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Kevin Wixson

Kalamazoo, MI United States | Member Since 2008

8
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 3 reviews
  • 35 ratings
  • 343 titles in library
  • 37 purchased in 2014
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  • Who Owns the Future?

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Jaron Lanier
    • Narrated By Pete Simoneilli
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (87)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (74)

    Who Owns the Future? is a visionary reckoning with the effects network technologies have had on our economy. Lanier asserts that the rise of digital networks led our economy into recession and decimated the middle class. Now, as technology flattens more and more industries - from media to medicine to manufacturing - we are facing even greater challenges to employment and personal wealth. But there is an alternative to allowing technology to own our future....

    Kevin Wixson says: "Really Long Blog Post Sold as a Book"
    "Really Long Blog Post Sold as a Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    I tried to like this book. I try to appreciate radical thinking even if I don't agree with it. This wasn't worth the effort. Too full of logical falicies, unsupported assertions, magical thinking, and sloppy reductionism. This book is begging for critical review.

    Now, where's my nano payment?


    Any additional comments?

    Take his thesis to the next logical plateau and his idea quickly falls apart. Most of my thoughts, the information I produce, are not mine. I received that information from other people. In the parlance of the book, I was part of a network of students and teachers. Should I be making nano payments to all the teachers and everyone else from whom I've ever learned anything? His philosophy doesn't ever address the huge analog hole that this human mediation. Why are digital networks special? Isn't a system of renumeration for information sharing in the specific and limited context of digital networks inherently unbalanced?

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Accelerando

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Charles Stross
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    Overall
    (83)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (77)

    The Singularity. It is the era of the posthuman. Artificial intelligences have surpassed the limits of human intellect. Biotechnological beings have rendered people all but extinct. Molecular nanotechnology runs rampant, replicating and reprogramming at will. Contact with extraterrestrial life grows more imminent with each new day.

    Kevin says: "Way to many acronyms in this book"
    "Hang in There"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's a slog, to be blunt, as an audio book at least. You'll soon realize that what makes it difficult is the rather whiplash back and forth, both in the timeline, and between versions of the characters. As is often the case audio book producers have yet to master the art of the pause that gives the listener cues to when a scene changes. It's an especially pronounced in this reading.

    What makes it worth the struggle, however, is that this book goes further in imaging the machinations of a post-singularity solar system than any other. It even extends to thoughtful consideration of the implications of the singularity on interstellar travel and first contact.

    It's a complex story and you have to take care to keep the many small segments of the various plot lines strung together into contiguous threads, but it does make for a compelling and epic story of a sort that other authors seemingly fear to attempt.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Remaining

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By D. J. Molles
    • Narrated By Christian Rummel
    Overall
    (1962)
    Performance
    (1839)
    Story
    (1847)

    In a steel-and-lead-encased bunker 20 feet below the basement level of his house, a soldier waits for his final orders. On the surface, a plague ravages the planet, infecting over 90% of the populace. The bacterium burrows through the brain, destroying all signs of humanity and leaving behind little more than base, prehistoric instincts. The infected turn into hyper-aggressive predators, with an insatiable desire to kill and feed. Someday soon, the soldier will have to open the hatch to his bunker, and step out into this new wasteland, to complete his mission....

    Mike Naka says: "top notch! highly recommended!"
    "Poorly Written and Overacted"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    This book read like a hobby writer's first attempt at a novel. The language is forced and the characters are bland and voiceless. Midway through the book I realized I didn't care about the supporting characters, not that I could tell them apart, and by the end I just wished they would all die. The protagonist's inner monologue is tedious, repetitive, and shallow.


    What was most disappointing about D. J. Molles’s story?

    I blame the editor most of all. They should have attacked the manuscript with a red pen and struck out half or more of the words. Nearly ever sentence in the book could have been 3-4 words shorter, and been much better for it. Every third sentence should have been excised entirely.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The voice acting is so over the top it's distracting. That, at lest, gets marginally better towards the end.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    The overall concept was decent, and at least initially interesting. Ultimately, though, it was a wasted opportunity. At least the book didn't have a message or overt political or religious subtext. I've seen books like this that made that mistake. What social commentary there is tends be obvious and not very deep.


    5 of 8 people found this review helpful

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