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I, Robot

(Book #1 in the Foundation Universe Series)

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. Here are stories of robots gone mad, of mind-read robots, and robots with a sense of humor. Of robot politicians, and robots who secretly run the world--all told with the dramatic blend of science...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Incredible science fiction

Fantastic novel, or collection of stories as it were. I read this after seeing the movie and was surprised to find something completely different, and much better. I hope the laws of robotics stick around as the world becomes more and more automated.

Brilliant stories about man and robot

Isaac Asimov, the grand master of modern science fiction, wrote this classic collection of stories as the first in his Robot novel series. It deals with the relationships between human and robot. As one of Asimov's earliest novels, it introduced the Three Laws of Robotics that have set the standard for the use of robots in science fiction. In fact, Asimov was the acknowledged creator of the term "robotics." The stories are tied together via the reminiscences of Dr. Susan Calvin, a robopsychologist for U. S. Robot and Mechanical Men, the corporation that invented and manufactured intelligent robots and computing machines. She reflects upon the evolution of these robots and discusses how little humanity really understands about the artificial intelligence it has created. Each story illuminates a problem encountered when a robot interprets the three fundamental Laws and something goes awry. One robot questions the reason for his existence. Another feels a necessity to lie. Yet another has an ego problem. The later stories introduce the reader to the Machines, powerful computing robots without the typical humanoid personalities of the working robots, that control the economic and industrial processes of the world and that stand between mankind and destruction. These stories introduce some fascinating and sometimes unsettling ideas: where does one draw the fine line between intelligent robot and human? Can man and robot form a balanced relationship? Can a robot's creator reliably predict its behavior based upon its programming? Can logic alone be used to determine what is best for humanity? "I, Robot" was published in 1950 and includes stories written in the 1940's, when general-purpose electronic digital computers were still in their infancy. I was struck by what a visionary Asimov was. He had captured the mechanics of contemporary software development through these stories about the manufacture of the intelligent robot, whose positronic brain contained complex programming that inevitably had bugs that needed troubleshooting. Anyone who has ever written a computer program or has fallen victim to software bugs will get an eerie feeling of deja vu while reading these stories. Asimov's writing style might not be the most polished in science fiction and his characterizations might be a bit wooden, but the concepts presented here will blow you away. This is required reading for any fan of science fiction. Eileen Rieback

The TRUE master of sci-fi

Isaac Asimov was an absolutely brillaint man. And that shows in this amazing compilation of short stories dealing with his most famous creation-the Robot. Not many know that Asimov was actually the first to coin the term "robot" which is now used in common language. I, Robot introduces us to a saga of epic preportions (which spans an AMAZING 14 books!). In the future, the robot has been created. However, these robots must live by three laws.1. A Robot may not harm a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.2. A robot must obey a human beings orders, if the order does not conflict with the first law.3. A robot must protect its own exhistence unless it conflicts with the first two laws.All robots must follow these laws. Or do they? In this particular compilation, you will read about a robot that does its best to return to its owner, robots that dance on mars, a robot that can read minds, a politician that is accused of being a robot himself, and many more fantastic tales. By this book and it will give you non-stop reading pleasure. And be sure to by the next book in the saga, The Caves of Steel. Which I have reviewed on its page.This book gets my highest praise available: It is put into the class of Star Wars, Star Trek, 2001, and Ender's Game.

The classic first short stories in the robot series.

This is a collection of nine classic short stories about robots, each of which appeared previously in a pulp SF magazine. The stories contain Asimov's famous three "laws" of robotics as well as the positronic brain (consisting of a platinum/iridium sponge), now quite familiar with "Star Trek" fans. All of these have been great influences in both science and science fiction: 1) A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm; 2) A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law; and 3) A robot must protect its own existence, as long as such protection does not conflict with the First and Second Laws. It should also be noted that Asimov coined the word "robotics" in these stories, a term very common today. I really enjoyed these when I first read them as a teenager (my father had introduced me to Asimov's works). And, now rereading them many years later, I can understand why I enjoyed them. They are straight-forward science fiction in which a problem is presented and a solution posed. The first story, "Robbie," first appeared in 1940 (when Asimov 20 years old) in a slightly different form as "Strange Playfellow." Robbie is a companion robot for a child and the child's mother is apprehensive in allowing her daughter to play with it. "Runaround" (1942) is a story concerning a problem encountered by two trouble-shooters on a mining operation on the surface of Mercury. A robot has been given orders to retrieve some ore yet keeps walking in circles, to the detriment of the two human workers. They come to the conclusion that the problem lies with the three Laws and they have to find a solution. (This type of story [that is, of a problem presented needing a solution] becomes a common format for Asimov's science fiction and mystery stories.) In "Reason" (1941) the two trouble-shooters of the previous story are still on Mercury and have to reason with a robot who has been designed to take over the mining operation and energy conversion plant on Mercury. The robot has come to a conclusion that humans did not construct him and that his role is to serve the "Master" (the conversion apparatus). In "Catch That Rabbit" (1944), the two trouble shooters are on an asteroid attempting to train a robot that has control over six subsidiary robots. For some unknown reason, the robot ceases to function properly if no human is watching. "Liar!" (1941) is a story about a robot, still subject to the Three Laws, that can read minds. In "Little Lost Robot" (1947) a robot, which has had its first law modified, has hidden itself among sixty-two other robots and it has to be found. In "Escape!" (1945), a robot has to design an interstellar ship that may be hazardous to humans; yet, design it without violating the first law. "Evidence" (1946) is a story concerned with the problem of identifying a possible humaniform robot hiding itse

I, Robot Mentions in Our Blog

I, Robot in Who Wrote That? Why Authors Use Pen Names
Who Wrote That? Why Authors Use Pen Names
Published by Bianca Smith • March 05, 2018
Who really wrote the book you're reading?
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