THE ARTIFICIAL APE

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The Artificial Ape

Author : Timothy Taylor
ISBN : 023010973X
Genre : Science
File Size : 60.60 MB
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A breakthrough theory that tools and technology are the real drivers of human evolution Although humans are one of the great apes, along with chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans, we are remarkably different from them. Unlike our cousins who subsist on raw food, spend their days and nights outdoors, and wear a thick coat of hair, humans are entirely dependent on artificial things, such as clothing, shelter, and the use of tools, and would die in nature without them. Yet, despite our status as the weakest ape, we are the masters of this planet. Given these inherent deficits, how did humans come out on top? In this fascinating new account of our origins, leading archaeologist Timothy Taylor proposes a new way of thinking about human evolution through our relationship with objects. Drawing on the latest fossil evidence, Taylor argues that at each step of our species' development, humans made choices that caused us to assume greater control of our evolution. Our appropriation of objects allowed us to walk upright, lose our body hair, and grow significantly larger brains. As we push the frontiers of scientific technology, creating prosthetics, intelligent implants, and artificially modified genes, we continue a process that started in the prehistoric past, when we first began to extend our powers through objects. Weaving together lively discussions of major discoveries of human skeletons and artifacts with a reexamination of Darwin's theory of evolution, Taylor takes us on an exciting and challenging journey that begins to answer the fundamental question about our existence: what makes humans unique, and what does that mean for our future?
Category: Science

Fire

Author : Frances D. Burton
ISBN : 9780826346483
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 61.5 MB
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The association between our ancestors and fire, somewhere around six to four million years ago, had a tremendous impact on human evolution, transforming our earliest human ancestor, a being communicating without speech but with insight, reason, manual dexterity, highly developed social organization, and the capability of experimenting with this new technology. As it first associated with and then began to tame fire, this extraordinary being began to distance itself from its primate relatives, taking a path that would alter its environment, physiology, and self-image. Based on her extensive research with nonhuman primates, anthropologist Frances Burton details the stages of the conquest of fire and the systems it affected. Her study examines the natural occurrence of fire and describes the effects light has on human physiology. She constructs possible variations of our earliest human ancestor and its way of life, utilizing archaeological and anthropological evidence of the earliest human-controlled fires to explore the profound physical and biological impacts fire had on human evolution.
Category: Social Science

The Artificial Kingdom

Author : Celeste Olalquiaga
ISBN : 081664117X
Genre : Art
File Size : 20.19 MB
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Originally published: New York: Pantheon Books, 1998.
Category: Art

Sapiens

Author : Yuval Noah Harari
ISBN : 9780062316103
Genre : Science
File Size : 53.41 MB
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New York Times Bestseller From a renowned historian comes a groundbreaking narrative of humanity’s creation and evolution—a #1 international bestseller—that explores the ways in which biology and history have defined us and enhanced our understanding of what it means to be “human.” One hundred thousand years ago, at least six different species of humans inhabited Earth. Yet today there is only one—homo sapiens. What happened to the others? And what may happen to us? Most books about the history of humanity pursue either a historical or a biological approach, but Dr. Yuval Noah Harari breaks the mold with this highly original book that begins about 70,000 years ago with the appearance of modern cognition. From examining the role evolving humans have played in the global ecosystem to charting the rise of empires, Sapiens integrates history and science to reconsider accepted narratives, connect past developments with contemporary concerns, and examine specific events within the context of larger ideas. Dr. Harari also compels us to look ahead, because over the last few decades humans have begun to bend laws of natural selection that have governed life for the past four billion years. We are acquiring the ability to design not only the world around us, but also ourselves. Where is this leading us, and what do we want to become? Featuring 27 photographs, 6 maps, and 25 illustrations/diagrams, this provocative and insightful work is sure to spark debate and is essential reading for aficionados of Jared Diamond, James Gleick, Matt Ridley, Robert Wright, and Sharon Moalem.
Category: Science

The Industries Of The Future

Author : Alec Ross
ISBN : 9781476753652
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 87.87 MB
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Leading innovation expert Alec Ross explains what's next for the world, mapping out the advances and stumbling blocks that will emerge in the next ten years—for businesses, governments, and the global community—and how we can navigate them. While Alec Ross was working as Hillary Clinton's Senior Advisor on Innovation, he traveled to forty-one countries. He visited some of the toughest places in the world—from refugee camps of Congo to Syrian war zones. From phone-charger stands in Rwanda to R&D labs in South Korea, Ross has seen what the future holds. Over the past two decades, the Internet has radically changed markets and businesses worldwide. InThe Industries of the Future, Ross shows us what's next, highlighting the best opportunities for progress and explaining why countries thrive or sputter. He examines the specific fields that will most shape our economic future over the next ten years, including cybercrime and cybersecurity, the commercialization of genomics, the next step for big data, and the coming impact of digital technology on money, payments, and markets. And in each of these realms, Ross addresses the toughest questions: How will we have to adapt to the changing nature of work? Is the prospect of cyberwar sparking the next arms race? How can the world's rising nations hope to match Silicon Valley in creating their own innovation hotspots? Ross blends storytelling and economic analysis to give a vivid and informed perspective on how sweeping global trends are affecting the ways we live, incorporating the insights of leaders ranging from the founders of Google and Twitter to defense experts like David Petraeus. The Industries of the Future takes the intimidating, complex topics that many of us know to be important and boils them down into clear, plain-spoken language. This is an essential work for understanding how the world works—now and tomorrow—and a must-read for businesspeople, in every sector, from every country.
Category: Business & Economics

The Real Planet Of The Apes

Author : David R. Begun
ISBN : 9781400874279
Genre : Science
File Size : 54.83 MB
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Was Darwin wrong when he traced our origins to Africa? The Real Planet of the Apes makes the explosive claim that it was in Europe, not Africa, where apes evolved the most important hallmarks of our human lineage—such as dexterous hands and larger brains. In this compelling and accessible book, David Begun, one of the world's leading paleoanthropologists, transports readers to an epoch in the remote past when the Earth was home to many migratory populations of ape species. Drawing on the latest astonishing discoveries in the fossil record as well as his own experiences conducting field expeditions across Europe and Asia, Begun provides a sweeping evolutionary history of great apes and humans. He tells the story of how one of the earliest members of our evolutionary group—a new kind of primate called Proconsul—evolved from lemur-like monkeys in the primeval forests of Africa. Begun vividly describes how, over the next 10 million years, these hominoids expanded into Europe and Asia and evolved climbing and hanging adaptations, longer maturation times, and larger brains, setting the stage for the emergence of humans. As the climate deteriorated in Europe around 10 million years ago, these apes either died out or migrated south, reinvading the African continent and giving rise to the lineages of the gorilla, chimpanzee, and, ultimately, the human. Presenting startling new insights about our fossil ape ancestors, The Real Planet of the Apes is a book that fundamentally alters our understanding of human origins.
Category: Science

In Touch With The Future

Author : Alberto Gallace
ISBN : 9780191501814
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 31.10 MB
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Out of all the human senses, touch is the one that is most often unappreciated, and undervalued. Yet, the surface of the human body, the skin, is actually one huge sheet of tactile receptors. It provides us with the means to connect with our surroundings. Despite the important role that vision plays in our everyday lives, it is the skin that constitutes both the oldest, and by far the largest of our sense organs. The skin protects our body from the external world and, at the same time, informs us about what occurs on its surface. In Touch With The Future explores the science of touch, bringing together the latest findings from cognitive neuroscience about the processing of tactile information in humans. The book provides a comprehensive overview of scientific knowledge regarding themes such as tactile memory, tactile awareness (consciousness), tactile attention, the role of touch in interpersonal and sexual interactions, and the neurological substrates of touch. It highlights the many ways in which our growing understanding of the world of touch can, and in some cases already are, being applied in the real world in everything from the development of virtual reality (VR) environments, tablet PCs, mobile phones, and even teledildonics - the ultimate frontier in terms of adult entertainment. In addition, the book shows how the cognitive neuroscience approach to the study of touch can be applied to help improve the design of many real-world applications/products as well as to many of our everyday experiences, such as those related to the appreciation of food, marketing, packaging design, the development of enhanced sensory substitution systems, art, and man-machine interfaces. Crucially, the authors makes a convincing argument for the view that one cannot really understand touch, especially not in a real-world context, without placing it in a multisensory context. That is, the senses interact to influence tactile perception in everything - from changing the feel of a surface or product by changing the sound it makes or the fragrance it has. For students and researchers in the brain sciences, this book presents a valuable and fascinating exploration into one of our least understood senses
Category: Psychology

Grandmother Fish

Author : Jonathan Tweet
ISBN : 9781250134110
Genre : Juvenile Nonfiction
File Size : 66.49 MB
Format : PDF, ePub
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Where did we come from? It's a simple question, but not so simple an answer to explain—especially to young children. Charles Darwin's theory of common descent no longer needs to be a scientific mystery to inquisitive young readers. Meet Grandmother Fish. Told in an engaging call and response text where a child can wiggle like a fish or hoot like an ape and brought to life by vibrant artwork, Grandmother Fish takes children and adults through the history of life on our planet and explains how we are all connected. The book also includes comprehensive backmatter, including: - An elaborate illustration of the evolutionary tree of life - Helpful science notes for parents - How to explain natural selection to a child
Category: Juvenile Nonfiction

Tomorrowland

Author : Steven Kotler
ISBN : 9780544456211
Genre : Science
File Size : 38.37 MB
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The Flow Genome Project director and award-winning author of The Rise of Superman charts the world-changing transformation of fictional scientific concepts into real-world technologies. Original. 10,000 first printing.
Category: Science

Are We Smart Enough To Know How Smart Animals Are

Author : Frans de Waal
ISBN : 9780393246193
Genre : Science
File Size : 72.46 MB
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A New York Times Bestseller From world-renowned biologist and primatologist Frans de Waal, a groundbreaking work on animal intelligence destined to become a classic. What separates your mind from an animal’s? Maybe you think it’s your ability to design tools, your sense of self, or your grasp of past and future—all traits that have helped us define ourselves as the planet’s preeminent species. But in recent decades, these claims have eroded, or even been disproven outright, by a revolution in the study of animal cognition. Take the way octopuses use coconut shells as tools; elephants that classify humans by age, gender, and language; or Ayumu, the young male chimpanzee at Kyoto University whose flash memory puts that of humans to shame. Based on research involving crows, dolphins, parrots, sheep, wasps, bats, whales, and of course chimpanzees and bonobos, Frans de Waal explores both the scope and the depth of animal intelligence. He offers a firsthand account of how science has stood traditional behaviorism on its head by revealing how smart animals really are, and how we’ve underestimated their abilities for too long. People often assume a cognitive ladder, from lower to higher forms, with our own intelligence at the top. But what if it is more like a bush, with cognition taking different forms that are often incomparable to ours? Would you presume yourself dumber than a squirrel because you’re less adept at recalling the locations of hundreds of buried acorns? Or would you judge your perception of your surroundings as more sophisticated than that of a echolocating bat? De Waal reviews the rise and fall of the mechanistic view of animals and opens our minds to the idea that animal minds are far more intricate and complex than we have assumed. De Waal’s landmark work will convince you to rethink everything you thought you knew about animal—and human—intelligence.
Category: Science