Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age

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Penguin Books Limited, Jul 1, 2010 - Social Science - 256 pages
34 Reviews

For decades, technology encouraged us to squander our time and as passive consumers. Today, tech has finally caught up with human potential. In Cognitive Surplus, Clay Shirky examines the changes we will all enjoy as our untapped resources of talent and good will are put to use at last.

Since the postwar boom, we've had a surfeit of intellect, energy, and time - a "cognitive surplus." Shirky argues persuasively that this cognitive surplus - rather than being some strange new departure from normal behavior - actually returns our society to forms of collaboration that were natural to us up to and through the early 20th Century. He also charts the vast effects that our cognitive surplus - aided by new technologies - will have on 21st Century society, and how we can best exploit those effects, and how the choices we make are not only economically motivated but driven by the desire for autonomy, competence, and community.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ariahfine - LibraryThing

Cognitive Surplus is Shirky's second book and takes a more academic/intellectual edge then his last one. They both explore this basic idea of "Cognitive Surplus" that massive amount of mental resource ... Read full review

Review: Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age

User Review  - Elizabeth Licata - Goodreads

I liked this book. It was well written, clear and interesting. I don't have much to criticize in this particular piece, so below is my summary of the book's content. Free time is a relatively new ... Read full review

About the author (2010)

Clay Shirky teaches at the Interactive Telecommunications Program at NYU, where he researches the interrelated effects of our social and technological networks. He has consulted with a variety ofgroups working on network design, including Nokia, the BBC, Newscorp,Microsoft, BP, Global Business Network, the Library of Congress, the US Navy, the Libyan government, and Lego. His writings have appearedin the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Times of London, Harvard Business Review, Business 2.0, and Wired.

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