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Adventures of a Computational Explorer

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  12 ratings  ·  12 reviews
In this lively book of essays, Stephen Wolfram takes the reader along on some of his most surprising and engaging intellectual adventures in science, technology, artificial intelligence and language design.
Hardcover, 421 pages
Expected publication: October 15th 2019 by Wolfram Media
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4.50  · 
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Manuel Antão
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.



Tortoiseshell Ray-Bans: "Adventures of a Computational Explorer" by Stephen Wolfram



“’You work hard...but what do you do for fun?’ people will ask me. Well, the fact is that I’ve tried to set up my life so that the things I work on are things I find fun. [... ] Sometimes I work on things that just come up, and that for one reason or another I find interesting and fun. [...] It [ the paradigm for thinking] all centers around the idea of
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Manny
Some people - I think of J.R.R. Tolkien, Garry Kasparov and Simone de Beauvoir - just figure out at once what they want to do and then spend the rest of their lives doing it. Stephen Wolfram is one of these lucky few. By the age of ten, he'd got it worked out. He was interested in everything, and he was going to use computers to help him satisfy his curiosity. He read books on physics and mathematics, acquired software skills, and found that algebraic manipulation packages could enhance his prec ...more
Bradley
Sep 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have a TON to say about Stephen Wolfram, but for the sake of reviewing, I'll highlight. :)

I'm a fanboy. I mean, back in the day when I first saw Wolfram Alpha get released, I practically pooped myself. An all-round science tool that aimed to combine every known function in the world in one easy search bar that you can use real language with? I downloaded the hell out of it and squeed with joy that there were people like this in the world that would make things like this.

Everything that can be
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David Wineberg
Jul 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
The basic message of both Stephen Wolfram’s new book and his life is that somehow, everything can be reduced to computation. This levels the playing field, gives researchers a clear path to follow, and in very many ways, is proving not only true, but advantageous. Adventures of a Computational Explorer is the Stephen Wolfram story, as seen through his work and discoveries. Fortunately, he loves to share.

For example, his knowledge engine, Wolfram Alpha’s “goal is to take as much knowledge about
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Jacqui Huntley
Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
First, I'm afraid that the graphics on my kindle version were awful and spoilt some of the essays - said graphics were bizarrely shaped, over-wrote the text, had illegible text/legends and mixed up colours compared with what the text implied. Sadly the Cambridge North station design was one of these that suffered. "Data Science of the Facebook World" could have been fascinating if it weren't for those screwed-up graphics. The book is an autobiography and we certainly have his point of view such ...more
Eric
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This collection of essays (or blog posts?) was delightful to read. Most of them had at least one fascinating bit, and none of them were long enough to get boring. Wolfram seems like a moderate to pathological narcissist, but overall that didn’t get in the way too much. There was quite a bit of redundancy throughout the book, but rather than annoy, it served to strengthen the ideas in my head. In the eARC copy I received from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review, the image ...more
Eric
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This collection of essays (or blog posts?) was delightful to read. Most of them had at least one fascinating bit, and none of them were long enough to get boring. Wolfram seems like a moderate to pathological narcissist, but overall that didn’t get in the way too much. There was quite a bit of redundancy throughout the book, but rather than annoy, it served to strengthen the ideas in my head. In the eARC copy I received from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review, the image ...more
Annarella
Jul 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an interesting collection of essay and thoughts about life and work written by a computer genius like Stephen Wolfram.
I liked the style of writing and it gave me food for thought.
Highly recommended!
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
Isabella
Aug 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Adventures of a Computational Explorer is a delightful collection of essays on the life and work of Stephen Worlfram. Particularly interesting is the essay on how he contributed as a consultant to the movie Arrival.
Anett Kovacs
Jul 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Adventures of a Computational Explorer by Stephen Wolfram is an immensely interesting collection of essays about the life and work of a fascinating person. Highly recommendable!
Elbrackeen Brackeen
Sep 11, 2019 marked it as to-read
pw 9/2/19
Kirsten never has enough time
Hoo boy, a lot of this went over my head completely. But the Arrival stuff was very interesting! lol
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Stephen Wolfram's parents were Jewish refugees who emigrated from Germany to England in the 1930s. Wolfram's father Hugo was a textile manufacturer and novelist (Into a Neutral Country) and his mother Sybil was a professor of philosophy at the University of Oxford. He has a younger brother, Conrad. Wolfram is married to a mathematician and has four children.

He was educated at Eton College, but cla
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