Deep Time Hardcover – 1 Feb 1999
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Explains how the human race is sending a message about itself into the cosmos in the form of nuclear waste, global warming, and the extinction of species.
Top Customer Reviews
Time capsules? We go to so much trouble to send trivial junk into the future...sometimes for only a few decades. A future archaeologist would probably learn more from mining our landfills, as we do from digging in ancient garbage heaps.
Benford also distinguishes between serious, scientific efforts to send a message to aliens (eg the plaques/records on the Pioneer space probes) and the "Kilroy was here" impulse ("Send your name on a CD-ROM to the stars!") being marketed so heavily. The latter, he notes, amounts to graffiti, worthless in the end except to someone's ego.
Finally, there are sections on saving the environment and biodiversity, to make sure we HAVE a future. Benford strikes a balance between the in situ/ex situ (conservation/zoos) approaches to saving species and the Puritan/technology prophet approaches to solving the greenhouse effect, a balance that is desperately needed when most so-called experts seem to be passionate ideologues one way or the other.
This book draws broadly on numerous disciplines and from a lot of research but leaves you really thinking in the end, and perhaps rethinking some of your assumptions about the future.
It is also an interesting look at how communications FAIL, even in the present. The look at the Cassini project's interstellar communication attempt is a very interesting study in how EGOs, INFIGHTING and POLITICS can derail even the best of plans.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Speedy delivery, good quality book a a fantastic price. Overall I can't fault it.Published 6 months ago by Ning
A very intriguing look at the complexities of communicating and preserving information over vast periods of time. Mr. Read morePublished on 3 Jun. 1999
Greg Benford points out an implication of Deep Time that I have never before considered. Thank-you, sir. Read morePublished on 8 April 1999
Tis is an extraordinary view of humanity in a long dimension of time--beautifully written, based on real experience, but not pontifical. Read morePublished on 19 Mar. 1999
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