Book Reviews

Book Reviews

Open Higher Education in the 21st Century

“It has been decades since the first open university was started back in 1946 in Africa. In the intervening decades, perhaps this sector has already gone through the peak of inflated expectations, the trough of disillusionment, the slope of enlightenment, and arrived at the plateau of productivity (in terms of the hype cycle). As several of the contributors to this collection have noted, COVID-19 drove many more to open higher education, so as not to lose the time under lockdown. With a burgeoning world population, the needs for higher education are greater than ever, and this broadens the ambit of such universities. In the U.S., there are some endeavors for open educational resources (OERs), in which online learning objects are shared without cost. There are some stand-alone courses and some course series on MOOC platforms. A perusal of the List of Open Universities identifies only one public open university in the U.S. (Open SUNY), and two private ones. Perhaps many of the needs in the U.S. are met with excellent community colleges and various institutes. Or perhaps Americans reach out for opportunities as provided by other open institutions of higher education… Read more >>>” – Shalin Hai-Jew, Instructional Designer/Researcher, Kansas State University. Published in C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2021 / Winter 2022).

Anomaly Detection: Techniques and Applications

“A lot of learning happens by observing what happens normally. In many cases, identifying what happens in unusual contexts may also provide insight. In the computational space, “anomaly detection” in various available data is used in various practical applications, with real implications on people’s daily lives. Anomalies refer to data deviations from a normal state of observed behaviors, beyond particular parameters. Anomalies are those data points at the far ends of the min-max range, the ends of the normal curve, the isolate datapoints in scatterplots, the unclustered datapoints in a 2D or 3D data representation. With multidimensional data, these are the datapoints that do not cluster. Saira Banu Atham, Shriram Raghunathan, Dinesh Mavaluru, and A. Syed Mustafa are co-editors of Anomaly Detection: Techniques and Applications, which highlights some of the techniques and technologies to achieve anomaly detection in various systems… Read more >>>” – Shalin Hai-Jew, Instructional Designer/Researcher, Kansas State University. Published in C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2021 / Winter 2022).

A Closer Look at Big Data Analytics

“R. Anandan, in A Closer Look at Big Data Analytics, offers some perspectives on how big data may be analyzed and perhaps kept safe. It does not read like a manual, but more of a tourist guidebook into the topic. The work mostly argues for the power of big data analytics to inform on behaviors in the world…. Read more at >>>” – Shalin Hai-Jew, Instructional Designer/Researcher, Kansas State University. Published in C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2021 / Winter 2022).

Understanding Emotional Intelligence

“John T. Lanthem’s Understanding Emotional Intelligence (2021) can be read as a way to benefit self-development and other-development, in various educational and work contexts. For adults, they are beset by various marshmallow temptations of their own. Perhaps there are smarter decision making paths than reaching for the temptation…. Read more >>>– Shalin Hai-Jew, Instructional Designer/Researcher, Kansas State University. Published in C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2021 / Winter 2022).

Social Media in the 21st Century: Perspectives, Influences and Effects on Well-Being

“Walter J. Kahn’s Social Media in the 21st Century: Perspectives, Influences and Effects on Well-Being (2021) is a volume of four research works. This book enables readers to think outside of their direct experiences with social media and engage more critically. These works help readers understand the various levers for human manipulation within and across the platforms. They should be able to better see when manipulations are afoot and perhaps how to make clearer-headed decisions about what to share, what not to share, and perhaps who they are engaging with online. Perhaps contemporary users may avoid manipulation by marketers, ‘bots, and people with malicious intent. Another angle is that they will also see the social media platforms as data hubs, worthy of research and study, with valuable insights to extract. In this space, it is helpful to think of what may be to come in terms of technological advancements and perhaps what humanity might accept or reject…Read more at >>>– Shalin Hai-Jew, Instructional Designer/Researcher, Kansas State University. Published in C2C Digital Magazine (Fall 2021 / Winter 2022).

The Quantum Biosemiosphere

“Tobias and Morrison’s rewarding book demands scintillating focus and presents a serious, if shattering treatise, a transformative ecological paradigm based in a new theoretical metaphysics which surrounds us, is speaking to us, lives within us and seeks to guide us towards a transcendent future care-taking this precious earth.” To read the full review, click here >> – Michael S. Bostick, Environmental Professional, Artist, Freelance Writer

The Quantum Biosemiosphere reflects the pure inner strength and remarkable acumen of Dr Michael Charles Tobias and Mrs. Jane Gray Morrison as they take stock of the vast natural forces and energy of ecological communities across the planet. They then subsequently engage in philosophical discourse, abetted by remarkable empirical data to support a planetary ethic. This work could not have emerged at a more critical time: the Anthropocene. By applying advanced environmental research in utterly fascinating and new scientific arenas of hypothesis and synthesis, this book invokes, conveys, and thoroughly symbolizes the ecological integrity of a wildlife civilization, never quite explored like this in the history of science. Tobias and Morrison summon forth various computational analyses of a myriad of inter-species languages and the cultural behavior of plants and animals. Likewise, the work is richly nourished with extraordinary scientific findings. The Authors, in this – one of their most provocative books – conscientiously counsel to save the planet from its permanent collapse. For every (human) member of the global community who wants to save this planet, the only world we know and call home, from the devastating irruptions of human interference, this book is a must read.” – Ugyen Tshewang, PhD, former Secretary of Environment in Bhutan, Thimphu, Bhutan

“The fast evolving world of ethology – interspecies research, communication, scientific breakthroughs regarding the extraordinary sentience, feelings, and minds of other species – has rarely, if ever, been examined through the lenses of physics, mathematics, and psychological GIS (Geographic Information Systems). In this book, layer upon layer, tier after tier, every leaf, stoma, axon, brain cell, and genotypic expression is explored in a riveting new approach to the biosphere that at once translates it into a biosemiosphere–an earth teeming with meaningful communication amongst trillions of individuals. The Quantum Biosemiosphere makes profoundly clear that human consciousness, and conscience has the responsibility as never before to safeguard a vastly philosophical biosphere; an artistic and intellectual earth pouring out its feelings, needs, recognitions, co-symbioses, and biological pacts in readable formats. Tobias and Morrison illuminate in unambiguous terms how we might yet avoid an unprecedented calamity in the face of the genius of all other species, who just happen to work together.” – Marc Bekoff, University of Colorado, author of Rewilding Our Hearts: Building Pathways of Compassion and Coexistence and A Dog’s World: Imagining the Lives of Dogs in a World Without Humans

“Michael Charles Tobias and Jane Gray Morrison have laid the groundwork for an entirely new theoretical and philosophical understanding of 21st century ecological dynamics. Their theories and entire narrative – as enshrined in The Quantum Biosemiosphere, are as revolutionary in their own eloquent, intricate way, as the early 20th century initiatives in math and physics that came to form the basis for our understanding of fundamental quantum mechanics and relativity.” – Alexander N. Chumakov Ph.D., Professor, Lomonosov Moscow State University Editor-in-Chief of “Age of Globalization” Journal Moscow, Russia

A special commentary, published by Transition-Earth, was written by Geoffrey Holland, an award-winning Writer/Producer of long and short form video. He is also currently Coordinator of Dialogues for the Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere. To read the commentary, click here >>.

Neutrino Mass: Past, Present, Future

This book provides a brief overview of approximately 40 years of experimental search for a non-zero mass of neutrinos. It presents the results of experimental studies on beta-decay, double beta-decay, neutrino oscillations in vacuum and matter, the results of attempts to measure neutrino-free double beta-decay, and experiments planned for the future. While discussing the experimental problems, the necessary theoretical background is presented, with numerous references to the literature. It is worth noting that the authors refer to the achievements of outstanding physicists whose work contributed to the emergence of the discussed field. The photo gallery of these characters brings them closer to the reader. This book is aimed primarily at physicists, but also has great educational value for PhD students.” –Doctor Wilhelm Czaplinski, University of Science and Technology, Cracow, Poland

“Imagine you have a friend whom you have known for decades and whose friendship you highly appreciate, but who adamantly refuses to reveal his name. In physics, the neutrino appears to look much like that elusive friend. Though the physicists learned of neutrino’s existence almost a century ago and despite the fact that the neutrino is one of fundamental components of the matter around us, the neutrino mass spectrum is still unknown. This puzzle is the main theme of the book. The authors present a thorough discussion of reasons why the puzzle exists and of efforts to resolve it. A seasoned researcher and a curious layman will each benefit from the material of this interesting book.” – Professor Vitaly Efimov, University of Washington, Seattle, USA

“I’ve never been a big fan of neutrinos because of typically low statistics of experiments studying their properties and difficulties with reconstruction of the processes with neutrinos in the final state. The first feature is no longer true today and the second inspired physicists to invent various beautiful methods of analysis. This book discusses one more fascinating property of neutrinos – their masses. Nonzero masses of neutrinos obviously violate the Standard model but at the same time do not contradict its most stringent tests. The book clearly describes various consequences of this mystery and experiments to understand it.” – Professor Simon Eidelman, Budker Institute of Nuclear Physics, Novosibirsk, Russia

“Mysterious behavior neutrino keeps providing us hints to reveal the secret of nature. The book gives excellent description of neutrino physics from the very appearance of neutrino towards the recent topics of expanding fields.” – Professor Toru Sato, RCNP, Osaka University

Combinatorics: First Steps

This book is a very good introduction to combinatorics as a first step to know about the subject which is a basic for such areas as theory probability and statistics, among others. For example, Basic Concepts of Set Theory (Chapter 2) and Inclusion-Exclusion Principle (Chapter 5) are good examples of analogue between operations with sets and events in probability. Also, Trees (Chapter 7) have applications in financial mathematics, as we recall, binomial trees, as one of many examples. The book contains a great deal of problems (e.g., 160 (!), and it’s only in Chapter 1) with answers, examples and exercises. I would recommend it to university instructors who teach combinatorics, to pedagogical universities and colleges students, and also to high school students and first year university students. Moreover, as a background, mathematical courses from regular school will suffice to read and study the book. It is a really the first step in combinatorics to proceed to many more steps further in students’ journey through the beauty of combinatorics. Finally, I am proud to say, that one of the authors, namely, Volodymyr Vyshenskyi, was one of my best instructors in algebra at Kyiv State University back to 70th , when I was there as a freshman student. His pedagogical and teaching skills were a legend among young university’s students. All in all, do not be afraid to make the first step in anything, including combinatorics: it will pay-off when you make more steps and affords later.” – Anatoliy Swishchuk, Professor, Applied Mathematics, Universiry of Calgary, Alberta, Canada

The book “Combinatorics: First Steps” written by two very experienced mathematicians, Mykola Perestyuk and Volodymyr Vyshenskyi, is a gem, which will satisfy the needs of all kinds of combinatorics lovers, from high school students to college professors. It has plenty of examples and solved problems that make the digesting of the material easy, though the phrase “First steps” in the title should not discourage know-it-alls from acquiring the book. It can also serve as a wonderful source of all kinds of combinatorial problems for extracurricular activities in mathematics.” – Vyacheslav Futorny, Professor, Departamento de Matematica, Universidade de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Global Challenges of Digital Transformation of Markets

This book has a strong pattern of content. The mathematical aspect is prominent, adding quality to the general features of the book. The panel of authors is outstanding.” – Alberto Celani, ABC Department, Politecnico de Milano, Milano, Italy

Croatia: Past, Present and Future Perspectives

Croatia: Past, Present and Future Perspectives raises the question of what happens when the past casts shadows instead of light, when a nation’s heritage is manufactured, distorted, and plagued by uncertainty?” To see the full review published in the Journal of Croatian Studies Volume 53, 2021, click here>>> – Mishka Góra, Launceston, Australia

“Croatia is a small country with a great cultural heritage and a turbulent past. For centuries, Croatians defended Europe from Ottoman aggression from the east while keeping an eye on the cunning Venetians to the west. Today Croatia is a first-class tourist destination. The coast is the most stunning part of Croatia, with over 1,000 islands, crystal-clear seas and beautiful beaches, and its unique medieval cities built of stone – Dubrovnik as the most famous among them. This book presents equally stunning history of Croatia, as well as the future prospects for the country as an independent state and a member of the European Union.” – Dr. Žarko Domljan, the first President of the democratically elected Croatian Parliament (1990)

“Those who know nothing or little about Croatia will learn the truth about it from this book while those who think that they know enough will be surprised to discover a wealth of important facts about the past and the future of this beautiful country.” – Vinko Sabljo, President, Croatian World Congress

“For those seeking an historically accurate and multifaceted view of Croatia, Croatia, Past Present and Future, edited by Matko Marusic, is a rewarding source. Articles by prominent scholars and historians correct past distortions of the history of Croatia. Includes an interesting perspective on the future of Croatia, and an illuminating article on the Croatian language . Highly readable, authoritative, objective.” – Marvin S. Zuckerman, Dean of Academic Affairs; Chair, Department of English, Los Angeles Valley College

“Recognizing the fact that there are very few comprehensive texts by Croatian authors about Croatia published in the English language, the authors of this newly-released book sought to present a text which would appeal to the population of English-speaking people who are interested in learning about Croatia’s historical evolution. This book is especially important to Americans and anyone who knows English, to finally pave the way for the truth about us and our Home.” READ MORE… – Professor, Mihovil Biočić, CFU Lodge 2006, Split, Coratia, Zajednicar, Croatian Fraternal Union of America, April 2021, Volume 116/No. 9

“The book, Croatia: Past, Present and Future Perspectives, is a grateful starting point for studying Croatian history, reflecting on its present and vision of its future. This interesting, readable and useful work represents a step towards the approach and promotion of Croatian history, language, culture, heritage and identity in the world.” (For the complete review in Croatian, please click here) – Dr. Marija Benić Penava, Associate Professor, University of Dubrovnik, Department of Economics and Business, Dubrovnik, Croatia