How We Got to Now

How We Got to Now
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 304
  • Relase : 2014-09-30
  • ISBN : 9780698154506

How We Got to Now Book Review:

From the New York Times–bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From and Extra Life, a new look at the power and legacy of great ideas. In this illustrated history, Steven Johnson explores the history of innovation over centuries, tracing facets of modern life (refrigeration, clocks, and eyeglass lenses, to name a few) from their creation by hobbyists, amateurs, and entrepreneurs to their unintended historical consequences. Filled with surprising stories of accidental genius and brilliant mistakes—from the French publisher who invented the phonograph before Edison but forgot to include playback, to the Hollywood movie star who helped invent the technology behind Wi-Fi and Bluetooth—How We Got to Now investigates the secret history behind the everyday objects of contemporary life. In his trademark style, Johnson examines unexpected connections between seemingly unrelated fields: how the invention of air-conditioning enabled the largest migration of human beings in the history of the species—to cities such as Dubai or Phoenix, which would otherwise be virtually uninhabitable; how pendulum clocks helped trigger the industrial revolution; and how clean water made it possible to manufacture computer chips. Accompanied by a major six-part television series on PBS, How We Got to Now is the story of collaborative networks building the modern world, written in the provocative, informative, and engaging style that has earned Johnson fans around the globe.

How We Got to Now

How We Got to Now
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin UK
  • Pages : 256
  • Relase : 2014-10-16
  • ISBN : 9781846148569

How We Got to Now Book Review:

From Steven Johnson, the bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From, comes How We Got to Now, the companion book to his six-part BBC One television series exploring the power and the legacy of great ideas. How did photography bring about social reform? What connects refrigeration to Hollywood? And how did our battle against dirt help create smartphones? In this story of ingenious breakthroughs and unsung heroes, Steven Johnson explores the essential innovations that changed the world and how we live in it. 'A new Steven Johnson book is something not to be missed. The author has become the leading writer on how inventions happen' Daniel Finkelstein, The Times, Books of the Year 'Graceful and compelling ... you'll find yourself exhilarated' The New York Times Book Review 'Readable, entertaining, and a challenge to any jaded sensibility that has become inured to the everyday miracles all around us' Peter Forbes, Guardian'This nimble history of invention . . .is a many-layered delight' Nature Steven Johnson is the US bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From, The Invention of Air, The Ghost Map, and Everything Bad Is Good for You, and is the editor of the anthology The Innovator's Cookbook. He is the founder of a variety of influential websites - most recently, outside.in - and writes for Time, Wired, The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Extra Life

Extra Life
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 320
  • Relase : 2021-05-11
  • ISBN : 9780525538875

Extra Life Book Review:

“Offers a useful reminder of the role of modern science in fundamentally transforming all of our lives.” —President Barack Obama (on Twitter) “An important book.” —Steven Pinker, The New York Times Book Review The surprising and important story of how humans gained what amounts to an extra life, from the bestselling author of How We Got to Now and Where Good Ideas Come From In 1920, at the end of the last major pandemic, global life expectancy was just over forty years. Today, in many parts of the world, human beings can expect to live more than eighty years. As a species we have doubled our life expectancy in just one century. There are few measures of human progress more astonishing than this increased longevity. Extra Life is Steven Johnson’s attempt to understand where that progress came from, telling the epic story of one of humanity’s greatest achievements. How many of those extra years came from vaccines, or the decrease in famines, or seatbelts? What are the forces that now keep us alive longer? Behind each breakthrough lies an inspiring story of cooperative innovation, of brilliant thinkers bolstered by strong systems of public support and collaborative networks, and of dedicated activists fighting for meaningful reform. But for all its focus on positive change, this book is also a reminder that meaningful gaps in life expectancy still exist, and that new threats loom on the horizon, as the COVID-19 pandemic has made clear. How do we avoid decreases in life expectancy as our public health systems face unprecedented challenges? What current technologies or interventions that could reduce the impact of future crises are we somehow ignoring? A study in how meaningful change happens in society, Extra Life celebrates the enduring power of common goals and public resources, and the heroes of public health and medicine too often ignored in popular accounts of our history. This is the sweeping story of a revolution with immense public and personal consequences: the doubling of the human life span.

Farsighted

Farsighted
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 256
  • Relase : 2018-09-04
  • ISBN : 9780525534709

Farsighted Book Review:

The hardest choices are also the most consequential. So why do we know so little about how to get them right? Big, life-altering decisions matter so much more than the decisions we make every day, and they're also the most difficult: where to live, whom to marry, what to believe, whether to start a company, how to end a war. There's no one-size-fits-all approach for addressing these kinds of conundrums. Steven Johnson's classic Where Good Ideas Come From inspired creative people all over the world with new ways of thinking about innovation. In Farsighted, he uncovers powerful tools for honing the important skill of complex decision-making. While you can't model a once-in-a-lifetime choice, you can model the deliberative tactics of expert decision-makers. These experts aren't just the master strategists running major companies or negotiating high-level diplomacy. They're the novelists who draw out the complexity of their characters' inner lives, the city officials who secure long-term water supplies, and the scientists who reckon with future challenges most of us haven't even imagined. The smartest decision-makers don't go with their guts. Their success relies on having a future-oriented approach and the ability to consider all their options in a creative, productive way. Through compelling stories that reveal surprising insights, Johnson explains how we can most effectively approach the choices that can chart the course of a life, an organization, or a civilization. Farsighted will help you imagine your possible futures and appreciate the subtle intelligence of the choices that shaped our broader social history.

Wonderland

Wonderland
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 336
  • Relase : 2016-11-15
  • ISBN : 9780399184505

Wonderland Book Review:

“A house of wonders itself. . . . Wonderland inspires grins and well-what-d'ya-knows” —The New York Times Book Review From the New York Times–bestselling author of How We Got to Now and Extra Life, a look at the world-changing innovations we made while keeping ourselves entertained. This lushly illustrated history of popular entertainment takes a long-zoom approach, contending that the pursuit of novelty and wonder is a powerful driver of world-shaping technological change. Steven Johnson argues that, throughout history, the cutting edge of innovation lies wherever people are working the hardest to keep themselves and others amused. Johnson’s storytelling is just as delightful as the inventions he describes, full of surprising stops along the journey from simple concepts to complex modern systems. He introduces us to the colorful innovators of leisure: the explorers, proprietors, showmen, and artists who changed the trajectory of history with their luxurious wares, exotic meals, taverns, gambling tables, and magic shows. In Wonderland, Johnson compellingly argues that observers of technological and social trends should be looking for clues in novel amusements. You’ll find the future wherever people are having the most fun.

Where Good Ideas Come From

Where Good Ideas Come From
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 336
  • Relase : 2010-10-05
  • ISBN : 9781101444207

Where Good Ideas Come From Book Review:

A fascinating deep dive on innovation from the New York Times bestselling author of How We Got To Now and Unexpected Life The printing press, the pencil, the flush toilet, the battery--these are all great ideas. But where do they come from? What kind of environment breeds them? What sparks the flash of brilliance? How do we generate the breakthrough technologies that push forward our lives, our society, our culture? Steven Johnson's answers are revelatory as he identifies the seven key patterns behind genuine innovation, and traces them across time and disciplines. From Darwin and Freud to the halls of Google and Apple, Johnson investigates the innovation hubs throughout modern time and pulls out the approaches and commonalities that seem to appear at moments of originality.

Everything Bad is Good for You

Everything Bad is Good for You
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 272
  • Relase : 2006-05-02
  • ISBN : 9781101158012

Everything Bad is Good for You Book Review:

From the New York Times bestselling author of How We Got To Now and Farsighted Forget everything you’ve ever read about the age of dumbed-down, instant-gratification culture. In this provocative, unfailingly intelligent, thoroughly researched, and surprisingly convincing big idea book, Steven Johnson draws from fields as diverse as neuroscience, economics, and media theory to argue that the pop culture we soak in every day—from Lord of the Rings to Grand Theft Auto to The Simpsons—has been growing more sophisticated with each passing year, and, far from rotting our brains, is actually posing new cognitive challenges that are actually making our minds measurably sharper. After reading Everything Bad is Good for You, you will never regard the glow of the video game or television screen the same way again. With a new afterword by the author.

How We Got to the Moon

How We Got to the Moon
  • Author : John Rocco
  • Publisher : Crown Books for Young Readers
  • Pages : 264
  • Relase : 2020-10-06
  • ISBN : 9780525647430

How We Got to the Moon Book Review:

LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD • YALSA EXCELLENCE IN NONFICTION FINALIST • A ROBERT F. SIBERT HONOR BOOK This beautifully illustrated, oversized guide to the people and technology of the moon landing by award-winning author/illustrator John Rocco (illustrator of the Percy Jackson series) is a must-have for space fans, classrooms, and tech geeks. Everyone knows of Neil Armstrong's famous first steps on the moon. But what did it really take to get us there? The Moon landing is one of the most ambitious, thrilling, and dangerous ventures in human history. This exquisitely researched and illustrated book tells the stories of the 400,000 unsung heroes--the engineers, mathematicians, seamstresses, welders, and factory workers--and their innovations and life-changing technological leaps forward that allowed NASA to achieve this unparalleled accomplishment. From the shocking launch of the Russian satellite Sputnik to the triumphant splashdown of Apollo 11, Caldecott Honor winner John Rocco answers every possible question about this world-altering mission. Each challenging step in the space race is revealed, examined, and displayed through stunning diagrams, experiments, moments of crisis, and unforgettable human stories. Explorers of all ages will want to pore over every page in this comprehensive chronicle detailing the grandest human adventure of all time!

How We Got to Now

How We Got to Now
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Riverhead Books
  • Pages : 293
  • Relase : 2015-09
  • ISBN : 9781594633935

How We Got to Now Book Review:

This book is a celebration of ideas: how they happen and their sometimes unintended results. Johnson shows how simple scientific breakthroughs have driven other discoveries through the network of ideas and innovations that made each finding possible. He traces important inventions through ancient and contemporary history, unlocking tales of unsung heroes and radical revolutions that changed the world and the way we live in it

Enemy of All Mankind

Enemy of All Mankind
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 306
  • Relase : 2020-05-12
  • ISBN : 9780735211629

Enemy of All Mankind Book Review:

“Thoroughly engrossing . . . a spirited, suspenseful, economically told tale whose significance is manifest and whose pace never flags.” —The Wall Street Journal From The New York Times–bestselling author of The Ghost Map and Extra Life, the story of a pirate who changed the world Henry Every was the seventeenth century’s most notorious pirate. The press published wildly popular—and wildly inaccurate—reports of his nefarious adventures. The British government offered enormous bounties for his capture, alive or (preferably) dead. But Steven Johnson argues that Every’s most lasting legacy was his inadvertent triggering of a major shift in the global economy. Enemy of All Mankind focuses on one key event—the attack on an Indian treasure ship by Every and his crew—and its surprising repercussions across time and space. It’s the gripping tale of one of the most lucrative crimes in history, the first international manhunt, and the trial of the seventeenth century. Johnson uses the extraordinary story of Henry Every and his crimes to explore the emergence of the East India Company, the British Empire, and the modern global marketplace: a densely interconnected planet ruled by nations and corporations. How did this unlikely pirate and his notorious crime end up playing a key role in the birth of multinational capitalism? In the same mode as Johnson’s classic nonfiction historical thriller The Ghost Map, Enemy of All Mankind deftly traces the path from a single struck match to a global conflagration.

Who We Are and How We Got Here

Who We Are and How We Got Here
  • Author : David Reich
  • Publisher : Oxford University Press
  • Pages : 368
  • Relase : 2018-03-27
  • ISBN : 9780198821250

Who We Are and How We Got Here Book Review:

David Reich describes how the revolution in the ability to sequence ancient DNA has changed our understanding of the deep human past. This book tells the emerging story of our often surprising ancestry - the extraordinary ancient migrations and mixtures of populations that have made us who we are.

The Ghost Map

The Ghost Map
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 320
  • Relase : 2006-10-19
  • ISBN : 9781101158531

The Ghost Map Book Review:

A National Bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book, and an Entertainment Weekly Best Book of the Year from the author of Extra Life “By turns a medical thriller, detective story, and paean to city life, Johnson's account of the outbreak and its modern implications is a true page-turner.” —The Washington Post “Thought-provoking.” —Entertainment Weekly It's the summer of 1854, and London is just emerging as one of the first modern cities in the world. But lacking the infrastructure-garbage removal, clean water, sewers-necessary to support its rapidly expanding population, the city has become the perfect breeding ground for a terrifying disease no one knows how to cure. As the cholera outbreak takes hold, a physician and a local curate are spurred to action-and ultimately solve the most pressing medical riddle of their time. In a triumph of multidisciplinary thinking, Johnson illuminates the intertwined histories of the spread of disease, the rise of cities, and the nature of scientific inquiry, offering both a riveting history and a powerful explanation of how it has shaped the world we live in.

The Story of More

The Story of More
  • Author : Hope Jahren
  • Publisher : Vintage Canada
  • Pages : 192
  • Relase : 2020-03-03
  • ISBN : 9780735275126

The Story of More Book Review:

From the bestselling author of Lab Girl comes a slim, urgent missive on the defining issue of our time: here is Hope Jahren on climate change, our timeless pursuit of more, and how the same human ambition that got us here can also be our salvation. Hope Jahren is an award-winning geobiologist, a brilliant writer, and one of the seven billion people with whom we share this earth. The Story of More is her impassioned open letter to humanity as we stand at the crossroads of survival and extinction. Jahren celebrates the long history of our enterprising spirit--which has tamed wild crops, cured diseases, and sent us to the moon--but also shows how that spirit has created excesses that are quickly warming our planet to dangerous levels. In short, highly readable chapters, she takes us through the science behind the key inventions--from electric power to large-scale farming and automobiles--that, even as they help us, release untenable amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. She explains the current and projected consequences of greenhouse gases--from superstorms to rising sea levels--and shares the science-based tools that could help us fight back. At once an explainer on the mechanisms of warming and a capsule history of human development, The Story of More illuminates the link between our consumption habits and our endangered earth. It is the essential pocket primer on climate change that will leave an indelible impact on everyone who reads it.

Are-4

Are-4
  • Author : Sam Shake
  • Publisher : Bookbaby
  • Pages : 492
  • Relase : 2021-04-09
  • ISBN : 1098350553

Are-4 Book Review:

The epic novel, Are-4, A True Story of How We Got to Now, chronicles four main characters and their growing disappointment in "the way things are". Over the span of forty years, the characters' individual personalities are revealed as they confront and discuss the issues of the day and ponder how to better them. The scheme they develop involves the invention of a device to send one of the characters to a well-known historical event where his minuscule change to a minor element creates tremendous changes going forward. All four characters then re-live their lives in a new, vastly different reality until, alas, that "better world" is cruelly transformed into our current reality by three men - well known to us all - who stumble upon the breakthrough and realize its incredible power.

Dogfight

Dogfight
  • Author : Fred Vogelstein
  • Publisher : Penguin Canada
  • Pages : 272
  • Relase : 2013-11-12
  • ISBN : 9780143190301

Dogfight Book Review:

This is the story of how Apple and Google have reshaped our world and redefined the meaning of content and how it is distributed. It begins with the iPhone, which has transformed the concept of what a smart phone can be. Now everyone wants one, or else a smart phone like it. Apple and Google are fighting to find a way to control the software that runs these phones so they can manage the content that runs on top of it. The battle has become vicious, although Google makes more than half the apps that run on Apple devices. There may be room for both, but the history of technology suggests that only one player will be dominant in the long term. Author Fred Vogelstein recounts that struggle and describes the impact it is having on the rest of the media and on technology. Filled with in-depth interviews of key players and behind-the-scenes accounts of corporate strategy, Dogfight is a must-read for anyone interested in the biggest societal and technological shift since the Industrial Revolution.

Emergence

Emergence
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Simon and Schuster
  • Pages : 288
  • Relase : 2012-09-11
  • ISBN : 9780743218269

Emergence Book Review:

In the tradition of Being Digital and The Tipping Point, Steven Johnson, acclaimed as a "cultural critic with a poet's heart" (The Village Voice), takes readers on an eye-opening journey through emergence theory and its applications. A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK A VOICE LITERARY SUPPLEMENT TOP 25 FAVORITE BOOKS OF THE YEAR AN ESQUIRE MAGAZINE BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR Explaining why the whole is sometimes smarter than the sum of its parts, Johnson presents surprising examples of feedback, self-organization, and adaptive learning. How does a lively neighborhood evolve out of a disconnected group of shopkeepers, bartenders, and real estate developers? How does a media event take on a life of its own? How will new software programs create an intelligent World Wide Web? In the coming years, the power of self-organization -- coupled with the connective technology of the Internet -- will usher in a revolution every bit as significant as the introduction of electricity. Provocative and engaging, Emergence puts you on the front lines of this exciting upheaval in science and thought.

The Invention of Air

The Invention of Air
  • Author : Steven Johnson
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 304
  • Relase : 2008-12-26
  • ISBN : 9781440685316

The Invention of Air Book Review:

From the bestselling author of How We Got To Now, The Ghost Map and Farsighted, a new national bestseller: the “exhilarating”( Los Angeles Times) story of Joseph Priestley, “a founding father long forgotten”(Newsweek) and a brilliant man who embodied the relationship between science, religion, and politics for America's Founding Fathers. In The Invention of Air, national bestselling author Steven Johnson tells the fascinating story of Joseph Priestley—scientist and theologian, protégé of Benjamin Franklin, friend of Thomas Jefferson—an eighteenth-century radical thinker who played pivotal roles in the invention of ecosystem science, the discovery of oxygen, the uses of oxygen, scientific experimentation, the founding of the Unitarian Church, and the intellectual development of the United States. As he did so masterfully in The Ghost Map, Steven Johnson uses a dramatic historical story to explore themes that have long engaged him: innovative strategies, intellectual models, and the way new ideas emerge and spread, and the environments that foster these breakthroughs.

WTF?

WTF?
  • Author : Robert Peston
  • Publisher : Hodder & Stoughton
  • Pages : 288
  • Relase : 2017-11-02
  • ISBN : 9781473661325

WTF? Book Review:

THE TOP 10 BESTSELLER 'Richly argued and brilliantly written... a deeply thoughtful analysis that should be mandatory reading for anyone seeking to understand where we have gone wrong.' Vernon Bogdanor, Financial Times In WTF? Robert Peston draws on his years of experience as a political, economics and business journalist to show us what has gone bad and gives us a manifesto to put at least some of it right. Framed by two letters to his father (who died in early 2016) WTF? is Robert Peston's highly personal account of what those who have ruled us for years got so badly wrong, and what we need to do to mend the terrible fractures in our society. With characteristic passion and clarity he looks at what must happen to prevent democracy being subverted by technocratic geniuses with the ability to manipulate social media, how and whether it is possible to make a success of leaving the EU, what the lessons should be of the appalling Grenfell Tower tragedy, whether robots can be stopped from taking our work, what can be done to staunch the widening gap between rich and poor, and how to raise living standards for all. WTF? is a trenchant, often entertaining account of the recent past. It is also a call to action, giving hope to all of us who believe that taking back control is not only vital, but possible. 'A manual for our times that everyone should read.' Matthew d'Ancona

The Idea Factory

The Idea Factory
  • Author : Jon Gertner
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Pages : 432
  • Relase : 2012-03-15
  • ISBN : 9781101561089

The Idea Factory Book Review:

The definitive history of America’s greatest incubator of innovation and the birthplace of some of the 20th century’s most influential technologies “Filled with colorful characters and inspiring lessons . . . The Idea Factory explores one of the most critical issues of our time: What causes innovation?” —Walter Isaacson, The New York Times Book Review “Compelling . . . Gertner's book offers fascinating evidence for those seeking to understand how a society should best invest its research resources.” —The Wall Street Journal From its beginnings in the 1920s until its demise in the 1980s, Bell Labs-officially, the research and development wing of AT&T-was the biggest, and arguably the best, laboratory for new ideas in the world. From the transistor to the laser, from digital communications to cellular telephony, it's hard to find an aspect of modern life that hasn't been touched by Bell Labs. In The Idea Factory, Jon Gertner traces the origins of some of the twentieth century's most important inventions and delivers a riveting and heretofore untold chapter of American history. At its heart this is a story about the life and work of a small group of brilliant and eccentric men-Mervin Kelly, Bill Shockley, Claude Shannon, John Pierce, and Bill Baker-who spent their careers at Bell Labs. Today, when the drive to invent has become a mantra, Bell Labs offers us a way to enrich our understanding of the challenges and solutions to technological innovation. Here, after all, was where the foundational ideas on the management of innovation were born.

Nothing But the Truth

Nothing But the Truth
  • Author : Avi
  • Publisher : Scholastic Inc.
  • Pages : 177
  • Relase : 2010
  • ISBN : 9780545174152

Nothing But the Truth Book Review:

Ninth-grader Philip Malloy's suspension for humming "The Star-Spangled Banner" during homeroom becomes a national news story.