Placing Outer Space

Author: Lisa Messeri
ISBN: 9780822361879
Size: 30.55 MB
Format: PDF
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Introduction from outer space to outer place -- Narrating Mars in Utah's desert -- Mapping Mars in Silicon Valley -- Visualizing alien worlds -- Inhabiting other Earths -- Conclusion : navigating the infinite cosmos

Alien Ocean

Author: Stefan Helmreich
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520250621
Size: 80.31 MB
Format: PDF
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"Alien Ocean immerses readers in worlds being newly explored by marine biologists: the deep sea, the microscopic realm, and oceans beyond national boundaries. Working alongside scientists on ships at sea, in coastal research labs, and at undersea volcanoes, Stefan Helmreich charts how revolutions in genomics, bioinformatics, and remote sensing have pressed marine bioligists to view the sea as animated by its smallest inhabitants: marine microbes. Thriving in astonishingly extreme conditions, such microbes have become key figures in scientific and public debates about the origin of life, climate change, biotechnology, and even the possibility of life on other worlds."--Cover.

Inventing The American Astronaut

Author: Matthew H. Hersch
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 1137025298
Size: 62.65 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Who were the men who led America's first expeditions into space? Soldiers? Daredevils? The public sometimes imagined them that way: heroic military men and hot-shot pilots without the capacity for doubt, fear, or worry. However, early astronauts were hard-working and determined professionals - 'organization men' - who were calm, calculating, and highly attuned to the politics and celebrity of the Space Race. Many would have been at home in corporate America - and until the first rockets carried humans into space, some seemed to be headed there. Instead, they strapped themselves to missiles and blasted skyward, returning with a smile and an inspiring word for the press. From the early days of Project Mercury to the last moon landing, this lively history demystifies the American astronaut while revealing the warring personalities, raw ambition, and complex motives of the men who were the public face of the space program.

A Final Story

Author: Nasser Zakariya
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022647612X
Size: 24.77 MB
Format: PDF
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Towards a Final Story is the first history of the modern scientific epic. These epic stories pull together our knowledge of the universe, uniting material and biological origins, from beginning to end. The authors of these epics--among them Carl Sagan, E.O. Wilson, and Steven Weinberg--saw their task as providing an integrated schema that would not only bring together but also go beyond the particular scientific results and disciplines available as they wrote their histories. Nasser Zakariya traces how such epic stories could achieve what they claimed, how they inhabit culture and politics, and how they arrived at the present moment from a period in the previous century when inquiries into ultimate origins were regarded by many as unscientific and unanswerable. These prominent, popular historical narratives of science are important forms of knowledge in their own right. They expose what science means in the wider culture and at the same time focus attention on the near paradoxical nature of a universal history narrated by humanity for humanity.

Seeing Like A Rover

Author: Janet Vertesi
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022615596X
Size: 69.49 MB
Format: PDF
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Seeing Like a Rover brings the Mars Exploration Rover mission to vivid life through the author's years of immersion with the team during routine operations on Mars. In the book, Janet Vertesi explores the social and technical achievements of making knowledge about Mars based on iterative digital representations of its surface. We see how scientists on the Rover mission both perform the digital transformations that bring new features in their images to light, enabling discovery, as well as how they collectively interpret images to determine where the Rovers are located on Mars and what they should do next. Using her close study of digital imaging, which exhibits a sensitivity to the social context of scientific work, Vertesi discusses how representation on the mission is never about finding a single way of truthfully representing Mars. Representation is instead, she argues, a question of using image processing techniques strategically to reveal and conceal different features of the planet's surface, and of bringing these multiple representations together to make both knowledge and collective decisions about exploration on the Red Planet. Seeing Like a Rover speaks to many themes that are familiar to historians, sociologists, and philosophers of science. Issues such as trust among knowledge-making teams, the different epistemic status and practices of the lab and the field, and the heritage of visual languages in an emerging discipline are just as relevant in other periods and places. Moreover, by revealing how representational practices craft social visions, Vertesi develops a framework that can be applied to scientific imaging across a variety of time periods and scientific contexts.

A Single Sky

Author: David P. D. Munns
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262304279
Size: 79.90 MB
Format: PDF, Mobi
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For more than three thousand years, the science of astronomy depended on visible light. In just the last sixty years, radio technology has fundamentally altered how astronomers see the universe. Combining the wartime innovation of radar and the established standards of traditional optical telescopes, the "radio telescope" offered humanity a new vision of the universe. In A Single Sky, the historian David Munns explains how the idea of the radio telescope emerged from a new scientific community uniting the power of radio with the international aspirations of the discipline of astronomy. The radio astronomers challenged Cold War era rivalries by forging a united scientific community looking at a single sky.Munns tells the interconnecting stories of Australian, British, Dutch, and American radio astronomers, all seeking to learn how to see the universe by means of radio. Jointly, this international array of radio astronomers built a new "community" style of science opposing the "glamour" of nuclear physics. A Single Sky describes a communitarian style of science, a culture of interdisciplinary and international integration and cooperation, and counters the notion that recent science has been driven by competition. Collaboration, or what a prominent radio astronomer called "a blending of radio invention and astronomical insight," produced a science as revolutionary as Galileo's first observations with a telescope. Working together, the community of radio astronomers revealed the structure of the galaxy.

The Ethics Of Space Exploration

Author: James S.J. Schwartz
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 331939827X
Size: 33.70 MB
Format: PDF
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This book aims to contribute significantly to the understanding of issues of value (including the ultimate value of space-related activities) which repeatedly emerge in interdisciplinary discussions on space and society. Although a recurring feature of discussions about space in the humanities, the treatment of value questions has tended to be patchy, of uneven quality and even, on occasion, idiosyncratic rather than drawing upon a close familiarity with state-of-the-art ethical theory. One of the volume's aims is to promote a more robust and theoretically informed approach to the ethical dimension of discussions on space and society. While the contributions are written in a manner which is accessible across disciplines, the book still withstands scrutiny by those whose work is primarily on ethics. At the same time it allows academics across a range of disciplines an insight into current approaches toward how the work of ethics gets done. The issues of value raised could be used to inform debates about regulation, space law and protocols for microbial discovery as well as longer-range policy debates about funding.

Rendering Life Molecular

Author: Natasha Myers
ISBN: 9780822358664
Size: 67.90 MB
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Natasha Myers shows in this ethnography how scientists who build three-dimensional models of proteins use their senses and bodies to create, represent, and evaluate otherwise imperceptible molecules. These modelers often consider matter to be made up of living, moving, and sometimes breathing entities, and Myers' study of them rethinks the objectivity of science.

How Climate Change Comes To Matter

Author: Candis Callison
Publisher: Duke University Press Books
ISBN: 9780822357711
Size: 55.14 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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During the past decade, skepticism about climate change has frustrated those seeking to engage broad publics and motivate them to take action on the issue. In this innovative ethnography, Candis Callison examines the initiatives of social and professional groups as they encourage diverse American publics to care about climate change. She explores the efforts of science journalists, scientists who have become expert voices for and about climate change, American evangelicals, Indigenous leaders, and advocates for corporate social responsibility. The disparate efforts of these groups illuminate the challenge of maintaining fidelity to scientific facts while transforming them into ethical and moral calls to action. Callison investigates the different vernaculars through which we understand and articulate our worlds, as well as the nuanced and pluralistic understandings of climate change evident in different forms of advocacy. As she demonstrates, climate change offers an opportunity to look deeply at how issues and problems that begin in a scientific context come to matter to wide publics, and to rethink emerging interactions among different kinds of knowledge and experience, evolving media landscapes, and claims to authority and expertise.

Masters Of Uncertainty

Author: Phaedra Daipha
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022629868X
Size: 13.40 MB
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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"In Masters of Uncertainity, Phaedra Daipha offers a new framework for understanding decision-making practice after spending years immersed in a northeastern office of the National Weather Service. Arguing that forecasters have made a virtue of the unpredictability of the weather, Daipha shows how they enlist an onmivorous appetite for information and improvisational collage techniques to create a locally meaningful forecast on their computer screens. This richly detailed and lucidly written book advances a theory of decision making that foregrounds the pragmatic and situated nature of expert cognition and casts new light on how we make decisions in the digital age"--Page {4] of cover.