the next species the future of evolution in the aftermath of man

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The Next Species

Author : Michael Tennesen
ISBN : 9781451677539
Genre : Science
File Size : 52. 39 MB
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“Simultaneously sobering and exhilarating, Michael Tennesen’s wide-ranging survey of disasters highlights both life’s fragility and its metamorphosing persistence” (Booklist) and describes what life on earth could look like after the next mass extinction. A growing number of scientists agree we are headed toward a mass extinction, perhaps in as little as 300 years. Already there have been five mass extinctions in the last 600 million years, including the Cretaceous Extinction, during which an asteroid knocked out the dinosaurs. Though these events were initially destructive, they were also prime movers of evolutionary change in nature. And we can see some of the warning signs of another extinction event coming, as our oceans lose both fish and oxygen, and our lands lose both predators and prey. In The Next Species, Michael Tennesen questions what life might be like after it happens. In thoughtful, provocative ways, Tennesen discusses the future of nature and whether humans will make it through the bottleneck of extinction. Could life suddenly get very big as it did before the arrival of humans? Could the conquest of Mars lead to another form of human? Could we upload our minds into a computer and live in a virtual reality? How would we recognize the next humans? Are they with us now? Tennesen delves into the history of the planet and travels to rainforests, canyons, craters, and caves all over the world to explore the potential winners and losers of the next era of evolution. His predictions, based on reports and interviews with top scientists, have vital implications for life on earth today. The Next Species is “an engrossing history of life, the dismal changes wrought by man, and a forecast of life after the sixth mass extinction” (Kirkus Reviews).

Future Humans

Author : Scott Solomon
ISBN : 9780300208719
Genre : Science
File Size : 54. 17 MB
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Are humans still subject to the forces of evolution? An evolutionary biologist provides surprising insights into the future of Homo sapiens In this intriguing book, evolutionary biologist Scott Solomon draws on the explosion of discoveries in recent years to examine the future evolution of our species. Combining knowledge of our past with current trends, Solomon offers convincing evidence that evolutionary forces still affect us today. But how will modernization--including longer lifespans, changing diets, global travel, and widespread use of medicine and contraceptives--affect our evolutionary future? Solomon presents an entertaining and accessible review of the latest research on human evolution in modern times, drawing on fields from genomics to medicine and the study of our microbiome. Surprising insights, on topics ranging from the rise of online dating and Cesarean sections to the spread of diseases such as HIV and Ebola, suggest that we are entering a new phase in human evolutionary history--one that makes the future less predictable and more interesting than ever before.

Bad Girls Of Japan

Author : L. Miller
ISBN : 9781403977120
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 76. 50 MB
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Are bad girls casualties of patriarchy, a necessary evil, or visionary pioneers? The authors in this volume propose shifts in our perceptions of bad girls by providing new ways to understand them through the case of Japan. By tracing the concept of the bad girl as a product of specific cultural assumptions and historical settings, Bad Girls of Japan maps new roads and old detours in revealing a disorderly politics of gender. Bad Girls of Japan explores deviancy in richly diverse media: mountain witches, murderers, performance artists, cartoonists, schoolgirls and shoppers gone wild are all part of the terrain.

Ego

Author : Peter Baumann
ISBN : 9781604076561
Genre : Self-Help
File Size : 59. 10 MB
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Ego: The Fall of the Twin Towers and the Rise of an Enlightened Humanity by Peter Baumann and Michael W. Taft is the first book to explore the positive evolutionary potential hidden in one of the most destructive events in history. In their examination of the evolutionary implications of 9/11 and its aftermath, the authors contend we are not falling into the grip of a new dark age at all; rather, we are on the verge of a much brighter one as the Darwinian process of natural selection continues to advance humankind. The authors’ inquiry led them to the roots of human suffering: the ego. That the ego underlies our problems as a species may come as no surprise. But a deeper look into the ego’s origin and history is full of unexpected revelations: The modern human is dominated by a Stone Age brain Energy consumption and the environmental crisis is nothing more than the evolutionary drive to survive gone haywire Evolution has wired us to be riveted to bad news, bad outcomes, and worst-case scenarios When beliefs are challenged it triggers a life or death stance in the human nervous system Emotions are mostly physical, not mental The self we identify with—along with its biases and beliefs—turns out to be an evolutionary tool that made its first appearance some 50,000 years ago during what’s called the conceptual revolution, arguably the biggest developmental leap in human history. The emerging ego accompanied our ability to construct complex tools, create art, and redefine social structure. For the first time as a species, we were able to imagine the future, consider the thoughts of others, and picture ourselves in our own minds. The ego is a cognitive trick of natural selection intended to insure the survival of the individual. Baumann and Taft say the problem comes when we take the ego’s conceptualization of reality as the truth about who we actually are. Using the latest research from neuroscience, evolutionary biology, psychology, and paleontology, Baumann and Taft show that modern humanity may be on the verge of an expansion of cognitive abilities akin to the development of the ego. This next step will free the human mind to see beyond the confines of the prison, and open the vast potential of conscious awareness.

Future Evolution

Author : Peter D. Ward
ISBN : 0716734966
Genre : Science
File Size : 57. 1 MB
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Everyone wonders what tomorrow holds, but what will the real future look like? Not decades or even hundreds of years from now, but thousands or millions of years into the future. Will our species change radically? Or will we become builders of the next dominant intelligence on Earth- the machine? These and other seemingly fantastic scenarios are the very possible realities explored in Peter Ward's Future Evolution, a penetrating look at what might come next in the history of the planet. Looking to the past for clues about the future, Ward describes how the main catalyst for evolutionary change has historically been mass extinction. While many scientist direly predict that humanity will eventually create such a situation, Ward argues that one is already well underway--the extinction of large mammals--and that a new Age of Humanity is coming that will radically revise the diversity of life on Earth. Finally, Ward examines the question of human extinction and reaches the startling conclusion that the likeliest scenario is not our imminent demise but long term survival--perhaps reaching as far as the death of the Sun! Full of Alexis Rockman's breathtaking color images of what animals, plants and other organisms might look like thousands and millions of years from now, Future Evolution takes readers on an incredible journey through time from the deep past into the far future.

Scatter Adapt And Remember

Author : Annalee Newitz
ISBN : 9780385535922
Genre : Science
File Size : 20. 16 MB
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In its 4.5 billion–year history, life on Earth has been almost erased at least half a dozen times: shattered by asteroid impacts, entombed in ice, smothered by methane, and torn apart by unfathomably powerful megavolcanoes. And we know that another global disaster is eventually headed our way. Can we survive it? How? As a species, Homo sapiens is at a crossroads. Study of our planet’s turbulent past suggests that we are overdue for a catastrophic disaster, whether caused by nature or by human interference. It’s a frightening prospect, as each of the Earth’s past major disasters—from meteor strikes to bombardment by cosmic radiation—resulted in a mass extinction, where more than 75 percent of the planet’s species died out. But in Scatter, Adapt, and Remember, Annalee Newitz, science journalist and editor of the science Web site io9.com explains that although global disaster is all but inevitable, our chances of long-term species survival are better than ever. Life on Earth has come close to annihilation—humans have, more than once, narrowly avoided extinction just during the last million years—but every single time a few creatures survived, evolving to adapt to the harshest of conditions. This brilliantly speculative work of popular science focuses on humanity’s long history of dodging the bullet, as well as on new threats that we may face in years to come. Most important, it explores how scientific breakthroughs today will help us avoid disasters tomorrow. From simulating tsunamis to studying central Turkey’s ancient underground cities; from cultivating cyanobacteria for “living cities” to designing space elevators to make space colonies cost-effective; from using math to stop pandemics to studying the remarkable survival strategies of gray whales, scientists and researchers the world over are discovering the keys to long-term resilience and learning how humans can choose life over death. Newitz’s remarkable and fascinating journey through the science of mass extinctions is a powerful argument about human ingenuity and our ability to change. In a world populated by doomsday preppers and media commentators obsessively forecasting our demise, Scatter, Adapt, and Remember is a compelling voice of hope. It leads us away from apocalyptic thinking into a future where we live to build a better world—on this planet and perhaps on others. Readers of this book will be equipped scientifically, intellectually, and emotionally to face whatever the future holds.

The World Without Us

Author : Alan Weisman
ISBN : 0312347294
Genre : Science
File Size : 55. 56 MB
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A study of what would happen to Earth if the human presence was removed examines our legacy for the planet, from the objects that would vanish without human intervention to those that would become long-lasting remnants of humankind.

Homo Evolutis

Author : Juan Enriquez
ISBN : 9781936529988
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 85. 59 MB
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There have been at least 25 prototype humans. We are but one more model, and there is no evidence evolution has stopped. So unless you think Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern are the be all and end all of creation, and it just does not get any better, then one has to ask what is next? Juan Enriquez and Steve Gullans, two of the world's most eminent science authors, researchers, and entrepreneurs, answer this by taking you into a world where humans increasingly shape their environment, their own selves, and other species. It is a world where our bodies harbor 100 times more microbial cells than human cells, a place where a gene cocktail may allow many more to climb an 8,000 meter peak without oxygen, and where, given the right drug, one could have a 77 percent chance of becoming a centenarian. By the end you will see a broad, and sometimes scary, map of life sciences driven change. Not just our bodies will be altered but our core religious, government, and social structures as humankind make the transition to a new species,a Homo evolutis, which directly and deliberately controls its own evolution and that of many other species.

Evolution

Author : Stephen Baxter
ISBN : 0345457846
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 61. 7 MB
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It’s the job of a science fiction writer to visualize extrapolations of the future. But there are those who go far beyond, venturing into realms of breathtaking science. That kind of cutting edge talent is as rare as a supernova—and, in its own way, just as powerful. Arthur C. Clarke had it. So did William Gibson. Now, with Evolution, Stephen Baxter delivers what is sure to be one of the most talked-about books of the year—and shows once again why he belongs among the select company of science fiction writers who matter. Stretching from the distant past into the remote future, from primordial Earth to the stars, Evolution is a soaring symphony of struggle, extinction, and survival, a dazzling epic that combines a dozen scientific disciplines and a cast of unforgettable characters to convey the grand drama of evolution in all its awesome majesty and rigorous beauty. Sixty-five million years ago, when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, lived a small mammal, a proto-primate of the species Purgatorius. From this humble beginning, Baxter traces the human lineage forward through time. The adventure that unfolds is a gripping odyssey governed by chance and competition, a perilous journey to an uncertain destination along a route beset by sudden and catastrophic upheavals. It is a route that ends, for most species, in stagnation or extinction. Why should humanity escape this fate? A generation from today, a group of concerned scientists—distant descendants of that primitive Purgatorius—gathers on a remote island to discuss this very question. The ceaseless expansion of human civilization has triggered an urgent environmental crisis that must be solved now if the Earth is to survive as a place hospitable to human life. But just when a peaceful solution seems within reach, two acts of shocking violence set in motion a cataclysmic chain of events that will expose the limitations of human intellect and adaptability in the face of the blind and implacable processes of Darwin’s dangerous idea. From the Hardcover edition.

The Big Ratchet

Author : Ruth DeFries
ISBN : 9780465044979
Genre : Science
File Size : 51. 29 MB
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"Our species' pervasive presence on the planet is the combined result of two powerful forces: earth's rich natural endowments and humanity's ability to manipulate nature. From our ability to control fire to our expertise in breeding palatable plants, from our capacity to ship fertilizer across the Atlantic to our skill in selectively tinkering with plant genomes, DeFries describes the ingenious manipulations of nature that have enabled humankind to nourish and flourish. Throughout history humans have been able to ratchet up populations, survive the hatchets that threaten the species, and pivot to a new strategy for survival"--

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