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Publisher's Summary

Artificial intelligence is our most powerful technology and, in the coming decades, it'll change everything in our lives. If we get it right, it'll make humans almost godlike. If we get it wrong...well, extinction is not the worst possible outcome.

Surviving AI is a concise, easy guide to what's coming, taking you through technological unemployment (the economic singularity) and the possible creation of a superintelligence (the technological singularity).

©2015 Calum Chace (P)2015 Calum Chace

Critic Reviews

"Understanding AI - its promise and its dangers - is emerging as one of the great challenges of coming decades, and this is an invaluable guide to anyone who's interested, confused, excited, or scared." (David Shukman, BBC Science editor)
"We have recently seen a surge in the volume of scholarly analysis of this topic; Chace impressively augments that with this high-quality, more general-audience discussion." (Aubrey de Grey, CSO of SENS Research Foundation; former AI researcher)
"Calum Chace is a prescient messenger of the risks and rewards of artificial intelligence. In Surviving AI, he has identified the most essential issues and developed them with insight and wit - so that the very framing of the questions aids our search for answers. Chace's sensible balance between AI's promise and peril makes Surviving AI an excellent primer for anyone interested in what's happening, how we got here, and where we are headed." (Kenneth Cukier, co-author of Big Data)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Good Overview

Very high-level. Great information. May not be detailed enough for a reader familiar with AI.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Good Introduction to the Topic

You could easily see a book like this become too long and laborious for the average reader. I was impressed that the producer and author kept it informative but relatively brief. I am more technically inclined than the average person but I can see this book being highly accessible by a reader that knows little about AI but wants to know more. The author does an exceptional job in introducing the reader to the moral aspect of AI and makes a compelling case for why it is every bit as important as the how and when we technical people tend to focus on.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Confirmation Bias and the rise of AGI

Would you try another book from Calum Chace and/or Joe Hempel?

The book was more a high-level jet tour of AI in general with a focus on AGI (Artificial General Intelligence) and some details on Superintelligence. Although I enjoy and have read books covering the subject of AI, more in the gaming perspective, the author and his premise is more focused on AI that is self-aware and what do/should we do with such an AI when or if it happens. <br/><br/>This book, in many ways, reminds me of the book "Engines of Creation" by Eric Drexler (1986) covering the subject of Nanotechnology. AI, along with deep learning, meta data, and other terms have been the latest scientific craze to replace the older ones we previously worried about; such as nanotechnology. Like with nanotechnology, one needs to be careful with AI in a similar way. I agree that even if AI were outlawed with hopes of preventing AGI from happening, there would be people experimenting with it just like they did with the atomic bomb. I liked the authors discussion of the issue around indifference and how this is an issue as much as friendly or hostile AI. Just an area not often covered in this type of material<br/><br/>For me, I would have liked a deeper dive into an AI primer than to go the route of what could be more speculative arguments. Understanding that much of AI and the level of AIG are still in the speculative realm. I found the author placed a lot of trust in aspects of science while often ignoring the more moral parts of the subject. This is not to say he did not breeze over them in parts of the book, but it seemed more something he did not want to bother with as it could be a very sensitive and difficult road to go down. <br/><br/>I'm not sure I fully agree or understand the author's assumption that biology and technology can be blended or that one can fully duplicate one from the other. This may be my lack of understanding of the complexities of AIG and Superintelligence. We have been able to replicate specific applications of biological movement (move a widget from there to there) and automate them with technology. I just have a harder time understanding how this can be applied to intelligence or replicating the brain. As an audio book, I found the format of the book to be somewhat more difficult to follow. This book of course is more reference than fiction so that is and I was able to follow; just that the physical book would have been easier to follow the flow. This also does not reflect my thought about the difficulty being the narrator, he did a great job with the text. .

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

To make the book more enjoyable, I would have like to have had more details on the history of AI and how it has progressed to today. Once that was covered, then dive down based on this information into AGI, etc. I felt that the author to quickly passed over Turing and some of the items the gave rise to AI which would have provided more detail on his premise.

Which character – as performed by Joe Hempel – was your favorite?

The narration of the book was done very well. I think Joe was able to make a book that may be considered boring or dull to many not interested in the subject to something they could enjoy listening too. I would look for other books narrated by this author in the future. Because this was non-fiction, it is difficult to provide feedback on his ability to do different characters, etc.

Any additional comments?

Disclaimer: This book was provided to the reviewer free of charge in exchange for an unbiased review of the material.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • -E
  • 08-25-16

Very good!!

What did you like best about this story?

I now have a clearer understanding of a topic for which I was fairly ignorant. Thanks to the author!! Great read.

Any additional comments?

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBoom dot com.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Fascinating look into our future

What made the experience of listening to Surviving AI: The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence the most enjoyable?

The reality of AI becoming commonplace is not so distant anymore. It was shocking and scary at the same time. The story was well written.

What does Joe Hempel bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

It made the subject matter come to life and was easy to listen to.

Any additional comments?

"I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom."

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Good book for the curious.

Would you listen to Surviving AI: The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence again? Why?

Yes. I believe the author did a good job of providing an overview of the history of AI, how we got to where we are and some possibilities of what is to come.

What did you like best about this story?

It caused me to give a bit more thought (not that I can really do anything to prepare for it) about how drastically things could be in the not too distant future. A bit exciting and a bit scary.

What about Joe Hempel’s performance did you like?

The author did a nice job narrating his own book. Considering the type of book that it is, a real dynamic actor is not required. Hempel's style was more than satisfactory for the job.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Seeing the changes that technology has brought to our culture over the past 20 years or so, I'd have to say that I feel some sadness about the path we are on. Even though I am a bit of a tech junkie, I really long for the simpler times that are forever gone in our Western culture.

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this audiobook from the author, publisher, or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Outstanding, easy to understand discussion of AI and possible benefits and dangers

This book is essentially a simplified and easy to understand version of Nick Bostrom's Superintelligence. It is an accessible explanation of the biggest and possibly last issue humans will face. The possibilities range from wonderful to terrifying.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Great at overview of artificial intelligence.

This what provides a great overview of artificial intelligence and its implications for Humanity. it provides enough detail on the current state of development to provide the reader with an understanding of the subject to be able to consider the broader implications of its development.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Great overview

If you could sum up Surviving AI: The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence in three words, what would they be?

Great AI Overview

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes.

Any additional comments?

The author did a great job with this book. It's a very broad subject and took a lot of research. He explains the different aspects of artificial intelligence very well.<br/> definitely worth listening to.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Surviving Al

What did you love best about Surviving AI: The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence?

I was interested in this book because I enjoyed Chace's Pandora's Brain and it's a great companion piece. It gives a clear-eyed view of Artificial Intelligence with imaginative, fact-based glimpses that show what our world may be like in the future.

Any additional comments?

This audiobook was provided at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Marion
  • 03-09-16

Insightful

A really very balanced evaluation of: where we are with AI, what we need to do, what we should be afraid of and much more.
A definite recommendation for those who enjoy science fiction, even though this is very nearly science fact!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Joshua Gerrard
  • 09-05-17

Seeding

This doesn't offer much in terms of answers, which isn't surprising, but it does provoke discussion of an important existential threat in as thought out a manner as a layman book can hope for.

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  • Mr Phillip Ash
  • 03-25-17

Very interesting discussion.

Coherent extrapolated volition is such a brilliant concept :). Some excellent reasoning and well balanced view points throughout the book

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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-03-16

Ok

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Was interesting but would've been nice with more detail!<br/>But maybe the author is working on this, an ever evolving subject.

Any additional comments?

This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast.

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  • Andres
  • 05-23-17

Accessible and informative

This book pulls together many of the ideas around AI, giving a well packaged overview. It also provides enough detail to spark curiosity and further study.