In his first book since the bestselling Fermat’s Enigma, Simon Singh offers the first sweeping history of encryption, tracing its evolution and revealing the dramatic effects codes have had on wars, nations, and individual lives. From Mary, Queen of Scots, trapped by her own code, to the Navajo Code Talkers who helped the Allies win World War II, to the incredible (and incredibly simple) logisitical breakthrough that made Internet… read more
- Philip Auerswald
- Oxford University Press, USA (2012)
Ours is the most dynamic era in human history. The benefits of four centuries of technological and organizational change are at last reaching a previously excluded global majority. This transformation will create large-scale opportunities in richer countries like the United States just as it has in poorer countries now in the ascent.
In The Coming Prosperity, Philip E. Auerswald argues that it is time to overcome the outdated… read more
The Compass of Pleasure: How Our Brains Make Fatty Foods, Orgasm, Exercise, Marijuana, Generosity, Vodka, Learning, and Gambling Feel So Good
July 19, 2011
- David J. Linden
- Viking Adult (2011)
Amazon | A leading brain scientist’s look at the neurobiology of pleasure-and how pleasures can become addictions.
Whether eating, taking drugs, engaging in sex, or doing good deeds, the pursuit of pleasure is a central drive of the human animal. In The Compass of Pleasure Johns Hopkins neuroscientist David J. Linden explains how pleasure affects us at the most fundamental level: in our brain.
As he… read more
February 24, 2012
- Eric Topol, M.D.
- Basic Books (2012)
What if your cell phone could detect cancer cells circulating in your blood or warn you of an imminent heart attack? Mobile wireless digital devices, including smartphones and tablets with seemingly limitless functionality, have brought about radical changes in our lives, providing hyper-connectivity to social networks and cloud computing. But the digital world has hardly pierced the medical cocoon.
Until now. Beyond reading email and surfing… read more
November 26, 2012
- Carl Sagan, Ann Druyan
- Ballantine Books (1997)
“POWERFUL . . . A stirring defense of informed rationality. . . Rich in surprising information and beautiful writing.”
*The Washington Post Book World
How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives… read more
The Department of Mad Scientists: How DARPA Is Remaking Our World, from the Internet to Artificial Limbs
December 28, 2009
- Michael Belfiore
- Smithsonian (2009)
Wireless, prosthetic arms that are as nimble and light as the real thing; driverless robot cars that work their way through real traffic; a portable robotic emergency room with remote-controlled, mobile robotic surgeons; and scramjets able to race around the world in just a few hours — these are among the DARPA projects profiled by journalist Michael Belfiore in his book, The Department of Mad Scientists.
The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future (Or, Don’t Trust Anyone Under 30)
February 21, 2014
- Mark Bauerlein
- Tarcher (2008)
The dawn of the digital age once aroused our hopes: the Internet, e-mail, blogs, and interactive and ultra-realistic video games promised to yield a generation of sharper, more aware, and intellectually sophisticated children. The terms “information superhighway” and “knowledge economy” entered the lexicon, and we assumed… read more
July 8, 2010
- Anil Ananthaswamy
- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Trade (2010)
Amazon | Despite 20th-century physics’ revelations, from relativity and quantum mechanics to the physics of the atom’s nucleus and the life cycles of stars, ninety-odd percent of the universe is a complete mystery, says a scientist quoted by Ananthaswamy, a consulting editor for New Scientist. Dark matter, dark energy, quantum gravity: these are the topics that keep physicists awake at night, requiring bigger, more massive, more extreme experiments to test… read more
January 12, 2012
- Thomas Metzinger
- 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
The Emotion Machine: Commonsense Thinking, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of the Human Mind
January 18, 2008
- Marvin Minsky
- Simon & Schuster (2007)
In this mind-expanding book, scientific pioneer Marvin Minsky continues his groundbreaking research, offering a fascinating new model for how our minds work. He argues persuasively that emotions, intuitions, and feelings are not distinct things, but different ways of thinking.
By examining these different forms of mind activity, Minsky says, we can explain why our thought sometimes takes the form of carefully reasoned analysis and at other times turns… 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
- Richard J. Davidson, Sharon Begley
- Hudson Street Press (2012)
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
September 12, 2011
- Richard Menary
- The MIT Press (2010)
Where does the mind stop and the rest of the world begin? In their famous 1998 paper “The Extended Mind,” philosophers Andy Clark and David Chalmers posed this question and answered it provocatively: cognitive processes “ain’t all in the head.” The environment has an active role in driving cognition; cognition is sometimes made up of neural, bodily, and environmental processes. Their argument excited a vigorous debate among… read more
- James Canton
- Plume (2007)
In the post-9/11 world every forecasting book that came before 9/11 is obsolete. Our world is constantly buffeted by new and dramatic change that we can’t fully grasp. The changes come in extremes: faster, bigger, more illuminating and more devastating than ever before. And all of these changes are tame compared to what is coming in the Extreme Future.
Dr. Canton breaks new ground in boldly… read more