World in My Mind, My Mind in the World [EPUB]
22 January 2015, 22:19
2013 | EPUB | 2.08MB
Not consciousness, but knowledge of consciousness: that is what this book communicates in a fascinating way. Consciousness is the thread that links the disappearing gorilla with the octopus suffering from a stomach ache, and the person under anaesthetic with a new born baby. How these are different, yet illustrative of consciousness, is revealed in this accessible book by one of the world's leading thinkers and neural computing engineers.
Igor Aleksander addresses this enigmatic topic, by making us understand the difference between what happens to us when thinking consciously and when sort of thinking when dreaming or when not conscious at all, as when sleeping, anaesthetised or knocked out by a blow on the head.
The book also tackles the larger topics of free will, choice, God, Freud (what is 'the unconscious'?), inherited traits and individuality, while exploding the myths and misinformation of many earlier mind-hijackers. He shares the journey towards building a new model of consciousness, with an invitation to understand 5 axioms or basic ideas, which we easily recognise in ourselves.
The Naked Future [EPUB]
22 January 2015, 22:12
2014 | EPUB | 0.9MB
“Where I saw a thrilling and historic transformation in the world’s oldest idea—the future—other people saw only Target, Facebook, Google, and the government using their data to surveil, track, and trick them . . . But in fact, your data is your best defense against coercive marketing and intrusive government practices. Your data is nothing less than a superpower waiting to be harnessed.” —FROM THE INTRODUCTION
In the past, the future was opaque—the territory of fortune-tellers, gurus, and dubious local TV weathermen. But thanks to recent advances in computing and the reams of data we create through smartphone and Internet use, prediction models for individual behavior grow smarter and more sophisticated by the day. Whom you should marry, whether you’ll commit a crime or fall victim to one, if you’ll contract a specific strain of flu—even your precise location at any given moment years into the future—are becoming easily accessible facts. The naked future is upon us, and the implications are staggering.
Patrick Tucker draws on stories from health care to urban planning to online dating to reveal the shape of a future that’s ever more certain. In these pages you’ll meet scientists and inventors who can predict your behavior based on your friends’ Twitter updates. They are also hacking the New York City sewer system to predict environmental conditions, anticipating how much the weather a year from now will cost an individual farmer, figuring out the time of day you’re most likely to slip back into a bad habit, and guessing how well you’ll do on a test before you take it. You’ll learn how social networks like Facebook are using your data to turn you into an advertisement and why the winning formula for a blockbuster movie is more predictable than ever.
The rise of big data and predictive analytics means that governments and corporations are becoming much more effective at accomplishing their goals and at much less cost. Tucker knows that’s not always a good thing. But he also shows how we’ve gained tremendous benefits that we have yet to fully realize.
Thanks to the increased power of predictive science, we’ll be better able to stay healthy, invest our savings more wisely, learn faster and more efficiently, buy a house in the right neighborhood at the right time, avoid crime, thwart terrorists, and mitigate the consequences of natural disasters. What happens in a future that anticipates your every move? The surprising answer: we’ll live better as a result.
Intelligence, Race, And Genetics: Conversations With Arthur R. Jensen [EPUB]
22 January 2015, 19:46
2008 | EPUB | 1.34MB
Arthur R. Jensen is the psychologist who set off an enduring controversy with his 1969 article in the Harvard Educational Review holding that an individual's IQ is largely attributed to heredity, including racial heritage, and that efforts to boost IQ educationally do not achieve much. Miele, senior editor of Skeptic magazine, set out to "skeptically cross-examine" Jensen on his views. The questions and answers traveled by e-mail, but they read like a conversation.
Jensen, professor emeritus of educational psychology at the University of California at Berkeley, holds that the scientific evidence is stronger now than it was in 1969 that IQ is highly genetic, that race is a biological reality rather than a social construct, and that the cause of the 15-point average IQ difference between blacks and whites in the U.S. is partly genetic. Miele hopes the exchange will enable the reader "to decide for yourself whether Jensenism represents one man's search for provisional, not metaphysical, truth through the continuous and vigorous application of the methods of science ...or a dangerous diversion back down a blind alley of old and disproven ideas, deceptively dressed up in modern scientific jargon."