By Carl Zimmer
Viruses are the smallest dwelling issues recognized to technological know-how, but they carry the complete planet of their sway. we're such a lot accustomed to the viruses that supply us colds or the flu, yet viruses additionally reason an unlimited variety of alternative ailments, together with one disease that makes humans sprout branch-like growths as though they have been timber. Viruses were part of our lives for thus lengthy, actually, that we are literally half virus: the human genome includes extra DNA from viruses than our personal genes. in the meantime, scientists are studying viruses in every single place they appear: within the soil, within the ocean, even in caves miles underground.
This attention-grabbing publication explores the hidden international of viruses—a global that all of us inhabit. the following Carl Zimmer, renowned technological know-how author and writer of Discover magazine’s award-winning web publication The Loom, offers the newest learn on how viruses carry sway over our lives and our biosphere, how viruses helped supply upward thrust to the 1st life-forms, how viruses are generating new illnesses, how we will be able to harness viruses for our personal ends, and the way viruses will proceed to manage our destiny for years yet to come. during this eye-opening travel of the frontiers of biology, the place scientists are increasing our realizing of lifestyles as we all know it, we study that a few remedies for the typical chilly do extra damage than sturdy; that the world’s oceans are domestic to an marvelous variety of viruses; and that the evolution of HIV is now in overdrive, spawning extra mutated lines than we care to imagine.
The New York occasions booklet Review calls Carl Zimmer “as fantastic a technological know-how essayist as we have.” A Planet of Viruses is certain to delight his many lovers and additional improve his recognition as one in all America’s most valuable and well known technology journalists.
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About the Author
BRIAN CLEGG is the writer of Ten Billion Tomorrows, ultimate Frontier, additional Sensory, Gravity, the best way to construct a Time desktop, Armageddon technological know-how, earlier than the large Bang, improve Me, and The God influence between others. He holds a physics measure from Cambridge and has written typical columns, gains, and experiences for various magazines. He lives in Wiltshire, England, along with his spouse and kids.
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Extra info for A Planet of Viruses
The protagonists, "the Moderns", propelled by the self-confidence and selfreliance of the Age, propounded the superiority of their own period and the necessity of making a break with the ways of antiquity of standing on one's own feet. In this debate of the Ancients and the Moderns, which mostly dealt with poetics, art and architecture, the idea of progress regarding science was also touched upon. Thus one of the brothers Perrault used the term verisimilitude to suggest that scientific knowledge improves and moves through various degrees of increasing verisimilitude.
The Portuguese are recorded to have greatly admired the local Congo velvet-like cloths made from palm fibres and a tree bark. The Baganda of Uganda and the Ashantis were experts in the bark cloth manufacturing technique, but fine cotton was also produced along the Guinea Coast and the unbleached Fouta Djallon cotton was famous. Fast vegetable dyes such as for the Adinkra cloth of the Ashantis were widely used, and the indigo dye had long been used in Yorubaland. The quality of all these products was high and based on reliable scientific techniques.
In his most influential book, The Making of the Counter Culture: Reflections on Technocratic Society (1969), and Where the Wasteland Ends: Politics and Trans- cendence in Post Industrial Society (1972), Roszak identifies science with a technocratic wasteland which has nothing of value to offer the human individual, only alienation, destruction and enslavement through "machine culture". He wants to see the worship of scientific reason put down, and in its stead a visionary mode of cognition reminiscent of certain practices and traditions in the culture of the North American Indian, or in the East.
A Planet of Viruses by Carl Zimmer