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The Universe in a Nutshell

April 9, 2009

universe-nutshell

Author:
Stephen William Hawking
Publisher:
Bantam (2001)

Professor Hawking is seeking to uncover the grail of science — the elusive “Theory of Everything” that lies at the heart of the cosmos. In this book he guides us on his search to uncover the secrets of the universe — from supergravity to supersymmetry, from quantum theory to M-theory, from holography to duality. In this exciting intellectual adventure he seeks “to combine Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity and… read more

Build A Remote-Controlled Robot

February 7, 2011

buildremotecontrolrobot

Author:
David R. Shircliff
Publisher:
McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics (2002)

How to build a remote controlled roving person shaped device complete with vacuum cleaner and beverage dispenser.  The book is written by a teacher who answers questions you might ask, and who emphasizes the fun aspect of building robots.  This book bypasses history, design, or electronics theory and simply gets right to the heart of building the robot with an air of happiness.

Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution

July 16, 2010

Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution

Author:
Francis Fukuyama
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux (2002)

Amazon | Fukuyama (The End of History and the Last Man; Trust) is no stranger to controversial theses, and here he advances two: that there are sound nonreligious reasons to put limits on biotechnology, and that such limits can be enforced. Fukuyama argues that “the most significant threat” from biotechnology is “the possibility that it will alter human nature and thereby move us into a ‘posthuman’ stage of history.”… read more

Redesigning Humans: Choosing Our Genes, Changing Our Future

November 22, 2013

Redesigning humas

Author:
Gregory Stock
Publisher:
Mariner Books (2003)

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | A groundbreaking work, Redesigning Humans tackles the controversial subject of engineering the human germline — the process of permanently altering the genetic code of an individual so that the changes are passed on to the offspring. Gregory Stock, an expert on the implications of recent advances in reproductive biology, has glimpsed the inevitable future of biomedical engineering.

Within decades, Stock asserts, technological advances will bring… read more

Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs Novels)

February 3, 2011

alteredcarboncover

Author:
Richard K. Morgan
Publisher:
Del Rey (2003)

Amazon | In the twenty-fifth century, humankind has spread throughout the galaxy, monitored by the watchful eye of the U.N. While divisions in race, religion, and class still exist, advances in technology have redefined life itself. Now, assuming one can afford the expensive procedure, a person’s consciousness can be stored in a cortical stack at the base of the brain and easily downloaded into a new body… read more

The Next Big Thing Is Really Small: How Nanotechnology Will Change the Future of Your Business

July 16, 2010

The Next Big Thing Is Really Small: How Nanotechnology Will Change the Future of Your Business

Author:
Jack Uldrich
Publisher:
Crown Business (2003)

Amazon | Ever heard of self-cleaning floor tiles and windows? Or mirrors that won’t fog up in the shower? What about army uniforms that can “monitor a soldier’s health, detect and detoxify chemical agents, heat and cool the soldier… and independently generate power so the soldier can remain in constant communication with headquarters”? According to Uldrich, director of the Minnesota Office of Strategic and Long-Range Planning, and nuclear physicist… read more

Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies, and the Future of Human Intelligence

May 8, 2013

Natural Born Cyborgs

Author:
Andy Clark
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA (2003)

From Robocop to the Terminator to Eve 8, no image better captures our deepest fears about technology than the cyborg, the person who is both flesh and metal, brain and electronics. But philosopher and cognitive scientist Andy Clark sees it differently. Cyborgs, he writes, are not something to be feared–we already are cyborgs.

In Natural-Born Cyborgs, Clark argues that what makes humans so different from other species is our… 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

Self-Organization in Biological Systems

April 20, 2011

Self-Organization in Biological Systems book cover

Author:
Scott Camazine, Jean-Louis Deneubourg, Nigel R. Franks
Publisher:
Princeton University Press (2003)

Amazon | The synchronized flashing of fireflies at night. The spiraling patterns of an aggregating slime mold. The anastomosing network of army-ant trails. The coordinated movements of a school of fish. Researchers are finding in such patterns — phenomena that have fascinated naturalists for centuries — a fertile new approach to understanding biological systems: the study of self-organization. This book, a primer on self-organization in biological systems for students and… read more

Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots

February 3, 2011

absolutebeginnersguide

Author:
Gareth Branwyn
Publisher:
Que (2003)

If you have an interest in robotics, but not sure how to get started, this could be the right book to get past that hurdle. It covers basic skills like soldering and programming, and steps you through how to build three simple robots.  The reader is gently led through an easy to follow robot building procedure with a list and photo of the parts needed to build the… read more

Robot Building for Dummies

February 7, 2011

robotbuildingfordummies

Author:
Roger Arrick, Nancy Stevenson
Publisher:
For Dummies/John Wiley & Sons (2003)

Discover what robots can do and how they work. Find out how to build your own robot and program it to perform tasks with Robot Building for Dummies. Learn to build robots the “Dummies” way with explanations in plain English, icons and other navigational aids, tear-out cheat sheet, top ten lists, and a dash of humor and fun. The book walks you through building your very own… read more

Does IT Matter? Information Technology and the Corrosion of Competitive Advantage

February 3, 2011

doesITmatter

Author:
Nicholas G. Carr
Publisher:
Harvard Business Press (1970)

Amazon | A bold manifesto on the future of Information Technology. Over the last decade, and even since the bursting of the technology bubble, pundits, consultants, and thought leaders have argued that information technology provides the edge necessary for business success. IT expert Nicholas G. Carr offers a radically different view in this eloquent and explosive book. As IT’s power and presence have grown, he argues, its strategic… read more

Enough: Staying Human in an Engineered Age

July 16, 2010

Enough: Staying Human in an Engineered Age

Author:
Bill McKibben
Publisher:
St. Martin's Griffin (2004)

Amazon | In 1989, McKibben published The End of Nature, a gorgeously written and galvanizing book about the true cost of global warming, the destruction of the ozone layer and other man-made ills-the loss of wild nature and with it the priceless aspect of our humanity that evolved to listen to and heed it. Now McKibben applies the same passion, scholarship and free-ranging thought to a subject that even… read more

A Shortcut Through Time: The Path to the Quantum Computer

September 9, 2010

shortcut through time

Author:
George Johnson
Publisher:
Vintage Books (2004)

Amazon | In this remarkably illustrative and thoroughly accessible look at one of the most intriguing frontiers in science and computers, award-winning New York Times writer George Johnson reveals the fascinating world of quantum computing—the holy grail of super computers where the computing power of single atoms is harnassed to create machines capable of almost unimaginable calculations in the blink of an eye.

As computer chips continue to… read more

Build Your Own Humanoid Robots: 6 Amazing and Affordable Projects

February 7, 2011

buildyourownhumanoidrobots

Author:
Karl Williams
Publisher:
McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics (2004)

This unique guide to sophisticated robotics projects brings humanoid robot construction home to the hobbyist. Written by a well-known figure in the robotics community, Build Your Own Humanoid Robots provides step-by-step directions for 6 exciting projects, each costing less than $300: Robotic Arm, Wrist, and Hand; Personal Computer Interface; Visual Basic Control Software; Voice Recognition Control; Expressive, Speaking Face; Bipedal Walking Robot. Together, these projects form the… read more

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