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The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress

November 5, 2012

The World As It Is

Author:
Chris Hedges
Publisher:
Nation Books (2011)

Drawing on two decades of experience as a war correspondent and based on his numerous columns for Truthdig, Chris Hedges presents The World As It Is, a panorama of the American empire at home and abroad, from the coarsening effect of America’s War on Terror to the front lines in the Middle East and South Asia and the continuing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Underlying his reportage is a constant… read more

2012 State of the Future

October 24, 2012

2012-stateofthefuture

Author:
Jerome C. Glenn, Theodore J. Gordon
Publisher:
The Millennium Project (2012)

The 2012 State of the Future is a concise, readable overview of the global situation, problems, solutions, and prospects for the future. It covers the global landscape with two-page overviews with regional considerations of 15 global challenges such as energy, food, science & technology, ethics, development, water, organized crime, health, decisionmaking, gender relations, demographics, war & peace, and others. These together with the executive summary are ideal… read more

The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined

November 27, 2012

The Better Angels of Our Nature

Author:
Steven Pinker
Publisher:
Penguin Books (2012)

A provocative history of violence—from the New York Times bestselling author of The Stuff of Thought and The Blank Slate

Believe it or not, today we may be living in the most peaceful moment in our species’ existence. In his gripping and controversial new work, New York Times bestselling author Steven Pinker shows that despite the ceaseless news about war, crime, and terrorism, violence has actually been in decline over long stretches of history.… 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

Nanomedical Device and Systems Design: Challenges, Possibilities, Visions

May 1, 2013

Nanomedical Device and Systems Design

Author:
Frank Boehm
Publisher:
CRC Press (2013)

This unique book addresses issues pertaining to nanomedical devices and systems design in terms of challenges, possibilities, and future vision. It examines what it takes to design, fabricate, and functionalize autonomous micron-scale, robotic medical devices (having nanometric-scale components) and what perceived hurdles must be overcome to foster their development and implementation. The book investigates device deployment and recovery strategies, as well as protocols for their safe and failsafe operation… read more

Biopunk: DIY Scientists Hack the Software of Life

April 25, 2011

biopunk

Author:
Marcus Wohlsen
Publisher:
Current Hardcover (2011)

The most disruptive force on the planet resides in DNA. Biotech companies and academic researchers are just beginning to unlock the potential of piecing together life from scratch.

Champions of synthetic biology believe that turning genetic code into Lego-like blocks to build never-before-seen organisms could solve the thorniest challenges in medicine, energy, and environmental protection.

But as the hackers who cracked open the potential of the personal… read more

When Gadgets Betray Us: The Dark Side of Our Infatuation With New Technologies

May 6, 2011

When Gadgets Betray Us

Author:
Robert Vamosi
Publisher:
Basic Books (2011)

Amazon | Technology is evolving faster than we are. As our mobile phones, mp3 players, cars, and digital cameras become more and more complex, we understand less and less about how they actually work and what personal details these gadgets might reveal about us.

Robert Vamosi, an award-winning journalist and analyst who has been covering digital security issues for more than a decade, shows us the dark… 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 Winter of Our Disconnect: How Three Totally Wired Teenagers (and a Mother Who Slept with Her iPhone)Pulled the Plug on Their Technology and Lived to Tell the Tale

January 25, 2011

The Winter of Our Disconnect

Author:
Susan Maushart
Publisher:
Tarcher (2011)

Amazon | The wise and hilarious story of a family who discovered that having fewer tools to communicate with led them to actually communicate more.

When Susan Maushart first announced her intention to pull the plug on her family’s entire armory of electronic weaponry for six months — from the itsy-bitsiest iPod Shuffle to her son’s seriously souped-up gaming PC — her three kids didn’t blink an eye.… read more

Smart Machines: IBM’s Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing

October 18, 2013

Smart machines

Author:
John E. Kelly III, Steve Hamm
Publisher:
Columbia University Press (2013)

We are crossing a new frontier in the evolution of computing and entering the era of cognitive systems. The victory of IBM’s Watson on the television quiz show Jeopardy! revealed how scientists and engineers at IBM and elsewhere are pushing the boundaries of science and technology to create machines that sense, learn, reason, and interact with people in new ways to provide insight and advice.

In Smart Machines, John E. Kelly… read more

The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains

September 7, 2010

theshallows

Author:
Nicholas G. Carr
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company (2010)

Amazon | The best-selling author of The Big Switch returns with an explosive look at technology’s effect on the mind. “Is Google making us stupid?” When Nicholas Carr posed that question, in a celebrated Atlantic Monthly cover story, he tapped into a well of anxiety about how the Internet is changing us. He also crystallized one of the most important debates of our time: As we enjoy the… read more

Immortality Wars (digital novel)

June 20, 2012

immortality_wars

Author:
Joe Tripician
Publisher:
Amazon Digital Services (2012)

What is it about the Singularity that causes such controversy and conflict? In an age where nanotechnology and stem cells could greatly extend human life, and where human-to-computer mind upload is discussed as casually as the latest iPad app, the Singularity may not be all it’s cracked up to be.

Award-winning author and filmmaker Joe Tripician offers up a tantalizing, satric and cautionary tale of one… read more

Who Owns the Future?

May 7, 2013

who_owns_the_future

Author:
Jaron Lanier
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster (2013)

The Dazzling New Masterwork from the Prophet of Silicon Valley

Jaron Lanier is the bestselling author of You Are Not a Gadget, the father of virtual reality, and one of the most influential thinkers of our time. For decades, Lanier has drawn on his expertise and experience as a computer scientist, musician, and digital media pioneer to predict the revolutionary ways in which technology is transforming our culture.… 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

Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence

October 30, 2013

Hardwiring Happiness

Author:
Rick Hanson
Publisher:
Harmony (2013)

Why is it easier to ruminate over hurt feelings than it is to bask in the warmth of being appreciated?

Because your brain evolved to learn quickly from bad experiences but slowly from the good ones.

You can change this.

Hardwiring Happiness lays out a simple method that uses the hidden power of everyday experiences to build new neural structures full of happiness, love, confidence, and… read more

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