Hiya, from the mysterious world of computing thumbnail

I’m Mat Honan, the contemporary editor in chief of MIT Technology Review. That is the first explain of the magazine I’ve had the pleasure of working on. Per chance that you just may even savor been learning Technology Review for years, love me. Or per chance here is your first explain. Both methodology, I’m mad by the different to try this magazine something you look forward to learning each time it appears to be like. I am hoping you gather pleasure from learning this explain as grand as we loved placing it collectively. 

I must start by making you a promise about Technology Review: We’re going to set aside it price your time to be taught and price your money to subscribe. We’re going to bring you impossible experiences about issues at the sting of impossibility. We’ll expose hidden truths, and protect the industries and of us we quilt to yarn. We’re going to illustrate you the strategy to savor the ways wherein science and expertise are reshaping the area we all allotment. We’re going to set aside you dream and beauty about the arriving years. We’re going to set aside you poke over your cease since you factual can’t quit learning. 

The Computing issue

This legend used to be portion of our November 2021 explain

As you possible know, every explain has its safe theme. This explain is on computing—a topic so utterly central to what we quilt it appeared principal to sort out it head on. 

When I was younger, private computers savor been something completely contemporary. They savor been vaguely mysterious—you had to know the language—and utterly absorbing. I spent limitless hours tinkering on the one in my mother’s dwelling place of job, writing easy programs, mapping out dungeons in Zork, and looking for to savor the universe internal that box. 

As of late computers are, clearly, in every single whisper—in every pocket and car, even on the partitions of our homes. And although computers, and computing, savor change into draw more ubiquitous and accessible, their roles are typically rather more mysterious now than they savor been after I was rather one in the 1980s. Nearly all aspects of novel life are now modulated by programs past our attend an eye fixed on. That isn’t any longer merely since the network or the service or the algorithm is maintained by some unseen entity. As Will Douglas Heaven notes, the very nature of how computing works has modified with the upward thrust of synthetic intelligence. We must inspire demystify issues somewhat.

This explain explores how we arrived the put we are, and the put we are going next. Margaret O’Mara’s sweeping introductory essay grounds the trajectory of computing in its better historical context. Siobhan Roberts’s exploration of the beguiling P vs. NP quiz traces the lengthy twin carriageway Sisyphean researchers savor traveled in looking for to search out a definitive resolution. Chris Turner’s review of A Biography of the Pixel begins by exploring the complicated history of “Digital Light” and builds to an unexpected, utterly delightful treatise on the triumph of Steamed Hams. (You’re factual going to hope to be taught it.) 

However history is meant to lend a hand the demonstrate. Morgan Ames delves into the hype round One Laptop per Child to inspire us collect a higher methodology in direction of ensuring that the most weak in our society receive correct equity of gather admission to. Fay Cobb Payton, Lynette Yarger, and Victor Mbarika point out how we are in a position to take into yarn constructing correct pathways into the artificial for underrepresented groups. Lakshmi Chandrasekaran’s examination of the triumph of silicon over other reputedly fallow technologies (endure in mind spintronics?) reveals how those selections might well also in the break demonstrate their price. Meanwhile, Clive Thompson brings us the legend of ASML, the Dutch firm whose innovative task is preserving Moore’s Law alive, at least for now. 

On the opposite hand it’s the lengthy flee the put issues gather uncommon and absorbing. Alán Aspuru-Guzik is combining artificial intelligence and robotics in an try and perambulate up materials discovery—with the closing fair of solving the truth is thorny considerations love local climate substitute. After which there’s Antonio Regalado’s legend on mind-computer interfaces. I frankly had to factual sit down for a brief while and ponder after I done learning it, imagining a coming expertise that brings no longer perfect the flexibility to attend an eye fixed on machines with our minds, nonetheless additionally shared agency with a artificial neural network. It’s wild stuff. 

There might be, clearly, rather more to discover internal these pages. I am hoping you additionally collect something that grabs you by the collar and makes you cease and ponder. And I am hoping to ogle you again soon. Let me know! I always must hear your feedback. That it is possible you’ll per chance reach me on electronic mail at mat.honan@technologyreview.com, or assert at me on Twitter, the put I am @mat

Till next time.

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