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The next Fifty Years: Science in the First Half of the Twenty-first Centuryby John Brockman
Synopses & Reviews
A brilliant ensemble of the world’s most visionary scientists provides twenty-five original never-before-published essays about the advances in science and technology that we may see within our lifetimes.
Theoretical physicist and bestselling author Paul Davies examines the likelihood that by the year 2050 we will be able to establish a continuing human presence on Mars. Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi investigates the ramifications of engineering high-IQ, geneticially happy babies. Psychiatrist Nancy Etcoff explains current research into the creation of emotion-sensing jewelry that could gauge our moods and tell us when to take an anti-depressant pill. And evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins explores the probability that we will soon be able to obtain a genome printout that predicts our natural end for the same cost as a chest x-ray. (Will we want to read it? And will insurance companies and governments have access to it?) This fascinating and unprecedented book explores not only the practical possibilities of the near future, but also the social and political ramifications of the developments of the strange new world to come.
Also includes original essays by:
Marc D. Hauser
Robert M. Sapolsky
John H. Holland
Roger C. Schank
Judith Rich Harris
Paul W. Ewald
Collects twenty-five previously unpublished essays by top visionary scientists on the advances that may be anticipated in the next half century, making predictions about what such accomplishments will mean to everyday society and human beliefs about life and its origins. Original. 50,000 first printing.
John Brockman lives in New York City.
Table of Contents
pt. 1. The future, in theory — The future of the nature of the universe / Lee Smolin — Cosmological challenges: are we alone, and where? / Martin Rees — The mathematics of 2050 / Ian Stewart — In the shadow of culture / Brian Goodwin — Swappable minds / Marc D. Hauser — What children will teach scientists / Alison Gopnik — Toward a theory of moral development / Paul Bloom — The science of subtlety / Geoffrey Miller — The future of happiness / Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi — Will we still be sad fifty years from now? / Robert M. Sapolsky — Fermi's "little discovery" and the future of chaos and complexity theory / Steven Strogatz — What is life? / Stuart Kauffman — pt. 2. The future, in practice — Son of Moore's law / Richard Dawkins — Was there a second genesis? / Paul Davies — What is to come and how to predict it / John H. Holland — The merger of flesh and machines / Rodney Brooks — The future of matter / Peter Atkins — Are we going to get smarter? / Roger C. Schank — The complexity ceiling / Jaron Lanier --Tapping into the beam / David Gelernter — Mind, brain, and self / Joseph Ledoux — What makes us the way we are: the view from 2050 / Judith Rich Harris — Drugs, DNA, and the Analyst's couch / Samuel Barondes — Brain scans, wearables, and brief encounter / Nancy Etcoff --Mastering disease / Paul W. Ewald.
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History and Social Science » Sociology » Future Studies