• Computers

To Be a Machine

Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers, and the Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death
Author: Mark O'Connell
Publisher: Anchor
ISBN: 110191159X
Category: Computers
Page: 256
View: 2401
"A globe-spanning investigation into the Transhumanist movement, considering the tech billionaires, scientific luminaries, and DIY body-hackers attempting to prolong, improve, and ultimately transcend the limits of human life"--

    • Computers

To Be a Machine

Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers, and the Futurists Solving theModest Problem of Death
Author: Mark O'Connell
Publisher: Anchor
ISBN: 0385540426
Category: Computers
Page: 256
View: 5244
“This gonzo-journalistic exploration of the Silicon Valley techno-utopians’ pursuit of escaping mortality is a breezy romp full of colorful characters.” —New York Times Book Review (Editor's Choice) Transhumanism is a movement pushing the limits of our bodies—our capabilities, intelligence, and lifespans—in the hopes that, through technology, we can become something better than ourselves. It has found support among Silicon Valley billionaires and some of the world’s biggest businesses. In To Be a Machine, journalist Mark O'Connell explores the staggering possibilities and moral quandaries that present themselves when you of think of your body as a device. He visits the world's foremost cryonics facility to witness how some have chosen to forestall death. He discovers an underground collective of biohackers, implanting electronics under their skin to enhance their senses. He meets a team of scientists urgently investigating how to protect mankind from artificial superintelligence. Where is our obsession with technology leading us? What does the rise of AI mean not just for our offices and homes, but for our humanity? Could the technologies we create to help us eventually bring us to harm? Addressing these questions, O'Connell presents a profound, provocative, often laugh-out-loud-funny look at an influential movement. In investigating what it means to be a machine, he offers a surprising meditation on what it means to be human.

    • Computers

To Be a Machine

Adventures Among Cyborgs, Utopians, Hackers, and the Futurists Solving the Modest Problem of Death
Author: Mark O'Connell
Publisher: Granta Books
ISBN: 1783781971
Category: Computers
Page: 241
View: 1085
WINNER OF THE WELLCOME BOOK PRIZE 2018 Shortlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize 2017 A stunning new non-fiction voice tackles an urgent question... what next for mankind? 'Troubling and humorous, this is one of my current give-it-to-everyone books - I buy six copies at a time' Jeanette Winterson

    • Family & Relationships

The Gene Machine

How Genetic Technologies Are Changing the Way We Have Kids--and the Kids We Have
Author: Bonnie Rochman
Publisher: Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374713960
Category: Family & Relationships
Page: 288
View: 8502
A sharp-eyed exploration of the promise and peril of having children in an age of genetic tests and interventions Is screening for disease in an embryo a humane form of family planning or a slippery slope toward eugenics? Should doctors tell you that your infant daughter is genetically predisposed to breast cancer? If tests revealed that your toddler has a genetic mutation whose significance isn’t clear, would you want to know? In The Gene Machine, the award-winning journalist Bonnie Rochman deftly explores these hot-button questions, guiding us through the new frontier of gene technology and how it is transforming medicine, bioethics, health care, and the factors that shape a family. Rochman tells the stories of scientists working to unlock the secrets of the human genome; genetic counselors and spiritual advisers guiding mothers and fathers through life-changing choices; and, of course, parents (including Rochman herself) grappling with revelations that are sometimes joyous, sometimes heartbreaking, but always profound. She navigates the dizzying and constantly expanding array of prenatal and postnatal tests, from carrier screening to genome sequencing, while considering how access to more tests is altering perceptions of disability and changing the conversation about what sort of life is worth living and who draws the line. Along the way, she highlights the most urgent ethical quandary: Is this technology a triumph of modern medicine or a Pandora’s box of possibilities? Propelled by human narratives and meticulously reported, The Gene Machine is both a scientific road map and a meditation on our power to shape the future. It is a book that gets to the very core of what it means to be human.

    • Medical

Modern Death

How Medicine Changed the End of Life
Author: Haider Warraich
Publisher: Gerald Duckworth & Co
ISBN: 0715652400
Category: Medical
Page: 336
View: 4160
Nothing is more certain in life than death. Yet recent advances in medicine and technology have dramatically increased our life expectancy, and everything about when, where, how and why we die has changed. The result is that dying is today a more prolonged and harrowing experience than ever before. In Modern Death, the physician and clinical researcher Haider Warraich draws on his expert personal experience as well as on history, culture, theology and legal theory, to tackle important ethical questions that go right to the heart of what it is to be human. He reveals what dying really means in today’s medical industrial complex, discusses the ethics of patient proxies, living wills and the right to die, and argues in favour of giving terminally ill patients the right to physician-assisted death. Written by an insightful, new voice in the conversation about death and dying, Modern Death is a heartfelt and inspiring book offering an unabashedly honest perspective, exploring how we can and must do better by the ones we love.

    • Biography & Autobiography

Mayhem


Author: Sigrid Rausing
Publisher: Knopf
ISBN: 0451493125
Category: Biography & Autobiography
Page: 224
View: 9712
A searingly powerful memoir about the impact of addiction on a family. In the summer of 2012 a woman named Eva was found dead in the London townhouse she shared with her husband, Hans K. Rausing. The couple had struggled with drug addiction for years, often under the glare of tabloid headlines. Now, writing with singular clarity and restraint, Hans' sister, the editor and publisher Sigrid Rausing, tries to make sense of what happened. In Mayhem, she asks the difficult questions those close to the world of addiction must face. "Who can help the addict, consumed by a shaming hunger, a need beyond control? There is no medicine: the drugs are the medicine. And who can help their families, so implicated in the self-destruction of the addict? Who can help when the very notion of 'help' becomes synonymous with an exercise of power; a familial police state; an end to freedom, in the addict's mind?" An eloquent and timely attempt to understand the conundrum of addiction--and a memoir as devastating as it is riveting.

    • Health & Fitness

In Pursuit of Memory

The Fight Against Alzheimer's
Author: Joseph Jebelli
Publisher: Little, Brown
ISBN: 0316398969
Category: Health & Fitness
Page: 320
View: 6123
For readers of Atul Gawande, Siddhartha Mukherjee, and Henry Marsh, a riveting, gorgeously written biography of one of history's most fascinating and confounding diseases--Alzheimer's--from its discovery more than 100 years ago to today's race towards a cure. SHORTLISTED FOR THE ROYAL SOCIETY SCIENCE BOOK PRIZE 2017 Named "Science Book of the Month" by Bookseller Alzheimer's is the great global epidemic of our time, affecting millions worldwide -- there are more than 5 million people diagnosed in the US alone. And as our population ages, scientists are working against the clock to find a cure. Neuroscientist Joseph Jebelli is among them. His beloved grandfather had Alzheimer's and now he's written the book he needed then -- a very human history of this frightening disease. But In Pursuit of Memory is also a thrilling scientific detective story that takes you behind the headlines. Jebelli's quest takes us from nineteenth-century Germany and post-war England, to the jungles of Papua New Guinea and the technological proving grounds of Japan; through America, India, China, Iceland, Sweden, and Colombia. Its heroes are scientists from around the world -- many of whom he's worked with -- and the brave patients and families who have changed the way that researchers think about the disease. This compelling insider's account shows vividly why Jebelli feels so hopeful about a cure, but also why our best defense in the meantime is to understand the disease. In Pursuit of Memory is a clever, moving, eye-opening guide to the threat one in three of us faces now.

    • Science

Dolphin Confidential

Confessions of a Field Biologist
Author: Maddalena Bearzi
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226040186
Category: Science
Page: 216
View: 8159
Who hasn’t fantasized about the unique thrill of working among charismatic and clever dolphins in the wild? Now we no longer have to rely solely on our imaginations . With Dolphin Confidential, Maddalena Bearzi invites all of us shore-bound dreamers to join her and travel alongside the dolphins. In this fascinating account, she takes us inside the world of a marine scientist and offers a firsthand understanding of marine mammal behavior, as well as the frustrations, delights, and creativity that make up dolphin research. In this intimate narrative, Bearzi recounts her experiences at sea, tracing her own evolution as a woman and a scientist from her earliest travails to her transformation into an advocate for conservation and dolphin protection. These compelling, in-depth descriptions of her fieldwork also present a captivating look into dolphin social behavior and intelligence. The central part of the book is devoted to the metropolitan bottlenose dolphins of California, as Bearzi draws on her extensive experience to offer insights into the daily lives of these creatures—as well as the difficulties involved in collecting the data that transforms hunches into hypotheses and eventually scientific facts. The book closes by addressing the critical environmental and conservation problems facing these magnificent, socially complex, highly intelligent, and emotional beings. An honest, down-to-earth analysis of what it means to be a marine biologist in the field today, Dolphin Confidential offers an entertaining, refreshingly candid, and always informative description of life among the dolphins.

    • Science

The Body Builders

Inside the Science of the Engineered Human
Author: Adam Piore
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062347160
Category: Science
Page: 400
View: 9308
Fareed Zakaria GPS Book of the Week Weaving together vivid storytelling and groundbreaking science, The Body Builders explores the current revolution in human augmentation, which is helping us to triumph over the limitations and constraints we have long accepted as an inevitable part of being human For millennia, humans have tried—and often failed—to master nature and transcend our limits. But this has started to change. The new scientific frontier is the human body: the greatest engineers of our generation have turned their sights inward, and their work is beginning to revolutionize mankind. In The Body Builders, Adam Piore takes us on a fascinating journey into the field of bioengineering—which can be used to reverse engineer, rebuild, and augment human beings—and paints a vivid portrait of the people at its center. Chronicling the ways new technology has retooled our physical expectations and mental processes, Piore visits people who have regrown parts of their fingers and legs in the wake of terrible traumas, tries on a muscle suit that allows him to lift ninety pounds with his fingertips, dips into the race to create “Viagra for the brain,” and shadows the doctors trying to give mute patients the ability to communicate telepathically. As science continues to lay bare the mysteries of human performance, it is helping us to see—and exist—above our expectations. The Body Builders will take readers beyond the headlines and the hype to introduce them to the inner workings and the outer reaches of our bodies and minds, and explore how new developments are changing, and will forever change, what is possible for humankind.

    • Science

Super You

How Technology is Revolutionizing What It Means to Be Human
Author: Andy Walker,Kay Svela Walker,Sean Carruthers
Publisher: Que Publishing
ISBN: 0133790703
Category: Science
Page: 352
View: 4491
Rewind Your Biology and Live Like a 20-Year-Old! Edit Your Genes to Live Disease-Free! Find a Parking Space with Your Internet-Connected Brain! Advances in longevity, genetics, nanotech, and robotics will make all this possible! This is not science fiction. This is your future. Right now, pioneering scientists and technologists are transforming what it means to be human by overcoming biological limits that have existed since our ancestors swung out of the trees…and into the suburbs. With incredible inspiration and perseverance, these visionaries are solving deep problems of human health and longevity—and their progress is accelerating. Super You takes you inside their labs, companies, and minds…to show how you can reap the benefits of a stronger, longer, better, life. You’ll learn how to start hacking your life today, to become more super, every day. Discover what’s possible when yesterday’s human limits are gone! Learn how evolution became obsolete—and why it’s time to start hacking yourself Save your life with whirring “jet engine” hearts, printed organs, and other medical miracles Rewire and turbo-boost your ape brain Become a mega-mind by connecting your brain directly to the Internet to use Google’s synthetic neocortex Become superhuman with cyborg technology Design and mold your looks Genetically engineer your baby to be a tennis star (and other true stories) Prepare for the political and religious backlash against the future Discover how scientists will make death obsolete by treating it like a curable disease—and how to live until they do

    • Self-Help

With the End in Mind

Dying, Death, and Wisdom in an Age of Denial
Author: Kathryn Mannix
Publisher: Little, Brown
ISBN: 031650453X
Category: Self-Help
Page: 352
View: 3509
For readers of Atul Gawande and Paul Kalanithi, a palliative care doctor's breathtaking stories from 30 years spent caring for the dying. Modern medical technology is allowing us to live longer and fuller lives than ever before. And for the most part, that is good news. But with changes in the way we understand medicine come changes in the way we understand death. Once a familiar and gentle process, death has come to be something from which we shy away, preferring to fight it desperately than to accept its inevitability. Palliative care has a long tradition in Britain, where Dr. Kathryn Mannix has practiced it for 30 years. In this book, she shares beautifully crafted stories from a lifetime of caring for the dying. With insightful meditations on life, death, and the space between them, With the End in Mind describes the possibility of meeting death gently, with forethought and preparation, and shows the unexpected beauty, dignity, and profound humanity of life coming to an end.

    • Medical

The Transhumanist Reader

Classical and Contemporary Essays on the Science, Technology, and Philosophy of the Human Future
Author: Max More,Natasha Vita-More
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118555996
Category: Medical
Page: 480
View: 2170
The first authoritative and comprehensive survey of the origins and current state of transhumanist thinking The rapid pace of emerging technologies is playing an increasingly important role in overcoming fundamental human limitations. Featuring core writings by seminal thinkers in the speculative possibilities of the posthuman condition, essays address key philosophical arguments for and against human enhancement, explore the inevitability of life extension, and consider possible solutions to the growing issues of social and ethical implications and concerns. Edited by the internationally acclaimed founders of the philosophy and social movement of transhumanism, The Transhumanist Reader is an indispensable guide to our current state of knowledge of the quest to expand the frontiers of human nature.

    • Technology & Engineering

Life 3.0

Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
Author: Max Tegmark
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 1101946601
Category: Technology & Engineering
Page: 384
View: 9176
New York Times Best Seller How will Artificial Intelligence affect crime, war, justice, jobs, society and our very sense of being human? The rise of AI has the potential to transform our future more than any other technology—and there’s nobody better qualified or situated to explore that future than Max Tegmark, an MIT professor who’s helped mainstream research on how to keep AI beneficial. How can we grow our prosperity through automation without leaving people lacking income or purpose? What career advice should we give today’s kids? How can we make future AI systems more robust, so that they do what we want without crashing, malfunctioning or getting hacked? Should we fear an arms race in lethal autonomous weapons? Will machines eventually outsmart us at all tasks, replacing humans on the job market and perhaps altogether? Will AI help life flourish like never before or give us more power than we can handle? What sort of future do you want? This book empowers you to join what may be the most important conversation of our time. It doesn’t shy away from the full range of viewpoints or from the most controversial issues—from superintelligence to meaning, consciousness and the ultimate physical limits on life in the cosmos.

    • Fiction

Gravel Heart


Author: Abdulrazak Gurnah
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1408881314
Category: Fiction
Page: 272
View: 7686
Moving from revolutionary Zanzibar in the 1960s to restless London in the 1990s, Gravel Heart is a powerful story of exile, migration and betrayal, from the Booker Prize-shortlisted author of Paradise Salim has always believed that his father does not want him. Living with his parents and his adored Uncle Amir in a house full of secrets, he is a bookish child, a dreamer haunted by night terrors. It is the 1970s and Zanzibar is changing. Tourists arrive, the island's white sands obscuring the memory of recent conflict: longed-for independence from British colonialism swiftly followed by bloody revolution. When his father moves out, retreating into dishevelled introspection, Salim is confused and ashamed. His mother explains neither this nor her absences with a strange man; silence is layered on silence. When glamorous Uncle Amir, now a senior diplomat, offers Salim an escape, the lonely teenager travels to London for college. But nothing has prepared him for the biting cold and seething crowds of this hostile city. Struggling to find a foothold, and to understand the darkness at the heart of his family, Salim must face devastating truths about himself and those closest to him – and about love, sex and power. Evoking the immigrant experience with unsentimental precision and profound insight, Gravel Heart is a powerfully affecting story of isolation, identity, belonging and betrayal, and is Abulrazak Gurnah's most dazzling achievement.

    • Science

Stalin and the Scientists

A History of Triumph and Tragedy, 1905–1953
Author: Simon Ings
Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
ISBN: 0802189865
Category: Science
Page: 528
View: 6372
Scientists throughout history, from Galileo to today’s experts on climate change, have often had to contend with politics in their pursuit of knowledge. But in the Soviet Union, where the ruling elites embraced, patronized, and even fetishized science like never before, scientists lived their lives on a knife edge. The Soviet Union had the best-funded scientific establishment in history. Scientists were elevated as popular heroes and lavished with awards and privileges. But if their ideas or their field of study lost favor with the elites, they could be exiled, imprisoned, or murdered. And yet they persisted, making major contributions to 20th century science. Stalin and the Scientists tells the story of the many gifted scientists who worked in Russia from the years leading up to the Revolution through the death of the “Great Scientist” himself, Joseph Stalin. It weaves together the stories of scientists, politicians, and ideologues into an intimate and sometimes horrifying portrait of a state determined to remake the world. They often wreaked great harm. Stalin was himself an amateur botanist, and by falling under the sway of dangerous charlatans like Trofim Lysenko (who denied the existence of genes), and by relying on antiquated ideas of biology, he not only destroyed the lives of hundreds of brilliant scientists, he caused the death of millions through famine. But from atomic physics to management theory, and from radiation biology to neuroscience and psychology, these Soviet experts also made breakthroughs that forever changed agriculture, education, and medicine. A masterful book that deepens our understanding of Russian history, Stalin and the Scientists is a great achievement of research and storytelling, and a gripping look at what happens when science falls prey to politics.

    • Technology & Engineering

Soonish

Ten Emerging Technologies That'll Improve and/or Ruin Everything
Author: Kelly Weinersmith,Zach Weinersmith
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0399563830
Category: Technology & Engineering
Page: 368
View: 4658
The instant New York Times bestseller! A Wall Street Journal Best Science Book of the Year! A Popular Science Best Science Book of the Year! From a top scientist and the creator of the hugely popular web comic Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, a hilariously illustrated investigation into future technologies -- from how to fling a ship into deep space on the cheap to 3D organ printing What will the world of tomorrow be like? How does progress happen? And why do we not have a lunar colony already? What is the hold-up? In this smart and funny book, celebrated cartoonist Zach Weinersmith and noted researcher Dr. Kelly Weinersmith give us a snapshot of what's coming next -- from robot swarms to nuclear fusion powered-toasters. By weaving their own research, interviews with the scientists who are making these advances happen, and Zach's trademark comics, the Weinersmiths investigate why these technologies are needed, how they would work, and what is standing in their way. New technologies are almost never the work of isolated geniuses with a neat idea. A given future technology may need any number of intermediate technologies to develop first, and many of these critical advances may appear to be irrelevant when they are first discovered. The journey to progress is full of strange detours and blind alleys that tell us so much about the human mind and the march of civilization. To this end, Soonish investigates ten different emerging fields, from programmable matter to augmented reality, from space elevators to robotic construction, to show us the amazing world we will have, you know, soonish. Soonish is the perfect gift for science lovers for the holidays!

The Poetry of Pop


Author: Adam Bradley
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300165021
Category:
Page: 424
View: 3530
From Tin Pan Alley to the Beatles to Beyonc�, "Mr. Bradley skillfully breaks down a century of standards and pop songs into their elements to reveal the interaction of craft and art in composition and performance." (The Wall Street Journal) Encompassing a century of recorded music, this pathbreaking book reveals the poetic artistry of popular songs. Pop songs are music first. They also comprise the most widely disseminated poetic expression of our time. Adam Bradley traces the song lyric across musical genres from early twentieth-century Delta blues to mid-century rock 'n' roll to today's hits. George and Ira Gershwin's "Fascinating Rhythm." The Rolling Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction." Rihanna's "Diamonds." These songs are united in their exacting attention to the craft of language and sound. Bradley shows that pop music is a poetry that must be heard more than read, uncovering the rhythms, rhymes, and metaphors expressed in the singing voice. At once a work of musical interpretation, cultural analysis, literary criticism, and personal storytelling, this book illustrates how words and music come together to produce compelling poetry, often where we least expect it.

    • Science

New Romantic Cyborgs

Romanticism, Information Technology, and the End of the Machine
Author: Mark Coeckelbergh
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262035464
Category: Science
Page: 336
View: 7028
An account of the complex relationship between technology and romanticism that links nineteenth-century monsters, automata, and mesmerism with twenty-first-century technology's magic devices and romantic cyborgs.

    • Science fiction

The Transhumanist Wager


Author: Zoltan Istvan
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780988616110
Category: Science fiction
Page: 297
View: 882
Philosopher, entrepreneur, and former National Geographic and New York Times correspondent Zoltan Istvan presents his visionary novel, The Transhumanist Wager, as a seminal statement of our times. Scorned by over 500 publishers and literary agents around the world, his philosophical thriller has been called "revolutionary" and "socially dangerous" by readers, scholars, and religious authorities. The novel debuts a challenging original philosophy, which rebuffs modern civilization by inviting the end of the human species-and declaring the onset of something greater. Set in the present day, the novel tells the story of transhumanist Jethro Knights and his unwavering quest for immortality via science and technology. Fighting against him are fanatical religious groups, economically depressed governments, and mystic Zoe Bach: a dazzling trauma surgeon and the love of his life, whose belief in spirituality and the afterlife is absolute. Exiled from America and reeling from personal tragedy, Knights forges a new nation of willing scientists on the world's largest seasteading project, Transhumania. When the world declares war against the floating city, demanding an end to its renegade and godless transhuman experiments and ambitions, Knights strikes back, leaving the planet forever changed.

    • Political Science

The Econocracy

On the Perils of Leaving Economics to the Experts
Author: Joe Earle,Cahal Moran,Zach Ward-Perkins
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141986883
Category: Political Science
Page: 240
View: 3448
A century ago, the idea of 'the economy' didn't exist. Now economics is the supreme ideology of our time, with its own rules and language. The trouble is, most of us can't speak it. This is damaging democracy. Dangerous agendas are hidden inside mathematical wrappers; controversial policies are presented as 'proven' by the models of economic 'science'. Government is being turned over to a publicly unaccountable technocratic elite. The Econocracy reveals that economics is too important to be left to the economists - and shows us how we can begin to participate more fully in the decisions which affect all our futures.