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Publisher's Summary

Penguin Audio presents Life 3.0 by Max Tegmark, read by Rob Shapiro. 

We stand at the beginning of a new era. What was once science fiction is fast becoming reality, as AI transforms war, crime, justice, jobs and society - and even our very sense of what it means to be human. More than any other technology, AI has the potential to revolutionise our collective future - and there's nobody better situated to explore that future than Max Tegmark, an MIT professor and cofounder of the Future of Life Institute, whose work has helped mainstream research on how to keep AI beneficial. 

In this deeply researched and vitally important new book, Tegmark takes us to the heart of thinking about AI and the human condition, bringing us face to face with the essential questions of our time. What sort of future do we want? Life 3.0 gives us the tools to join what may be the most important conversation of our time.

©2018 Rob Shapiro (P)2018 Penguin Books Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book. But not much new

It's a great book on a great topic. If you've already read homo deus, super intelligence or read about AI online, you will not learn much new though. But it is very well written.

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Consciousness is physics!

I loved it. I am going to read it twice and more. It made me think of start reading physics for fun. It left me wondering maybe there could be law of physics that could illustrate witchcraft or Black Magic!! Max Tegemark what do you think? Come to Tanzania there are people seen instructing the sky to rain or a light to strike! Imagine transforming that lighting energy to electricity, we could bury the thought of Africa is a land of darkness!🤔

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  • Heisenberg
  • 04-09-18

Entertaining and thought provoking.

I have been waiting for this to come to audible, as Tegmark's mathematical universe is one of my favourite popular physics book. It does not disappoint. The subject matter is such an important one, that this book, as well as Nick Bostrom's superintelligence, should be mandatory reading for all politicians. Life 3.0 examines the great benefits and immense dangers, that artificial intelligence will offer in the decades to come, and does so in a superbly entertaining way. A word too for Rob Shapiro, who narrated Tegmark's previous book, as he does a faultless job here also. Highly recommended.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Wras
  • 08-20-18

A good beginning to the end life 2.0

Definitions and concepts to ideas that are changing the world while humanity fights over gods and philosophies of other centuries, the shock will hit so hard it will change everything or everything will burn.
Politicians are pushing for population growth to stimulate economies and importing humans with retrograde religions to boost modern societies while these societies are advancing modes of technology that will diminish the necessity of ever-growing numbers of human to stimulate economies, and by the very nature of this technologies and sciences contradicting the exitance of god and our own importance as biological beings in this plane of reality. Time to have science influence politics a lot more than just as a possible future, but because science is the main engine of the future good or bad, and having social change created by half blind demagogs will not put us in line with the future shock.
Excelente expose of how our world is changing and how little of this information is bleeding into the general public as a possible total game changer.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-07-18

Inspirational but frightening

An important summary of where we are headed as a species and as the guardians of the future of A.I.

The book goes through several science fiction and science fact(ion) scenarios, from utopian to dystopian. These help to illustrate, in vivid colours, the ethically challenging pathways that a superintelligent A.I. could take in the near future, and their potential impact on human society.

Tegmark writes passionately without succumbing to the naive enthusiasm of the most lurid techno-optimists. In fact, since I am (perhaps) one of those sorry people, he appears to me excessively conservative when he cautions the reader against the risks associated with unregulated and undirected A.I. But he simultaneously waxes lyrical about the positive powers of enhancement that A.I. could bring.
(The reader is thus served hot and cold dishes in schizophrenic rotation. Which I don't mind.)

One thing that Tegmark has special expertise in is space (he is a physicist), so the chapters on space exploration and colonisation are the most solidly grounded and, for that reason, inspiring of awe. But even outside his purported main area of expertise, he pulls no punches: the chapters on ethics and consciousness, for example, are eminently thoughtful and illuminating. The importance he readily gives to philosophy as the arbiter of the big questions of the future warms this philosopher's heart.

Overall, the book sheds light on the current state of knowledge around A.I. research in a fruitful and exciting way. I wish there had been more discussion on the possibility of the transhumanistic fusion between man and machine via biotechnological engineering. It seems unlikely that, barring catastrophe, we will be left behind as a biological relic stuck at a permanently low stage of development. While I agree with Tegmark that we need ethical guidelines, I am not so convinced that consensus building leads to an optimal outcome. The (reasonable) ethical and political concerns around A.I., as well as around transhumanistic self-modification and -enhancement, might do more harm than good, unless the liberty of experimentation is safeguarded (of course within the cautionary bounds of internalized externalities).

Dreamy stuff. Nightmarish, too. Frightful hope is knocking robotically at the door, so you better take it like a (hu)man. Or a man machine.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • David
  • 10-08-18

Rather Boring

I had just finished 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari. The chapters on AI were excellent. I then followed-up with Life 3.0 thinking there would be more fascinating stuff on AI. What a let down. The opening chapter is a fictional account of AI gradually taking over the world. Though it contained a lot of detail on the methods used by the company owning the AI application which in the story is called "Prometheus" to take over the world it is OK if you like fiction about AI. I don't. The following chapters I found tedious and frankly quite boring. I gave up completely after 2 hours.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-06-18

thoroughly thought provoking.

worth thinking through the challenges and opportunities posed and how we can help in our daily lives and possible our future generations .

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  • jonathan
  • 09-27-18

Tech heads need this future perspective 👍

Forget Arnie, this is a serious considered approach to how we make sure our values and ethics keep ahead of creativity, ensuring we are in the driving seat as general AI takes us into the next phase. 3.0.

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  • Federico
  • 09-13-18

Amazing walkthrough through AI challenges & opportunities

This is a thought provoking audiobook focused on how to approach, what are the main problems and possible solutions to AI. Highly recommended

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  • Adz McP
  • 08-28-18

The most important book of our times?

I was sceptical about reading a book on Artificial Intelligence (AI), I've always viewed the subject as a bit of a Pandora's Box, almost seeming inevitable at some point in the not so distant future and also quite terrifying largely because of human tenancies to rush into developing technologies which we don't fully understand.
This book though is incredibly well put together, Max Tegmark covers the numerous advantages which AI could bring to humanity alongside the more clear risks and presses home the importance of creating a clear and concise framework of safety and mutual benifit for all of humanity. If you have any interest in the future of our race please read and join the discussion.

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  • N V.
  • 08-12-18

a good introduction to AI safety conversation.

The urgency of this books themes makes it pretty much an essential read. It helps that is well written with easy explanations for complex topics and infused with infectious passion. Do not miss it.

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  • Tubbs
  • 08-07-18

AI is coming - it is time to learn about it.

Whether we like it or not AI is coming. This is a thought provoking read or listen which explains in great detail the advantages and dangers of the technology. And how we, as the human race, could gain maximum benefit for all, or completely mess everything up to the detriment of most if not all.

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  • Christopher Sellers
  • 10-07-18

Brilliant

An inspired, thoughtful and articulate contribution to the conversation on the future of AI and life. Great performance by the narrator.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-23-18

Exploration of the future of AI and hence, life.

This was a pretty through exploration. it makes connections to physics, which the arguments of what is possible is built on. Tegmark pushes the argument for AI safety research and provides solid reasoning for doing so.

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  • Luisa
  • 07-20-18

Insightful exploration of our potential AI future

Life 3.0 is a insightful exploration of the potential direction of AI. It begins with a story of a potential near future of the stealth development of a superintelligence which is provocative and sets the scene to explore in depth a comprehensive set of different perspectives and possibilities of how this exciting field will develop.
Max is pragmatic, realistic, scientific, and thorough in explaining his thoughts on an unknown future that could be wondrous or disastrous. He not only delivers a message of hope but is actively engaged in moving this field in a positive direction for the benefit of all.

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  • Grizzimo
  • 07-11-18

The clearest breakdown of present and future A.I.

I've read a dozen books in the genre - mainly from Kurzweil and Bostrom - and Max Tegmark's is right now the clearest, most reasonable, and most relevant I know. Highly recommend.

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  • Solomon
  • 07-09-18

Very speculative, but interesting

A book about AI safety research with a hefty dose of speculation about the future of intelligence from a physicist's perspective.

Its main purpose seems to be to provoke thought and explore possible questions about super intelligent AI and it acknowledges the enormous uncertainty in this area.

It's a bit repetitive as an audio book as it was intended as a text reference where readers could jump to sections of interest.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-14-18

A+

Loved it. One of the best books i've heard. Thanks to that author for writing this book.

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  • Cambell
  • 05-06-18

Thought provoking material. A lot to digest.

I really loved the broad range of ideas and possibilities outlined in this book and the encouragement from the author to think about the future of life and consciousness in the universe, not just AI for the world we live in now and over the next century.

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  • Timothy Lehmann
  • 06-21-18

A great discussion on a major topic.

I found this book fascinating and accessible. It did justice to this enormously important subject.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful