What Should We Be Worried About?
Real Scenarios That Keep Scientists Up at Night
By John Brockman (Editor)
(Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780062296238, 499pp.)
Publication Date: February 2014
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Drawing from the horizons of science, today's leading thinkers reveal the hidden threats nobody is talking about--and expose the false fears everyone else is distracted by.
What should we be worried about? That is the question John Brockman, publisher of Edge.org ("The world's smartest website"--The Guardian), posed to the planet's most influential minds. He asked them to disclose something that, for scientific reasons, worries them--particularly scenarios that aren't on the popular radar yet. Encompassing neuroscience, economics, philosophy, physics, psychology, biology, and more--here are 150 ideas that will revolutionize your understanding of the world.
Steven Pinker uncovers the real risk factors for war * Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi peers into the coming virtual abyss * Nobel laureate Frank Wilczek laments our squandered opportunities to prevent global catastrophe * Seth Lloyd calculates the threat of a financial black hole * Alison Gopnik on the loss of childhood * Nassim Nicholas Taleb explains why firefighters understand risk far better than economic "experts" * Matt Ridley on the alarming re-emergence of superstition * Daniel C. Dennett and george dyson ponder the impact of a major breakdown of the Internet * Jennifer Jacquet fears human-induced damage to the planet due to "the Anthropocebo Effect" * Douglas Rushkoff fears humanity is losing its soul * Nicholas Carr on the "patience deficit" * Tim O'Reilly foresees a coming new Dark Age * Scott Atran on the homogenization of human experience * Sherry Turkle explores what's lost when kids are constantly connected * Kevin Kelly outlines the looming "underpopulation bomb" * Helen Fisher on the fate of men * Lawrence Krauss dreads what we don't know about the universe * Susan Blackmore on the loss of manual skills * Kate Jeffery on the death of death * plus J. Craig Venter, Daniel Goleman, Virginia Heffernan, Sam Harris, Brian Eno, Martin Rees, and more