The Book of Why: The New Science of Cause and Effect

Front Cover
Penguin Books Limited, May 15, 2018 - Philosophy - 432 pages

The hugely influential book on how the understanding of causality revolutionized science and the world, by the pioneer of artificial intelligence

'Wonderful ... illuminating and fun to read' Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize-winner and author of Thinking, Fast and Slow

'Correlation does not imply causation.' For decades, this mantra was invoked by scientists in order to avoid taking positions as to whether one thing caused another, such as smoking and cancer, or carbon dioxide and global warming. But today, that taboo is dead. The causal revolution, sparked by world-renowned computer scientist Judea Pearl and his colleagues, has cut through a century of confusion and placed cause and effect on a firm scientific basis. Now, Pearl and science journalist Dana Mackenzie explain causal thinking to general readers for the first time, showing how it allows us to explore the world that is and the worlds that could have been. It is the essence of human and artificial intelligence. And just as Pearl's discoveries have enabled machines to think better, The Book of Why explains how we too can think better.

'Pearl's accomplishments over the last 30 years have provided the theoretical basis for progress in artificial intelligence and have redefined the term "thinking machine"' Vint Cerf

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Skybalon - LibraryThing

So Dr. Pearl won the Turing Prize, which I think means he convinced a computer that he's human or something. The first part of the book is fascinating and informative. The author was involved directly ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (2018)

Judea Pearl (Author)
Judea Pearl is a world-renowned Israeli-American computer scientist and philosopher, known for his world-leading work in AI and the development of Bayesian networks, as well as his theory of causal and counterfactual inference. In 2011, he won the most prestigious award in computer science, the Alan Turing Award. He has also received the Rumelhart Prize (Cognitive Science Society), the Benjamin Franklin Medal (Franklin Institute) and the Lakatos Award (London School of Economics), and he is the founder and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation.
Dana Mackenzie, a Ph.D. mathematician turned science writer, has written for such magazines as Science, New Scientist, and Discover.

Bibliographic information