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How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World (2014)

– tekijä: Steven Johnson

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
7723621,425 (3.97)40
"From the New York Times-bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From and Everything Bad Is Good for You, a new look at the power and legacy of great ideas. In this illustrated volume, 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. "--… (lisätietoja)
Viimeisimmät tallentajatChiniak, CMBProtocol, yksityinen kirjasto, adnibe, mullinstreetzoo, ithomson, style-dud, heringk, dsnywife
  1. 00
    Sisään! : lyhyt historia lähes kaikesta kotona (tekijä: Bill Bryson) (cbl_tn)
    cbl_tn: Both books address some of the same technological advances, such as refrigeration and electricity and artificial light, for a popular audience.
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Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 36) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
The author and I disagree on some fairly major points of view; however, I found his analysis of the "butterfly effect" of major innovations to be very intriguing. Finishing this one immediately after the Elon Musk biography worked perfectly. ( )
  mullinstreetzoo | Feb 12, 2021 |
This book is two things and doesn't seem to do either perfectly, but does a pretty good job of each. First, it's a book about how technologies used today had fairly indirect and non-linear origins -- fiber optics being due to lab work in measurement. This is a lot like the "Connections" tv series from James Burke. It doesn't do an amazing job of this, mostly because the technologies were all things well documented. A few of the anecdotes were new to me, but really very little that a reasonably well educated person wouldn't have already encountered.

Second, it's a book about people who develop technologies "out of their time" -- he makes an argument that most innovation happens because the disciplines involved get to a certain point that a certain innovation is largely inevitable, either because there's a huge new need or because it's newly possible. (Stuart Kauffman's "the adjacent possible.) However, there are some people who develop things entirely ahead of "schedule", e.g. the computer and programming by Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace -- largely due to working at the margins of fields, intersections of different fields, and often as a hobbyist vs. professional. This was a much more interesting idea than the first part, and does use some of the examples of the first part of the book, but really wasn't developed until the last few pages of the book. Had the entire focus been on iconoclasts who revolutionized existing fields (and then some examples of those who tried and failed), it would have been much more compelling. ( )
  octal | Jan 1, 2021 |
Fascinating! ( )
  Henrik_Warne | Dec 13, 2020 |
I liked the idea here, but it didn't do a great job of holding my attention. Also, while the author notes that this is specifically about Europe and America, it felt weird to hear about bathing and cleanliness being "not intuitive" when the book itself alludes to the fact that bathing was a regular activity for people in the middle east and perhaps elsewhere in the world at the same time that Europeans were hanging out being smelly or whatever. There were other similar instances and they gave the book a myopic feel that was off-putting for me. ( )
  bookbrig | Aug 5, 2020 |
Wonderful book! For people who like to see the big picture the authors overarching theme of technology's role in human development illustrates connections in history that were, for the most part, new to me. The technology explanations are great for laypeople- just enough detail to get the idea but not overly long. My favorite part was the author's theory of how invention works as a collaborative affair that builds on networks of similar thoughts as they percolate through society. Having read Bill Bryson's "Home" a few months prior was very helpful as it gave more background to some of the inventions and inventors that were glossed over in How We Got To Now. ( )
  Tip44 | Jun 30, 2020 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 36) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
While we appreciate it in the abstract, few of us pause to grasp the miracles of modern life, from artificial light to air conditioning, as Steven Johnson puts it in the excellent How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World, “how amazing it is that we drink water from a tap and never once worry about dying forty-eight hours later from cholera.” Understanding how these everyday marvels first came to be, then came to be taken for granted, not only allows us to see our familiar world with new eyes — something we are wired not to do — but also lets us appreciate the remarkable creative lineage behind even the most mundane of technologies underpinning modern life.
 
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Katso lisäohjeita Common Knowledge -sivuilta (englanniksi).
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For Jane, who no doubt expected a three-volume
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(Introduction) A little more than two decades ago, the Mexican-American artist and philosopher Manuel De Landa published a strange and wonderful book called War in the Age of Intelligent Machines.
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia (4)

"From the New York Times-bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From and Everything Bad Is Good for You, a new look at the power and legacy of great ideas. In this illustrated volume, 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. "--

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