The Architecture of Happiness


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: McClelland & Stewart
ISBN: 1551993872
Category: Philosophy
Page: 288
View: 1672

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Bestselling author Alain de Botton considers how our private homes and public edifices influence how we feel, and how we could build dwellings in which we would stand a better chance of happiness. In this witty, erudite look at how we shape, and are shaped by, our surroundings, Alain de Botton applies Stendhal’s motto that “Beauty is the promise of happiness” to the spaces we inhabit daily. Why should we pay attention to what architecture has to say to us? de Botton asks provocatively. With his trademark lucidity and humour, de Botton traces how human needs and desires have been served by styles of architecture, from stately Classical to minimalist Modern, arguing that the stylistic choices of a society can represent both its cherished ideals and the qualities it desperately lacks. On an individual level, de Botton has deep sympathy for our need to see our selves reflected in our surroundings; he demonstrates with great wisdom how buildings — just like friends — can serve as guardians of our identity. Worrying about the shape of our sofa or the colour of our walls might seem self-indulgent, but de Botton considers the hopes and fears we have for our homes at a new level of depth and insight. When shopping for furniture or remodelling the kitchen, we don’t just consider functionality but also the major questions of aesthetics and the philosophy of art: What is beauty? Can beautiful surroundings make us good? Can beauty bring happiness? The buildings we find beautiful, de Botton concludes, are those that represent our ideas of a meaningful life. The Architecture of Happiness marks a return to what Alain does best — taking on a subject whose allure is at once tantalizing and a little forbidding and offering to readers a completely beguiling and original exploration of the subject. As he did with Proust, philosophy, and travel, now he does with architecture. From the Hardcover edition.

The Architecture of Happiness


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307481565
Category: Architecture
Page: 288
View: 4818

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The Achitecture of Happiness is a dazzling and generously illustrated journey through the philosophy and psychology of architecture and the indelible connection between our identities and our locations.One of the great but often unmentioned causes of both happiness and misery is the quality of our environment: the kinds of walls, chairs, buildings, and streets that surround us. And yet a concern for architecture is too often described as frivolous, even self-indulgent. Alain de Botton starts from the idea that where we are heavily influences who we can be, and argues that it is architecture's task to stand as an eloquent reminder of our full potential. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Architecture of Happiness


Author: Alain de Botton
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 014193025X
Category: Philosophy
Page: 280
View: 2119

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The Architecture of Happiness is Alain de Botton's exploration of the hidden links between buildings and our well being Bestselling author Alain de Botton has written about love, travel, status and how philosophy can console us. Now he turns his attention to one of our most intense but often hidden love affairs: with our houses and their furnishings. He asks: What makes a house truly beautiful?Why are many new houses so ugly?Why do we argue so bitterly about sofas and pictures - and can differences of taste ever be satisfactorily resolved?Will minimalism make us happier than ornaments? To answer these questions and many more, de Botton looks at buildings across the world, from medieval wooden huts to modern skyscrapers; he examines sofas and cathedrals, tea sets and office complexes, and teases out a host of often surprising philosophical insights. The Architecture of Happiness will take you on a beguiling tour through the history and psychology of architecture and interior design, and will forever alter your relationship with buildings. It will change the way you look at your current home - and help you make the right decisions about your next one. 'Engaging and intelligent . . . full of splendid ideas, happily and beautifully expressed'Independent Alain de Botton was born in 1969 and is the author of non-fiction essays on themes ranging from love and travel to architecture and philosophy. His bestselling books include Essays in Love; The Romantic Movement; Kiss and Tell; Status Anxiety; How Proust Can Change Your Life; The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work; The Art of Travel; The Architecture of Happiness and Religion for Atheists. He lives in London and founded The School of Life (www.theschooloflife.com) and Living Architecture (www.living-architecture.co.uk). For more information, consult www.alaindebotton.com.

The Architecture of Happiness


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307277244
Category: Architecture
Page: 288
View: 735

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The Achitecture of Happiness is a dazzling and generously illustrated journey through the philosophy and psychology of architecture and the indelible connection between our identities and our locations.One of the great but often unmentioned causes of both happiness and misery is the quality of our environment: the kinds of walls, chairs, buildings, and streets that surround us. And yet a concern for architecture is too often described as frivolous, even self-indulgent. Alain de Botton starts from the idea that where we are heavily influences who we can be, and argues that it is architecture's task to stand as an eloquent reminder of our full potential. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The News: A User's Manual


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307911721
Category: Social Science
Page: 272
View: 4893

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The news is everywhere. We can’t stop constantly checking it on our computer screens, but what is this doing to our minds? We are never really taught how to make sense of the torrent of news we face every day, writes Alain de Botton (author of the best-selling The Architecture of Happiness), but this has a huge impact on our sense of what matters and of how we should lead our lives. In his dazzling new book, de Botton takes twenty-five archetypal news stories—including an airplane crash, a murder, a celebrity interview and a political scandal—and submits them to unusually intense analysis with a view to helping us navigate our news-soaked age. He raises such questions as Why are disaster stories often so uplifting? What makes the love lives of celebrities so interesting? Why do we enjoy watching politicians being brought down? Why are upheavals in far-off lands often so boring? In The News: A User’s Manual, de Botton has written the ultimate guide for our frenzied era, certain to bring calm, understanding and a measure of sanity to our daily (perhaps even hourly) interactions with the news machine. (With black-and-white illustrations throughout.) From the Hardcover edition.

How Buildings Learn

What Happens After They're Built
Author: Stewart Brand
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101562641
Category: Architecture
Page: 252
View: 8743

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Buildings have often been studies whole in space, but never before have they been studied whole in time. How Buildings Learn is a masterful new synthesis that proposes that buildings adapt best when constantly refined and reshaped by their occupants, and that architects can mature from being artists of space to becoming artists of time. From the connected farmhouses of New England to I.M. Pei's Media Lab, from "satisficing" to "form follows funding," from the evolution of bungalows to the invention of Santa Fe Style, from Low Road military surplus buildings to a High Road English classic like Chatsworth—this is a far-ranging survey of unexplored essential territory. More than any other human artifacts, buildings improve with time—if they're allowed to. How Buildings Learn shows how to work with time rather than against it.

A Week at the Airport


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Emblem Editions
ISBN: 0771026285
Category: Travel
Page: 112
View: 3365

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The bestselling author of The Architecture of Happiness and The Art of Travel spends a week at an airport in a wittily intriguing meditation on the "non-place" that he believes is the centre of our civilization. In the summer of 2009, Alain de Botton was invited by the owners of Heathrow airport to become their first ever writer-in-residence. Given unprecedented, unrestricted access to wander around one of the world's busiest airports, he met travellers from all over the globe, and spoke with everyone from baggage handlers to pilots, and senior executives to the airport chaplain. Based on these conversations he has produced this extraordinary meditation on the nature of travel, work, relationships, and our daily lives. Working with the renowned documentary photographer Richard Baker, he explores the magical and the mundane, and the interactions of travellers and workers all over this familiar but mysterious "non-place," which by definition we are eager to leave. Taking the reader through departures, "air-side," and the arrivals hall, de Botton shows with his usual combination of wit and wisdom that spending time in an airport can be more revealing than we might think. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Emblem Editions
ISBN: 0771026323
Category: Philosophy
Page: 336
View: 4739

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From the international bestselling author of The Architecture of Happiness and How Proust Can Change Your Life comes this lyrical, erudite look at our world of work. We spend most of our time at work, but what we do there rarely gets discussed in the sort of lyrical and descriptive prose our efforts surely deserve. Determined to correct this lapse, armed with a poetic perspective and his trademark philosophical sharpness, Alain de Botton heads out into the world of offices and factories, ready to take in the beauty, interest, and sheer strangeness of the modern workplace. De Botton spends time in and around some less familiar work environments, including warehouses, container ports, rocket launch pads, and power stations, and follows scientists, landscape painters, accountants, cookie manufacturers, therapists, entrepreneurs, and aircraft salesmen as they do their jobs. Along the way, de Botton tries to answer some of the most urgent questions we can pose about work: Why do we do it? What makes it pleasurable? What is its meaning? To what end do we daily exhaust not only ourselves but also our planet? Equally intrigued by work’s pleasures and its pains, Alain de Botton offers a characteristically lucid and witty tour of the working day and night, in a book sure to inspire a range of life-changing and wise thoughts. From the Hardcover edition.

The Consolations of Philosophy


Author: Alain de Botton
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141930314
Category: Philosophy
Page: 272
View: 5228

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The Consolations of Philosophy is Alain de Botton's internationally bestselling guide to life The inspiration for the TV series Philsophy: A Guide to Happiness Alain de Botton, bestselling author of How Proust Can Change Your Life, has set six of the finest minds in the history of philosophy to work on the problems of everyday life. Here then are Socrates, Epicurus, Seneca, Montaigne, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche on some of the things that bother us all: lack of money, the pain of love, inadequacy, anxiety; the fear of failure and the pressure to conform. 'Singlehandedly, de Botton has taken philosophy back to its simplest and most important purpose: helping us live our lives' Independent 'No doubt about it, philosophy is the new rock and roll and Alain de Botton is its Colonel Tom Parker . . . A pleasure to read. And good writing, like good philosophy, is always a consolation' John Banville, Irish Times 'Few discussions on the great philosophers can have been so entertaining . . . an ingenious, imaginative book' Humphrey Carpenter, Sunday Times 'Witty, thoughtful, entertaining . . . a stylish book, which manages to make philosophy both enjoyable and relevant' Anthony Clare, Literary Review 'Gentle, helpful and humane . . . De Botton's instinct is surely right: if we are to bring philosophy to life we should look again at those thinkers who have sought to be not clever or paradoxical, but simply wise' Roger Scruton, Mail on Sunday Alain de Botton was born in 1969 and is the author of non-fiction essays on themes ranging from love and travel to architecture and philosophy. His bestselling books include Essays in Love; The Romantic Movement; Kiss and Tell; Status Anxiety; How Proust Can Change Your Life; The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work; The Art of Travel; The Architecture of Happiness and Religion for Atheists. He lives in London and founded The School of Life (www.theschooloflife.com) and Living Architecture (www.living-architecture.co.uk). For more information, consult www.alaindebotton.com.

How Proust Can Change Your Life


Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307833496
Category: Humor
Page: 208
View: 5522

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Alain de Botton combines two unlikely genres--literary biography and self-help manual--in the hilarious and unexpectedly practical How Proust Can Change Your Life. Who would have thought that Marcel Proust, one of the most important writers of our century, could provide us with such a rich source of insight into how best to live life? Proust understood that the essence and value of life was the sum of its everyday parts. As relevant today as they were at the turn of the century, Proust's life and work are transformed here into a no-nonsense guide to, among other things, enjoying your vacation, reviving a relationship, achieving original and unclichéd articulation, being a good host, recognizing love, and understanding why you should never sleep with someone on a first date. It took de Botton to find the inspirational in Proust's essays, letters and fiction and, perhaps even more surprising, to draw out a vivid and clarifying portrait of the master from between the lines of his work. Here is Proust as we have never seen or read him before: witty, intelligent, pragmatic. He might well change your life.

Religion for Atheists

A Non-Believer's Guide to the Uses of Religion
Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Signal
ISBN: 0771025998
Category: Philosophy
Page: 336
View: 6536

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From the author of The Architecture of Happiness, a deeply moving meditation on how we can still benefit, without believing, from the wisdom, the beauty, and the consolatory power that religion has to offer. Alain de Botton was brought up in a committedly atheistic household, and though he was powerfully swayed by his parents' views, he underwent, in his mid-twenties, a crisis of faithlessness. His feelings of doubt about atheism had their origins in listening to Bach's cantatas, were further developed in the presence of certain Bellini Madonnas, and became overwhelming with an introduction to Zen architecture. However, it was not until his father's death -- buried under a Hebrew headstone in a Jewish cemetery because he had intriguingly omitted to make more secular arrangements -- that Alain began to face the full degree of his ambivalence regarding the views of religion that he had dutifully accepted. Why are we presented with the curious choice between either committing to peculiar concepts about immaterial deities or letting go entirely of a host of consoling, subtle and effective rituals and practices for which there is no equivalent in secular society? Why do we bristle at the mention of the word "morality"? Flee from the idea that art should be uplifting, or have an ethical purpose? Why don't we build temples? What mechanisms do we have for expressing gratitude? The challenge that de Botton addresses in his book: how to separate ideas and practices from the religious institutions that have laid claim to them. In Religion for Atheists is an argument to free our soul-related needs from the particular influence of religions, even if it is, paradoxically, the study of religion that will allow us to rediscover and rearticulate those needs. From the Hardcover edition.

The Art of Travel


Author: Alain de Botton
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141930268
Category: Philosophy
Page: 272
View: 3268

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The Art of Travel is Alain de Botton's travel guide with a difference: an exploration of why we travel and what we learn when we do As seen on Channel 4 Few activities seem to promise is as much happiness as going travelling: taking off for somewhere else, somewhere far from home, a place with more interesting weather, customs and landscapes. But although we are inundated with advice on where to travel to, we seldom ask why we go and how we might become more fulfilled by doing so. With the help of a selection of writers, artists and thinkers - including Flaubert, Edward Hopper, Wordsworth and Van Gogh - Alain de Botton's bestselling The Art of Travel provides invaluable insights into everything from holiday romance to hotel minibars, airports to sightseeing. The perfect antidote to those guides that tell us what to do when we get there, The Art of Travel tries to explain why we really went in the first place - and helpfully suggest how we might be happier on our journeys.

How to Take Your Time

from How Proust Can Change Your Life
Author: Alain De Botton
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0525435026
Category: Humor
Page: 16
View: 6813

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Curiously practical—this no-nonsense blend of literary biography and self-help unravels how interesting life can be if only you could resist the impulse to rush through the mundane rituals of modern life. Every morning, Marcel Proust sipped his two cups of strong coffee with milk, ate a croissant from one boulangerie, dunking it in his coffee as he slowly read the day’s paper with great care—poring over each headline and section. Only Alain de Botton could have pulled so many useful insights from the oeuvre of one the world’s greatest literary masters. Fascinating and vital, How to Take Your Time will urge you to find the wisdom in defying “the self-satisfaction felt by ‘busy’ men—however idiotic their business—at ‘not having time’ to do what you are doing.” A Vintage Shorts Wellness selection. An ebook short.

Status Anxiety


Author: Alain de Botton
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141930241
Category: Philosophy
Page: 320
View: 7033

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In Status Anxiety, bestselling author Alain de Botton sets out to understand our universal fear of failure - and how we might change We all worry about what others think of us. We all long to succeed and fear failure. We all suffer - to a greater or lesser degree, usually privately and with embarrassment - from status anxiety. For the first time, Alain de Botton gives a name to this universal condition and sets out to investigate both its origins and possible solutions. He looks at history, philosophy, economics, art and politics - and reveals the many ingenious ways that great minds have overcome their worries. The result is a book that is not only entertaining and thought-provoking - but genuinely wise and helpful as well. 'Clever, wise. De Botton's gift is to prompt us to think about how we live and how we might change things'The Times 'De Botton analyses modern society with great charm, learning and humour. His remedies come as a welcome relief when most books offering solutions to the stresses of life recommend the lotus position'Daily Mail 'Measured, amused, compassionate . . . de Botton is a surefooted discoverer of the pungent but less well known quote'Daily Telegraph 'A purveyor of serious buy playful manuals for living'GQ 'Turned me into a fan, for its range, insight, wit and sheer usefulness'Daily Express Alain de Botton was born in 1969 and is the author of non-fiction essays on themes ranging from love and travel to architecture and philosophy. His bestselling books include Essays in Love; The Romantic Movement; Kiss and Tell; Status Anxiety; How Proust Can Change Your Life; The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work; The Art of Travel; The Architecture of Happiness and Religion for Atheists. He lives in London and founded The School of Life (www.theschooloflife.com) and Living Architecture (www.living-architecture.co.uk). For more information, consult www.alaindebotton.com.

Sometimes Happiness

The Architecture of Isay Weinfeld
Author: Isay Weinfeld
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9783899554922
Category: Architecture
Page: 272
View: 6305

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Isay Weinfeld melds the forms of classical modernism and visionary Brazilian architecture into distinctive structures of captivating beauty and timeless elegance. Isay Weinfeld is one of today's most soughtafter architects. He has succeeded in developing a warm, elegant, and contemporary style with a distinctly Brazilian touch that effortlessly melds contrasting characteristics--tropical with modern, playful with functional, minimalistic with elaborate, sophisticated with democratic. Weinfeld's remarkable talent has caught the attention of clients from around the world, who have asked him to create their hotels, residences, shops, and commercial buildings. Weinfeld's best-known structures in clued the Fasano Hotel and the 360° Building in São Paulo, the square nine Hotel in Belgrade, and the Fasano Las Piedras in Uruguay, which was featured on the cover of once in a lifetime. Weinfeld is currently working on a high-rise residential building for the royal family of Monaco. Sometimes Happiness is the first comprehensive showcase of Isay Weinfeld's body of work. The large-format book features detailed depictions of 20 exemplary projects that are supplemented by images of his personal arrangements of various objects--so-called "table scapes." Project descriptions, anecdotes, and fictional narratives by the architect himself as well as befriended artists, writers, and cinematographers give added insight into Weinfeld's work. What makes Isay Weinfeld so outstanding is that he designs not only exteriors, but also buildings in their entirety. While some architects, even famous ones, leave the interior design of their structures to others, Weinfeld plans his buildings to the last detail. He even designs furniture himself or researches and seeks out the most fitting furnishings from around the world. Narrative elements are a focus of Weinfeld's work, and he pays particular attention to staging the transition from outside to inside. Given that entering one of his buildings turns into an unforgettable experience, it comes as no surprise that Weinfeld counts the films of Stanley Kubrick and Ingmar Bergman among his influences, along with the visual arts and the music of Radiohead and Jay-Z.

From a Cause to a Style

Modernist Architecture's Encounter with the American City
Author: Nathan Glazer
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400827589
Category: Architecture
Page: 320
View: 5859

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Modernism in architecture and urban design has failed the American city. This is the decisive conclusion that renowned public intellectual Nathan Glazer has drawn from two decades of writing and thinking about what this architectural movement will bequeath to future generations. In From a Cause to a Style, he proclaims his disappointment with modernism and its impact on the American city. Writing in the tradition of legendary American architectural critics Lewis Mumford and Jane Jacobs, Glazer contends that modernism, this new urban form that signaled not just a radical revolution in style but a social ambition to enhance the conditions under which ordinary people lived, has fallen short on all counts. The articles and essays collected here--some never published before, all updated--reflect his ideas on subjects ranging from the livable city and public housing to building design, public memorials, and the uses of public space. Glazer, an undisputed giant among public intellectuals, is perhaps best known for his writings on ethnicity and social policy, where the unflinching honesty and independence of thought that he brought to bear on tough social questions has earned him respect from both the Left and the Right. Here, he challenges us to face some difficult truths about the public places that, for better or worse, define who we are as a society. From a Cause to a Style is an exhilarating and thought-provoking book that raises important questions about modernist architecture and the larger social aims it was supposed to have addressed-and those it has abandoned.

The Architecture of Psychoanalysis

Spaces of Transition
Author: Jane Rendell
Publisher: I.B.Tauris
ISBN: 1786720485
Category: Psychology
Page: 308
View: 2072

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How do external material environments and the inner world of emotion, memory and imagination influence each other? In this thought-provoking book, Jane Rendell explores how architectural space registers in psychoanalysis. She investigates both the inherently spatial vocabulary of psychoanalysis and ideas around the physical ‘setting’ of the psychoanalytic encounter, with reference to Sigmund Freud, D.W. Winnicott and André Green. Building on the innovative writing methods employed in Art and Architecture and Site-Writing, she also addresses the concept of architecture as ‘social condenser’ – a Russian constructivist notion that connects material space and community relations. Tracing this idea’s progress from 1920s Moscow to 1950s Britain, Rendell shows how interior and exterior meet in both psychoanalysis and architectural practice. Illuminating a novel field of interdisciplinary enquiry, this book breathes fresh life into notions of social space.

The Course of Love


Author: Alain de Botton
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0241962129
Category: Fiction
Page: 240
View: 9892

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Twenty years after his bestselling debut Essays in Love, internationally acclaimed author Alain de Botton returns to fiction with a brilliant new novel about modern relationships What does it mean to live happily ever after? At dinner parties and over coffee, Rabih and Kirsten's friends always ask them the same question: how did you meet? The answer comes easily -- it's a happy story, one they both love to tell. But there is a second part to this story, the answer to a question their friends never ask: what happened next? Rabih and Kirsten find each other, fall in love, get married. Society tells us this is the end of the story. In fact, it is only the beginning. From the first thrill of lust, to the joys and fears of real commitment, to the deep problems that surface slowly over two shared lifetimes, this is the story of a marriage. It is the story of modern relationships and how to survive them. Playful, wise and profoundly moving, The Course of Love is a delightful return to the novel by Alain de Botton, twenty years after his debut Essays in Love.

Life After Google

The Fall of Big Data and the Rise of the Blockchain Economy
Author: George Gilder
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1621576132
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 256
View: 6458

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“Google’s algorithms assume the world’s future is nothing more than the next moment in a random process. George Gilder shows how deep this assumption goes, what motivates people to make it, and why it’s wrong: the future depends on human action.” — Peter Thiel, founder of PayPal and Palantir Technologies and author of Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future. “If you want to be clued in to the unfolding future, then you have come to the right place. For decades, George Gilder has been the undisputed oracle of technology’s future. Are giant companies like Google, Amazon, and Facebook the unstoppable monopolistic juggernauts that they seem, or are they dysfunctional giants about to be toppled by tech-savvy, entrepreneurial college dropouts?” — Nick Tredennick, Ph.D., Chief Scientist, QuickSilver Technolog Silicon Valley’s Nervous Breakdown The Age of Google, built on big data and machine intelligence, has been an awesome era. But it’s coming to an end. In Life after Google, George Gilder—the peerless visionary of technology and culture—explains why Silicon Valley is suffering a nervous breakdown and what to expect as the post-Google age dawns. Google’s astonishing ability to “search and sort” attracts the entire world to its search engine and countless other goodies—videos, maps, email, calendars….And everything it offers is free, or so it seems. Instead of paying directly, users submit to advertising. The system of “aggregate and advertise” works—for a while—if you control an empire of data centers, but a market without prices strangles entrepreneurship and turns the Internet into a wasteland of ads. The crisis is not just economic. Even as advances in artificial intelligence induce delusions of omnipotence and transcendence, Silicon Valley has pretty much given up on security. The Internet firewalls supposedly protecting all those passwords and personal information have proved hopelessly permeable. The crisis cannot be solved within the current computer and network architecture. The future lies with the “cryptocosm”—the new architecture of the blockchain and its derivatives. Enabling cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether, NEO and Hashgraph, it will provide the Internet a secure global payments system, ending the aggregate-and-advertise Age of Google. Silicon Valley, long dominated by a few giants, faces a “great unbundling,” which will disperse computer power and commerce and transform the economy and the Internet. Life after Google is almost here. For fans of "Wealth and Poverty," "Knoweldge and Power," and "The Scandal of Money."

Architecture of the absurd

how "genius" disfigured a practical art
Author: John Silber
Publisher: Quantuck Lane Pr & the Mill rd
ISBN: N.A
Category: Architecture
Page: 97
View: 5790

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In this tour of contemporary architecture, John Silber exposes the wilful disdain of \'genius\' architects for their clients, their budgets and the people who live or work inside their creations.