BOOK CLUB Compass reviews four new titles

SEARCH: HOW THE DATA EXPLOSION MAKES US SMARTER - STEFAN WEITZ

From hierarchical indexes and complex algorithms to connected sensors and devices, Search: How the Data Explosion Makes Us Smarter tracks the history and future of search technology and explains why language soon won’t be the sole way of locating information.

Author Stefan Weitz explains why information retrieval has the potential to link the unique abilities of humans and machines, making it the most transformative and enduring gift of the modern age.

208 pages, Bibliomotion, November 2014, US$26.95 (hardcover)bibliomotion.com

SPAM NATION: THE INSIDE STORY OF ORGANIZED CYBERCRIME, FROM GLOBAL EPIDEMIC TO YOUR FRONT DOOR - BRIAN KREBS

Have you ever wondered who runs and funds the botnets that spam us daily with junk mail, who’s phishing and who’s hacking? Now, you can know.

In Spam Nation: The Inside Story of Organized Cybercrime, From Global Epidemic to Your Front Door, award-winning journalist and cybersecurity expert Brian Krebs exposes the cybercrime underworld that is stealing and selling personal data on the digital black market. This fast-paced and shocking exposé demonstrates just how vulnerable our personal information is – and the lengths to which thieves will go to steal it.

256 pages, Sourcebooks, November 2014, US$24.99 (hardcover)sourcebooks.com

VIRTUALLY HUMAN: THE PROMISE – AND THE PERIL – OF DIGITAL IMMORTALITY - MARTINE ROTHBLATT

According to artificial intelligence (AI) expert Martine Rothblatt, humans are on the verge of being able to maintain relationships with relatives and friends long after they have died. Sound incredible? It’s not. Thanks to mindclones – “mindware that has been set up to be a functionally equivalent replica of one’s mind” – humans are poised to become “technoimmortal.”

But is this possibility a good idea? Rothblatt confronts the ethical, legal and social implications of cyberconsciousness, arguing that AI is not a threat but an opportunity infused with dignity and respect.

368 pages, St. Martin’s Press, September 2014, US$26.99 (hardcover)us.macmillan.com

THE GEN Z EFFECT: THE SIX FORCES SHAPING THE FUTURE OF BUSINESS - TOM KOULOPOULOS AND DAN KELDSEN

According to Tom Koulopoulos and Dan Keldsen, the post-Millennial generation (also known as Gen Z) has all the tools to bridge the generational divides that influence our values, beliefs and actions and that will change the nature of business.

The Gen Z Effect: The Six Forces Shaping the Future of Business presents an insightful perspective on how Gen Z’s changing perception of self-identity will evolve our civilization. Ultimately, the authors advocate an end to labels, creating a single global community equal to the world’s biggest challenges and opportunities.

256 pages, Bibliomotion, November 2014, US$29.95 (hardcover)ubibliomotion.com

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