Overcomplicated

Author: Samuel Arbesman
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0143131303
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"You don't understand the software running your car or your iPhone. But here's a secret: neither do the geniuses at Apple or the Ph. D.'s at Toyota--not perfectly, anyway. No one, not accountants, engineers, or doctors, fully grasps the rules governing your tax return, your internet connection, or your hospital's medical machinery. The same technological advances that have simplified our lives have made the systems governing our lives incomprehensible, unpredictable, and overcomplicated. Complexity scientist Samuel Arbesman offers a fresh, insightful field guide to living with complex technologies that defy human comprehension. As technology grows more complex, Arbesman argues, its behavior mimics the vagaries of the natural world more than it conforms to a mathematical model. If we are to survive and thrive in this new age, we must abandon our need for governing principles and rules and accept the chaos. We will become better thinkers, scientists, and innovators as a result. Lucid and energizing, this book is a vital new analysis of the world heralded as "modern" for anyone who wants to live wisely."--Back cover.

Overcomplicated

Author: Samuel Arbesman
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0698189191
Format: PDF, ePub
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Why did the New York Stock Exchange suspend trading without warning on July 8, 2015? Why did certain Toyota vehicles accelerate uncontrollably against the will of their drivers? Why does the programming inside our airplanes occasionally surprise its creators? After a thorough analysis by the top experts, the answers still elude us. You don’t understand the software running your car or your iPhone. But here’s a secret: neither do the geniuses at Apple or the Ph.D.’s at Toyota—not perfectly, anyway. No one, not lawyers, doctors, accountants, or policy makers, fully grasps the rules governing your tax return, your retirement account, or your hospital’s medical machinery. The same technological advances that have simplified our lives have made the systems governing our lives incomprehensible, unpredictable, and overcomplicated. In Overcomplicated, complexity scientist Samuel Arbesman offers a fresh, insightful field guide to living with complex technologies that defy human comprehension. As technology grows more complex, Arbesman argues, its behavior mimics the vagaries of the natural world more than it conforms to a mathematical model. If we are to survive and thrive in this new age, we must abandon our need for governing principles and rules and accept the chaos. By embracing and observing the freak accidents and flukes that disrupt our lives, we can gain valuable clues about how our algorithms really work. What’s more, we will become better thinkers, scientists, and innovators as a result. Lucid and energizing, this book is a vital new analysis of the world heralded as "modern" for anyone who wants to live wisely.

The Half Life of Facts

Author: Samuel Arbesman
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 159184651X
Format: PDF, Mobi
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A scientometrics expert analyzes the changing nature of factual information to explain how knowledge in most fields evolves in systematic and predictable ways that, if properly understood, can be powerful tools for training and professional improvement.

The Dark Side of Technology

Author: Peter Townsend
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198790538
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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The Dark Side of Technology is aimed at a mass market of intelligent people who are concerned about human progress, interested or amused by many of the unexpected consequences of technological advance, and probably unaware of the dangers which we are accruing for ourselves. Although the book spans a very wide spectrum of ideas, no previous scientific knowledge is required. Other books have focussed on different topic areas, but none have previously presented thegenerality of the patterns across medicine to agriculture, electronics, communications, a global economy and a burgeoning population. Technology invariably advances faster than our understanding of sideeffects, or our realisation that we have become vulnerable to natural events that could eliminate advanced nations, nor that mutagenic changes may not be apparent for one or two generations. This is therefore both an alarm call and a guide to survival.

User Experience in the Age of Sustainability

Author: Kem-Laurin Kramer
Publisher: Elsevier
ISBN: 0123877954
Format: PDF, ePub
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Examines the user experience in the economic, sociological, and environmental movement to create sustainable products, and provides a framework for designing sustainable hardware, software, and packaging.

Geek Heresy

Author: Kentaro Toyama
Publisher: PublicAffairs
ISBN: 1610395298
Format: PDF, ePub
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In 2004, Kentaro Toyama, an award-winning computer scientist, moved to India to start a new research group for Microsoft. Its mission: to explore novel technological solutions to the world's persistent social problems. Together with his team, he invented electronic devices for under-resourced urban schools and developed digital platforms for remote agrarian communities. But after a decade of designing technologies for humanitarian causes, Toyama concluded that no technology, however dazzling, could cause social change on its own. Technologists and policy-makers love to boast about modern innovation, and in their excitement, they exuberantly tout technology's boon to society. But what have our gadgets actually accomplished? Over the last four decades, America saw an explosion of new technologies – from the Internet to the iPhone, from Google to Facebook – but in that same period, the rate of poverty stagnated at a stubborn 13%, only to rise in the recent recession. So, a golden age of innovation in the world's most advanced country did nothing for our most prominent social ill. Toyama's warning resounds: Don't believe the hype! Technology is never the main driver of social progress. Geek Heresy inoculates us against the glib rhetoric of tech utopians by revealing that technology is only an amplifier of human conditions. By telling the moving stories of extraordinary people like Patrick Awuah, a Microsoft millionaire who left his lucrative engineering job to open Ghana's first liberal arts university, and Tara Sreenivasa, a graduate of a remarkable South Indian school that takes children from dollar-a-day families into the high-tech offices of Goldman Sachs and Mercedes-Benz, Toyama shows that even in a world steeped in technology, social challenges are best met with deeply social solutions.

Backyard Chickens Beyond the Basics

Author: Pam Freeman
Publisher: Voyageur Press
ISBN: 0760357676
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Backyard Chickens Beyond the Basics goes beyond introductory lessons to explore the realities of raising a flock for eggs and give expert advice to make sure your birds are happy, healthy, and productive.

The End of Ownership

Author: Aaron Perzanowski
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262035014
Format: PDF, Mobi
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An argument for retaining the notion of personal property in the products we "buy" in the digital marketplace.

The Goldilocks Planet

Author: Jan Zalasiewicz
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191634026
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Climate change is a major topic of concern today, scientifically, socially, and politically. It will undoubtedly continue to be so for the foreseeable future, as predicted changes in global temperatures, rainfall, and sea level take place, and as human society adapts to these changes. In this remarkable new work, Jan Zalasiewicz and Mark Williams demonstrate how the Earth's climate has continuously altered over its 4.5 billion-year history. The story can be read from clues preserved in the Earth's strata - the evidence is abundant, though always incomplete, and also often baffling, puzzling, infuriating, tantalizing, seemingly contradictory. Geologists, though, are becoming ever more ingenious at interrogating this evidence, and the story of the Earth's climate is now being reconstructed in ever-greater detail - maybe even providing us with clues to the future of contemporary climate change. The history is dramatic and often abrupt. Changes in global and regional climate range from bitterly cold to sweltering hot, from arid to humid, and they have impacted hugely upon the planet's evolving animal and plant communities, and upon its physical landscapes of the Earth. And yet, through all of this, the Earth has remained consistently habitable for life for over three billion years - in stark contrast to its planetary neighbours. Not too hot, not too cold; not too dry, not too wet, it is aptly known as 'the Goldilocks planet'.

Streaming Sharing Stealing

Author: Michael D. Smith
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262335891
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"[The authors explain] gently yet firmly exactly how the internet threatens established ways and what can and cannot be done about it. Their book should be required for anyone who wishes to believe that nothing much has changed." -- The Wall Street Journal"Packed with examples, from the nimble-footed who reacted quickly to adapt their businesses, to laggards who lost empires." -- Financial TimesTraditional network television programming has always followed the same script: executives approve a pilot, order a trial number of episodes, and broadcast them, expecting viewers to watch a given show on their television sets at the same time every week. But then came Netflix's House of Cards. Netflix gauged the show's potential from data it had gathered about subscribers' preferences, ordered two seasons without seeing a pilot, and uploaded the first thirteen episodes all at once for viewers to watch whenever they wanted on the devices of their choice. In this book, Michael Smith and Rahul Telang, experts on entertainment analytics, show how the success of House of Cards upended the film and TV industries -- and how companies like Amazon and Apple are changing the rules in other entertainment industries, notably publishing and music. We're living through a period of unprecedented technological disruption in the entertainment industries. Just about everything is affected: pricing, production, distribution, piracy. Smith and Telang discuss niche products and the long tail, product differentiation, price discrimination, and incentives for users not to steal content. To survive and succeed, businesses have to adapt rapidly and creatively. Smith and Telang explain how.How can companies discover who their customers are, what they want, and how much they are willing to pay for it? Data. The entertainment industries, must learn to play a little "moneyball." The bottom line: follow the data.