New PDF release: Arguments that Count: Physics, Computing, and Missile

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By Rebecca Slayton

In a swiftly altering global, we depend upon specialists to evaluate the promise and dangers of latest know-how. yet how do those specialists make feel of a hugely doubtful destiny? In Arguments that Count, Rebecca Slayton deals a major new standpoint. Drawing on new old files and interviews in addition to views in technological know-how and expertise reports, she presents an unique account of the way scientists got here to phrases with the remarkable probability of nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). She compares how diversified expert groups -- physicists and laptop scientists -- built arguments concerning the hazards of missile safeguard, and the way those arguments replaced over the years. Slayton exhibits that our realizing of technological dangers is formed through disciplinary repertoires -- the codified wisdom and mathematical ideas that specialists use to border new demanding situations. And, considerably, a brand new repertoire can carry long-neglected hazards into transparent view.In the Fifties, scientists well-known that high-speed pcs will be had to deal with the exceptional pace of ICBMs. however the nation's elite technological know-how advisors had no strategy to study the dangers of pcs so used physics to evaluate what they can: radar and missile functionality. merely many years later, after developing computing as a technological know-how, have been advisors capable of research authoritatively the dangers linked to advanced software program -- so much particularly, the chance of a catastrophic failure. As we proceed to confront new threats, together with that of cyber assault, Slayton deals precious perception into how other forms of craftsmanship can restrict or extend our capability to handle novel technological risks.

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Arguments that Count: Physics, Computing, and Missile Defense, 1949-2012 (Inside Technology) by Rebecca Slayton

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