Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
Author: Randall Munroe
Pubpsher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The creator of the incredibly popular webcomic xkcd presents his heavily researched answers to his fans' oddest questions, including “What if I took a swim in a spent-nuclear-fuel pool?” and “Could you build a jetpack using downward-firing machine guns?” 100,000 first printing.
What If Obama Were White, What If Romney Were Black
Author: Denny T.
What If is a small, but powerful, controversial presentation that is intended to incite profitable thought into 2012 American presidential politics by asking and answering a series of what-if political questions that lead to a better understanding of our financial mess and a simple health-care solution that could provide more jobs and reduce our national debt.
Author LaDeana Cummins hopes that What If?an illustrated rhyming bookwill provide an opportunity for many in-depth conversations with children about emotions, compassion, and empathy. Beth Ferrara has created charming illustrations of cats, dogs, whales, and skunks that, when combined with poetic thought-provoking questions, will help build the foundation of caring and understanding of others. What If? offers a whimsical approach to the ever present relationship issues that children can sometimes experience. What if broccoli were sweet Instead of ice cream? What if bees grew on trees Instead of leaves? By showing children what its like to walk in someone elses shoes, they will view things from a different perspective, enabling them to explore a broader range of feelings. What If? is a colorful, rhyming book for children of all ages, a wonderful addition to any classroom or home library.
Have you ever wondered how things could have been? We all play the "What If" game. As sports fans, we find the history of our favorite teams littered with moments like these. Ripple effects of these moments reach far and wide. Altering the past could have drastic effects on sports history, and as fans, we sometimes can't help but imagine what might have been. “What If?” takes a hypothetical glance at some of our favorite players and teams to examine how things could have turned out differently if one particular aspect of their careers had been altered – for better or for worse.
Thought experimentation has been a staple of philosophical methodology since classical antiquity, when Xenophanes of Colophon speculated that if horses had gods, they would be equine in form. Nicholas Rescher's What If? undertakes a systematic survey of the role and utility of thought experiments in philosophy. After surveying the historical issues, Rescher examines the principles involved, and explains the conditions under which thought experimentation can validly yield instructive results in philosophy. The reader gains understanding of the differences between scientific and philosophical experiments. What If? begins by examining the nature of thought experiments. It presents an overview of how thought experiments have figured in natural science and in historical studies, before moving on to examine how they function as an instrument of philosophical inquiry. After examining thought experiments from the pre-Socratics to the present day, Rescher turns from history to analysis, and examines the modes of reasoning involved in the use of speculative hypotheses in philosophical problem solving. He shows the limitations of speculative ontology, showing that thought experimentation can lead readily to paradox in a way that increasingly diminishes its usefulness. The book concludes by arguing and illustrating how and when it becomes pointless to push speculation, or thought experimentation beyond the limits of intelligibility and cogent sense. Among the principal features of Rescher's book is its elaborate analysis of the appropriate conditions for philosophical thought experimentation. Its cardinal thesis is that there indeed are limits to the appropriateness of this important methodological resource and that transgressing these limits destroys the prospect of drawing any valid lessons for the philosophical enterprise. What If? will be of interest to philosophers, students of philosophy, and theorists of logic and reasoning.
Conventional probability theory states that the odds of tails coming up when flipping a coin are fifty percent. This figure is not quite correct. Once a penny slipped from my hand and fell on the kitchen table with a single knock. Strangely, the usual noise of a coin settling on a tabletop was missing. To my amazement, the penny was standing on the kitchen table on its edge. The odds against such an event are astronomic. The penny was standing there, as if an invisible hand from another dimension held the coin steady. "Nothing happens by chance," say the spiritualists. What if such a hand is there for me to steady my life and shape my future? This book describes unbelievable events in my life that prove the existence of such a helping hand.
What if computers could generate creative ideas? Well, perhaps they can. The what-if machine emerged from a research project exploring the potential of computers to be genuinely creative and come up with fictional ideas that could be the basis of poems, stories, or even musical theatre. This notebook is about creativity. First and foremost, it is about your creativity. Using ideas generated by the what-if machine, this book prompts you to let your imagination run wild with ideas that might take on a life of their own as stories, plays, animations, computer games, or paintings.