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Discover the true heart of humanity: the brain Your brain shapes your world, but you can also shape your brain. From the God helmet to the No Lie MRI, award-winning journalist Lone Frank embarks on an incredible adventure to the frontiers of neuroscience, revealing how today's top scientists are reinventing human nature, morality, happiness, health, and reality itself. Interlacing bizarre experiments, cutting-edge research, and irreverent interviews, The Neurotourist is an unforgettable tour of the mind-bending revolution underway in the new age of the brain. A critically-acclaimed journalist, science writer, and TV presenter, Lone Frank also holds a PhD in neurobiology and has worked as a research scientist in Denmark and the US. Apart from a particularly ‘cute’ corpus callosum she has an expert’s word that her brain is quite unremarkable. “[A] fascinating exploration of the most intriguing brain experiments so far this century.” The New Scientist
What if you could predict your future – which political party you will vote for, what kind of person you will marry, which disease will end your life, whether your blue mood will fester into something more troubling, even debilitating. Would you want to know? Taking a uniquely intimate and cheeky approach to the personal genomics revolution, internationally acclaimed science writer Lone Frank swabs up her genetic code to explore who any of us are in the days when a catalogue of your full six billion DNA building blocks is available for $10,000 and the local Walgreens offers genetic screening tests to anyone. She challenges the august Nobel Prize winners and the hyperactive business mavericks who are pushing to map and decipher every fetus’s genome within the next decade. She tests the potential to detect diseases early, as well as our capacity to develop chronic anxieties when our DNA is seen as a death sentence. She ponders whether personality, including her own above-average irritability and non-conformity, can really be reduced to biochemistry. And she prods the psychologists who hope to uncover just how much or how little our environment will matter in the new genetic century – a quest made all the more gripping as Frank considers her family’s and her own struggles with depression. At turns compellingly candid and irreverently insightful, Frank provides the first truly personal account of the new science of consumer-led genomics – and to what extent our genes determine our destiny. Lone Frank is the author of The Neurotourist: Postcards from the Edge of Brain Science (ISBN 9781851687961). She holds a PhD in neurobiology and was previously a research scientist working in the biotechnology industry in the United States. An award-winning science journalist and TV documentary presenter, she has written for such publicationsn as Scientific American, Science, and Nature Biotechnology and is a frequent speaker at venues including Harvard Medical School, the Library of Congress, the Royal Society, and TED. Praise for The Neurotourist “A fascinating exploration of the most intriguing brain experiments so far.” New Scientist “Riveting.” Rita Carter, author of Mapping the Mind
The age of the brain is upon us. The realisation that the fundamental building blocks of our world consist of brains rather than nations, electrons, or even DNA is ushering in a ‘neurocentric’ revolution, challenging how we think about everything from morality to the stock market, and how we view ourselves. Serving as guide and human guinea pig, the author introduces the leading brain researchers whose work is changing our understanding of ethics, religion, and personal happiness, and influencing economics, society, and even the judicial system. This is the first book to document the rise of ‘neurocentrism’: a concept in which the very essence of what it is to be human is located in the brain. While it may seem limiting to reduce humanity to the 1300 grams of tissue between our ears, the emerging truth is that such acceptance will allow us to transcend human nature. Writer, editor, presenter, and public lecturer, Dr Lone Frank has been involved in the study of science and ethics for over ten years.
Most of us believe that we are unique and coherent individuals, but are we? The idea of a "self" has existed ever since humans began to live in groups and become sociable. Those who embrace the self as an individual in the West, or a member of the group in the East, feel fulfilled and purposeful. This experience seems incredibly real but a wealth of recent scientific evidence reveals that this notion of the independent, coherent self is an illusion - it is not what it seems. Reality as we perceive it is not something that objectively exists, but something that our brains construct from moment to moment, interpreting, summarizing, and substituting information along the way. Like a science fiction movie, we are living in a matrix that is our mind. In The Self Illusion, Dr. Bruce Hood reveals how the self emerges during childhood and how the architecture of the developing brain enables us to become social animals dependent on each other. He explains that self is the product of our relationships and interactions with others, and it exists only in our brains. The author argues, however, that though the self is an illusion, it is one that humans cannot live without. But things are changing as our technology develops and shapes society. The social bonds and relationships that used to take time and effort to form are now undergoing a revolution as we start to put our self online. Social networking activities such as blogging, Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter threaten to change the way we behave. Social networking is fast becoming socialization on steroids. The speed and ease at which we can form alliances and relationships is outstripping the same selection processes that shaped our self prior to the internet era. This book ventures into unchartered territory to explain how the idea of the self will never be the same again in the online social world.
The author of the bestseller The Disappearing Spoon reveals the secret inner workings of the brain through strange but true stories. Early studies of the human brain used a simple method: wait for misfortune to strike -- strokes, seizures, infectious diseases, horrendous accidents -- and see how victims coped. In many cases their survival was miraculous, if puzzling. Observers were amazed by the transformations that took place when different parts of the brain were destroyed, altering victims' personalities. Parents suddenly couldn't recognize their own children. Pillars of the community became pathological liars. Some people couldn't speak but could still sing. In The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons, Sam Kean travels through time with stories of neurological curiosities: phantom limbs, Siamese twin brains, viruses that eat patients' memories, blind people who see through their tongues. He weaves these narratives together with prose that makes the pages fly by, to create a story of discovery that reaches back to the 1500s and the high-profile jousting accident that inspired this book's title.* With the lucid, masterful explanations and razor-sharp wit his fans have come to expect, Kean explores the brain's secret passageways and recounts the forgotten tales of the ordinary people whose struggles, resilience, and deep humanity made neuroscience possible. *"The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons" refers to the case of French king Henri II, who in 1559 was lanced through the skull during a joust, resulting in one of the most significant cases in neuroscience history. For hundreds of years scientists have gained important lessons from traumatic accidents and illnesses, and such misfortunes still represent their greatest resource for discovery.
A U.S. release of a best-selling existential work in Germany blends pop culture, cutting-edge research in neuroscience and traditional philosophy to tour some of today's most relevant philosophical questions, exploring such topics as the nature of truth and the actual value of good behavior. Original.
Embark on an exploration of what lies behind our eyelids when we surrender to the secret life of sleep. What makes us cross the line from waking to slumber? According to Harvard scientists it’s our 'sleep switch' – a cluster of neurons in the hypothalamus. For the ancient Greeks it was the god Hypnos, caressing you with his wings. For the Blackfeet Indians, a butterfly. From the meaning of dreams to the dangers of sleeping pills, Kat Duff brings insights from the latest in sleep science, the paintings of Salvador Dali, the musings of Michel de Montaigne, and rituals from around the world to paint a portrait of an activity that we all cherish but know little about. Why do we sleep? What happens in our brains when we sleep? Why are sleep patterns in Western industrialised countries so unhealthy? Is the boundary between sleep and wakefulness as clear cut as we might have supposed? Tackling the full breadth of what sleep means to us, The Secret Life of Sleep blends cutting-edge research with captivating narrative to explore a hidden world that is both intimate and mysterious.

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