Nicholas Thompson is an American technology journalist. He is currently the editor in chief of Wired and formerly the editor of the NewYorker.com. Thompson is a contributor for CBS News and regularly appears on CBS This Morning and CBSN.

  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers

    From Pulitzer Prize-winner Katherine Boo, a landmark work of narrative nonfiction that tells the dramatic and sometimes heartbreaking story of families striving toward a better life in one of the twenty-first century’s great, unequal cities.,In this brilliantly written, fast-paced book, based on three years of uncompromising reporting, a bewildering age of global change and inequality is made human.

  • Nonzero

    In his bestselling The Moral Animal, Robert Wright applied the principles of evolutionary biology to the study of the human mind. Now Wright attempts something even more ambitious: explaining the direction of evolution and human history???and discerning where history will lead us next.,In Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny, Wright asserts that, ever since the primordial ooze, life has followed a basic pattern. Organisms and human societies alike have grown more complex by mastering the challenges of internal cooperation. Wright’s narrative ranges from fossilized bacteria to vampire bats, from stone-age villages to the World Trade Organization, uncovering such surprises as the benefits of barbarian hordes and the useful stability of feudalism. Here is history endowed with moral significance???a way of looking at our biological and cultural evolution that suggests, refreshingly, that human morality has improved over time, and that our instinct to discover meaning may itself serve a higher purpose. Insightful, witty, profound, Nonzero offers breathtaking implications for what we believe and how we adapt to technology’s ongoing transformation of the world.

  • Strangers Drowning

    What does it mean to devote yourself wholly to helping others? In Strangers Drowning, Larissa MacFarquhar seeks out people living lives of extreme ethical commitment and tells their deeply intimate stories; their stubborn integrity and their compromises; their bravery and their recklessness; their joys and defeats and wrenching dilemmas.,A couple adopts two children in distress. But then they think: If they can change two lives, why not four? Or ten? They adopt twenty. But how do they weigh the needs of unknown children in distress against the needs of the children they already have?, ,Another couple founds a leprosy colony in the wilderness in India, living in huts with no walls, knowing that their two small children may contract leprosy or be eaten by panthers. The children survive. But what if they hadn???t? How would their parents??? risk have been judged?,A woman believes that if she spends money on herself, rather than donate it to buy life-saving medicine, then she???s responsible for the deaths that result. She lives on a fraction of her income, but wonders: when is compromise self-indulgence and when is it essential?,We honor such generosity and high ideals; but when we call people do-gooders there is skepticism in it, even hostility. Why do moral people make us uneasy? Between her stories, MacFarquhar threads a lively history of the literature, philosophy, social science, and self-help that have contributed to a deep suspicion of do-gooders in Western culture.,Through its sympathetic and beautifully vivid storytelling, Strangers Drowning confronts us with fundamental questions about what it means to be human. In a world of strangers drowning in need, how much should we help, and how much can we help? Is it right to care for strangers even at the expense of those we are closest to? Moving and provocative, Strangers Drowning challenges us to think about what we value most, and why.

  • The Survival of the Bark Canoe

    In Greenville, New Hampshire, a small town in the southern part of the state, Henri Vaillancourt makes birch-bark canoes in the same manner and with the same tools that the Indians used. The Survival of the Bark Canoe is the story of this ancient craft and of a 150-mile trip through the Maine woods in those graceful survivors of a prehistoric technology. It is a book squarely in the tradition of one written by the first tourist in these woods, Henry David Thoreau, whose The Maine Woods recounts similar journeys in similar vessel.,As McPhee describes the expedition he made with Vaillancourt, he also traces the evolution of the bark canoe, from its beginnings through the development of the huge canoes used by the fur traders of the Canadian North Woods, where the bark canoe played the key role in opening up the wilderness. He discusses as well the differing types of bark canoes, whose construction varied from tribe to tribe, according to custom and available materials. In a style as pure and as effortless as the waters of Maine and the glide of a canoe, John McPhee has written one of his most fascinating books, one in which his talents as a journalist are on brilliant display.

  • Why Buddhism is True

    From one of America???s most brilliant writers, a New York Times bestselling journey through psychology, philosophy, and lots of meditation to show how Buddhism holds the key to moral clarity and enduring happiness.,At the heart of Buddhism is a simple claim: The reason we suffer???and the reason we make other people suffer???is that we don???t see the world clearly. At the heart of Buddhist meditative practice is a radical promise: We can learn to see the world, including ourselves, more clearly and so gain a deep and morally valid happiness.,In this ???sublime??? (The New Yorker), pathbreaking book, Robert Wright shows how taking this promise seriously can change your life???how it can loosen the grip of anxiety, regret, and hatred, and how it can deepen your appreciation of beauty and of other people. He also shows why this transformation works, drawing on the latest in neuroscience and psychology, and armed with an acute understanding of human evolution.,This book is the culmination of a personal journey that began with Wright???s landmark book on evolutionary psychology, The Moral Animal, and deepened as he immersed himself in meditative practice and conversed with some of the world???s most skilled meditators. The result is a story that is ???provocative, informative and…deeply rewarding??? (The New York Times Book Review), and as entertaining as it is illuminating. Written with the wit, clarity, and grace for which Wright is famous, Why Buddhism Is True lays the foundation for a spiritual life in a secular age and shows how, in a time of technological distraction and social division, we can save ourselves from ourselves, both as individuals and as a species.