The Brain is Wider Than the Sky

The Brain is Wider Than the Sky

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A brand-new book from the award-winning SUNDAY TIMES journalist Brian Appleyard. Simplicity has become a brand and a cult. People want simple lives and simple solutions. And now our technology wants us to be simpler, to be 'machine readable'. From telephone call trees that simplify us into a series of 'options' to social networks that reduce us to our purchases and preferences, we are deluged with propaganda urging us to abandon our irreducibly complex selves. At the same time, scientists tell us we are 'simply' the products of evolution, nothing more than our genes. Brain scanners have inspired neuroscientists to claim they are close to cracking the problem of the human mind. 'Human equivalent' computers are being designed that, we are told, will do our thinking for us. Humans are being simplified out of existence. It is time, says Bryan Appleyard, to resist, and to reclaim the full depth of human experience. We are, he argues, naturally complex creatures, we are only ever at home in complexity. Through art and literature we see ourselves in ways that machines never can. He makes an impassioned plea for the voices of art to be heard before those of the technocrats. Part memoir, part reportage, part cultural analysis, THE BRAIN IS WIDER THAN THE SKY is a dire warning about what we may become and a lyrical evocation of what humans can be. For the brain is indeed wider than the the answers, but the questions were an external, moral force which was, in the heat of the moment, defined by the ... Humans are questioning so they make machines that can give them straight answers a€“ or questions in the perverse rules of Jeopardy! ... In the movie 2010, the sequel to 2001, it is revealed that what turned the computer HAL into a murderer was the pressure of keeping a secret.

Title:The Brain is Wider Than the Sky
Author:Bryan Appleyard
Publisher:Hachette UK - 2011-11-10


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