Machines of Loving Grace

  • von John Markoff
  • Sprecher: George Newbern
  • 11 Std. 53 Min.
  • ungekürztes Hörbuch


As robots are increasingly integrated into modern society - on the battlefield and the road, in business, education, and health - Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times science writer John Markoff searches for an answer to one of the most important questions of our age: Will these machines help us, or will they replace us?
In the past decade alone, Google introduced us to driverless cars, Apple debuted a personal assistant that we keep in our pockets, and an Internet of Things connected the smaller tasks of everyday life to the farthest reaches of the Internet. There is little doubt that robots are now an integral part of society, and cheap sensors and powerful computers will ensure that in the coming years, these robots will soon act on their own. This new era offers the promise of immense computing power, but it also reframes a question first raised more than half a century ago, at the birth of the intelligent machine: Will we control these systems, or will they control us?
In Machines of Loving Grace, New York Times reporter John Markoff, the first reporter to cover the World Wide Web, offers a sweeping history of the complicated and evolving relationship between humans and computers. Over the recent years, the pace of technological change has accelerated dramatically, reintroducing this difficult ethical quandary with newer and far weightier consequences. As Markoff chronicles the history of automation, from the birth of the artificial intelligence and intelligence augmentation communities in the 1950s to the modern-day brain trusts at Google and Apple in Silicon Valley and on to the expanding tech corridor between Boston and New York, he traces the different ways developers have addressed this fundamental problem and urges them to carefully consider the consequences of their work.


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Not what I was hoping for

The book is well-written and the narration is good. The text is chiefly a very well-researched history of Silicon Valley robotics and AI research. It has a reasonably low density of trivia, which is great -- unlike, for instance, Bill Bryson’s "Short History of Nearly Everything", which is literally flooded with trivia and hard to be patient with for that very reason.

However, being a robotics PhD myself, I was rather expecting a deep moral discussion on virtues and perils of the robotics and AI age. I didn’t learn anything new from this book, and see myself yet another time left alone with my longing for a non-emotionally lead discussion of what my daily work might help to bring about for mankind.
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- Dr. Andreas J. Häusler

Weitere Infos zum Titel

  • Erscheinungsdatum: 25.08.2015
  • Verlag: HarperAudio