The Simpsons, Desperate Housewives, The Apprentice, The Sopranos, Grand Theft Auto: we're constantly being told that popular culture is just mindless entertainment. But, as Steven Johnson shows, it's actually making us more intelligent. Everything Bad is Good for You, one of the most talked about books of the year, puts forward a radical alternative to the endless complaints about reality TV, throwaway and violent video games. He shows that mass culture is actually more sophisticated and challenging than ever before. When we focus on what our minds have to do to process its complex, multilayered messages, is become clear that it's not dumbing is down -but smartening us up.