To the extent that consciousness is useful, it is useful in small quantities, and for very particular kinds of tasks. It's easy to understand why you would not want to be consciously aware of the intricacies of your muscle movement, but this can be less intuitive when applied to your perceptions, thoughts, and beliefs, which are also final products of the activity of billions of nerve cells.

From the Blog

  • Schwarzenegger on Incognito
    Schwarzenegger on Incognito

    What a wonderful shot of caffeine it was to find my childhood hero lauding my book in the New York Times.

  • CNN's Next List - video profile
    CNN's Next List - video profile

    I was recently named a CNN Next List Fellow. Watch two clips from the show.

  • Why I am a Possibilian
    Why I am a Possibilian

    Our ignorance of the cosmos is too vast to commit to atheism, and yet we know too much to commit to a particular religion. A third position, agnosticism, is often an uninteresting stance in which a person simply questions whether his traditional religious story is true or not true. I call myself a possibilian. Find out why.

  • My favorite New Yorker cartoon. Ever.
    My favorite New Yorker cartoon. Ever.

    I'm a sucker for time jokes.

Newsflashes

Sum on Radiolab

Listen to David discussing Sum -- and actor Jeffrey Tambor reading stories from the book -- on WNYC's Radiolab.

Sum #2 book in UK

In September, 2009, Sum became the number 2 book in the United Kingdom on Amazon's bestseller list, only behind Dan Brown's Lost Symbol.

Guggenheim Fellowship

David has been named a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow. He will use the fellowship opportunity to pursue the genetics and neuroimaging of synesthesia.

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