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"Can you Count the Clouds?" asks the voice of God from the whirlwind in the stunningly beautiful catalogue of nature-questions from the Old Testament Book of Job. Tom McLeish takes a scientist's reading of this ancient text as a centrepiece to make the case for science as a deeply human and ancient activity, embedded in some of the oldest stories told about human desire to understand the natural world. Drawing on stories from the modern science of chaos and uncertainty alongside medieval, patristic, classical and Biblical sources, Faith and Wisdom in Science challenges much of the current 'science and religion' debate as operating with the wrong assumptions and in the wrong space. Its narrative approach develops a natural critique of the cultural separation of sciences and humanities, suggesting an approach to science, or in its more ancient form natural philosophy - the 'love of wisdom of natural things' - that can draw on theological and cultural roots. Following the theme of pain in human confrontation with nature, it develops a 'Theology of Science', recognising that both scientific and theological worldviews must be 'of' each other, not holding separate domains. Science finds its place within an old story of participative reconciliation with a nature, of which we start ignorant and fearful, but learn to perceive and work with in wisdom. Surprisingly, science becomes a deeply religious activity. There are urgent lessons for education, the political process of decision-making on science and technology, our relationship with the global environment, and the way that both religious and secular communities alike celebrate and govern science.
Digital Darwinism takes an exhilarating look at disruptive thinking to inspire those who want to be the best at digital transformation. Change across business is accelerating, but the lifespan of companies is decreasing. Life is more unpredictable than ever and leaders are facing a growing abundance of decisions to make, data to process and technology that threatens to disrupt even the most established business models. These are the forces that could destroy your company but, with the right strategy in place, they could also help you transform it into a market leader. Digital Darwinism is a guiding hand through the turbulence of this moment, offering practical strategies as well as an ambitious call-to-action that lights a fire underneath complacency and inspires creative change.
In this book, Tom Goodwin shines a light into the future by exploring technology, society and the lessons of the past so that you can understand how to adapt, what to embrace and what to ignore. Goodwin proves how every assumption the business world has previously made about "digital" is wrong in order to revolutionize your mindset: incremental change isn't good enough, adding technology at the edges won't work and digital isn't a thing - it's everything. If you want your organization to succeed in the post-digital age, you need to be enlightened by Digital Darwinism.
In 1768, Ahmad al-Damanhuri became the rector (shaykh) of al-Azhar, which was one of the most authoritative and respected positions in the Ottoman Empire. He occupied this position until his death. Despite being a prolific author, whose writings are largely extant, al-Damanhuri remains almost unknown, and much of his work awaits study and analysis. This book aims to shed light on al-Damanhuri's diverse intellectual background, and that of and his contemporaries, building on and continuing the scholarship on the academic thought of the late Ottoman Empire. The book specifically investigates the intersection of medical and religious knowledge in Eighteenth-Century Egypt. It takes as its focus a manuscript on anatomy by al-Damanhuri (d. 1778), entitled "The Clear Statement on the Science of Anatomy (al-qawl al-sarih fi 'ilm al-tashrih),". The book includes an edited translation of The Clear Statement, which is a well-known but unstudied and unpublished manuscript. It also provides a summary translation and analysis of al-Damanhuri's own intellectual autobiography. As such, the book provides an important window into a period that remains deeply understudied and a topic that continues to cause debates and controversies. This study, therefore, will be of keen interest to scholars working on the "post-Classical" Islamic world, as well as historians of religion, science, and medicine looking beyond Europe in the Early Modern period.
Nanotechnology: The Future is Tiny introduces 176 different research projects from around the world that are exploring the different areas of nanotechnologies. Using interviews and descriptions of the projects, the collection of essays provides a unique commentary on the current status of the field. From flexible electronics that you can wear to nanomaterials used for cancer diagnostics and therapeutics, the book gives a new perspective on the current work into developing new nanotechnologies. Each chapter delves into a specific area of nanotechnology research including graphene, energy storage, electronics, 3D printing, nanomedicine, nanorobotics as well as environmental implications. Through the scientists' own words, the book gives a personal perspective on how nanotechnologies are created and developed, and an exclusive look at how today's research will create tomorrow's products and applications. This book will appeal to anyone who has an interest in the research and future of nanotechnology.
"Humboldt and Jefferson" explores the relationship between two fascinating personalities: the Prussian explorer, scientist, and geographer Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) and the American statesman, architect, and naturalist Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826). In the wake of his famous expedition through the Spanish colonies in the spring of 1804, Humboldt visited the United States, where he met several times with then-president Jefferson. A warm and fruitful friendship resulted, and the two men corresponded a good deal over the years, speculating together on topics of mutual interest, including natural history, geography, and the formation of an international scientific network. Living in revolutionary societies, both were deeply concerned with the human condition, and each vested hope in the new American nation as a possible answer to many of the deficiencies characterizing European societies at the time.
The intellectual exchange between the two over the next twenty-one years touched on the pivotal events of those times, such as the independence movement in Latin America and the applicability of the democratic model to that region, the relationship between America and Europe, and the latest developments in scientific research and various technological projects. "Humboldt and Jefferson" explores the world in which these two Enlightenment figures lived and the ways their lives on opposite sides of the Atlantic defined their respective convictions.
Everything evolves, science tells us, including the public language used by scientists to sustain and perpetuate their work. Harkening back to the Protestant Reformation--a time when the promise of scientific inquiry was intimately connected with a deep faith in divine Providence--Thomas Lessl traces the evolving role and public identity of science in the West. As the Reformation gave way to the Enlightenment, notions of Providence evolved into progress. History's divine plan could now be found in nature, and scientists became history's new prophets. With Darwin and the emergence of evolutionary science, progress and evolution collapsed together into what Lessl calls "evolutionism," and the grand scientific identity was used to advance science's power into the world. In this masterful treatment, Lessl analyzes the descent of these patterns of scientific advocacy from the world of Francis Bacon into the world of Thomas Huxley and his successors. In the end, Rhetorical Darwinism proposes that Darwin's power to fuel the establishment of science within the Western social milieu often turns from its scientific course. Rhetorical Darwinism: Religion, Evolution, and the Scientific Identity received the Religious Communication Associatons "Book of the Year" award in 2012.
This book offers a rationale for a new 'ramified natural theology' that is in dialogue with both science and historical-critical study of the Bible. Traditionally, knowledge of God has been seen to come from two sources, nature and revelation. However, a rigid separation between these sources cannot be maintained, since what purports to be revelation cannot be accepted without qualification: rational argument is needed to infer both the existence of God from nature and the particular truth claims of the Christian faith from the Bible. Hence the distinction between 'bare natural theology' and 'ramified natural theology.' The book begins with bare natural theology as background to its main focus on ramified natural theology. Bayesian confirmation theory is utilised to evaluate competing hypotheses in both cases, in a similar manner to that by which competing hypotheses in science can be evaluated on the basis of empirical data. In this way a case is built up for the rationality of a Christian theist worldview. Addressing issues of science, theology and revelation in a new framework, this book will be of keen interest to scholars working in Religion and Science, Natural Theology, Philosophy of Religion, Biblical Studies, Systematic Theology, and Science and Culture.
Now in paperback, "an examination of the most profound issues of
faith and science that is both intellectually rigorous and generous
in spirit." ("Shelf Awareness")
Modern technology has changed the way we live, work, play, communicate, fight, love, and die. Yet few works have systematically explored these changes in light of their implications for individual and social welfare. How can we conceptualize and evaluate the influence of technology on human well-being? Bringing together scholars from a cross-section of disciplines, this volume combines an empirical investigation of technology and its social, psychological, and political effects, and a philosophical analysis and evaluation of the implications of such effects.
In Fungible Life Aihwa Ong explores the dynamic world of cutting-edge bioscience research, offering critical insights into the complex ways Asian bioscientific worlds and cosmopolitan sciences are entangled in a tropical environment brimming with the threat of emergent diseases. At biomedical centers in Singapore and China scientists map genetic variants, disease risks, and biomarkers, mobilizing ethnicized "Asian" bodies and health data for genomic research. Their differentiation between Chinese, Indian, and Malay DNA makes fungible Singapore's ethnic-stratified databases that come to "represent" majority populations in Asia. By deploying genomic science as a public good, researchers reconfigure the relationships between objects, peoples, and spaces, thus rendering "Asia" itself as a shifting entity. In Ong's analysis, Asia emerges as a richly layered mode of entanglements, where the population's genetic pasts, anxieties and hopes, shared genetic weaknesses, and embattled genetic futures intersect. Furthermore, her illustration of the contrasting methods and goals of the Biopolis biomedical center in Singapore and BGI Genomics in China raises questions about the future direction of cosmopolitan science in Asia and beyond.
We live in an age of awesome technological potential. From nanotechnology to synthetic organisms, new technologies stand to revolutionize whole domains of human experience. But with awesome potential comes awesome risk: drones can deliver a bomb as readily as they can a new smartphone makers and hackers can 3D-print guns as well as tools and supercomputers can short-circuit Wall Street just as easily as they can manage your portfolio.One thing these technologies can't do is answer the profound moral issues they raise. Who should be held accountable when they go wrong? What responsibility do we, as creators and users, have for the technologies we build? In A Dangerous Master , ethicist Wendell Wallach tackles such difficult questions with hard-earned authority, imploring both producers and consumers to face the moral ambiguities arising from our rapid technological growth. There is no doubt that scientific research and innovation are a source of promise and productivity, but, as Wallach, argues, technological development is at risk of becoming a juggernaut beyond human control. Examining the players, institutions, and values lobbying against meaningful regulation of everything from autonomous robots to designer drugs, A Dangerous Master proposes solutions for regaining control of our technological destiny. Wallach's nuanced study offers both stark warnings and hope, navigating both the fears and hype surrounding technological innovations. An engaging, masterful analysis of the elements we must manage in our quest to survive as a species, A Dangerous Master forces us to confront the practical,and moral,purposes of our creations.
The definitive book on leadership in the digital era: why digital technologies call for leadership that emphasizes creativity, collaboration, and inclusivity. Certain ideas about business leadership are held to be timeless, and certain characteristics of leaders-often including a square jaw, a deep voice, and extroversion-are said to be universal. In Leading in the Digital World, Amit Mukherjee argues that since digital technologies are changing everything else, how could they not change leadership ideologies and styles? As more people worldwide participate equally in business, those assumptions of a leader's ideal profile have become irrelevant. Offering a radical rethinking of leadership, Mukherjee shows why digital technologies call for a new kind of leader-one who emphasizes creativity, collaboration, and inclusivity. Drawing on a global survey of 700 mid-tier to senior executives and interviews with C-level executives from around the world, Mukherjee explains how digital technologies are already reshaping organizations and work and what this means for leaders. For example, globally dispersed businesses can't reserve key leadership roles for people from exclusive groups; leadership must become inclusive, or fail. Leaders must learn to collaborate in a multipolar world of networked organizations, working with co-located and non-co-located colleagues. Leaders must lead for creativity rather than productivity. Focusing on practice, Mukherjee outlines goals and strategies, warns against unthinking assumptions, and explains how leaders can identify the mindsets, behaviors, and actions they need to pursue. With Leading in the Digital World, Mukherjee offers the definitive book on leadership for the digital era.
The Burden of Choice examines how recommendations for products, media, news, romantic partners, and even cosmetic surgery operations are produced and experienced online. Fundamentally concerned with how the recommendation has come to serve as a form of control that frames a contemporary American as heteronormative, white, and well off, this book asserts that the industries that use these automated recommendations tend to ignore and obscure all other identities in the service of making the type of affluence they are selling appear commonplace. Focusing on the period from the mid-1990s to approximately 2010 (while this technology was still novel), Jonathan Cohn argues that automated recommendations and algorithms are far from natural, neutral, or benevolent. Instead, they shape and are shaped by changing conceptions of gender, sexuality, race, and class. With its cultural studies and humanities-driven methodologies focused on close readings, historical research, and qualitative analysis, The Burden of Choice models a promising avenue for the study of algorithms and culture.
Francois Laruelle's lifelong project of "nonphilosophy," or "nonstandard philosophy," thinks past the theoretical limits of Western philosophy to realize new relations between religion, science, politics, and art. In Christo-Fiction Laruelle targets the rigid, self-sustaining arguments of metaphysics, rooted in Judaic and Greek thought, and the radical potential of Christ, whose "crossing" disrupts their circular discourse. Laruelle's Christ is not the authoritative figure conjured by academic theology, the Apostles, or the Catholic Church. He is the embodiment of generic man, founder of a science of humans, and the herald of a gnostic messianism that calls forth an immanent faith. Explicitly inserting quantum science into religion, Laruelle recasts the temporality of the cross, the entombment, and the resurrection, arguing that it is God who is sacrificed on the cross so equals in faith may be born. Positioning itself against orthodox religion and naive atheism alike, Christo-Fiction is a daring, heretical experiment that ties religion to the human experience and the lived world.
Will a computer ever compose a symphony, write a prize-winning novel, or paint a masterpiece? And if so, would we be able to tell the difference?
As humans, we have an extraordinary ability to create works of art that elevate, expand and transform what it means to be alive.
Yet in many other areas, new developments in AI are shaking up the status quo, as we find out how many of the tasks humans engage in can be done equally well, if not better, by machines. But can machines be creative? Will they soon be able to learn from the art that moves us, and understand what distinguishes it from the mundane?
In The Creativity Code, Marcus du Sautoy examines the nature of creativity, as well as providing an essential guide into how algorithms work, and the mathematical rules underpinning them. He asks how much of our emotional response to art is a product of our brains reacting to pattern and structure, and exactly what it is to be creative in mathematics, art, language and music.
Marcus finds out how long it might be before machines come up with something creative, and whether they might jolt us into being more imaginative in turn. The result is a fascinating and very different exploration into both AI and the essence of what it means to be human.
Across American praries, through Siberian tundra, over Argentinian pampas and deep into the heart of Africa, the modern world began with the arrival of the railway. The shock was sudden and universal: railways carried empire, capitalism and industrialization to every corner of the planet. For some, the 'Iron Road' symbolized the brute horrors of modernity; for others the way toward a brighter future. From 1825, when the first passenger service linked Stockton and Darlington to the outbreak of World War I, Nicholas Faith presents an engaging and entertaining journey through the first century of rail, introducing visionaries, engineers, surveyors, speculators, financiers and navvies - the heroes and the rogues of the mechanical revolution that turned the world upside down. The railway was the most important invention of the 19th Century, and THE WORLD THE RAILWAYS MADE argues that in the 21st Century, with high speed lines that can compete with air travel and over 190 metro systems in 54 countries underpinning the world's greatest cities, it remains just as relevant.
The field of religion and science is one of the most exciting and dynamic areas of research today. This Companion brings together an outstanding team of scholars to explore the ways in which science intersects with the major religions of the world and religious naturalism. The collection provides an overview of the field and also indicates ways in which it is developing. Its multicultural breadth and scientific rigor on topics that are and will be compelling issues in the first part of the twenty-first century and beyond will be welcomed by students and scholars alike.
'The future hasn't happened yet. The idea that our civilisation is doomed is not established fact. It is a story we tell ourselves.' In the 1980s, we gave up on the future. When we look ahead now, we imagine economic collapse, environmental disaster and the zombie apocalypse. But what if we are wrong? What if this bleak outlook is a generational quirk that afflicted those raised in the twentieth century, but which is already beginning to pass? What if we do have a future after all? John Higgs takes us on a journey past the technological hype and headlines to discover why we shouldn't trust the predictions of science fiction, why nature is not as helpless as we assume and why purpose can never be automated. In the process, we will come to a better understanding of what lies ahead and how, despite everything - despite all the horrors and instability we face - we can build a better future.
What is form in modern art? How could a work of art achieve its organic life in a world increasingly dominated by mechanism, by new technology? In this new book, Brandon Taylor proposes that biology and the life sciences themselves supplied many of the analogies and metaphors by which modern artists were guided. For the creative giants of the period - Picasso, Miro, Kandinsky, Strzeminski, Dali, Arp, Motherwell and Pollock, as well as less-known figures such as Taeuber, Erni and Kobro - questions of 'living' form loomed large in studio conversation, in the press, and in the writings of the artists themselves. In a book rich in new research and fresh thinking, a well-known art historian proposes six modalities of organic and vital life that pervade the radical experiments of modern art: the organic, the biomorphic, the ambiguous, the monstrous, the dialectical, and the liquid.
We are now acutely aware, as if all of the sudden, that data matters enormously to how we live. How did information come to be so integral to what we can do? How did we become people who effortlessly present our lives in social media profiles and who are meticulously recorded in state surveillance dossiers and online marketing databases? What is the story behind data coming to matter so much to who we are? In How We Became Our Data, Colin Koopman excavates early moments of our rapidly accelerating data-tracking technologies and their consequences for how we think of and express our selfhood today. Koopman explores the emergence of mass-scale record keeping systems like birth certificates and social security numbers, as well as new data techniques for categorizing personality traits, measuring intelligence, and even racializing subjects. This all culminates in what Koopman calls the "informational person" and the "informational power" we are now subject to. The recent explosion of digital technologies that are turning us into a series of algorithmic data points is shown to have a deeper and more turbulent past than we commonly think. Blending philosophy, history, political theory, and media theory in conversation with thinkers like Michel Foucault, J rgen Habermas, and Friedrich Kittler, Koopman presents an illuminating perspective on how we have come to think of our personhood--and how we can resist its erosion.
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