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Smoke & Mirrors: How Hype Obscures the Future and How to See Past It Paperback – 30 June 2020

4.9 out of 5 stars 21 ratings

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Product details

  • Publisher : Robinson; 1st edition (30 June 2020)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 336 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 1472143663
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1472143662
  • Dimensions : 15.2 x 2.8 x 23.2 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.9 out of 5 stars 21 ratings

Product description

Review

Stop following the news until you've read Gemma Milne's persuasive analysis of the hype and bullshit that distort our understanding of emerging science. As she shows, the starting point to grasping the genuine opportunities of AI, life sciences and climate tech is a healthy dose of critical thinking

'Couldn't be more timely. Fascinating and vitally important'

A much-needed blast of fresh air! Gemma Milne expertly shows us how to separate the truth from the hype surrounding the emerging techs of today, and those of the near-tomorrow. -- Lewis Dartnell, author of Origins: How the Earth Made Us

I loved this book! This is exactly the sort of sceptical, cut-through-the crap-but-still-excited-about-what's-emerging book around tech innovation that's sorely needed, yet is so hard to find. Gemma Milne's writing sparkles and delights as she strips away the hype around nine cutting-edge areas of science and technology while revealing possibilities that are all the more compelling as a result. More than an antidote to over-hyped tech, Smoke & Mirrors is essential reading for anyone who's serious about how real-world advances might be effectively harnessed to build a better future. -- Dr Andrew Maynard, scientist and author of Films from the Future and Future Rising

Smoke & Mirrors is a vital contribution in a world where technological progress promises so much, but too often disappoints. If, like me, you believe that advances in science and technology are our best hope for solving the grand challenges of our times, this book is the indispensable guide to avoiding the mirages and the charlatans along the way.

A refreshingly grown-up, clear-headed look at the interaction between science, technology and the media - readable without being dumbed down, acknowledging complexities without being heavy.

In this book, we see technological hype for what it is: not mere exuberance, but a form of attention-seeking. As some technological hucksters stake claims on our future and try to foreclose alternatives, we need strong defences. Gemma Milne offers a spotter's guide to hype, using science to bring speculation down to earth. People inside and outside the world of technological innovation need this book.

A much-needed blast of fresh air! Gemma Milne expertly shows us how to separate the truth from the hype surrounding the emerging techs of today, and those of the near-tomorrow.

I loved this book! This is exactly the sort of sceptical, cut-through-the crap-but-still-excited-about-what's-emerging book around tech innovation that's sorely needed, yet is so hard to find. Gemma Milne's writing sparkles and delights as she strips away the hype around nine cutting-edge areas of science and technology while revealing possibilities that are all the more compelling as a result. More than an antidote to over-hyped tech, Smoke & Mirrors is essential reading for anyone who's serious about how real-world advances might be effectively harnessed to build a better future.

A really interesting read . . . thought-provoking. It shines a spotlight on issues that are all too frequently left out of the narrative around over-hyped technological innovation. For those working in science communication and general tech lovers alike, this book will certainly open your eyes to some important questions. -- Jamie Durrani, Chemistry World

Review

'Couldn't be more timely. Fascinating and vitally important'

A much-needed blast of fresh air! Gemma Milne expertly shows us how to separate the truth from the hype surrounding the emerging techs of today, and those of the near-tomorrow.

I loved this book! This is exactly the sort of sceptical, cut-through-the crap-but-still-excited-about-what's-emerging book around tech innovation that's sorely needed, yet is so hard to find. Gemma Milne's writing sparkles and delights as she strips away the hype around nine cutting-edge areas of science and technology while revealing possibilities that are all the more compelling as a result. More than an antidote to over-hyped tech, Smoke & Mirrors is essential reading for anyone who's serious about how real-world advances might be effectively harnessed to build a better future.

Smoke & Mirrors is a vital contribution in a world where technological progress promises so much, but too often disappoints. If, like me, you believe that advances in science and technology are our best hope for solving the grand challenges of our times, this book is the indispensable guide to avoiding the mirages and the charlatans along the way.

A refreshingly grown-up, clear-headed look at the interaction between science, technology and the media - readable without being dumbed down, acknowledging complexities without being heavy.

Stop following the news until you've read Gemma Milne's persuasive analysis of the hype and bullshit that distort our understanding of emerging science. As she shows, the starting point to grasping the genuine opportunities of AI, life sciences and climate tech is a healthy dose of critical thinking

In this book, we see technological hype for what it is: not mere exuberance, but a form of attention-seeking. As some technological hucksters stake claims on our future and try to foreclose alternatives, we need strong defences. Gemma Milne offers a spotter's guide to hype, using science to bring speculation down to earth. People inside and outside the world of technological innovation need this book.

A really interesting read . . . thought-provoking. It shines a spotlight on issues that are all too frequently left out of the narrative around over-hyped technological innovation. For those working in science communication and general tech lovers alike, this book will certainly open your eyes to some important questions. - Chemistry World

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4.9 out of 5 stars
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Rory Greig
5.0 out of 5 stars A balanced and informative look at some of the most exciting areas of technology
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 April 2020
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Thomas Hornigold
5.0 out of 5 stars An insightful peer into the looking-glass for new technologies.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 June 2020
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JM
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating book, highly recommend.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 April 2020
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One person found this helpful
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Suchandrika Chakrabarti
5.0 out of 5 stars Smoke & Mirrors shows us the value of critical thinking while keeping up with the digital news cycle
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 May 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars Smoke & Mirrors shows us the value of critical thinking while keeping up with the digital news cycle
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 May 2020
The news landscape has changed hugely over the past 20 years thanks to mobile phones and the internet, but we don't necessarily have the critical faculties needed to figure out the good from the bad, the hyped from the realistic, the science from the pseudo-science. Gemma Milne's very timely book helps us navigate our way through overwrought headlines and prods us to think again about how and why certain stories get amplified. It's all written in a clear, easy-to-access way. Now that we all have the power to self-publish from the moment we can swipe a screen, we need to be learning the lessons laid out in Smoke & Mirrors.
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Andy Weir
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant read ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 August 2020
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