Cybernetics, the science of communication and control as it applies to machines and to humans;originates from efforts during World War II to build automatic anti-aircraft systems. Following the war, this science extended beyond military needs to examine all systems that rely on information and feedback, from the level of the cell to that of society. In The Cybernetics Moment, Ronald R. Kline, a senior historian of technology, examines the intellectual and cultural history of cybernetics and information theory, whose language of "information," "feedback," and "control" transformed the idiom of the sciences, hastened the development of information technologies, and laid the conceptual foundation for what we now call the Information Age. Kline argues that, for about twenty years after 1950, the growth of cybernetics and information theory and ever-more-powerful computers produced a utopian information narrative;an enthusiasm for information science that influenced natural scientists, social scientists, engineers, humanists, policymakers, public intellectuals, and journalists, all of whom struggled to come to grips with new relationships between humans and intelligent machines. Kline traces the relationship between the invention of computers and communication systems and the rise, decline, and transformation of cybernetics by analyzing the lives and work of such notables as Norbert Wiener, Claude Shannon, Warren McCulloch, Margaret Mead, Gregory Bateson, and Herbert Simon. Ultimately, he reveals the crucial role played by the cybernetics moment when cybernetics and information theory were seen as universal sciences in setting the stage for our current preoccupation with information technologies.
"No single figure embodies Cold War science more than the renowned physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. Although other scientists may have been more influential in establishing the institutions and policies of the nuclear age, none has loomed larger in the popular imagination than the 'father of the atomic bomb.' Americans have been drawn to the story of the Manhattan Project Oppenheimer helped lead and riveted by the McCarthy-era politics that caught him in its crosshairs. Journalists and politicians, writers and artists have told Oppenheimer's story in many different ways since he first gained notoriety in 1945. In Storytelling and Science, David K. Hecht examines why they did so, and what they hoped to achieve through their stories. From the outset, accounts of Oppenheimer's life and work were deployed for multiple ends: to trumpet or denigrate the value of science, to settle old scores or advocate new policies, to register dissent or express anxieties. In these different renditions, Oppenheimer was alternately portrayed as hero and villain, establishment figure and principled outsider, 'destroyer of worlds' and humanist critic. Yet beneath the varying details of these stories, Hecht discerns important patterns in the way that audiences interpret, and often misinterpret, news about science. In the end, he argues, we find that science itself has surprisingly little to do with how its truths are assimilated by the public. Instead its meaning is shaped by narrative traditions and myths that frame how we think and write about it.
We live in a world of seeds. From our morning toast to the cotton in our clothes, they are quite literally the stuff and staff of life, supporting diets, economies, and civilizations around the globe. Just as the search for nutmeg and the humble peppercorn drove the Age of Discovery, so did coffee beans help fuel the Enlightenment, and cottonseed help spark the Industrial Revolution. And from the Fall of Rome to the Arab Spring, the fate of nations continues to hinge on the seeds of a Middle Eastern grass known as wheat. In nature and in culture, seeds are fundamental--objects of beauty, evolutionary wonder, and simple fascination. How many times has a child dropped the winged pip of a maple, marveling as it spirals its way down to the ground, or relished the way a gust of wind(or a stout breath) can send a dandelion’s feathery flotilla skyward? Yet despite their importance, seeds are often seen as a commonplace, their extraordinary natural and human histories overlooked. Thanks to Thor Hanson and this stunning new book, they can be overlooked no more. What makes The Triumph of Seeds remarkable is not just that it is informative, humane, hilarious, and even moving, just as what makes seeds remarkable is not simply their fundamental importance to life. In both cases, it is their sheer vitality and the delight that we can take in their existence--the opportunity to experience, as Hanson puts it, "the simple joy of seeing something beautiful, doing what it is meant to do.” Spanning the globe from the Raccoon Shack--Hanson’s backyard writing hideout-cum-laboratory--to the coffee shops of Seattle, from gardens and flower patches to the spice routes of Kerala, this is a book of knowledge, adventure, and wonder, spun by an award-winning writer with both the charm of a fireside story-teller and the hard-won expertise of a field biologist. A worthy heir to the grand tradition of Aldo Leopold and Bernd Heinrich, The Triumph of Seeds takes us on a fascinating scientific adventure through the wild and beautiful world of seeds. It is essential reading for anyone who loves to see a plant grow.
Our world today--from the phone in your pocket to the car that you drive, the allure of social media to the strategy of the Pentagon--has been shaped irrevocably by the technology of silicon transistors. Year after year, for half a century, these tiny switches have enabled ever-more startling capabilities. Their incredible proliferation has altered the course of human history as dramatically as any political or social revolution. At the heart of it all has been one quiet Californian: Gordon Moore. At Fairchild Semiconductor, his seminal Silicon Valley startup, Moore--a young chemist turned electronics entrepreneur--had the defining insight: silicon transistors, and microchips made of them, could make electronics profoundly cheap and immensely powerful. Microchips could double in power, then redouble again in clockwork fashion. History has borne out this insight, which we now call "Moore’s Law”, and Moore himself, having recognized it, worked endlessly to realize his vision. With Moore’s technological leadership at Fairchild and then at his second start-up, the Intel Corporation, the law has held for fifty years. The result is profound: from the days of enormous, clunky computers of limited capability to our new era, in which computers are placed everywhere from inside of our bodies to the surface of Mars. Moore led nothing short of a revolution. In Moore’s Law, Arnold Thackray, David C. Brock, and Rachel Jones give the authoritative account of Gordon Moore’s life and his role in the development both of Silicon Valley and the transformative technologies developed there. Told by a team of writers with unparalleled access to Moore, his family, and his contemporaries, this is the human story of man and a career that have had almost superhuman effects. The history of twentieth-century technology is littered with overblown "revolutions.” Moore’s Law is essential reading for anyone seeking to learn what a real revolution looks like.
A vibrant city-state on the Adriatic sea, Dubrovnik, also known as Ragusa, was a hub for the international trade between Europe and the Ottoman Empire. As a result, the city suffered frequent outbreaks of plague. Through a comprehensive analysis of these epidemics in Dubrovnik, Expelling the Plague explores the increasingly sophisticated plague control regulations that were adopted by the city and implemented by its health officials. In 1377, Dubrovnik became the first city in the world to develop and implement quarantine legislation, and in 1390 it established the earliest recorded permanent Health Office. The city s preoccupation with plague control and the powers granted to its Health Office led to a rich archival record chronicling the city s experience of plague, its attempts to safeguard public health, and the social effects of its practices of quarantine, prosecution, and punishment. These sources form the foundation of the authors' analysis, in particular the manuscript Libro deli Signori Chazamorbi, 1500-30, a rare health record of the 1526-27 calamitous plague epidemic. Teeming with real people across the spectrum, including gravediggers, laundresses, and plague survivors, it contains the testimonies collected during trial proceedings conducted by health officials against violators of public health regulations. Outlining the contributions of Dubrovnik in conceiving and establishing early public health measures in Europe, Expelling the Plague reveals how health concerns of the past greatly resemble contemporary anxieties about battling epidemics such as SARS, avian flu, and the Ebola virus."
Not so long ago, people North and South had little reason to believe that wealth from oil, gas, and coal brought anything but great prosperity. But the presumption of net benefits from fossil fuels is eroding as widening circles of people rich and poor experience the downside.A positive transition to a post-fossil fuel era cannot wait for global agreement, a swap-in of renewables, a miracle technology, a carbon market, or lifestyle change. This book shows that it is now possible to take the first step toward the post-fossil fuel era, by resisting the slow violence of extreme extraction and combustion, exiting the industry, and imagining a good life after fossil fuels. It shows how an environmental politics of transition might occur, arguing for going to the source rather than managing byproducts, for delegitimizing fossil fuels rather than accommodating them, for engaging a politics of deliberately choosing a post-fossil fuel world. Six case studies reveal how individuals, groups, communities, and an entire country have taken first steps out of the fossil fuel era, with experiments that range from leaving oil under the Amazon to ending mountaintop removal in Appalachia.
Unlike other barnyard animals, which pull plows, give eggs or milk, or grow wool, a pig produces only one thing: meat. Incredibly efficient at converting almost any organic matter into nourishing, delectable protein, swine are nothing short of a gastronomic godsend--yet their flesh is banned in many cultures, and the animals themselves are maligned as filthy, lazy brutes. As historian Mark Essig reveals in Lesser Beasts, swine have such a bad reputation for precisely the same reasons they are so valuable as a source of food: they are intelligent, self-sufficient, and omnivorous. What’s more, he argues, we ignore our historic partnership with these astonishing animals at our peril. Tracing the interplay of pig biology and human culture from Neolithic villages 10,000 years ago to modern industrial farms, Essig blends culinary and natural history to demonstrate the vast importance of the pig and the tragedy of its modern treatment at the hands of humans. Pork, Essig explains, has long been a staple of the human diet, prized in societies from Ancient Rome to dynastic China to the contemporary American South. Yet pigs’ ability to track down and eat a wide range of substances (some of them distinctly unpalatable to humans) and convert them into edible meat has also led people throughout history to demonize the entire species as craven and unclean. Today’s unconscionable system of factory farming, Essig explains, is only the latest instance of humans taking pigs for granted, and the most recent evidence of how both pigs and people suffer when our symbiotic relationship falls out of balance. An expansive, illuminating history of one of our most vital yet unsung food animals, Lesser Beasts turns a spotlight on the humble creature that, perhaps more than any other, has been a mainstay of civilization since its very beginnings--whether we like it or not.
What are the jobs of the future? How many will there be? And who will have them? We might imagine--and hope--that today’s industrial revolution will unfold like the last: even as some jobs are eliminated, more will be created to deal with the new innovations of a new era. In Rise of the Robots, Silicon Valley entrepreneur Martin Ford argues that this is absolutely not the case. As technology continues to accelerate and machines begin taking care of themselves, fewer people will be necessary. Artificial intelligence is already well on its way to making "good jobs” obsolete: many paralegals, journalists, office workers, and even computer programmers are poised to be replaced by robots and smart software. As progress continues, blue and white collar jobs alike will evaporate, squeezing working- and middle-class families ever further. At the same time, households are under assault from exploding costs, especially from the two major industries--education and health care--that, so far, have not been transformed by information technology. The result could well be massive unemployment and inequality as well as the implosion of the consumer economy itself. In Rise of the Robots, Ford details what machine intelligence and robotics can accomplish, and implores employers, scholars, and policy makers alike to face the implications. The past solutions to technological disruption, especially more training and education, aren’t going to work, and we must decide, now, whether the future will see broad-based prosperity or catastrophic levels of inequality and economic insecurity. Rise of the Robots is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand what accelerating technology means for their own economic prospects--not to mention those of their children--as well as for society as a whole.
From endless sand dunes and prickly cacti to shimmering mirages and green oases, deserts evoke contradictory images in us. They are lands of desolation, but also of romance, of blistering Mojave heat and biting Gobi cold. Covering a quarter of the earth’s land mass and providing a home to half a billion people, they are both a physical reality and landscapes of the mind. The idea of the desert has long captured Western imagination, put on display in films and literature, but these portrayals often fail to capture the true scope and diversity of the people living there. Bridging the scientific and cultural gaps between perception and reality, The Desert celebrates our fascination with these arid lands and their inhabitants, as well as their importance both throughout history and in the world today.
Covering an immense geographical range, Michael Welland wanders from the Sahara to the Atacama, depicting the often bizarre adaptations of plants and animals to these hostile environments. He also looks at these seemingly infertile landscapes in the context of their place in history—as the birthplaces not only of critical evolutionary adaptations, civilizations, and social progress, but also of ideologies. Telling the stories of the diverse peoples who call the desert home, he describes how people have survived there, their contributions to agricultural development, and their emphasis on water and its scarcity. He also delves into the allure of deserts and how they have been used in literature and film and their influence on fashion, art, and architecture. As Welland reveals, deserts may be difficult to define, but they play an active role in the evolution of our global climate and society at large, and their future is of the utmost importance. Entertaining, informative, and surprising, The Desert is an intriguing new look at these seemingly harsh and inhospitable landscapes.
Data Scientists at Work is a collection of interviews with sixteen of the world's most influential and innovative data scientists from across the spectrum of this hot new profession. 'Data scientist is the sexiest job in the 21st century, ' according to the Harvard Business Review. By 2018, the United States will experience a shortage of 190,000 skilled data scientists, according to a McKinsey report.Through incisive in-depth interviews, this book mines the what, how, and why of the practice of data science from the stories, ideas, shop talk, and forecasts of its preeminent practitioners across diverse industries: social network (Yann LeCun, Facebook); professional network (Daniel Tunkelang, LinkedIn); venture capital (Roger Ehrenberg, IA Ventures); enterprise cloud computing and neuroscience (Eric Jonas, formerly Salesforce.com); newspaper and media (Chris Wiggins, The New York Times); streaming television (Caitlin Smallwood, Netflix); music forecast (Victor Hu, Next Big Sound); strategic intelligence (Amy Heineike, Quid); environmental big data (Andre? Karpis'ts'enko, Planet OS); geospatial marketing intelligence (Jonathan Lenaghan, PlaceIQ); advertising (Claudia Perlich, Dstillery); fashion e-commerce (Anna Smith, Rent the Runway); specialty retail (Erin Shellman, Nordstrom); email marketing (John Foreman, MailChimp); predictive sales intelligence (Kira Radinsky, SalesPredict); and humanitarian nonprofit (Jake Porway, DataKind). The book features a stimulating foreword by Google's Director of Research, Peter Norvig.Each of these data scientists shares how he or she tailors the torrent-taming techniques of big data, data visualization, search, and statistics to specific jobs by dint of ingenuity, imagination, patience, and passion. Data Scientists at Work parts the curtain on the interviewees' earliest data projects, how they became data scientists, their discoveries and surprises in working with data, their thoughts on the past, present, and future of the profession, their experiences of team collaboration within their organizations, and the insights they have gained as they get their hands dirty refining mountains of raw data into objects of commercial, scientific, and educational value for their organizations and clients.
A trip to the doctor is almost a guarantee of misery. You'll make an appointment months in advance. You'll probably wait for several hours until you hear "the doctor will see you now"--but only for fifteen minutes! Then you'll wait even longer for lab tests, the results of which you'll likely never see, unless they indicate further (and more invasive) tests, most of which will probably prove unnecessary (much like physicals themselves). And your bill will be astronomical. In The Patient Will See You Now, Eric Topol, one of the nation’s top physicians, shows why medicine does not have to be that way. Instead, you could use your smartphone to get rapid test results from one drop of blood, monitor your vital signs both day and night, and use an artificially intelligent algorithm to receive a diagnosis without having to see a doctor, all at a small fraction of the cost imposed by our modern healthcare system. The change is powered by what Topol calls medicine's "Gutenberg moment." Much as the printing press took learning out of the hands of a priestly class, the mobile internet is doing the same for medicine, giving us unprecedented control over our healthcare. With smartphones in hand, we are no longer beholden to an impersonal and paternalistic system in which "doctor knows best." Medicine has been digitized, Topol argues; now it will be democratized. Computers will replace physicians for many diagnostic tasks, citizen science will give rise to citizen medicine, and enormous data sets will give us new means to attack conditions that have long been incurable. Massive, open, online medicine, where diagnostics are done by Facebook-like comparisons of medical profiles, will enable real-time, real-world research on massive populations. There's no doubt the path forward will be complicated: the medical establishment will resist these changes, and digitized medicine inevitably raises serious issues surrounding privacy. Nevertheless, the result--better, cheaper, and more human health care--will be worth it. Provocative and engrossing, The Patient Will See You Now is essential reading for anyone who thinks they deserve better health care. That is, for all of us.
"A vivid account of what the process of discovery was really like for an insider."--Peter Higgs "Butterworth is an insider's insider. His narrative seethes with insights on the project's science, technology and 'tribes,' as well as his personal (and often amusing) journey as a frontier physicist."--Nature The discovery of the Higgs boson has brought us a giant step closer to understanding how our universe works. But before the Higgs was found, its existence was hotly debated. Even Peter Higgs, who first pictured it, did not expect to see proof within his lifetime. The quest to find the Higgs would ultimately require perhaps the most ambitious experiment in human history. Jon Butterworth was there--a leading physicist on the ATLAS project at the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, Switzerland. In Most Wanted Particle, he gives us the first insider account of the hunt for the Higgs, and of life at the collider itself--the world's largest and most powerful particle accelerator, 17 miles long, 20 stories underground, and designed to "replay" the original Big Bang by smashing subatomic particles at nearly the speed of light. Writing with clarity and humor, Butterworth revels as much in the hard science--which he carefully reconstructs for readers of all levels--as in the messiness, uncertainty, and humanness of science--from the media scrutiny and late-night pub debates, to the false starts and intense pressure to generate results. He captures a moment when an entire field hinged on the proof or disproof of a 50-year-old theory--and even science's top minds didn't know what to expect. Finally, he explains why physics will never be the same after our first glimpse of the elusive Higgs--and where it will go from here.
For millennia, human survival depended on our innate abilities to fight pathogens and repair injuries. Only recently has medical science prolonged longevity and improved quality of life. Physicians and academic researchers contribute to such progress, but the principal contributor is private industry that produces the tools drugs and medical devices enabling doctors to prevent and cure disease. Heavy regulation and biology s complexity and unpredictability make medical innovation extremely difficult and expensive. Pharmaphobia describes how an ideological crusade, stretching over the last quarter century, has used distortion and flawed logic to make medical innovation even harder in a misguided pursuit of theoretical professional purity. Bureaucrats, reporters, politicians, and predatory lawyers have built careers attacking the medical products industry, belittling its critical contributions to medical innovation and accusing it of non-existent malfeasance: overselling product value, flaunting safety and corrupting physicians and academics who partner with it. The mania has imposed conflict-of-interest regulations limiting or banning valuable interactions between industry and physicians and researchers and diverting scarce resources from innovation to compliance. The victims are patients suffering from cancer, dementia, and other serious diseases for which new treatments are delayed, reduced, or eliminated as a result of these pointless regulations. With breathtaking detail, Thomas Stossel shows how this attack on doctors who work with industry limits medical innovation and inhibits the process of bringing new products into medical care."
In the years since the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit and Opportunity first began transmitting images from the surface of Mars, we have become familiar with the harsh, rocky, rusty-red Martian landscape. But those images are much less straightforward than they may seem to a layperson: each one is the result of a complicated set of decisions and processes involving the large team behind the Rovers. With Seeing Like a Rover, Janet Vertesi takes us behind the scenes to reveal the work that goes into creating our knowledge of Mars. Every photograph that the Rovers take, she shows, must be processed, manipulated, and interpreted--and all that comes after team members negotiate with each other about what they should even be taking photographs of in the first place. Vertesi's account of the inspiringly successful Rover project reveals science in action, a world where digital processing uncovers scientific truths, where images are used to craft consensus, and where team members develop an uncanny intimacy with the sensory apparatus of a robot that is millions of miles away. Ultimately, Vertesi shows, every image taken by the Mars Rovers is not merely a picture of Mars--it's a portrait of the whole Rover team, as well.
We live in times of great change on Earth. In fact, while previous shifts from one geological epoch to another were caused by events beyond human control, the dramatic results of our emission of carbon to the atmosphere over the past century have moved many scientists to declare the dawn of a new era: the Anthropocene, or Age of Man. Watching this consensus develop from her seat as an editor at Nature, Gaia Vince couldn’t help but wonder if the greatest cause of this dramatic planetary change--humans’ singular ability to adapt and innovate--might also hold the key to our survival. And so she left her professional life in London and set out to travel the world in search of ordinary people making extraordinary changes and, in many cases, thriving. Part science journal, part travelogue, Adventures in the Anthropocene recounts Vince’s journey, and introduces an essential new perspective on the future of life on Earth.
In 1972, The Limits to Growth introduced the idea that world resources are limited. Soon after, people became aware of the threats to the world’s rainforests, the biggest terrestrial repositories of biodiversity and essential regulators of global air and water cycles. Since that time, new research and technological advances have greatly increased our knowledge of how rainforests are being affected by changing patterns of resource use. Increasing concern about climate change has made it more important than ever to understand the state of the world’s tropical forests. This book provides an up-to-date picture of the health of the world’s tropical forests. Claude Martin, an eminent scientist and conservationist, integrates information from remote imaging, ecology, and economics to explain deforestation and forest health throughout the world. He explains how urbanization, an increasingly global economy, and a worldwide demand for biofuels put new pressure on rainforest land. He examines the policies and market forces that have successfully preserved forests in some areas and discusses the economic benefits of protected areas. Using evidence from ice core records and past forest cover patterns, he predicts the most likely effects of climate change.
This book, written from the perspective of a practicing primary care physician, interweaves patients’ stories with fascinating new brain research to show how addictive drugs overtake basic brain functions and transform them to create a chronic illness that is very difficult to treat. The idea that drug and alcohol addiction are chronic illnesses and not character flaws is not news—this notion has been around for many years. What Hijacked Brains offers is context and personal stories that demonstrate this point in a very accessible package. Dr. Barnes explores how the healthy brain works, how addictive drugs flood basic reward pathways, and what it feels like to grapple with addiction. She discusses how, for individuals, the combination of genetic and environmental factors determines both vulnerability for addiction and the resilience necessary for recovery. Finally, she shows how American culture, with its emphasis on freewill and individualism, tends to blame the addict for bad choices and personal weakness, thereby impeding political and/or health-related efforts to get the addict what she needs to recover.
A History of the Brain tells the full story of neuroscience, from antiquity to the present day. It describes how we have come to understand the biological nature of the brain, beginning in prehistoric times, and progressing to the twentieth century with the development of Modern Neuroscience. This is the first time a history of the brain has been written in a narrative way, emphasizing how our understanding of the brain and nervous system has developed over time, with the development of the disciplines of anatomy, pharmacology, physiology, psychology and neurosurgery. The book covers: beliefs about the brain in ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome the Medieval period, Renaissance and Enlightenment the nineteenth century the most important advances in the twentieth century and future directions in neuroscience. The discoveries leading to the development of modern neuroscience gave rise to one of the most exciting and fascinating stories in the whole of science. Written for readers with no prior knowledge of the brain or history, the book will delight students, and will also be of great interest to researchers and lecturers with an interest in understanding how we have arrived at our present knowledge of the brain.
Food historian Cynthia Clampitt pens the epic story of what happened when Mesoamerican farmers bred a nondescript grass into a staff of life so prolific, so protean, that it represents nothing less than one of humankind's greatest achievements. Blending history with expert reportage, she traces the disparate threads that have woven corn into the fabric of our diet, politics, economy, science, and cuisine. At the same time she explores its future as a source of energy and the foundation of seemingly limitless green technologies. The result is a bourbon-to-biofuels portrait of the astonishing plant that sustains the world.
Shale Gas and Fracking: The Science Behind the Controversy explains the relevant geological principles before examining the peer-reviewed evidence and presenting it through a simple and compelling illustrated narrative. Each chapter focuses on a particular controversy, such contamination of well water with gas from fracking, and follows a similar format: starting with the principles; then detailing peer-reviewed case studies for earthquakes, radioactivity, and climate chan≥ and concluding with a judgment of the general risks involved. Shale Gas and Fracking: The Science Behind the Controversy provides readers with the unbiased information they need to make informed decisions on the controversial issue of fracking. Presents a clear and unbiased view of the pros and cons of fracking in Europe and the US, through a simple and compelling narrative from an informed publicly-funded scientist Includes full-colour diagrams, photographs, and maps to present information clearly and simply Focuses on peer-reviewed, documented examples, particularly of earthquakes and groundwater contamination due to fracking
Designed for individuals concerned about their workout habits, personal trainers, family and friends of folks with a problem, as well as working mental health professionals treating exercise addicts, The Truth About Exercise Addiction provides an easy-to-read, illuminating glimpse into the rising trend of over-exercise. Delving into the history of exercise addiction and the growing influence of thinspiration, Katherine Schreiber and Heather A. Hausenblas illustrate the symptoms and dangers of obsessive exercise with true stories from sufferers, all while exploring why and how such a seemingly healthy behavior morphs into a dangerous means of self-destruction. Analyzing the causes and consequences of excessive physical activity alongside the influence of genetics, culture, and personality, this book allows readers to gain a greater understanding of what exercise addiction looks and feels like. The Truth About Exercise Addiction also provides an unprecedented list of resources to address exercise addiction, a snapshot of treatments currently available for sufferers, and to top it off: guidelines on how to confront and care for someone who may have a problem."
Magdolna Hargittai uses over fifteen years of in-depth conversation with female physicists, chemists, biomedical researchers, and other scientists to form cohesive ideas on the state of the modern female scientist. The compilation, based on sixty conversations, examines unique challenges thatwomen with serious scientific aspirations face. In addition to addressing challenges and the unjustifiable underrepresentation of women at the higher levels of academia, Hargittai takes a balanced approach by discussing how some of the most successful of these women have managed to obtainprofessional success and personal happiness.Women Scientists portrays scientists from different backgrounds, different geographical regions-eighteen countries from four continents-and leaders from a variety of professional backgrounds, including eight Nobel laureate women. The book is divided into three sections: "Husband and Wife Teams,""Women at the Top," and "In High Positions." Hargittai uses her own experience to introduce her first section on the lives of prominent scientific couples and addresses the joys and disadvantages of husband and wife teams. The second section is a comprehensive exploration of the struggles andtriumphs of "women at the top." Hargittai introduces women from countries where relatively little has been written about female scientists. The final section focuses on women scientists involved with science administration and leadership. Hargittai's biographical sketches role models for buddingscientists. The book is a much needed account of female presence and influence in the sciences.
Considering the ever-rising costs of traditional fuel paired with the increasing scarcity of its resources, it's easy to see why exploring renewable fuels has become an increasingly critical goal for engineers, researchers, and end-users alike. However, due to the great diversity of technologies, policies, and attitudes, it can be difficult to gain a good well-rounded understanding of these types of fuels. Renewable Motor Fuels: The Past, the Present and the Uncertain Future presents an opportunity to gain an insightful understanding of all the key aspects of alternative automotive fuels in one book. Author Arthur Brownstein describes various sources of renewable motor fuels (including ethanol, algae, isobutanol, natural gas, and battery power) and their production processes, specific properties, and economic advantages/disadvantages. This comprehensive coverage of such an important topic is crucial for anyone with an interest in renewable fuels, from researchers to engineers to end-users. Presents a clear overview on a variety of renewable motor fuel technologies, balancing history, technology, and policy Provides the status of current and developing renewable motor fuel technologies and their uses worldwide Discusses the competitive economics of renewable fuel processes and their respective market interactions
In the songs and bubble feeding of humpback whales; in young killer whales learning to knock a seal from an ice floe in the same way their mother does; and in the use of sea sponges by the dolphins of Shark Bay, Australia, to protect their beaks while foraging for fish, we find clear examples of the transmission of information among cetaceans. Just as human cultures pass on languages and turns of phrase, tastes in food (and in how it is acquired), and modes of dress, could whales and dolphins have developed a culture of their very own? Unequivocally: yes. In The Cultural Lives of Whales and Dolphins, cetacean biologists Hal Whitehead, who has spent much of his life on the ocean trying to understand whales, and Luke Rendell, whose research focuses on the evolution of social learning, open an astounding porthole onto the fascinating culture beneath the waves. As Whitehead and Rendell show, cetacean culture and its transmission are shaped by a blend of adaptations, innate sociality, and the unique environment in which whales and dolphins live: a watery world in which a hundred-and-fifty-ton blue whale can move with utter grace, and where the vertical expanse is as vital, and almost as vast, as the horizontal. Drawing on their own research as well as a scientific literature as immense as the sea--including evolutionary biology, animal behavior, ecology, anthropology, psychology, and neuroscience--Whitehead and Rendell dive into realms both humbling and enlightening as they seek to define what cetacean culture is, why it exists, and what it means for the future of whales and dolphins. And, ultimately, what it means for our future, as well.
A surprising, page-turning account of how the wars of the future are already being fought today The United States military currently views cyberspace as the "fifth domain" of warfare (alongside land, air, sea, and space), and the Department of Defense, the National Security Agency, and the CIA all field teams of hackers who can, and do, launch computer virus strikes against enemy targets. In fact, as @WAR shows, U.S. hackers were crucial to our victory in Iraq. Shane Harris delves into the frontlines of America's new cyber war. As recent revelations have shown, government agencies are joining with tech giants like Google and Facebook to collect vast amounts of information. The military has also formed a new alliance with tech and finance companies to patrol cyberspace, and Harris offers a deeper glimpse into this partnership than we have ever seen before. Finally, Harris explains what the new cybersecurity regime means for all of us, who spend our daily lives bound to the Internet -- and are vulnerable to its dangers.
It is now possible to witness human brain activity while we are talking, reading, or thinking, thanks to revolutionary neuroimaging techniques like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). These groundbreaking advances have opened infinite fields of investigation--into such areas as musical perception, brain development in utero, and faulty brain connections leading to psychiatric disorders--and have raised unprecedented ethical issues. In Looking Inside the Brain, one of the leading pioneers of the field, Denis Le Bihan, offers an engaging account of the sophisticated interdisciplinary research in physics, neuroscience, and medicine that have led to the remarkable neuroimaging methods that give us a detailed look into the human brain. Introducing neurological anatomy and physiology, Le Bihan walks readers through the historical evolution of imaging technology--from the x-ray and CT scan to the PET scan and MRI--and he explains how neuroimaging uncovers afflictions like stroke or cancer and the workings of higher-order brain activities, such as language skills. Le Bihan also takes readers on a behind-the-scenes journey through NeuroSpin, his state-of-the-art neuroimaging laboratory, and goes over the cutting-edge scanning devices currently being developed. Considering what we see when we look at brain images, Le Bihan weighs what might be revealed about our thoughts and unconscious, and discusses how far this technology might go in the future. Beautifully illustrated in color, Looking Inside the Brain presents the trailblazing story of the scanning techniques that provide keys to previously unimagined knowledge of our brains and our selves.