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Sunday, December 03, 2017

Review Or Two Books: 'Dawn Of The New Everything' And 'Hacking Of The American Mind' | Seeking Alpha

Summary
  • Silicon Valley scientist Jaron Lanier turns philosophical guru in "Dawn of the New Everything."
  • Pediatrician and former public health official Robert Lustig describes human addiction to electronic devices, advertising, drugs, sugar and processed foods.
  • These two books take deep dives into the social costs of Silicon Valley and the marketing of the "consumer industrial complex."


Photo: Storyblocks.com

"Check out these two books: 'Dawn Of The New Everything' and 'Hacking Of The American Mind' below" continues Seeking Alpha.

Photo: Hazel Henderson
"These two books are engrossing, enlightening and call for a re-design of these large sections of the US economy" says Hazel Henderson D.Sc.Hon., FRSA, founder of Ethical Markets Media, LLC and producer of its TV series. 

In "Dawn of the New Everything," computer scientist / musician Jaron Lanier reveals through this biographical account of his innovative startup VPL Research his deep philosophical approach to the digital revolution. Lanier goes beyond his "Who Owns The Future", (2014) and its insightful understanding of the shortcomings of Silicon Valley's social media business models. He skewers the contradictions inherent in Facebook (FB), Google (GOOGL), Twitter (TWTR) and similar business models based on advertising and selling their users' personal information. Lanier proposes that every single bit and pixel uploaded by users be paid for, which is feasible with existing software. 

Dawn of the New Everything:
Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality
In "Dawn of the New Everything" he amplifies these critiques of digital age companies in similar terms to the 2017 Congressional hearings...

In the "The Hacking of the American Mind", Dr. Robert Lustig, Professor of pediatrics at the University of California and former US Public Health official goes even deeper than Lanier. Lustig describes in anatomical detail how addictive technologies from phones, tablets and TV to marketing, branding and advertising affect the human brain. Lustig describes the brain's neural pathways and their responses via hormonal changes in dopamine, serotonin, cortisol, testosterone and oxytocin. He describes how addictive substances including those in foods, can cause dependency and how humans can change and distort our behavior in response.


The Hacking of the American Mind:
The Science Behind the Corporate
Takeover of Our Bodies and Brains

Dr. Lustig's first foray into these critiques of mass industrial marketing is his best seller, "Fat Chance" (2013) which examines sugar, salt and fats as addictive substances and indicates sugar as the worst for human health. In "The Hacking of the American Mind, Lusting extends this challenge to the entire industrial food sector and how it has depleted the nutritional value of most packaged, canned and processed foods.

Source: Seeking Alpha and Amazon


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