rapidly Advancing Technologies

Author:
Damien Broderick
Publisher:
Tor Books (2001)

Amazon | Is technological change advancing so rapidly that we can no longer chart its progress? Are we careening ever closer to the point that scientists have dubbed “the singularity,” the moment when the pace of innovation will lead to changes so profound that attempting to envision the future becomes an impossible dream? According to Broderick (The Last Mortal Generation; Theory and Its Discontents), the answer is a resounding… read more

Daemon

September 3, 2010

daemon

Author:
Daniel Suarez
Publisher:
Signet (2009)

Amazon | Originally self-published, Suarez’s riveting debut would be a perfect gift for a favorite computer geek or anyone who appreciates thrills, chills and cyber suspense. Gaming genius Matthew Sobol, the 34-year-old head of CyberStorm Entertainment, has just died of brain cancer, but death doesn’t stop him from initiating an all-out Internet war against humanity. When the authorities investigate Sobol’s mansion in Thousand Oaks, Calif., they find… read more

Futures from Nature

January 3, 2011

futuresfromnature

Author:
Henry Gee
Publisher:
Tor Books (2007)

Amazon | Here are 100 very short stories on the subject of the future and what it might be like. The authors include scientists, journalists, and many of the most famous SF writers in the world. Futures from Nature includes everything from satires and vignettes to compressed stories and fictional book reviews, science articles, and journalism, in eight-hundred word modules. All of them are entertaining and as a group they… read more

I, Avatar: The Culture and Consequences of Having a Second Life

February 28, 2011

I, Avatar book cover

Author:
Mark Stephen Meadows
Publisher:
New Riders Press (2008)

Amazon | What is an avatar? Why are there nearly a billion of them, and who is using them? Do avatars impact our real lives, or are they just video game conceits? Is an avatar an inspired rendering of its creator’s inner self, or is it just one among millions of anonymous vehicles clogging the online freeways? Can we use our avatars to really connect with people,… read more

SuperCooperators: Altruism, Evolution, and Why We Need Each Other to Succeed

May 2, 2011

Supercooperators

Author:
Martin Nowak, Roger Highfield
Publisher:
Free Press (2011)

Amazon | Evolution is often presented as a strictly competitive endeavor. This point of view has had serious implications for the way we see the mechanics of both science and culture. But scientists have long wondered how societies could have evolved without some measure of cooperation. And if there was cooperation involved, how could it have arisen from nature “red in tooth and claw”?

Martin Nowak,… read more

Living with the Genie: Essays On Technology And The Quest For Human Mastery

June 16, 2011

Living with the Genie book cover

Author:
Alan Lightman, Daniel Sarewitz, Christina Desser
Publisher:
Island Press (2004)

Amazon | Biotechnology, Cloning, Robotics, Nanotechnology…

At a time when scientific and technological breakthroughs keep our eyes focused on the latest software upgrades or the newest cell-phone wizardry, a group of today’s most innovative thinkers are looking beyond the horizon to explore both the promise and the peril of our technological future.

Human ingenuity has granted us a world of unprecedented personal power — enabling us to… read more

Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It

August 4, 2011

Cyber War book cover

Author:
Richard A. Clarke, Robert K. Knake
Publisher:
Ecco (2010)

Amazon | Richard A. Clarke warned America once before about the havoc terrorism would wreak on our national security — and he was right. Now he warns us of another threat, silent but equally dangerous. Cyber War is a powerful book about technology, government, and military strategy; about criminals, spies, soldiers, and hackers. This is the first book about the war of the future — cyber war — and a convincing argument… read more

The Emotional Life of Your Brain: How Its Unique Patterns Affect the Way You Think, Feel, and Live–and How You Can Change Them

April 18, 2012

emotionalifeofyourbrain

Author:
Richard J. Davidson, Sharon Begley
Publisher:
Hudson Street Press (2012)

Amazon | This longawaited book by a pioneer in brain research offers a new model of our emotions — their origins, their power, and their malleability.

For more than thirty years, Richard Davidson has been at the forefront of brain research. Now he gives us an entirely new model for understanding our emotions, as well as practical strategies we can use to change them.

Davidson has discovered that personality… read more

No Small Matter: Science on the Nanoscale

August 17, 2012

no_small_matter_book

Author:
Felice C. Frankel, George M. Whitesides
Publisher:
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press (2009)

A small revolution is remaking the world. The only problem is, we can’t see it. This book uses dazzling images and evocative descriptions to reveal the virtually invisible realities and possibilities of nanoscience. An introduction to the science and technology of small things, No Small Matter explains science on the nanoscale.

Authors Felice C. Frankel and George M. Whitesides offer an overview of recent scientific advances… read more

The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature

November 25, 2012

The Blank Slate

Author:
Steven Pinker
Publisher:
Penguin Books (2003)

In The Blank Slate, Steven Pinker, one of the world’s leading experts on language and the mind, explores the idea of human nature and its moral, emotional, and political colorings. With characteristic wit, lucidity, and insight, Pinker argues that the dogma that the mind has no innate traits-a doctrine held by many intellectuals during the past century-denies our common humanity and our individual preferences, replaces objective analyses of social problems… read more

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