A Crowd of One

A Crowd of One : The Future of Individual Identity

3.33 (33 ratings by Goodreads)

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This fresh and provocative perspective on how technology influences business and society presents a vision for a new scientific understanding of human nature and identity. John Clippinger - a leading authority on technology's impact on society - takes us through the historical origins of identity and the way it is influencing - and being influenced by - today's world. He examines the religious underpinnings of many people's identities, and explores the competing theories of human nature developed by philosophers across the ages. Applying principles from evolutionary biology he shows why and how we evolved some of our most unique capacities: trust, empathy, retribution, honour, virtue, leadership, reciprocity and collaboration. Drawing on modern scientific studies, he debunks some of our strongest-held beliefs about individualism, rationality, self-interest and moral absolutism. He challenges thinkers on the Left and Right and proposes a new theory of leadership, social virtue and cooperation derived from evolutionary biology and neuroscience.
Understanding what science tells us about who we are can help us better navigate a world that is continuously transforming itself in unprecedented ways. Clippinger explains how new conceptions of identity and human nature can help us to understand the cultures from which terrorism is likely to spring and prevent it. He looks at how fears over big-brother surveillance in our digital world are justified, and offers an alternative that is more secure, with ways to express, manage and protect one's digital identities. He walks us through the "big bang" in next-generation online commerce, and explains how it may usher in a new era of capitalism that harnesses the powers of the "invisible hand" to direct resources in an economically efficient and ecologically responsible way. His conclusions will have profound implications for everything from social-networking sites like MySpace and virtual worlds like Second Life to the Open Source movement to the military operations going on in the Middle East and Africa.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 157.5 x 236.2 x 22.9mm | 476.28g
  • PublicAffairs,U.S.
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1586483676
  • 9781586483678
  • 1,226,214

About John Henry Clippinger

John Henry Clippinger is currently a Fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at the Harvard Law School, where he is engaged in research on open identity and digital institutions. He has also worked for the US Department of Defense on issues of network centric organisations and global security, as well as for many other branches of government. He is a serial entrepreneur and the author of several books and articles on artificial intelligence, language, business and self-organizing networks. He lives in New Hampshire, USA.
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Rating details

33 ratings
3.33 out of 5 stars
5 15% (5)
4 27% (9)
3 39% (13)
2 12% (4)
1 6% (2)
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