Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Future of the Mind by Michio Kaku

The Future of the Mind by Michio Kaku
I love science, and although it seems that I read a ton of fiction, I also sprinkle in some science. Earlier this year, Michio Kaku came out with his latest popular science book, The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind. Although Kaku is a physicist, he takes an interesting look at the mind and recent research and development on the mind. Some of the topics that Kaku discusses that I found most interesting:
  • Consciousness: what is in and how do we understand it
  • Telepathy: is is possible to read the mind
  • Telekinesis: can the mind move objects (in this case, Kaku looks at cases where people are paralyzed and can use the mind to move the body with technology)
  • Memories: what are the problems of memory lose and retention (looking at amnesia, Alzheimer's, and photographic memory)
  • Intelligence: how it can be defined, tested, and possibly increased
  • Dreams: how they work and what they mean
  • Artificial intelligence: can we really build computers with intelligence, and what is the future for robots
  • Alien minds: what would alien life be like, how would they think, and why would they want to have anything to do with us
Overall, I found the book to be an enjoyable read. I like the way Kaku tells the story in the various chapters. He has a varied life experience, and he's talked to a large number of experts in the field of the mind. As a technical writing instructor, I give Kaku kudos. He knows his audience. That means he knows what sorts of thing someone reading a popular science book on the brain/mind would want to know. The language that he uses is accessible to a less scientifically trained audience. Kaku gives the reader enough information to inform and entertain. I found myself wanting to read some more books on the specific topics that intrigued me. Michio Kaku is greatly entertaining science writer! You should read this book so you can learn more about how your brain works.

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