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Hardcover Rapture for the Geeks: When AI Outsmarts IQ Book

ISBN: 0307405257

ISBN13: 9780307405258

Rapture for the Geeks: When AI Outsmarts IQ

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Format: Hardcover

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Book Overview

"Nimble and entertaining . . . A fascinating historical review of our longtime obsession with machines." -David Takami, Seattle Times In Rapture for the Geeks , Richard Dooling looks at what some of... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

To a niche audience, this book is awesome!

Reading some of the other customer reviews on here kind of bums me out. It seems like people are judging this book based on their own expectations rather than for what it is: an entertaining tour of the most important ideas about artificial intelligence. I loved this book. But I realize that I am a quirky guy who happens to be fascinated by theoretical science, and who is already fairly well-read about the singularity concept. For me, the book was an entertaining opinion-piece in which Dooling takes the reader on a tour of singularity's main ideas, while making sure to keep the reader entertained the whole way. He touches all the bases from Moore's Law to basic programming concepts (and hits on most of my favorite topics including consciousness, free will, and memes), and he gives the reader a glimpse at the contributions and opinions of all the key personalities from Ray Kurzweil to Bill Joy. Rather than being in depth and technical, the book presents the ideas in an everyman style, and Dooling provides enough specific links and references to point anyone interested in learning more about specific technical topics in the right direction. In my opinion, Dooling also makes some noteworthy contributions in the form of opinions and hypothetical scenarios. I've spent considerable time reading about artificial intelligence, and Dooling came up with quite a few interesting twists to the usual analysis that were new to me! As long as you have sufficient background knowledge, you will be able to tell when Dooling gets into opinion/speculation mode, and you should take it as such. For example, I personally disagree with his idea that singularity might be just another form of religion, but I am glad to have been exposed to the interesting idea. Bottom line: it is a book of ideas and hypotheticals, not a book about technical information. And I think it's filled with some superb ideas!

A Compelling Read

The concepts and perspectives on artificial intelligence presented in this book are compelling. It's not a question of if, but when we reach the singularity, and the types of issues humanity will have to deal with. When I read this book, I see a bright new world of computers helping to solve the world's currently intractable problems. My only complaint is the organization and structure of the book. The upside is that it's loaded with thought provoking material, and you can start reading at any random point in the book and get something out of it. But at the same time, I find myself confused when trying to tie it all together coherently. My approach is to just read every page as a new essay that's at best loosely connected to early parts of the book.

A great look at the coming Tech Singularity that you need to read

Rapture For the Geeks take a satirical, yet deep look into what is know as the AI(Artificial Intelligents) Singularity that is approaching. It goes into the explanation of Moore's law, that technology(especially computers) doubles every two years. At that rate, we should have a computer as powerful as the human mind in the next 10 years. This book also dives into the look at both the light and dark sides of AI, the best and the worse situations that can happen. It also dives into the cultural and social issues of technology and how they are changing the modern home and parent child relation ship as the first video game generation is having children and how they both play the same MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer online Role Playing Game for those not down with the lingo). I believe that this book will go down as the one book that we will look back and say that Richard Dooling had it all right. The new computer AI religion may hold him as an apostle to Linus Torvalds (the founder of linux, an awesome operating system based on UNIX). Come and read this book for it will entertain and educate at the same time

Ecletic and wandering but interesting

The author provides a balanced view of the "singularity" and gives Ray Kurzweil his due. The suggestion that humans learn programming languages to make us somewhat more acceptable to our AI successors is a bit of a stretch, as if we were dogs learning tricks to keep our owners feeding us. Of course, learning programming is a good idea but for pete's sake -- if computers are a threat, don't we need to put in safeguards? But I'm not trashing the book; it is a fun read and the author is obviously well educated in both the classics and in current scifi literature. He suggests that religion, in one form or another, will be with us always. I read it on the Kindle and took a few notes along the way. Good read. Bill Yarberry, Houston, Texas
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