How Things Are: A Science Tool Kit for the Mind John Brockman and Katinka Matson have asked a large number of eminent scientists to write about what they consider to be important in the way that they and other scientists think. Books of this kind can suffer from the articles being repetitive and unsatisfyingly short. This one largely manages to avoid that problem, and I feel that this is because the contributors have been given a sufficiently wide scope to answer the question. Hence the reader gets plenty of novel viewpoints on the nature and practise of science.

Some examples of the contributions are Marian Stamp Dawkins who asks whether science reduces things to 'nothing but', and Mary Catherine Bateson who looks at what we mean by 'natural'. Dan Sperber describes how communication relies much more on inference than is commonly thought and Roger C Schank argues against too much teaching of facts, while David Gelernter argues for the benefits of the meticulous study of something, whether it be the Talmud or the Algol 60 report. All of the contributors have written books themselves so there's plenty of opportunity to follow up anything that interests you."; include "amazinf.php"; ?>