- Hardcover: 304 pages
- Publisher: Atlas & Co. (June 24, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1934633054
- ISBN-13: 978-1934633052
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 1.5 x 7.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,575,059 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Year Million: Science at the Far Edge of Knowledge
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
From Publishers Weekly
The human race has come a long way in the 1.5 million years since Homo erectus rose up and walked on two feet. What will humans look like in another million years (if we're still around)? Where will we live and what will we be doing? In this collection, Broderick, an Australian writer and science fiction editor, and a dozen-plus contributors let their imaginations run wild. At times they sound like a bunch of dudes tossing around what if's, but they've come up with truly funky ideas. The concept of a Matrioshka brain crops up more than once—a gigantic system of solar-orbiting structures to trap the sun's energy. Other authors stay more down to earth. Dougal Dixon speculates on continental drift and changes in the Earth's magnetic field. Steven Harris discusses why deuterium may take the place of oil and gas as our primary energy source in a few millennia. Several chapters read more like science fiction than sound scientific speculation, and a few wander off topic, but it's all great fun. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
About the Author
Damien Broderick, Ph.D., is a freelance writer, senior fellow in the School of Culture and Communication at the University of Melbourne, and science fiction editor at the Australian popular science monthly Cosmos. He received the Distinguished Scholarship Award from the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts in 2005. He lives in Melbourne, Australia and San Antonio, Texas.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
One striking characteristic of this book is that the various authors' speculations about Year Million seem so plausible.
The disturbing aspect of this book is that Year Million human life will be, well, unrecognizable! Pretty much every human activity done today will likely not be done by Year Million humans (or humans' progeny). None of the many and various things humans do for entertainment today will likely be done by Year Million humans (at least not in the same recognizable form). Camping, music, sports, boating, horseback riding, photography, reading, computer games, sewing...pretty much everything a person can imagine for a pastime today will likely be no longer done in Year Million.
To future humans, the world will seem "normal," I'm sure. But a modern-day human would likely find the Year Million frightening, foreign, and incomprehensible. All of the things we find fun or entertaining and all of the things we find interesting or important (religion, for example) will likely no longer exist.
So, while the book is disturbing (or at least I found it so), it is also intriguing and fascinating.
I recommend it.
Those who did think big often rehashed already-existing ideas about the far future. I believe 4 of the essays talked about Dyson spheres or some version of them. Not exactly that imaginative.
This concept could have worked (could still work) with better, more imaginative writers. I can only guess that the editor did not have enough contacts in the science fiction world, or did not try hard enough to get the best people for the book.
Anyone can say that things which were thought impossible and unthinkable in the past are now real. That's true, but the occurrence of some examples of ignorance in the past does not imply that all of the laws of physics have work-arounds. Even these days, it is Newton's gravity theory which is used for sending probes to Mars and Pluto, not relativity or quantum theory. The laws of motion and gravity have not changed in any practical way. Most pages of most essays in this book describe physical impossibilities, straight out of the popular science-fiction literature. In fact, it resembles the typical post-truth "alternative facts" which are so popular on the internet these days, just communities of people exchanging nonsensical twaddle with each other as either entertainment or reality-avoidance.
I got to page 130 of this book and gave up. It's just page after page after page of pure twaddle, very repetitive twaddle. I was given this book by a friend in 2008. He wanted me to feel more optimistic about the future because I told him some very rational reasons to be profoundly pessimistic. Now that I have read the first 130 pages, I also feel profoundly pessimistic about the writing skills of science-fiction authors. They don't even try to make a semi-credible story line.
The reasons for deep pessimism about (1) the survival of civilisation, and (2) the survival of the human species, are well-known, including nuclear wars, catastrophic vulcanism, asteroids, comets, mineral resource depletion, habitat destruction, and pandemics. (That is not the full list. I would also include the mass abandonment of rationality.) There's very little serious discussion in these essays of the most likely outcome in a million years, which is that the human species will evolve into something very different after a succession of global catastrophes. Human speech only arrived about 250,000 years ago. Evolution is a lot faster than most people think, especially under the influence of catastrophes. The last million years included dozens of global catastrophes. The next millions years will be even worse than that.
There's nothing new and surprising in this book. It's just the usual pop science fiction/fantasy. There are not many surprising "facts" to drop into lunchtime banter because most of the "facts" in this book are "alternative facts".
Most recent customer reviews
The difficulty about this sort of essay collection is to get people with the necessary expertise to contribute, and to take the necessary time and...Read more
Year Million is a collection of essays, ostensibly describing what life will be like a million years from now.Read more