The Fault in Our Stars
I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, then all at once.Despite the tumour-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars brilliantly explores the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.Praise for The Fault in Our Stars: Sunday Times (Culture) 'A touching, often fiercely funny novel'The Sun on Sunday (Fabulous Magazine) 'So good I think it should be compulsory reading for everyone!'Daily Express 'John Green brilliantly captures the voices of a young generation while instilling it with the wisdom of a life that has lived too much yet will never live enough'The Metro - 2013 Best Fiction 'The love affair of two terminally ill teenagers could be mawkish. In fact, it's funny, clever, irreverent and life-affirming.'Grazia 'So good!'Good Housekeeping 'As funny as it is heartbreaking... we defy you not to fall in love with its main characters, Hazel and Augustus.'The Tablet 'A humourous and poignant love story... It's terrifically funny... as well as a moving exploration of loss and grief. And no, it's so much not just for teenage cancer sufferers... it's for everyone.'Bliss 'If you need inspiration when it comes to making the most of a moment, this one is for you'Mizz 'Insightful, bold, irreverent and raw, if this doesn't make you cry, it'll definitely make you think, laugh and maybe even fall in love yourself!'
Look To Windward
The seventh Culture book from the awesome imagination of Iain M. Banks, a modern master of science fiction.It was one of the less glorious incidents of a long-ago war. It led to the destruction of two suns and the billions of lives they supported. Now, eight hundred years later, the light from the first of those ancient mistakes has reached the Culture Orbital, Masaq'. The light from the second may not.Praise for the Culture series:'Epic in scope, ambitious in its ideas and absorbing in its execution' Independent on Sunday'Banks has created one of the most enduring and endearing visions of the future' Guardian'Jam-packed with extraordinary invention' Scotsman'Compulsive reading' Sunday Telegraph The Culture series:Consider PhlebasThe Player of GamesUse of WeaponsThe State of the ArtExcessionInversionsLook to WindwardMatterSurface DetailThe Hydrogen SonataOther books by Iain M. Banks:Against a Dark BackgroundFeersum EndjinnThe Algebraist
Frank Herbert's Final Novel in the Magnificent Dune Chronicles—the Bestselling Science Fiction Adventure of All TimeThe desert planet Arrakis, called Dune, has been destroyed. The remnants of the Old Empire have been consumed by the violent matriarchal cult known as the Honored Matres. Only one faction remains a viable threat to their total conquest—the Bene Gesserit, heirs to Dune’s power.Under the leadership of Mother Superior Darwi Odrade, the Bene Gesserit have colonized a green world on the planet Chapterhouse and are turning it into a desert, mile by scorched mile. And once they’ve mastered breeding sandworms, the Sisterhood will control the production of the greatest commodity in the known galaxy—the spice melange. But their true weapon remains a man who has lived countless lifetimes—a man who served under the God Emperor Paul Muad’Dib....
Matthew Sobol, programming genius, founder of CyberStorm Entertainment, one of the richest and most powerful of Silicon Valley's elite, is dead, but his final creation lives on to execute his last will and testament. At the moment of Sobol's death, computer programmes around the world burst into life, creating an entity known as the Daemon. The Daemon infiltrates our hyper-connected society, gathering secrets, stealing identities. Soon it has the power to change lives as well as the power to take them: those who serve the Daemon are rewarded; those who defy it are eliminated. Recruiting acolytes from the dispossessed and disaffected, the Daemon secures a growing stranglehold on the world's most precious commodity: information. And once you control information itself, how easy would it be to remake the world? It is up to an unlikely alliance - a computer illiterate detective and a white-hat hacker with secrets of his own - to challenge the monster that Sobol unleashed from beyond the grave. But before they can confront the Daemon they must discover what it wants...
Our Final Invention
Elon Musk named Our Final Invention one of 5 books everyone should read about the futureA Huffington Post Definitive Tech Book of 2013Artificial Intelligence helps choose what books you buy, what movies you see, and even who you date. It puts the "smart" in your smartphone and soon it will drive your car. It makes most of the trades on Wall Street, and controls vital energy, water, and transportation infrastructure. But Artificial Intelligence can also threaten our existence.In as little as a decade, AI could match and then surpass human intelligence. Corporations and government agencies are pouring billions into achieving AI's Holy Grail—human-level intelligence. Once AI has attained it, scientists argue, it will have survival drives much like our own. We may be forced to compete with a rival more cunning, more powerful, and more alien than we can imagine. Through profiles of tech visionaries, industry watchdogs, and groundbreaking AI systems, Our Final Invention explores the perils of the heedless pursuit of advanced AI. Until now, human intelligence has had no rival. Can we coexist with beings whose intelligence dwarfs our own? And will they allow us to?
The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress
For fans of Artemis—the visionary tour de force from “one of the grand masters of science fiction” (The Wall Street Journal).Widely acknowledged as one of Robert A. Heinlein's greatest works, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress rose from the golden age of science fiction to become an undisputed classic—and a touchstone for the philosophy of personal responsibility and political freedom. A revolution on a lunar penal colony—aided by a self-aware supercomputer—provides the framework for a story of a diverse group of men and women grappling with the ever-changing definitions of humanity, technology, and free will—themes that resonate just as strongly today as they did when the novel was first published.The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress gives readers an extraordinary, thought-provoking glimpse into the mind of Robert A. Heinlein, who, even now, “shows us where the future is” (Tom Clancy).
Modern Engineering for Design of Liquid-Propellant Rocket Engines
This newly reissued debut book in the Rutgers University Press Classics Imprint is the story of the search for a rocket propellant which could be trusted to take man into space. This search was a hazardous enterprise carried out by rival labs who worked against the known laws of nature, with no guarantee of success or safety. Acclaimed scientist and sci-fi author John Drury Clark writes with irreverent and eyewitness immediacy about the development of the explosive fuels strong enough to negate the relentless restraints of gravity. The resulting volume is as much a memoir as a work of history, sharing a behind-the-scenes view of an enterprise which eventually took men to the moon, missiles to the planets, and satellites to outer space. A classic work in the history of science, and described as “a good book on rocket stuff…that’s a really fun one” by SpaceX founder Elon Musk, readers will want to get their hands on this influential classic, available for the first time in decades.
Screw Business as Usual
'Doing good can help improve your prospects, your profits, and your business; and it can change the world. We must change the way we do business' - Richard BransonCan we bring more meaning to our lives and help change the world at the same time?In Screw Business as Usual, Richard Branson at his brilliant and motivating best, shares some fascinating and inspiring stories about the people who are already leading the way in transforming business into a force for good, for people and for the planet. Reflecting on some of his own experiences, and those of the Virgin Group, he also shares his new vision for the future and describes how businesses can help create a more prosperous world for everyone. It's time to turn capitalism upside down – to shift our values, to switch from a just profit focus to caring for people, communities and the world and to turn our work into something we both love and are proud of. It's time to Screw Business as Usual.
As it was in Anna Karenina, Madame Bovary, and Othello, so it is in life. Most forms of private vice and public evil are kindled and sustained by lies. Acts of adultery and other personal betrayals, financial fraud, government corruption—even murder and genocide—generally require an additional moral defect: a willingness to lie.In Lying, best-selling author and neuroscientist Sam Harris argues that we can radically simplify our lives and improve society by merely telling the truth in situations where others often lie. He focuses on "white" lies—those lies we tell for the purpose of sparing people discomfort—for these are the lies that most often tempt us. And they tend to be the only lies that good people tell while imagining that they are being good in the process.
Talking to Strangers
'I love this book . . . reading it will actually change not just how you see strangers, but how you look at yourself, the news - the world. Reading this book changed me' Oprah WinfreyThe highly anticipated new book from Malcolm Gladwell, No.1 international bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, What the Dog Saw and David and Goliath The routine traffic stop that ends in tragedy. The spy who spends years undetected at the highest levels of the Pentagon. The false conviction of Amanda Knox. Why do we so often get other people wrong? Why is it so hard to detect a lie, read a face or judge a stranger's motives?Through a series of encounters and misunderstandings - from history, psychology and infamous legal cases - Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual adventure into the darker side of human nature, where strangers are never simple and misreading them can have disastrous consequences.No one challenges our shared assumptions like Malcolm Gladwell. Here he uses stories of deceit and fatal errors to cast doubt on our strategies for dealing with the unknown, inviting us to rethink our thinking in these troubled times.
"The most important book I have read in quite some time" (Daniel Kahneman); "A must-read" (Max Tegmark); "The book we've all been waiting for" (Sam Harris)Humans dream of super-intelligent machines. But what happens if we actually succeed?Creating superior intelligence would be the biggest event in human history. Unfortunately, according to the world's pre-eminent AI expert, it could also be the last. In this groundbreaking book on the biggest question facing humanity, Stuart Russell explains why he has come to consider his own discipline an existential threat to our species, and lays out how we can change course before it's too late. There is no one better placed to assess the promise and perils of the dominant technology of the future than Russell, who has spent decades at the forefront of AI research. Through brilliant analogies and crisp, lucid prose, he explains how AI actually works, how it has an enormous capacity to improve our lives - but why we must ensure that we never lose control of machines more powerful than we are. Here Russell shows how we can avert the worst threats by reshaping the foundations of AI to guarantee that machines pursue our objectives, not theirs. Profound, urgent and visionary, Human Compatible is the one book everyone needs to read to understand a future that is coming sooner than we think.
The Lord of the Rings
A PBS Great American Read Top 100 Pick One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them In ancient times the Rings of Power were crafted by the Elven-smiths, and Sauron, the Dark Lord, forged the One Ring, filling it with his own power so that he could rule all others. But the One Ring was taken from him, and though he sought it throughout Middle-earth, it remained lost to him. After many ages it fell by chance into the hands of the hobbit Bilbo Baggins. From Sauron's fastness in the Dark Tower of Mordor, his power spread far and wide. Sauron gathered all the Great Rings to him, but always he searched for the One Ring that would complete his dominion. When Bilbo reached his eleventy-first birthday he disappeared, bequeathing to his young cousin Frodo the Ruling Ring and a perilous quest: to journey across Middle-earth, deep into the shadow of the Dark Lord, and destroy the Ring by casting it into the Cracks of Doom. The Lord of the Rings tells of the great quest undertaken by Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring: Gandalf the Wizard; the hobbits Merry, Pippin, and Sam; Gimli the Dwarf; Legolas the Elf; Boromir of Gondor; and a tall, mysterious stranger called Strider. This new edition includes the fiftieth-anniversary fully corrected text setting and, for the first time, an extensive new index. J.R.R. Tolkien (1892-1973), beloved throughout the world as the creator of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion, was a professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford, a fellow of Pembroke College, and a fellow of Merton College until his retirement in 1959. His chief interest was the linguistic aspects of the early English written tradition, but while he studied classic works of the past, he was creating a set of his own.
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.
A speculative science fiction series about a galactic empire facing decline and fall. The individual volumes are: Foundation (1980), Foundation and Empire, and Second Foundation (both 1986). A fourth volume is Foundation's Edge (1982).
In this authoritative and engrossing full-scale biography, Walter Isaacson, bestselling author of Einstein and Steve Jobs, shows how the most fascinating of America's founders helped define our national character.Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us, the one who seems made of flesh rather than marble. In a sweeping narrative that follows Franklin’s life from Boston to Philadelphia to London and Paris and back, Walter Isaacson chronicles the adventures of the runaway apprentice who became, over the course of his eighty-four-year life, America’s best writer, inventor, media baron, scientist, diplomat, and business strategist, as well as one of its most practical and ingenious political leaders. He explores the wit behind Poor Richard’s Almanac and the wisdom behind the Declaration of Independence, the new nation’s alliance with France, the treaty that ended the Revolution, and the compromises that created a near-perfect Constitution.In this colorful and intimate narrative, Isaacson provides the full sweep of Franklin’s amazing life, showing how he helped to forge the American national identity and why he has a particular resonance in the twenty-first century.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “Extremely funny . . . inspired lunacy . . . [and] over much too soon.”—The Washington Post Book WorldNominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American ReadSeconds before Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out-of-work actor.Together, this dynamic pair began a journey through space aided by a galaxyful of fellow travelers: Zaphod Beeblebrox—the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie and totally out-to-lunch president of the galaxy; Trillian (formerly Tricia McMillan), Zaphod’s girlfriend, whom Arthur tried to pick up at a cocktail party once upon a time zone; Marvin, a paranoid, brilliant, and chronically depressed robot; and Veet Voojagig, a former graduate student obsessed with the disappearance of all the ballpoint pens he’s bought over the years.Where are these pens? Why are we born? Why do we die? For all the answers, stick your thumb to the stars!Praise for The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy“A whimsical oddyssey . . . Characters frolic through the galaxy with infectious joy.”—Publishers Weekly“Irresistable!”—The Boston Globe