Analogia: The Emergence of Technology Beyond Programmable Control

October 31, 2020
Analogia: The Emergence of Technology Beyond Programmable Control

In Analogia, technology historian George Dysonpresents a startling look back at the analog age and life beforethe digital revolution—and an unsettling vision of what comesnext.In 1716, the philosopher and mathematician Gottfried WilhelmLeibniz spent eight days taking the cure with Peter the Great atBad Pyrmont in Saxony, seeking to initiate a digitally-computedtakeover of the world. In his classic books, Darwin Among theMachines and Turing's Cathedral, Dyson chronicled therealization of Leibniz's dream at the hands of a series oficonoclasts who brought his ideas to life. Now, in his pathbreakingnew book, Analogia, he offers a chronicle of people whofought for the other side—the Native American leader Geronimo andphysicist Leo Szilard, among them—a series of stories that willchange our view not only of the past but also of the future.The convergence of a startling historical archaeology withDyson's unusual personal story—set alternately in the rarifiedworld of cutting-edge physics and computer science, in Princeton,and in the rainforest of the Northwest Coast—leads to a propheticvision of an analog revolution already under way. We are, Dysonreveals, on the cusp of a new moment in human history, driven by ageneration of machines whose powers are beyond programmablecontrol.Includes black-and-white illustrations