Notes Of A Tourist On Planet Earth

Author: J. D. Smith
Publisher: SCB Distributors
ISBN: 0984964444
Size: 65.36 MB
Format: PDF
View: 5463
Download
Notes of a Tourist on Planet Earth Some questions haunt humanity on a daily basis, or at the very least make it scratch its collective head. Why shouldn't one wear black? Who is the emitting the most greenhouse gases? What hybrids could result from genetic engineering, and what kind of secret life does ethanol have? How can one sound halfway intelligent at an art gallery or survive a poetry open mic? Most importantly of all, who do you have to please to get a table at that restaurant everybody's talking it? In NOTES OF A TOURIST ON PLANET EARTH, seasoned traveler and award-winning writer J.D. Smith answers these questions and more, many more, in stories, lists, poems and essays, along with pieces that no category could hope to contain without undergoing elective surgery. Based on research in world capitals, the bars of eight time zones and a distressing number of degree programs, this collection combines wit and erudition in ways that will make Woody Allen and Roy Blount, Jr. hear footsteps-and have Rachael Ray taking a long, hard look at herself.

The Cosmic Perspective

Author:
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780321505675
Size: 52.26 MB
Format: PDF
View: 6235
Download
"Building on a long tradition of effective pedagogy and comprehensive presentation, The Cosmic Perspective includes an enhanced art program. This student-friendly text is now even more accessible through robust visual pedagogy via new Cosmic Context two-page illustrations, which walk students through key processes and summarize the major points of each Part, and via updated zoom-in figures which provide students with a sense of orientation, scale, and relation between images. In addition to an enhanced art program, the text also features new See It For Yourself boxes with practical hands-on activities for in-class use or self-study, and a new subset of Process of Science end-of-chapter questions that challenge students to think through how we know what we know about astronomy."--Product description.

Letters From The Earth

Author: Mark Twain
Publisher: Youcanprint
ISBN: 8892658379
Size: 28.70 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
View: 3972
Download
The Creator sat upon the throne, thinking. Behind him stretched the illimitable continent of heaven, steeped in a glory of light and color; before him rose the black night of Space, like a wall. His mighty bulk towered rugged and mountain-like into the zenith, and His divine head blazed there like a distant sun. At His feet stood three colossal figures, diminished to extinction, almost, by contrast -- archangels -- their heads level with His ankle-bone. When the Creator had finished thinking, He said, "I have thought. Behold!" He lifted His hand, and from it burst a fountain-spray of fire, a million stupendous suns, which clove the blackness and soared, away and away and away, diminishing in magnitude and intensity as they pierced the far frontiers of Space, until at last they were but as diamond nailheads sparkling under the domed vast roof of the universe. At the end of an hour the Grand Council was dismissed. They left the Presence impressed and thoughtful, and retired to a private place, where they might talk with freedom. None of the three seemed to want to begin, though all wanted somebody to do it.

The Demon Haunted World

Author: Carl Sagan
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 0307801047
Size: 50.22 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
View: 5524
Download
A prescient warning of a future we now inhabit, where fake news stories and Internet conspiracy theories play to a disaffected American populace “A glorious book . . . A spirited defense of science . . . From the first page to the last, this book is a manifesto for clear thought.”—Los Angeles Times How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives if we don’t understand the difference between the myths of pseudoscience and the testable hypotheses of science? Pulitzer Prize-winning author and distinguished astronomer Carl Sagan argues that scientific thinking is critical not only to the pursuit of truth but to the very well-being of our democratic institutions. Casting a wide net through history and culture, Sagan examines and authoritatively debunks such celebrated fallacies of the past as witchcraft, faith healing, demons, and UFOs. And yet, disturbingly, in today's so-called information age, pseudoscience is burgeoning with stories of alien abduction, channeling past lives, and communal hallucinations commanding growing attention and respect. As Sagan demonstrates with lucid eloquence, the siren song of unreason is not just a cultural wrong turn but a dangerous plunge into darkness that threatens our most basic freedoms. Praise for The Demon-Haunted World “Powerful . . . A stirring defense of informed rationality. . . Rich in surprising information and beautiful writing.”—The Washington Post Book World “Compelling.”—USA Today “A clear vision of what good science means and why it makes a difference. . . . A testimonial to the power of science and a warning of the dangers of unrestrained credulity.”—The Sciences “Passionate.”—San Francisco Examiner-Chronicle

Placing The Academy

Author: Jennifer Sinor
Publisher: Utah State University Press
ISBN: 9780874216578
Size: 53.92 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
View: 5684
Download
A set of creative writers here responds to the call for literature that addresses who we are by understanding where we are—where, for each of them, being somehow part of the academy. Their personal essays delineate the diverse, sometimes unexpected roles of place in shaping them, as writers and teachers in varied environments, through unique experiences and distinctive worldviews—in reconfiguring their conjunctions of identity and setting, here, there, everywhere, and in between. Offering creative comments on place, identity, and academic work are authors Charles Bergman, Mary Clearman Blew, Jayne Brim Box, Jeffrey M. Buchanan, Norma Elia Cantú, Katherine Fischer, Kathryn T. Flannery, Diana Garcia, Janice M. Gould, Seán W. Henne, Rona Kaufman, Deborah A. Miranda, Erin E. Moore, Kathleen Dean Moore, Robert Michael Pyle, Jennifer Sinor, Scott Slovic, Michael Sowder, Lee Torda, Charles Waugh, and Mitsuye Yamada.

Death By Black Hole And Other Cosmic Quandaries

Author: Neil deGrasse Tyson
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 9780393113785
Size: 29.82 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
View: 1361
Download
“[Tyson] tackles a great range of subjects . . . with great humor, humility, and—most important— humanity.” —Entertainment Weekly Loyal readers of the monthly "Universe" essays in Natural History magazine have long recognized Neil deGrasse Tyson's talent for guiding them through the mysteries of the cosmos with clarity and enthusiasm. Bringing together more than forty of Tyson's favorite essays, ?Death by Black Hole? explores a myriad of cosmic topics, from what it would be like to be inside a black hole to the movie industry's feeble efforts to get its night skies right. One of America's best-known astrophysicists, Tyson is a natural teacher who simplifies the complexities of astrophysics while sharing his infectious fascination for our universe.

Superintelligence

Author: Nick Bostrom
Publisher: Oxford University Press (UK)
ISBN: 0199678111
Size: 64.38 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
View: 1987
Download
The human brain has some capabilities that the brains of other animals lack. It is to these distinctive capabilities that our species owes its dominant position. Other animals have stronger muscles or sharper claws, but we have cleverer brains. If machine brains one day come to surpass human brains in general intelligence, then this new superintelligence could become very powerful. As the fate of the gorillas now depends more on us humans than on the gorillas themselves, so the fate of our species then would come to depend on the actions of the machine superintelligence. But we have one advantage: we get to make the first move. Will it be possible to construct a seed AI or otherwise to engineer initial conditions so as to make an intelligence explosion survivable? How could one achieve a controlled detonation? To get closer to an answer to this question, we must make our way through a fascinating landscape of topics and considerations. Read the book and learn about oracles, genies, singletons; about boxing methods, tripwires, and mind crime; about humanity's cosmic endowment and differential technological development; indirect normativity, instrumental convergence, whole brain emulation and technology couplings; Malthusian economics and dystopian evolution; artificial intelligence, and biological cognitive enhancement, and collective intelligence.

Billions Billions

Author: Carl Sagan
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 0307801020
Size: 23.16 MB
Format: PDF
View: 1486
Download
In the final book of his astonishing career, Carl Sagan brilliantly examines the burning questions of our lives, our world, and the universe around us. These luminous, entertaining essays travel both the vastness of the cosmos and the intimacy of the human mind, posing such fascinating questions as how did the universe originate and how will it end, and how can we meld science and compassion to meet the challenges of the coming century? Here, too, is a rare, private glimpse of Sagan's thoughts about love, death, and God as he struggled with fatal disease. Ever forward-looking and vibrant with the sparkle of his unquenchable curiosity, Billions & Billions is a testament to one of the great scientific minds of our day. From the Trade Paperback edition.

On Writing

Author: Stephen King
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 0743455967
Size: 20.34 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
View: 3543
Download
The author shares his insights into the craft of writing and offers a humorous perspective on his own experience as a writer.

Space Chronicles Facing The Ultimate Frontier

Author: Neil deGrasse Tyson
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393082911
Size: 17.45 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
View: 4635
Download
“A compelling appeal, at just the right time, for continuing to look up.”—Air & Space America’s space program is at a turning point. After decades of global primacy, NASA has ended the space-shuttle program, cutting off its access to space. No astronauts will be launched in an American craft, from American soil, until the 2020s, and NASA may soon find itself eclipsed by other countries’ space programs. With his signature wit and thought-provoking insights, Neil deGrasse Tyson—one of our foremost thinkers on all things space—illuminates the past, present, and future of space exploration and brilliantly reminds us why NASA matters now as much as ever. As Tyson reveals, exploring the space frontier can profoundly enrich many aspects of our daily lives, from education systems and the economy to national security and morale. For America to maintain its status as a global leader and a technological innovator, he explains, we must regain our enthusiasm and curiosity about what lies beyond our world. Provocative, humorous, and wonderfully readable, Space Chronicles represents the best of Tyson’s recent commentary, including a must-read prologue on NASA and partisan politics. Reflecting on topics that range from scientific literacy to space-travel missteps, Tyson gives us an urgent, clear-eyed, and ultimately inspiring vision for the future.