Robert B. Laughlin, "The Crime of Reason: And the Closing of the Scientific Mind"
Basic Books | 2008 | ISBN: 0465005071 | 224 pages | PDF | 1,2 MB
The provocative premise of this short book is that even as we appear to be awash in information, governments and industry are restricting access to knowledge by broadening the concept of intellectual property to include things as diverse as gene sequences and sales techniques . According to Laughlin, the right to learn is now aggressively opposed by intellectual property advocates, who want ideas elevated to the status of land, cars, and other physical assets so the their unauthorized acquisition can be prosecuted as theft. With examples drawn from nuclear physics, biotechnology and patent law, Laughlin, a Nobel laureate in physics, paints a troubling picture of a society in which the only information that is truly valuable in dollars and cents is controlled by a small number of individuals. But while Laughlin poses urgent questions, he provides neither in-depth analysis nor potential solutions. Many intriguing arguments—for example, that electronic technologies such as the Internet, which inundate us with useless information, are not instruments of knowledge dissemination at all but agencies of knowledge destruction—are offered but none are usefully explored. (Oct.)
"A Different Universe should be required reading for physics researchers, teachers and students...If I had to pick an idea that science needs in order to make real progress, I might be tempted to throw in my lot with Laughlin." New Scientist"
Only ONE (1) RS mirror, please
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