I Wonder FAQ
Here are my answers to frequently asked questions about I Wonder.

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You say that you wrote “I Wonder” for adults as well as children. Can you explain more about why?

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Guest Post: The User Illusion
An Excerpt from The User Illusion: Cutting Consciousness Down To Size
By Tor Norretranders

Tree Grass CloudsThe fact is that every single second, millions of bits of information flood in through our senses. But our consciousness processes only perhaps forty bits a second – at most. Millions and millions of bits are condensed to a conscious experience that contains practically no information at all…
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Guest Post: What Is Consciousness?
Here is an excerpt from a fascinating conversation between psychologist, Susan Blackmore and philosopher, David Chalmers, in the book Conversations On Consciousness, by Susan Blackmore:

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I think someone could know all the physical facts about the world and still not know about consciousness. So if the relationship between brain processes and conscious experience isn’t one of reduction, what is it?
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Guest Post: The History Of Homeopathy
An Excerpt From Challenging Nature, By Lee Silver

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Homeopathic medicine, or homeopathy, was the creation of a single person, Samuel Hahnemann, who graduated from a German medical school in 1779 and practiced the “healing arts” until 1843, first in Germany and then in Paris…
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Guest Post: Life’s Beginning
An Excerpt From The Selfish Gene, By Richard Dawkins 

…Chemists have tried to imitate the chemical conditions of the young earth. They have put these simple substances in a flask and supplied a source of energy such as ultraviolet light or electric sparks – artificial simulation of primordial lightning. After a few weeks of this, something interesting is usually found inside the flask…
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Guest Post: Music and Happiness
An Excerpt From The Happiness Trip, By Eduardo Punset

The most recent research has revealed that music, by acting on the central nervous system, raises levels of endorphins, the brain’s own opiates, as well as other neurotransmitters such as dopamine, acetylcholine, and oxytocin. Endorphins have been found to provide motivation and energy for life, to cause joyfulness and optimism, to decrease pain…
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I Wonder Update #1


I’m happy to announce that John Rowe has completed all of the paintings for I Wonder. I went to visit John at his studio yesterday, and it was magical to be surrounded by all of the illustrations for the book – the paintings are truly spectacular!
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Guest Post: The Future Of Intelligence
An Excerpt From On Intelligence, By Jeff Hawkins


Like a supersmart diplomat, intelligent machines may play a role in reducing conflict and human suffering. You might think intelligent machines would need emotions to foresee patterns involving human behavior, but I don’t think so…
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Guest Post: On Changing Your Mind
An Excerpt From The Blank Slate, By Steven Pinker

When law enforcement vanishes, all manner of violence breaks out; looting, settling old scores, ethnic cleansing, and petty warfare among gangs, warlords, and mafias. This was obvious in the remnants of Yugoslavia, the Soviet Union, and parts of Africa in the 1990′s, but can also happen in countries with a long tradition of civility…
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Guest Post: The Limits Of Our Imagination
An Excerpt From Many Worlds In One, By Alexander Vilenkin


A striking feature of the new worldview is the existence of multiple “other worlds” beyond our observable region. Some of them are rather uncontroversial. Very few people, for example, would question the reality of other O-regions…
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Guest Post: Earth’s Beginning
An Excerpt From The Canon, By Natalie Angier

…Earth’s crust had cooled down, and the swirling molten iron at its core had begun generating the magnetic fields that help deflect the searing solar wind. So shielded, the vast clouds of volcanic reflux were not peeled off into space, but instead hovered above the ground, gathering and glowering portentously, as storm clouds do…
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Fundamental Science And The Big Machine
My Interview With Lisa Randall

 

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In your new book, Knocking On Heaven’s Door, you have interwoven two projects: describing the awe-inspiring details of the Large Hadron Collider, while simultaneously leading a conversation about the importance of science. Why did you decide to write about these two topics together?

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