A twenty-first-century scientist sacrifices her family life to decipher the strange signals coming from interstellar space, messages that show her how to build an extraordinary machine that allows one to travel via the mind. Reprint.
Will your next doctor be a human being—or a machine? Will you have a choice? If you do, what should you know before making it?This book introduces the reader to the pitfalls and promises of artificial intelligence (AI) in its modern incarnation and the growing trend of systems to "reach off the Web" into the real world. The convergence of AI, social networking, and modern computing is creating an historic inflection point in the partnership between human beings and machines with potentially profound impacts on the future not only of computing but of our world and species.AI experts and researchers James Hendler—co-originator of the Semantic Web (Web 3.0)—and Alice Mulvehill—developer of AI-based operational systems for DARPA, the Air Force, and NASA—explore the social implications of AI systems in the context of a close examination of the technologies that make them possible. The authors critically evaluate the utopian claims and dystopian counterclaims of AI prognosticators. Social Machines: The Coming Collision of Artificial Intelligence, Social Networking, and Humanity is your richly illustrated field guide to the future of your machine-mediated relationships with other human beings and with increasingly intelligent machines. What Readers Will Learn What the concept of a social machine is and how the activities of non-programmers are contributing to machine intelligence How modern artificial intelligence technologies, such as Watson, are evolving and how they process knowledge from both carefully produced information (such as Wikipedia and journal articles) and from big data collections The fundamentals of neuromorphic computing, knowledge graph search, and linked data, as well as the basic technology concepts that underlie networking applications such as Facebook and Twitter How the change in attitudes towards cooperative work on the Web, especially in the younger demographic, is critical to the future of Web applications Who This Book Is ForGeneral readers and technically engaged developers, entrepreneurs, and technologists interested in the threats and promises of the accelerating convergence of artificial intelligence with social networks and mobile web technologies.
Some might think that the 27 thousand tons of material launched by earthlings into outer space is nothing more than floating piles of debris. However, when looking at these artifacts through the eyes of historians and anthropologists, instead of celestial pollution, they are seen as links to human history and heritage. Space: The New Frontier for Archeologists Handbook of Space Engineering, Archaeology and Heritage, published this month by CRC Press Taylor and Francis Group, brings together 43 anthropologists, historians, physicists, and engineers, a scientific team as culturally diverse as the crew of any science fiction cruiser. They offer a range of novel historical and technological perspectives on humankind’s experience in space. This ambitious work presents an informative, thought-provoking, and educational text that discusses the evolution of space engineering, spacecraft reliability and forensics, field techniques, and mission planning, as well as space programs for the future. The book is edited by a pair of scientists from different sides of the campus: Ann Garrison Darrin, aerospace engineer and NASA veteran and Beth Laura O’Leary, anthropologist and member of the World Archaeological Congress Space Heritage Task Force. The handbook delves into the evolution of space archaeology and heritage, including the emerging fields of Archaeoastronomy, Ethnoastronomy, and Cultural Astronomy. It also covers space basics and the history of the space age from Sputnik to modern day satellites. It discusses the cultural landscape of space, including orbital artifacts in space, as well as objects left on planetary surfaces and includes a look at the culture of Apollo as a catalog of manned exploration of the moon. It also considers the application of forensic investigation to the solving of cold case mysteries including failed Mars mission landing sites and lost spacecraft, and even investigates the archaeology of the putative Roswell UFO crash site and appraises material culture in science fiction.
Placing the neglected issue of class back into the study and understanding of religion, Sean McCloud reconsiders the meaning of class in today's world. More than a status grounded in material conditions, says McCloud, class is also an identity rhetorically and symbolically made and unmade through representations. It entails relationships, identifications, boundaries, meanings, power, and our most ingrained habits of mind and body. He demonstrates that employing class as an analytical tool that cuts across variables such as creed, race, ethnicity, and gender can illuminate American religious life in unprecedented ways. Through social theory, historical analysis, and ethnography, McCloud makes an interdisciplinary argument for reinserting class into the study of religion. First, he offers a new three-part conception of class for use in studying religion. He then presents a focused cultural history of religious studies by examining how social class surfaced in twentieth-century theories of religious affiliation. He concludes with historical and ethnographic case studies of religion and class. Divine Hierarchies makes a convincing case for the past and present importance of class in American religious thought, practice, and scholarship.
With the Soviet Union crumbling under internal pressures and a new Japanese empire causing trouble around the globe, the world is in chaos, and the Americans find themselves joining forces with their old enemies in Moscow
Calculating God is the new near-future SF thriller from the popular and award-winning Robert J. Sawyer. An alien shuttle craft lands outside the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. A six-legged, two-armed alien emerges, who says, in perfect English, "Take me to a paleontologist." It seems that Earth, and the alien's home planet, and the home planet of another alien species traveling on the alien mother ship, all experienced the same five cataclysmic events at about the same time (one example of these "cataclysmic events" would be the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs). Both alien races believe this proves the existence of God: i.e. he's obviously been playing with the evolution of life on each of these planets. From this provocative launch point, Sawyer tells a fast-paced, and morally and intellectually challenging, SF story that just grows larger and larger in scope. The evidence of God's universal existence is not universally well received on Earth, nor even immediately believed. And it reveals nothing of God's nature. In fact. it poses more questions than it answers. When a supernova explodes out in the galaxy but close enough to wipe out life on all three home-worlds, the big question is, Will God intervene or is this the sixth cataclysm:? Calculating God is SF on the grand scale. Calculating God is a 2001 Hugo Award Nominee for Best Novel. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
Dr. Peter Hobson has created three electronic simulations of his own personality. But they all have escaped from Hobson's computer into the web-and one of them is a killer.
Provides synopses for over 1,500 titles of current popular fiction and recommends other books by such criteria as authors, characters portrayed, time period, geographical setting, or genre
Next to Neil Young and Dan Akroyd, these Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror writers are Canada's greatest gift to the world.
By identifying similarities in various books, this annual selection guide helps readers to independently choose titles of interest published in the last year. Each entry describes a separate book, listing everything readers need to know to make selections. Arranged by author within six genre sections, detailed entries provide - Title; Publisher and publication date; Series; Names and descriptions of characters; Time period and geographical setting; Review citations; Story types; Brief plot summary; Selected other books by the author; Similar books by different authors. Author, title, series, character name, character description, time period, geographic setting and genre/sub-genre indexes are included to facilitate research.
A guide to popular, contemporary Canadian fiction.
Robert J. Sawyer's award-winning science fiction has garnered both popular and critical acclaim. The New York Times Book Review called Frameshift "filled to bursting with ideas, characters and incidents." His novels are fixtures on the Hugo and Nebula ballots. Sawyer now brings us Flashforward, the story of a world-shattering discovery. In pursuit of an elusive nuclear particle, an experiment goes incredibly awry, and, for a few moments, the consciousness of the entire human race is thrown ahead by about twenty years. As the implications truly hit home, the pressure to repeat the experiment builds. Everyone wants a glimpse of their future, a chance to flashforward and see their successes ... or learn how to avoid their failures. Winner of the Aurora Award and the basis for the hit ABC television series. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
This classic work is an essential tool for collection development, research, reference, and readers' advisory work."--BOOK JACKET.
Examines the history and people, the science and the society, the lives, times and themes, the cultural impact and the critical response of the dynamic genre that is speculative fiction.