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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

When I’m 164: The New Science of Radical Life Extension, and What Happens If It Succeeds

September 26, 2012

When I'm 164

Author:
David Ewing Duncan
Publisher:
TED Conferences (2012)

How long do you want to live, and why? These are the questions that bestselling author (‘Experimental Man’) and science writer David Ewing Duncan explores, with surprising results.

When I’m 164 surveys the increasingly legitimate science of radical life extension — from genetics and regeneration to machine solutions — and considers the pluses and minuses of living to age 164, or beyond: everything from the impact on population… read more

Mind and Brain: A Critical Appraisal of Cognitive Neuroscience

September 28, 2012

Mind and Brain: A Critical Appraisal of Cognitive Neuroscience

Author:
William R. Uttal
Publisher:
The MIT Press (2011)

Cognitive neuroscience explores the relationship between our minds and our brains, most recently by drawing on brain imaging techniques to align neural mechanisms with psychological processes. In Mind and Brain, William Uttal offers a critical review of cognitive neuroscience, examining both its history and modern developments in the field.

He pays particular attention to the role of brain imaging–especially functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)–in studying the mind-brain relationship.… read more

Founders: A Novel of the Coming Collapse

September 28, 2012

Founders: A Novel of the Coming Collapse

Author:
James Wesley Rawles
Publisher:
Atria/Emily Bestler Books (2012)

THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT IS GONE.

It’s the near future, and thanks to a perfect storm of reckless banking practices, hyperinflation, a stock market gone mad, and the negligence of our elected officials, the entire social, political, and economic infrastructure of America has collapsed.

Chaos reigns in the streets, medical treatment is no longer available, and a silent coup has placed a dangerous group of… read more

Makers: The New Industrial Revolution

October 1, 2012

makers_the_new_industrial_revolution_book

Author:
Chris Anderson
Publisher:
Crown Business (2012)

Wired magazine editor and bestselling author Chris Anderson takes you to the front lines of a new industrial revolution as today’s entrepreneurs, using open source design and 3-D printing, bring manufacturing to the desktop.  In an age of custom-fabricated, do-it-yourself product design and creation, the collective potential of a million garage tinkerers and enthusiasts is about to be unleashed, driving a resurgence of American manufacturing.  A generation of “Makers”… read more

Return To The Garden

October 1, 2012

ReturnToTheGarden

Author:
Norie Huddle
Publisher:
Amazon Digital Services, Inc. (2012)

RETURN TO THE GARDEN is the first novel in a series called “The Eleanor Chronicles” that Norie Huddle is writing to introduce almost 45 years of her research and thinking about practical ways to transform human civilization so that we may survive and thrive.

Luis Alvarez, a young Ecuadorian man, meets an older North American woman named simply “Eleanor” on a long bus ride in Ecuador. They have a… read more

Bowl of Heaven

October 3, 2012

Bowl of Heaven

Author:
Gregory Benford, Larry Niven
Publisher:
Tor Books (2012)

In this first collaboration by science fiction masters Larry Niven (Ringworld) and Gregory Benford (Timescape), the limits of wonder are redrawn once again as a human expedition to another star system is jeopardized by an encounter with an astonishingly immense artifact in interstellar space: a bowl-shaped structure half-englobing a star, with a habitable area equivalent to many millions of Earths…and it’s on a direct path heading for the same… read more

The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent

October 3, 2012

The Immigrant Exodus: Why America Is Losing the Global Race to Capture Entrepreneurial Talent

Author:
Vivek Wadhwa
Publisher:
Wharton Digital Press (2012)

Many of the United States’ most innovative entrepreneurs have been immigrants, from Andrew Carnegie, Alexander Graham Bell, and Charles Pfizer to Sergey Brin, Vinod Khosla, and Elon Musk. Nearly half of Fortune 500 companies and one-quarter of all new small businesses were founded by immigrants, generating trillions of dollars annually, employing millions of workers, and helping establish the United States as the most entrepreneurial, technologically advanced society on earth.… read more

Trillions: Thriving in the Emerging Information Ecology

October 3, 2012

Trillions: Thriving in the Emerging Information Ecology

Author:
Peter Lucas, Joe Ballay, Mickey McManus
Publisher:
Wiley (2012)

We are facing a future of unbounded complexity.  Whether that complexity is harnessed to build a world that is safe, pleasant, humane and profitable, or whether it causes us to careen off a cliff into an abyss of mind-numbing junk is an open question. The challenges and opportunities–technical, business, and human–that this technological sea change will bring are without precedent. Entire industries will be born and others will be… read more

Cloud Atlas: A Novel

October 9, 2012

Cloud Atlas

Author:
David Mitchell
Publisher:
Random House Trade Paperbacks (2004)

Now a major motion picture starring Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Susan Sarandon, and Hugh Grant, and directed by Lana and Andy Wachowski and Tom Tykwer

A postmodern visionary who is also a master of styles of genres, David Mitchell combines flat-out adventure, a Nabokovian lore of puzzles, a keen eye for character, and a taste for mind-bending philosophical and scientific speculation in the tradition of Umberto Eco and Philip… read more

Integral Biomathics: Tracing the Road to Reality

October 9, 2012

Integral Biomathics: Tracing the Road to Reality

Author:
Plamen L. Simeonov, Leslie S. Smith, Andrée C. Ehresmann
Publisher:
Springer (2012)

Perhaps the most distinct question in science throughout the ages has been the one of perceivable reality, treated both in physics and philosophy. Reality is acting upon us, and we, and life in general, are acting upon reality. Potentiality, found both in quantum reality and in the activity of life, plays a key role.  In quantum reality observation turns potentiality into reality. Again, life computes possibilities in various ways based… read more

America-Lite: How Imperial Academia Dismantled Our Culture (and Ushered In the Obamacrats)

October 10, 2012

America Lite

Author:
David Gelernter
Publisher:
Encounter Books (2012)

America-Lite (where we all live) is just like America, only turned into an amusement park or a video game or a supersized Pinkberry, where the past and future are blank and there is only a big NOW. How did we come to expect no virtue and so much cynicism from our culture, our leaders—and each other?

In this refreshingly judgmental book, David Gelernter connects the historical… read more

Metaman: The Merging of Humans and Machines into a Global Superorganism

October 12, 2012

Metaman

Author:
Gregory Stock
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (1993)

The author of The Book of Questions claims that humankind and technology have merged into a new global entity, a living extension of humankind acting through a complex system of computers and offering a promise of ever-greater prosperity.

From Publishers Weekly

In this supremely optimistic futuristic survey, Stock (The Book of Questions) argues that a symbiotic union of smart machines and humans, combined with increasingly interdependent global communications, trade and travel,… read more

Singularity Rising: Surviving and Thriving in a Smarter, Richer, and More Dangerous World

October 15, 2012

Singularity Rising: Surviving and Thriving in a Smarter, Richer, and More Dangerous World

Author:
James D. Miller
Publisher:
BenBella Books (2012)

Where will you be in a singular world?

In Ray Kurzweil’s New York Times bestseller The Singularity is Near, the futurist and entrepreneur describes the singularity, a likely future utterly different than anything we can imagine. The singularity is triggered by the tremendous growth of human and computing intelligence that is an almost inevitable outcome of Moore’s Law.

Since the book’s publication, the coming of singularity is now eagerly anticipated… read more

Hacking Your Education: Ditch the Lectures, Save Tens of Thousands, and Learn More Than Your Peers Ever Will

October 20, 2012

hacking_your_education

Author:
Dale J. Stephens
Publisher:
Perigee Trade (2013)

It’s no secret that college doesn’t prepare students for the real world. Student loan debt recently eclipsed credit card debt for the first time in history and now tops 1 trillion dollars. And the throngs of unemployed graduates chasing the same jobs makes us wonder whether there’s a better way to “make it” in today’s marketplace.

There is — and Dale Stephens is proof of… read more

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