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Publisher's Summary

This program includes an introduction read by the author.

No recent scientific enterprise has proved as alluring, terrifying, and filled with extravagant promise and frustrating setbacks as artificial intelligence. The award-winning author Melanie Mitchell, a leading computer scientist, now reveals its turbulent history and the recent surge of apparent successes, grand hopes, and emerging fears that surround AI.

In Artificial Intelligence, Mitchell turns to the most urgent questions concerning AI today: How intelligent - really - are the best AI programs? How do they work? What can they actually do, and when do they fail? How humanlike do we expect them to become, and how soon do we need to worry about them surpassing us? Along the way, she introduces the dominant methods of modern AI and machine learning, describing cutting-edge AI programs, their human inventors, and the historical lines of thought that led to recent achievements. She meets with fellow experts like Douglas Hofstadter, the cognitive scientist and Pulitzer Prize - winning author of the modern classic Gödel, Escher, Bach, who explains why he is “terrified” about the future of AI. She explores the profound disconnect between the hype and the actual achievements in AI, providing a clear sense of what the field has accomplished and how much farther it has to go.

Interweaving stories about the science and the people behind it, Artificial Intelligence brims with clear-sighted, captivating, and approachable accounts of the most interesting and provocative modern work in AI, flavored with Mitchell’s humor and personal observations. This frank, lively book will prove an indispensable guide to understanding today’s AI, its quest for “human-level” intelligence, and its impacts on all of our futures.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2019 Melanie Mitchell (P)2019 Macmillan Audio

What listeners say about Artificial Intelligence

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Start understanding AI right here!

As a high school computer science teacher, I have found that this book is doing what no other resource could do for me... make AI comprehendible in a way I can share and discuss with high school students. Mixed with some AI activities that I am getting from a secondary source, I am now on my way to creating an introductory AI unit that will help students understand better the world of AI and what is really happening as all of our appliances, cars, and the general world appear to get smarter around us.

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Excellent perspective on the field

Melanie Mitchell has done a great job summarizing the state of AI research. She touches on the most important advances, ideas and problems in the field. She gives due credit for the amazing progress that has been made while tapering the hype and expectations that has been overblown by some media outlets. She makes a great case for analogy-making as a crucial technique needed for AI systems to advance further towards human-like performance.

WARNING: If you like to listen to audiobooks while otherwise engaged (e.g. while exercising), this book may not be for you. There are over 50 figures in the accompanying PDF of this book and many of these illustrations are crucial to understanding the explanations of AI systems like Conv Nets and reinforcement learning. As someone who was already familiar with these topics, i didn’t lose much from not viewing them, but beware if these ideas are new to you.

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Highly recommended

The author does a great job at explaining the history of AI & where we currently are with machine learning. Great for beginners and computer scientists who want reinforcement.

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Decent

Decent primer on the past, present and future of AI. Contained too much fluff for me.

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Great

Great book, easy to understand and gives a very prtactical overview of the subject, strongly recommended.

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clear, informative, reasonable, excellent

The reader gets a good overview (although I would assume at a pretty basic level), of where artificial intelligence and machine learning are positioned at present. The book is neither too easy not too hard. On the whole, hers is a sensible and somewhat deflationary (compared to many popular accounts) account of the powers of artificial intelligence and machine learning now and in the foreseeable future.

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Clear, informative and entertaining

this is a wise book. it explains the major endeavours in AI in a clear and accessible way for non experts and non native speakers of English. At the same time the author gives an in depth view of the achievements, challenges and methods used in AI research, warning the reader about the risks involved. As a linguist I personally found this book amazing. The author has a realistic and well grounded view on AI, which is highly appreciated among too many sensational books on this topic.

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Very good!

This is a great overview of artificial intelligence! Was very useful, informative and interesting

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An excellent analysis of modern AI

Mitchell does a fantastic job explaining where AI is and why. The examples on the book illustrate the problems researchers are facing and why these problems are so challenging.

I would strongly recommend this to anyone who is interested in AI and would like to understand how it works. After reading this I am both more optimistic and more concerned about what affects future AI may have on humanity.

Thanks to Sean Carroll for recommending this in his Mindscape podcast.

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Read the book, spare yourself from a dead-end.

If you're a python developer and find yourself working almost entirely with vectors and matrices, read this book and spare yourself from a professional dead-end. Goes nicely with Rebooting AI by Marcus & Davis.

Now to tackle GEB...

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  • Paul Masters
  • 08-16-20

Superb

I highly recommend his book. It provides a great overview of AI and the challenges the field faces.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Milan Topalov
  • 01-11-20

Ultimate overview of the state of AI in 2019

This was a pure joy to listen. Great writing, great reading. Clearly explained concepts, lots of examples, engaging, up to date. No word was wasted.

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  • BryanP
  • 01-06-22

Fascinating insight into AI

This book provides an introduction to the ability of human intelligence and compares it with the difficulties AI has to imitate it. As you might expect, much of the content is complex but it left me with a clearer general understanding of the subject. The conclusion of the book that the threat of AI at present is nothing compared to that of the artificial stupidity currently available is revealing.

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  • Benjamin Colchester
  • 12-17-20

A perfect introduction to AI

I cannot recommend this book enough. Melanie Mitchell takes you on a beautifully choreographed journey through the field of AI from its inception to the present day. A must read for anyone with a desire to understand AI and its implications for the future.

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  • Dil
  • 12-17-20

easy read

book was good and informative on general knowledge of AI. You will not learn to program AI programs by reading this book.
narrator was brilliant, pleasant voice

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  • Mr GS Mccreadie
  • 02-18-20

SYMBIOSIS

i wonder if human intelligence plus artificial intelligence will equal a new type of intelligence

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  • Fabien
  • 01-03-22

Excellent book on AI

This book relates many historical accounts on the development of artificial intelligence powered applications, starting with video games. It also details many current flaws such as coding intuition and common sense. Great book!

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  • Ant
  • 08-26-21

A great read

Great book for walking through the basics of this critical but often not well understood space.

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  • Ben Hosken
  • 11-12-19

Brilliant book that goes to just the right depth

This book covers a very wide set of topics within AI, with some of the best examples and explanations of how machine learning and AI work that I have ever heard. The author explains the challenges and issues faced in AI and does so without sounding superior or dismissive.

This is truely the best overview of the current state of AI for people with an interest in the field that I have read.

I highly recommend it if you have some background in AI/ML or if you want more than a newspaper article depth on the topic.

Brilliant.