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In its billionndashyear history life on Earth has been almost erased at least half a dozen times shattered by asteroid impacts entombed in ice smothered by methane and torn apart by unfathomably powerful megavolcanoes And we know that another global disaster is eventually headed our way Can we survive it HowAs a species Homo sapiens is at a crossroads Study of our planetrsquos turbulent past suggests that we are overdue for a catastrophic disaster whether caused by nature or by human interferenceItrsquos a frightening prospect as each of the Earthrsquos past major disastersmdashfrom meteor strikes to bombardment by cosmic radiationmdashresulted in a mass extinction where more than percent of the planetrsquos species died out But in Scatter Adapt and Remember Annalee Newitz science journalist and editor of the science Web site iocom explains that although global disaster is all but inevitable our chances of long-term species survival are better than ever Life on Earth has come close to annihilationmdashhumans have more than once narrowly avoided extinction just during the last million yearsmdashbut every single time a few creatures survived evolving to adapt to the harshest of conditions This brilliantly speculative work of popular science focuses on humanityrsquos long history of dodging the bullet as well as on new threats that we may face in years to come Most important it explores how scientific breakthroughs today will help us avoid disasters tomorrow From simulating tsunamis to studying central Turkeyrsquos ancient underground cities from cultivating cyanobacteria for ldquoliving citiesrdquo to designing space elevators to make space colonies cost-effective from using math to stop pandemics to studying the remarkable survival strategies of gray whales scientists and researchers the world over are discovering the keys to long-term resilience and learning how humans can choose life over death Newitzrsquos remarkable and fascinating journey through the science of mass extinctions is a powerful argument about human ingenuity and our ability to change In a world populated by doomsday preppers and media commentators obsessively forecasting our demise Scatter Adapt and Remember is a compelling voice of hope It leads us away from apocalyptic thinking into a future where we live to build a better worldmdashon this planet and perhaps on others Readers of this book will be equipped scientifically intellectually and emotionally to face whatever the future holds.

About the Author

Annalee Newitz

Annalee Newitz writes about the intersection of science, technology and culture. Currently she is the tech culture editor at Ars Technica, and previously she was the founding editor of io9, and the editor-in-chief of Gizmodo. She has also written for publications including Wired, Popular Science, the New Yorker, the Atlantic, Slate, Washington Post, Smithsonian Magazine, and more. She has published short stories in Lightspeed, Shimmer, Apex, and Technology Review's Twelve Tomorrows.

She was the recipient of a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship at MIT, worked as a policy analyst at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and has a Ph.D. in English and American Studies from UC Berkeley.

Learn more at AnnaleeNewitz.com or follow her on Twitter @annaleen

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