Edge in the News

Sydney Morning Herald [4.30.12]

Note, he asked contributors how the internet has changed the way ''you'' - not ''we'' - think. Brockman's aim is not treatises. He wants personal responses, and to a satisfying degree he gets them. ... The question for his 2010 edition (even the internet has not sped the arrival of this print-format book to our shores) produces little consensus. This proves a central strength. 

Tuscon Citizen [4.22.12]

What scientific concept would most improve everybody’s ability to think? ... As Brockman points out, the “tools” in his book are like magic hammers in that they can help you now and through life to make the world better and to allow readers to see their biases more accurately.

Neon Tommy (USC Annnberg Digital News) [4.21.12]

These are people who live at the outermost frontiers of human knowledge -- thinkers who spend their lives using what we do know to discover what we don't. Their words are inspiring, comforting and occasionally alarming. Their wisdom is great. But their tone is never arrogant or elitist.

Vanity Fair [3.29.12]

He compiled the results in "This Will Make You Smarter" (Harper Perennial), a provocative, wiz bang collection of essays by experts in fields as wide ranging as neuroscience and economics, philosophy and biological anthropology, addressing such topics as collective intelligence and the paradox of daydreaming.

Svenska-Daglabet [3.5.12]

In a notable essay titled "The third culture", he initiated the idea of  a third culture, the cross-disciplinary "Edge" has since been mainly attracted thinkers from the science field, but also philosophers and novelists. One can mention names like Steven Pinker, Janna Levin, EO Wilson and Rebecca Goldstein.

The Daily Beast [3.4.12]

Pagel, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Reading, belongs to the intellectual hot bed of the edge.org set, a salon of scientific thinkers that has assembled over the years under the auspices of their intriguing host, John Brockman. The ethos of the edge.org crowd is one of unapologetic sophistication; its mission is to bring cutting-edge thinkers together in an ongoing, open-ended conversation, where ideas can beget ideas.

El Pais [3.2.12]

The list of writers with scientific training who have jumped the gap between empiricism and literature is well nourished. The Chilean poet Nicanor Parra, recent Cervantes Prize is awarded physicist and mathematician and worked as Professor of Rational Mechanics at the University of Chile for 51 years. ... And if you search an apostle of this, should go to John Brockman, author of The Third Culture (Tusquets), which states that the current culture is scientific and intellectual argues that the classical (letters, that is) are outdated. "

The Wilson Quarterly [2.24.12]

The answers, which come predominantly from scientists or social scientists, make for fascinating reading. Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman thinks that we often fall prey to the “focusing illusion,” in which problems that we are thinking about seem more grave the more we think about them. Yale psychologist Paul Bloom says we need to adopt scientific reasoning in daily thinking. NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen suggests that we often lose sight of the fact that most problems we face are so complex that they defy simple definition.

To The Best of Our Knowledge [2.22.12]

John Brockman is the editor of the new book “This Will Make You Smarter.” He also runs the website Edge.org, which features discussions on cutting edge science by some of the world’s most brilliant minds.  In this NEW and UNCUT interview, Brockman talks with Steve Paulson about “third culture” intellectuals and how he was inspired by New York’s avant-garde arts scene in the 1960s, when he used to hang out with John Cage, Marshall McLuhan and other visionaries who laid the groundwork for today’s Internet culture.

Arts & Letters Daily [2.22.12]

The brain science of bizarre behavior. If someone wants to, say, amputate his perfectly healthy arm, the call goes out to V.S. Ramachandran... more»

NPR — 13.7 [2.22.12]

Brockman believes that scientists, natural and social, are asking some of the best questions in the air today. And we are not talking only about global warming or the future of the universe. Personal questions and corporate behavior are included as well: how to live a better life, to think more clearly about personal and social issues and how to lead a better company are all part of the game.

China Science Daily [2.18.12]

Brockman had had such a brilliant exposition on the "third culture" with the impact and historical significance: "Scientists and experience of other thinkers in the world, showing the deep meaning of our lives, and to redefine ' who we are, what we are 'aspects are its works and descriptive writing, and gradually replace the traditional intellectuals.

The Irish Times [2.18.12]

The always-on nature of the web, which constantly beckons us to check what’s happening, may seem at odds with our natural instincts, but, as June Cohen of Ted Media suggests, the internet “may be returning us to the intensely social animals we evolved to be”. 

Kirkus Reviews [2.16.12]

This Will Make You Smarter: New Scientific Concepts To Improve Your Thinking.

Kirkus Reviews [2.14.12]

As the founder and publisher of edge.org, a website devoted to great thinkers discussing the world’s greatest challenges, John Brockman has a pretty decent idea of what makes a person smarter.

Here, he’s collected ideas from many of today’s top thinkers—including Richard Dawkins, Daniel Kahneman and Kathryn Schulz, to name but a few—in one book, aptly named This Will Make You Smarter: New Scientific Concepts to Improve Your Thinking. Brockman was kind enough to allow us to run a few passages from this collection that we called in a starred review, "a winning combination of good writers, good science and serious broader concerns." ...

Brain Pickings [2.14.12]

....As infinitely fascinating and stimulating as This Will Make You Smarter: New Scientific Concepts to Improve Your Thinking is, its true gift — Brockman’s true gift — is in acting as a potent rupture in the filter bubble of our curiosity, cross-pollinating ideas across a multitude of disciplines to broaden our intellectual comfort zones and, in the process, spark a deeper, richer, more dimensional understanding not only of science, but of life itself. 

The Boston Globe [2.12.12]

At his online science salon Edge.org, John Brockman asked: What scientific concept would improve everybody's cognitive tool kit? He packed 150 answers from Steven Pinker, Richard Dawkins, and other leading thinkers into ``This Will Make You Smarter: New Scientific Concepts to Improve Your Thinking'' (Harper Perennial). What's great about it is that in two to four pages a reader can learn a new concept, such as the Pareto Principle (the inevitable tendency for wealth and a variety of other things to be concentrated among the few), kakonomics (the widespread unconscious preference for mediocre outcomes), and apophenia (incorrectly finding patterns or connections in data that is actually random).

Pagina | 12 [2.5.12]

The website for years Edge.org meets many of the best scientists, artists, thinkers and technologists, all attentive to think the changes in knowledge and how to understand the world and life. As every year, the site invites them to answer a single question. The nearly 200 responses are an incredible display of wit, knowledge and sensitivity. And like every year, Radar read them and reproduced the 10 most remarkable and original to the question that opened in 2012: What's your favorite explanation deeper, beautiful or elegant?  ...