A Estranha Ordem das Coisas

As Origens Biologicas dos Sentimentos e da Cultura

Paperback, 344 pages

Portuguese language

Published Jan. 1, 2018 by Companhia das Letras.


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1 star (1 review)

1 edition

Verbose, Unscientific and Pointless

1 star

The central thesis is broadening the definition of homeostasis to fit one more layer of biological marvel after another, until the concept is so amorphous and generic that pretty much anything can go into the pile. Like many other pop-sci books that came before, the strategy is simple: incrementally build the one true hammer, and nail all the screws the world has to offer.

Halfway through the book, homeostasis is already completely dissociated from what it's supposed to mean when described by a proper science communicator. Armed with the confidence of a bestselling author, Damasio arrives at the ultimate conclusion: life doesn't follow algorithms and artificial intelligence is condemned to be a lower form.

I'm sorry (not really) to burst the author's coacervate, but "algorithm" and "artificial intelligence" are as vague as the concept of homeostasis crafted throughout the book. It's pointless to argue that an irresistible force is impossible …