Regular price: $24.50

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
Select or Add a new payment method

Buy Now with 1 Credit

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Buy Now for $24.50

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Add to Library for $0.00

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of How We Got to Now and Where Good Ideas Come From, a look at the world-changing innovations we made while keeping ourselves entertained.
This history of popular entertainment takes a long-zoom approach, contending that the pursuit of novelty and wonder is a powerful driver of world-shaping technological change. Steven Johnson argues that throughout history, the cutting edge of innovation has lain wherever people have been working the hardest to keep themselves and others amused.
Johnson's storytelling is just as delightful as the inventions he describes, full of surprising stops along the journey, from simple concepts to complex modern systems. He introduces us to the colorful innovators of leisure: the explorers, proprietors, showmen, and artists who changed the trajectory of history with their luxurious wares, exotic meals, taverns, gambling tables, and magic shows.
Johnson compellingly argues that observers of technological and social trends should be looking for clues in novel amusements. You'll find the future wherever people are having the most fun.
©2016 Steven Johnson (P)2016 Penguin Audio
Show More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By T. Leach on 02-09-17

It will delight you

Just as the topic of this book, this book will delight you as it did me in it's novelty. Worth the listen for the very serious who study the history of innovation. Like myself I'm sure it will cause you to look at play differently.

Read More Hide me

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Blair L. Murray on 01-09-17

Great read, great perspective of how & why we got to where we are.

A great perspective on the drivers in the evolution of the human race since mankind progressed beyond survival. I particularly enjoyed the analysis of the computer, and its development. As a physicist and mathematician, I particularly appreciated the acknowledgement of some of the real pioneers in the field.

Read More Hide me

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

See all Reviews