The Future of Everything: The Science of Prediction (Paperback)
Hurricane Katrina, the internet stock bubble, disease outbreaks -- are these predictable, preventable events, or are we merely the playthings of chaos? A compelling, irreverent, elegantly written history of our future that addresses the most important issues of our time, Apollo's Arrow examines such questions as: How well can we predict the future? Can past discoveries help us understand tomorrow's weather patterns, or tell us what our financial future will look like? Will scientists ever be able to forecast catastrophes, or will we always be at the mercy of Mother Nature, waiting for the next storm, epidemic, or economic crash to thunder through our lives? David Orrell looks back to show us how past scientists (and some charlatans) predicted the future, and where we are on the path to truly understanding what comes next. He asks how today's scientists can claim to predict future climate events when even three-day forecasts prove a serious challenge. Can we predict and control epidemics? Can we accurately foresee our financial future? Or will we only find out about tomorrow when tomorrow arrives?
David Orrell, Ph.D., received his doctorate in mathematics from the University of Oxford. His work in the prediction of complex systems has been featured in New Scientist and the Financial Times, and on BBC Radio, ABC Radio, and NPR. He lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.