Books

How We Got to Now

Steven Johnson

From Steven Johnson, the bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From, comes How We Got to Now, the companion book to his six-part BBC One television series exploring the power and the legacy of great ideas.

How did photography bring about social reform? What connects refrigeration to Hollywood? And how did our battle against dirt help create smartphones? In this story of ingenious breakthroughs and unsung heroes, Steven Johnson explores the essential innovations that changed the world and how we live in it.

'A new Steven Johnson book is something not to be missed. The author has become the leading writer on how inventions happen' Daniel Finkelstein, The Times, Books of the Year

'Graceful and compelling ... you'll find yourself exhilarated' The New York Times Book Review

'Readable, entertaining, and a challenge to any jaded sensibility that has become inured to the everyday miracles all around us' Peter Forbes, Guardian'This nimble history of invention . . .is a many-layered delight' Nature

Mind Wide Open

Steven Johnson

From the author of Emergence and The Ghost Map, Steven Johnson's Mind Wide Open: Why You Are What You Think takes us on a journey to the frontiers of brain science and reveals exactly how we're hardwired to think and feel.

'You are part reptile, part mammal, part primate. You are a dopamine fiend. You are a walking assembly of patterns and waves, clusters of neurons firing in sync with one another...'

Experimenting with the latest technology, Stephen Johnson discovers (among other things) that everything we do - from falling in love to forming a sentence - is caused by neurons firing and chemicals swirling around our heads; that there are gadgets which can enable us to control our own brainwaves; that everyone's mind, like their fingerprint, is unique; and this can help us understand our own mental foibles - and see ourselves in a totally new way.

'As Steven Johnson explores his inner world . . . we have a new sense of what it means to be human' The New York Times

'Refreshingly personal . . . endlessly fascinating' Guardian

'Steven Johnson has an eye for the most interesting new ideas in this exploding field, and he explains them with insight and gusto' Stephen Pinker

Steven Johnson is the author of the acclaimed books Everything Bad is Good for You, The Ghost Map, Where Good Ideas Come From, Emergence and Interface Culture. His writing appeared in the Guardian, the New Yorker, Nation and Harper's, as well as the op-ed pages of The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He is a Distinguished Writer In Residence at NYU's School Of Journalism, and a Contributing Editor to Wired.

Future Perfect

Steven Johnson

From the international bestselling author Steven Johnson, Future Perfect is the story of how progress is still possible and our future really is bright

What links a heroic pilot, eighteenth-century coffee houses, the French railway system and the invention of the Internet? Steven Johnson, with his renowned flair for discovering new ideas and hidden connections, shows that the answer lies in networked thinking. Johnson argues that collaborative networks of 'peer progressives' hold the key to an incredible range of human achievements, and can transform everything from local government to drug research to arts funding and education. Looking beyond traditional politics, Future Perfect shows that a new model of change is on the rise.

'Read Future Perfect ... Mr Johnson's book will give you lots of material to brighten the outlook of your gloomy friends ... it envisions a new political movement' Wall Street Journal

'An informative, tech-savvy and provocative vision of a new and more democratic public philosophy. A breath of fresh air a breath of fresh air in an age of gridlock, cynicism and disillusionment' San Francisco Chronicle

'A buoyant and hopeful book ... Future Perfect reminds us we already have the treatment. We just need to use it' Boston Globe

'An articulate manifesto' Clive Cookson, Financial Times

Steven Johnson is the US bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From, The Invention of Air, The Ghost Map, and Everything Bad Is Good for You, and is the editor of the anthology The Innovator's Cookbook. He is the founder of a variety of influential websites - most recently, outside.in - and writes for Time, Wired, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal. He lives in Marin County, California, with his wife and three sons.

Where Good Ideas Come From

Steven Johnson

From the author of Emergence and The Ghost Map, Steven Johnson's Where Good Ideas Come From: The Seven Patterns of Innovation identifies key principles that are the driving force of creativity.

Learn how:

A slow hunch can be much more valuable than a Eureka moment
The connected 'hive mind' is smarter than the lone thinker
Where you think matters just as much as what you're thinking
The best ideas come from building on the ideas and inventions of others

From the Renaissance to satellites, medical breakthroughs to social media, Charles Darwin to Marconi, Steven Johnson shows how, by recognising where and how patterns of creativity occur, we can all discover the secrets of inspiration.

'Inspirational' - Independent

'Exhilarating ... An entirely new way of looking at almost everything' - Guardian

'A huge diversity of bright ideas' - Financial Times

'Johnson finds new and original things to say about the nature of innovation, and the different forms it can take' - Economist, Books of the Year

'An enthralling work full of counter-intuitive insights' - Daily Mail

Steven Johnson is the author of the acclaimed books Everything Bad is Good for You, Mind Wide Open, Emergence and Interface Culture. His writing appeared in the Guardian, the New Yorker, Nation and Harper's, as well as the op-ed pages of The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He is a Distinguished Writer In Residence at NYU's School Of Journalism, and a Contributing Editor to Wired.

Where Good Ideas Come From

Steven Johnson

Where do good ideas come from? And what do we need to know and do to have more of them? In Where Good Ideas Come From, Steven Johnson, one of our most innovative popular thinkers, explores the secrets of inspiration.

Steven Johnson has spent twenty years immersed in creative industries, was active at the dawn of the internet and has a unique perspective that draws on his fluency in fields ranging from neurobiology to new media. Why have cities historically been such hubs of innovation? What do the printing press and Apple have in common? And what does this have to do with the creation and evolution of life itself? Johnson presents the answers to these questions and more in his infectious, culturally omnivoracious style, using examples from thinkers in a range of disciplines - from Charles Darwin to Tim Berners-Lee - to provide the complete, exciting, and encouraging story of inspiration.

He identifies the five key principles to the genesis of great ideas, from the cultivation of hunches to the importance of connectivity and how best to make use of new technologies. Most exhilarating is his conclusion: with today's tools and environment, radical innovation is extraordinarily accessible to those who know how to cultivate it. By recognizing where and how patterns of creativity occur - whether within a school, a software platform or a social movement - he shows how we can make more of our ideas good ones.

The Ghost Map

Steven Johnson

From the bestselling author of Everything Bad is Good For You, Steven Johnson's The Ghost Map vividly recreates Victorian London to show how huge populations live together, how cities can kill - and how they can save us.

Steven Johnson is one of today's most exciting writers about popular culture, urban living and new technology. In The Ghost Map he tells the story of the terrifying cholera epidemic that engulfed London in 1854, and the two unlikely heroes - anesthetist Doctor John Snow and affable clergyman Reverend Henry Whitehead - who defeated the disease through a combination of local knowledge, scientific research and map-making.

In telling their extraordinary story, Steven Johnson also explores a whole world of ideas and connections, from urban terror to microbes, ecosystems to the Great Stink, cultural phenomena to street life.

'A wonderful book'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Mail on Sunday

'A thumping page-turner'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Daily Telegraph

'Enthralling ... vivid and gripping'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;New Statesman

'Exhilarating'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Spectator

'It is a rattling scientific mystery, but in the hands of Steven Johnson it becomes something much richer ... a vast, interconnected picture about urban and bacterial life ... it is difficult to do justice to the exuberance of Johnson's ideas'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Scotland on Sunday

Steven Johnson is the author of the acclaimed books Everything Bad is Good for You, Mind Wide Open, Where Good Ideas Come From, Emergence and Interface Culture. His writing appeared in the Guardian, the New Yorker, Nation and Harper's, as well as the op-ed pages of The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He is a Distinguished Writer In Residence at NYU's School Of Journalism, and a Contributing Editor to Wired.

Everything Bad is Good for You

Steven Johnson

We're constantly being told that popular culture is just mindless entertainment - but, as Steven Johnson shows in Everything Bad is Good for You, it's actually making us more intelligent.

Steven Johnson puts forward a radical alternative to the endless complaints about reality TV, throwaway movies and violent video games. He shows that mass culture - The Simpsons, Desperate Housewives, The Apprentice, The Sopranos, Grand Theft Auto - is actually more sophisticated and challenging than ever before.

When we focus on what our minds have to do to process its complex, multilayered messages, it becomes clear that it's not dumbing us down - but smartening us up.

'As witty as Seinfeld and as wise as ER'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;New Statesman

'Wonderfully entertaining'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Malcolm Gladwell

'A vital, lucid exploration of the contemporary mediascape'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Time Out

'A guru for Generation Xbox'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Financial Times

'A must-read'<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;Mark Thompson, former Director-General of the BBC

Steven Johnson is the bestselling author of Mind Wide Open, Where Good Ideas Come From, and Emergence: The Connected Lives Of Ants, Brains, Cities and Software, named as one of the best books of 2001 by Esquire, The Village Voice, Amazon.com, and Discover Magazine, and a finalist for the Helen Bernstein Award for Excellence in Journalism.

Biography

Steven Johnson is the US bestselling author of Where Good Ideas Come From, Future Perfect, The Invention of Air, The Ghost Map, and Everything Bad Is Good for You. He is the founder of a variety of influential websites and has written for Time, Wired, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.