Once relegated to the fringes of society, transhumanism (the use of technology to enhance human intellectual and physical capability) is now poised to enter our cultural mainstream. It has found adherents in Silicon Valley billionaires Ray Kurzweil and Peter Diamandis. Google has entered the picture, establishing a bio-tech subsidiary aimed at solving the problem of aging. In To Be a Machine, journalist Mark O'Connell takes a headlong dive into this burgeoning movement.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end. The author asked a lot of insightful questions, chronicled many actors in the transhumanist movement, and pointed out intelligent metaphors to human desires in the past. Also, his writing style is both humorous and informative. Wonderful book. I will keep an eye for any other books from this author.
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Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.
I really enjoyed listening to this audio book. The story was engaging and humorous for such a big thriller. My engineering brain appreciated the many puzzles solved throughout the book. Cheers to the author for doing all this research (and math). I will go see the movie now and see if it lives up to this high standard.