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Michael A Nielsen

Reinventing discovery

In Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science Michael A Nielsen explains how the internet is changing the way science can be done and calls for us to adopt these changes as soon as we can.

The first part of the book 'Amplifying Collective Intelligence' looks at the benefits of online collaboration. Examples such as the Polymath project and the MathWorks competition show that considerable benefits can be gained when many minds can be harnessed to work on a problem. Nielsen hopes that tools to enable such collaboration will be introduced into many more areas of study. The second part of the book 'Networked Science' discusses how resources which used to be limited to a small group of people can now be accessed by all. Huge amounts of data are being made available for anyone to use. Websites such as Galaxy Zoo enable non-professionals to play a part in scientific projects. And the Open Access movement is calling for academic papers to be available for all to read rather than hidden behind paywalls.

Many choices need to be made over the next few years about the way academic institutions work - will they continue in the same old way, or will they undergo significant changes even at the cost of upsetting many people? I would recommend this book to anyone wishing to understand what possibilities are there and why we should embrace them.

Amazon.com info
Hardcover 272 pages  
ISBN: 0691148902
Salesrank: 543196
Weight:1.19 lbs
Published: 2011 Princeton University Press
Amazon price $15.85
Marketplace:New from $7.59:Used from $3.36
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Amazon.co.uk info
Hardcover 272 pages  
ISBN: 0691148902
Salesrank: 329366
Weight:1.19 lbs
Published: 2011 Princeton University Press
Amazon price £11.53
Marketplace:New from £8.72:Used from £8.12
Buy from Amazon.co.uk
Amazon.ca info
Hardcover 272 pages  
ISBN: 0691148902
Salesrank: 141228
Weight:1.19 lbs
Published: 2011 Princeton University Press
Amazon price CDN$ 16.62
Marketplace:New from CDN$ 10.96:Used from CDN$ 6.98
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Product Description

In Reinventing Discovery, Michael Nielsen argues that we are living at the dawn of the most dramatic change in science in more than 300 years. This change is being driven by powerful new cognitive tools, enabled by the internet, which are greatly accelerating scientific discovery. There are many books about how the internet is changing business or the workplace or government. But this is the first book about something much more fundamental: how the internet is transforming the nature of our collective intelligence and how we understand the world.



Reinventing Discovery tells the exciting story of an unprecedented new era of networked science. We learn, for example, how mathematicians in the Polymath Project are spontaneously coming together to collaborate online, tackling and rapidly demolishing previously unsolved problems. We learn how 250,000 amateur astronomers are working together in a project called Galaxy Zoo to understand the large-scale structure of the Universe, and how they are making astonishing discoveries, including an entirely new kind of galaxy. These efforts are just a small part of the larger story told in this book--the story of how scientists are using the internet to dramatically expand our problem-solving ability and increase our combined brainpower.


This is a book for anyone who wants to understand how the online world is revolutionizing scientific discovery today--and why the revolution is just beginning.