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Science


    Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World--and Why Things Are Better Than You Think

    Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World--and Why Things Are Better Than You Think Lowest new price: $4.99
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    Author: Hans Rosling

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    “One of the most important books I’ve ever read―an indispensable guide to thinking clearly about the world.” – Bill Gates

    “Hans Rosling tells the story of ‘the secret silent miracle of human progress’ as only he can. But Factfulness does much more than that. It also explains why progress is so often secret and silent and teaches readers how to see it clearly.” Melinda Gates

    Factfulness: The stress-reducing habit of only carrying opinions for which you have strong supporting facts.

    When asked simple questions about global trends―what percentage of the world’s population live in poverty; why the world’s population is increasing; how many girls finish school―we systematically get the answers wrong. So wrong that a chimpanzee choosing answers at random will consistently outguess teachers, journalists, Nobel laureates, and investment bankers.

    In Factfulness, Professor of International Health and global TED phenomenon Hans Rosling, together with his two long-time collaborators, Anna and Ola, offers a radical new explanation of why this happens. They reveal the ten instincts that distort our perspective―from our tendency to divide the world into two camps (usually some version of us and them) to the way we consume media (where fear rules) to how we perceive progress (believing that most things are getting worse).

    Our problem is that we don’t know what we don’t know, and even our guesses are informed by unconscious and predictable biases.

    It turns out that the world, for all its imperfections, is in a much better state than we might think. That doesn’t mean there aren’t real concerns. But when we worry about everything all the time instead of embracing a worldview based on facts, we can lose our ability to focus on the things that threaten us most.

    Inspiring and revelatory, filled with lively anecdotes and moving stories, Factfulness is an urgent and essential book that will change the way you see the world and empower you to respond to the crises and opportunities of the future.

    ---

    “This book is my last battle in my life-long mission to fight devastating ignorance…Previously I armed myself with huge data sets, eye-opening software, an energetic learning style and a Swedish bayonet for sword-swallowing. It wasn’t enough. But I hope this book will be.” Hans Rosling, February 2017.

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    Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

    Astrophysics for People in a Hurry Lowest new price: $11.37
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    Author: Neil deGrasse Tyson
    Brand: Neil DeGrasse Tyson

    The #1 New York Times Bestseller: The essential universe, from our most celebrated and beloved astrophysicist.

    What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There’s no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson.

    But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.

    While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.

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    Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress

    Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress Lowest new price: $17.74
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    List price: $35.00
    Author: Steven Pinker

    INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    "My new favorite book of all time." --Bill Gates

    If you think the world is coming to an end, think again: people are living longer, healthier, freer, and happier lives, and while our problems are formidable, the solutions lie in the Enlightenment ideal of using reason and science.

    Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? In this elegant assessment of the human condition in the third millennium, cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, which play to our psychological biases. Instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise, not just in the West, but worldwide. This progress is not the result of some cosmic force. It is a gift of the Enlightenment: the conviction that reason and science can enhance human flourishing.

    Far from being a naïve hope, the Enlightenment, we now know, has worked. But more than ever, it needs a vigorous defense. The Enlightenment project swims against currents of human nature--tribalism, authoritarianism, demonization, magical thinking--which demagogues are all too willing to exploit. Many commentators, committed to political, religious, or romantic ideologies, fight a rearguard action against it. The result is a corrosive fatalism and a willingness to wreck the precious institutions of liberal democracy and global cooperation.

    With intellectual depth and literary flair, Enlightenment Now makes the case for reason, science, and humanism: the ideals we need to confront our problems and continue our progress.]

    An Amazon Best Book of March 2018: Given the 24-hour news cycle to which we have grown accustomed, it’s difficult to navigate life and think that everything is peachy. But Steven Pinker has set out, first in The Better Angels of Our Nature, and now in Enlightenment Now, to illustrate that there has never been a better time to be a human being. In his new book, Pinker points out that the slow creep of progress is not as newsworthy as, say, an earthquake or an explosion. So it’s clear why we don’t always have the sense that things are getting better. But the Enlightenment—with its dedication to science, reason, humanism, and progress—has led people to live longer, healthier, freer, and happier lives. And Pinker uses charts, data, history, and a firm dedication to his cause to empirically prove that we are living in better times. It makes sense to be skeptical of a scientist arguing that that science is the answer. And his optimism won’t always jibe with your personal experience or judgement. But there’s lots to chew on here—and it’s so easy to obsess on the intrusions and negatives of technology and “advancement” that this book can serve as a kind of antidote. —Chris Schluep, the Amazon Book Review

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    Genius Foods: Become Smarter, Happier, and More Productive While Protecting Your Brain for Life

    Genius Foods: Become Smarter, Happier, and More Productive While Protecting Your Brain for Life Lowest new price: $17.73
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    Author: Max Lugavere

    New York Times Bestseller

    Discover the critical link between your brain and the food you eat and change the way your brain ages, in this cutting-edge, practical guide to eliminating brain fog, optimizing brain health, and achieving peak mental performance from media personality and leading voice in health Max Lugavere.

    After his mother was diagnosed with a mysterious form of dementia, Max Lugavere put his successful media career on hold to learn everything he could about brain health and performance. For the better half of a decade, he consumed the most up-to-date scientific research, talked to dozens of leading scientists and clinicians around the world, and visited the country’s best neurology departments—all in the hopes of understanding his mother’s condition.

    Now, in Genius Foods, Lugavere presents a comprehensive guide to brain optimization. He uncovers the stunning link between our dietary and lifestyle choices and our brain functions, revealing how the foods you eat directly affect your ability to focus, learn, remember, create, analyze new ideas, and maintain a balanced mood.

    Weaving together pioneering research on dementia prevention, cognitive optimization, and nutritional psychiatry, Lugavere distills groundbreaking science into actionable lifestyle changes. He shares invaluable insights into how to improve your brain power, including

    • the nutrients that can boost your memory and improve mental clarity (and where to find them);
    • the foods and tactics that can energize and rejuvenate your brain, no matter your age;
    • a brain-boosting fat-loss method so powerful it has been called “biochemical liposuction”; and
    • the foods that can improve your happiness, both now and for the long term.

    With Genius Foods, Lugavere offers a cutting-edge yet practical road map to eliminating brain fog and optimizing the brain’s health and performance today—and decades into the future.

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    A Brief History of Time

    A Brief History of Time Lowest new price: $10.69
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    Author: Stephen Hawking
    Brand: Bantam Books

    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    A landmark volume in science writing by one of the great minds of our time, Stephen Hawking’s book explores such profound questions as: How did the universe begin—and what made its start possible? Does time always flow forward? Is the universe unending—or are there boundaries? Are there other dimensions in space? What will happen when it all ends?

    Told in language we all can understand, A Brief History of Time plunges into the exotic realms of black holes and quarks, of antimatter and “arrows of time,” of the big bang and a bigger God—where the possibilities are wondrous and unexpected. With exciting images and profound imagination, Stephen Hawking brings us closer to the ultimate secrets at the very heart of creation.

    Stephen Hawking, one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists in history, wrote the modern classic A Brief History of Time to help nonscientists understand the questions being asked by scientists today: Where did the universe come from? How and why did it begin? Will it come to an end, and if so, how? Hawking attempts to reveal these questions (and where we're looking for answers) using a minimum of technical jargon. Among the topics gracefully covered are gravity, black holes, the Big Bang, the nature of time, and physicists' search for a grand unifying theory. This is deep science; these concepts are so vast (or so tiny) as to cause vertigo while reading, and one can't help but marvel at Hawking's ability to synthesize this difficult subject for people not used to thinking about things like alternate dimensions. The journey is certainly worth taking, for, as Hawking says, the reward of understanding the universe may be a glimpse of "the mind of God." --Therese Littleton

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    The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

    The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself Lowest new price: $8.01
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    Author: Michael A. Singer
    Brand: Unknown

    What would it be like to free yourself from limitations and soar beyond your boundaries? What can you do each day to discover inner peace and serenity? The Untethered Soul—now a #1New York Times bestseller—offers simple yet profound answers to these questions.

    Whether this is your first exploration of inner space, or you’ve devoted your life to the inward journey, this book will transform your relationship with yourself and the world around you. You’ll discover what you can do to put an end to the habitual thoughts and emotions that limit your consciousness. By tapping into traditions of meditation and mindfulness, author and spiritual teacher Michael A. Singer shows how the development of consciousness can enable us all to dwell in the present moment and let go of painful thoughts and memories that keep us from achieving happiness and self-realization.

    Copublished with the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) TheUntethered Soul begins by walking you through your relationship with your thoughts and emotions, helping you uncover the source and fluctuations of your inner energy. It then delves into what you can do to free yourself from the habitual thoughts, emotions, and energy patterns that limit your consciousness. Finally, with perfect clarity, this book opens the door to a life lived in the freedom of your innermost being.

    The Untethered Soul has already touched the lives of countless readers, and is now available in a special hardcover gift edition with ribbon bookmark—the perfect gift for yourself, a loved one, or anyone who wants a keepsake edition of this remarkable book.

    Visit www.untetheredsoul.com for more information.

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    • The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

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    Dr. Gundry's Diet Evolution: Turn Off the Genes That Are Killing You and Your Waistline

    Dr. Gundry's Diet Evolution: Turn Off the Genes That Are Killing You and Your Waistline Lowest new price: $10.45
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    Author: Steven R. Gundry
    Brand: Three Rivers Press CA

    "Dr. Gundry has crafted a wise program with a powerful track record.”
    –Mehmet Oz, M.D., professor and vice chair of surgery, NY Presbyterian/Columbia Medical Center

    Does losing weight and staying healthy feel like a battle? Well, it’s really a war. Your enemies are your own genes, backed by millions of years of evolution, and the only way to win is to outsmart them. Dr. Steven Gundry’s revolutionary book shares the health secrets other doctors won’t tell you:

    • Why plants are “good” for you because they’re “bad” for you, and meat is “bad” because it’s “good” for you
    • Why plateauing on this diet is actually a sign that you’re on the right track
    • Why artificial sweeteners have the same effects as sugar on your health and your waistline
    • Why taking antacids, statins, and drugs for high blood pressure and arthritis masks health issues instead of addressing them

    Along with the meal planner, 70 delicious recipes, and inspirational stories, Dr. Gundry’s easy-to-memorize tips will keep you healthy and on course.

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    • Three Rivers Press CA

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    Does It Fart?: The Definitive Field Guide to Animal Flatulence

    Does It Fart?: The Definitive Field Guide to Animal Flatulence Lowest new price: $9.13
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    Author: Nick Caruso

    "The book we didn't realize we needed."---Chicago Reader

    Dogs do it. Millipedes do it. Dinosaurs did it. You do it. I do it. Octopuses don't (and nor do octopi). Spiders might do it: more research is needed. Birds don't do it, but they could if they wanted to. Herrings do it to communicate with each other.

    In 2017 zoologist Dani Rabaiotti's teenage brother asked her a most teenaged question: Do snakes fart? Stumped, Rabaiotti turned to Twitter. The internet did not disappoint. Her innocent question spawned the hashtag #doesitfart and it spread like a noxious gas. Dozens of noted experts began weighing in on which animals do and don't fart, and if they do, how much, how often, what it's made of, what it smells like, and why.

    Clearly, the public demands more information on animal farts. Does it Fart? fills that void: a fully authoritative, fully illustrated guide to animal flatulence, covering the habits of 80 animals in more detail than you ever knew you needed.

    What do hyena farts smell especially bad? What is a fossa, and does it fart? Why do clams vomit but not fart? And what is a fart, really? Pairing hilarious illustrations with surprisingly detailed scientific explanations, Does it Fart? will allow you to shift the blame onto all kinds of unlikely animals for years to come.

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    Who We Are and How We Got Here: Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past

    Who We Are and How We Got Here: Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past Lowest new price: $14.00
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    Author: David Reich

    A groundbreaking book about how ancient DNA has profoundly changed our understanding of human history.
     
    Geneticists like David Reich have made astounding advances in the field of genomics, which is proving to be as important as archeology, linguistics, and written records as a means to understand our ancestry.
     
    In Who We Are and How We Got Here, Reich allows readers to discover how the human genome provides not only all the information a human embryo needs to develop but also the hidden story of our species. Reich delves into how the genomic revolution is transforming our understanding of modern humans and how DNA studies reveal deep inequalities among different populations, between the sexes, and among individuals. Provocatively, Reich’s book suggests that there might very well be biological differences among human populations but that these differences are unlikely to conform to common stereotypes.
     
    Drawing upon revolutionary findings and unparalleled scientific studies, Who We Are and How We Got Here is a captivating glimpse into humankind—where we came from and what that says about our lives today.

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    Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

    Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind Lowest new price: $17.50
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    Author: Yuval Noah Harari
    Brand: Harper

    New York Times Bestseller

    A Summer Reading Pick for President Barack Obama, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg

    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.

    An Amazon Best Book of the Month for February 2015: Yuval Noah Harari has some questions. Among the biggest: How did Homo sapiens (or Homo sapiens sapiens , if you’re feeling especially wise today) evolve from an unexceptional savannah-dwelling primate to become the dominant force on the planet, emerging as the lone survivor out of six distinct, competing hominid species? He also has some answers, and they’re not what you’d expect. Tackling evolutionary concepts from a historian’s perspective, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, describes human development through a framework of three not-necessarily-orthodox “Revolutions”: the Cognitive, the Agricultural, and the Scientific. His ideas are interesting and often amusing: Why have humans managed to build astonishingly large populations when other primate groups top out at 150 individuals? Because our talent for gossip allows us to build networks in societies too large for personal relationships between everyone, and our universally accepted “imagined realities”--such as money, religion, and Limited Liability Corporations—keep us in line. Who cultivated whom, humans or wheat?. Wheat. Though the concepts are unusual and sometimes heavy (as is the book, literally) Harari’s deft prose and wry, subversive humor make quick work of material prone to academic tedium. He’s written a book of popular nonfiction (it was a bestseller overseas, no doubt in part because his conclusions draw controversy) landing somewhere in the middle of a Venn diagram of genetics, sociology, and history. Throughout, Harari returns frequently to another question: Does all this progress make us happier, our lives easier? The answer might disappoint you. --Jon Foro

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