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World Brain

World Brain

by H. G. Wells
Paperback
Publication Date: 03/08/2021
  $38.75
In 1937, H. G. Wells proposed a predigital, freely available World Encyclopedia to represent a civilization-saving World Brain.

In a series of talks and essays in 1937, H. G. Wells proselytized for what he called a "World Brain," as manifested in a World Encyclopedia--a repository of scientifically established knowledge--that would spread enlightenment around the world and lead to world peace. Wells, known to readers today as the author of The War of the Worlds and other science fiction classics, was imagining something like a predigital Wikipedia. The World Encyclopedia would provide a summary of verified reality (in about forty volumes); it would be widely available, free of copyright, and utilize the latest technology.

Of course, as Bruce Sterling points out in the foreword to this edition of Wells's work, the World Brain didn't happen; the internet did. And yet, Wells anticipated aspects of the internet, envisioning the World Brain as a technical system of networked knowledge (in Sterling's words, a "hypothetical super-gadget"). Wells's optimism about the power of information might strike readers today as naïvely utopian, but possibly also inspirational.
ISBN:
9780262542562
9780262542562
Category:
Literary essays
Format:
Paperback
Publication Date:
03-08-2021
Language:
English
Publisher:
MIT Press
Country of origin:
United States
Dimensions (mm):
203.2x133.35mm
Weight:
0.37kg
H. G. Wells

Herbert George "H. G." Wells (September 21, 1866-August 13, 1946) was an English author, best known for his work in the "speculative fiction" genre. He was also a prolific writer in many other genres, including contemporary novels, history, politics, and social commentary.

Wells is sometimes called "The Father of Science Fiction," along with Jules Verne. The War of the Worlds was written in the age of British colonialism, and Wells came up with the idea for the story while he and his brother were imagining what might happen if someone came to colonize England the way England had other countries.

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