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We, Robot: Skywalker’s Hand, Blade Runners, Iron Man, Slutbots, and How Fiction Became Fact

February 24, 2011

We, Robot book cover

Author:
Mark Stephen Meadows
Publisher:
Lyons Press (2010)

Amazon | We, Robot does for robotics what Michio Kaku’s bestselling Physics of the Impossible has done for physics. How close to becoming reality are our favorite science fiction robots? And what might be the real-life consequences of their existence? Robotics and artificial intelligence expert (and science fiction fan) Mark Stephen Meadows answers that question with an irresistible blend of hard science, futurist imagination, solid statistics, pop culture, and plenty… read more

The Instant Physicist: An Illustrated Guide

October 5, 2011

instantphysicist

Author:
Richard A. Muller
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company (2010)

Amazon | Wine is radioactive? Organic foods have more poison in them than those grown with pesticides? Best-selling author Richard A. Muller enlightens us.

Richard A. Muller demonstrated in his recent bestseller, Physics for Future Presidents, that he has a unique talent for delivering the “aha” moment — making difficult topics accessible. In The Instant Physicist he shows his ability to entertain, too, by presenting the best of the scientific… read more

Self Comes to Mind: Constructing the Conscious Brain

May 18, 2011

Self Comes to Mind book cover

Author:
Antonio Damasio
Publisher:
Pantheon (2010)

Amazon | From one of the most significant neuroscientists at work today, a pathbreaking investigation of a question that has confounded philosophers, psychologists, and neuroscientists for centuries: how is consciousness created?

Antonio Damasio has spent the past thirty years studying and writing about how the brain operates, and his work has garnered acclaim for its singular melding of the scientific and the humanistic. In Self Comes toread more

Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age

December 16, 2010

program-programmed

Author:
Douglas Rushkoff
Publisher:
OR Books (2010)

Amazon | Today’s leading media theorist offers everyone a practical yet mind-blowing guide to our digital world. The debate over whether the Net is good or bad for us fills the airwaves and the blogosphere. But for all the heat of claim and counter-claim, the argument is essentially beside the point: it’s here; it’s everywhere. The real question is, do we direct technology, or do we let… read more

Sizing Up the Universe: The Cosmos in Perspective

February 8, 2011

Sizing Up the Universe

Author:
J. Richard Gott, Robert J. Vanderbei
Publisher:
National Geographic (2010)

Amazon | Sizing Up the Universe reveals an ingenious new way to envision the outsize proportions of space, based on the work of Princeton University professors Richard Gott and Robert Vanderbei. Using scaled maps, object comparisons, and beautiful space photographs, it demonstrates the actual size of objects in the cosmos — from Buz Aldrin’s historic footprint to the visible universe and beyond. The authors offer visual comparisons with… read more

Portraits of the Mind: Visualizing the Brain from Antiquity to the 21st Century

November 30, 2010

PortraitsMind_cover

Author:
Carl Schoonover
Publisher:
Abrams (2010)

Amazon | Portraits of the Mind follows the fascinating history of our exploration of the brain through images, from medieval sketches and 19th-century drawings by the founder of modern neuroscience to images produced using state-of-the-art techniques, allowing us to see the fantastic networks in the brain as never before. These black-and-white and vibrantly colored images, many resembling abstract art, are employed daily by scientists around the world,… read more

Armageddon Science: The Science of Mass Destruction

November 29, 2010

armageddonscience

Author:
Brian Clegg
Publisher:
St. Martin's Press (2010)

Publisher’s Weekly | Clegg (Before the Big Bang) explores how runaway science and other disasters might destroy humanity. He begins with the much discussed but highly speculative concerns over the operation of CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. The collider is designed to recreate energies equal to those existing at the time of the big bang, which some theorists say might create a chain reaction that would dissolve the… read more

The Mind’s Eye

February 8, 2011

The Minds Eye cover

Author:
Oliver Sacks
Publisher:
Knopf (2010)

Amazon | In The Mind’s Eye, Oliver Sacks tells the stories of people who are able to navigate the world and communicate with others despite losing what many of us consider indispensable senses and abilities: the power of speech, the capacity to recognize faces, the sense of three-dimensional space, the ability to read, the sense of sight. For all of these people, the challenge is to adapt to… read more

Do More Faster: TechStars Lessons to Accelerate Your Startup

March 17, 2011

Do More Faster book cover

Author:
Brad Feld, David Cohen
Publisher:
Wiley (2010)

Amazon | Practical advice from some of today’s top early stage investors and entrepreneurs.

TechStars is a mentorship-driven startup accelerator with operations in three U.S. cities. Once a year in each city, it funds about ten Internet startups with a small amount of capital and surrounds them with around fifty top Internet entrepreneurs and investors. Historically, about seventy-five percent of the companies that go through TechStars… read more

The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who’ve Lived the Longest

October 26, 2012

The Blue Zones

Author:
Dan Buettner
Publisher:
National Geographic (2010)

In this expanded paperback edition of his New York Times bestseller, longevity expert Dan Buettner draws on his research from extraordinarily long-lived communities—Blue Zones—around the globe to highlight the lifestyle, diet, outlook, and stress-coping practices that will add years to your life and life to your years.

A long healthy life is no accident. It begins with good genes, but it also depends on good habits. If you adopt the right… read more

Thrive: Finding Happiness the Blue Zones Way

May 13, 2011

Thrive book cover

Author:
Dan Buettner
Publisher:
National Geographic (2010)

Amazon | What makes us happy? It’s not wealth, youth, beauty, or intelligence, says Dan Buettner. In fact, most of us have the keys within our grasp. Circling the globe to study the world’s happiest populations, Buettner has spotted several common principles that can unlock the doors to true contentment with our lives.

Working with leading researchers, Buettner identifies the happiest region on each of four continents.… read more

What Technology Wants

December 29, 2010

whattechnologywants

Author:
Kevin Kelly
Publisher:
Viking Adult (2010)

Booklist | Verbalizing visceral feelings about technology, whether attraction or repulsion, Kelly explores the “technium,” his term for the globalized, interconnected stage of technological development. Arguing that the processes creating the technium are akin to those of biological evolution, Kelly devotes the opening sections of his exposition to that analogy, maintaining that the technium exhibits a similar tendency toward self-organizing complexity. Having defined the technium, Kelly addresses… read more

Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul: How to Create a New You

July 6, 2011

reinventing-the-body-resurrecting-the-soul-how-to-create-a-new-you

Author:
Deepak Chopra
Publisher:
Three Rivers Press (2010)

Amazon | Fifteen years after his #1 New York Times bestseller, Ageless Body, Timeless Mind, Deepak Chopra revisits “the forgotten miracle” — the body’s infinite capacity for change and renewal. You cannot take advantage of this miracle, Chopra says, unless you are willing to completely reinvent your body, transforming it from a material object to a dynamic, flowing process. “Your physical body is a fiction,” Chopra contends. Every cell is… read more

The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values

September 10, 2010

morallandscape

Author:
Sam Harris
Publisher:
Free Press (2010)

Amazon | Sam Harris’s first book, The End of Faith, ignited a worldwide debate about the validity of religion. In the aftermath, Harris discovered that most people—from religious fundamentalists to nonbelieving scientists—agree on one point: science has nothing to say on the subject of human values.

Indeed, our failure to address questions of meaning and morality through science has now become the most common justification for religious… read more

Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation

October 13, 2010
Author:
Steven Johnson
Publisher:
Riverhead Hardcover (2010)

Amazon | With Where Good Ideas Come From, Steven Johnson pairs the insight of his bestselling Everything Bad Is Good for You and the dazzling erudition of The Ghost Map and The Invention of Air to address an urgent and universal question: What sparks the flash of brilliance? How does groundbreaking innovation happen? Answering in his infectious, culturally omnivorous style, using his fluency in fields from neurobiology to popular culture, Johnson… read more

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