Friday, December 5, 2014

Ten of the most important science fiction books about superintelligence

"The idea that humans might one day become superintelligent — or invent a superintelligent computer — is a staple of science fiction," writes Annalee Newitz at io9. "It's also taken seriously by scientists and engineers as a plausible outcome of today's technologies." One of ten key books Newitz says we should read to understand brains of the future:
Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge

Vinge is the computer scientist and author who first coined the term "Singularity" to mean the rise of superintelligence. In his most celebrated novel, he explores civilizations that are headed toward such Singularities, though they haven't quite made it yet. Still, they've set up quite a successful galactic democracy, full of aliens, AIs, and various combinations of both. Everything is zooming along at lightspeed, when they're menaced by a post-Singular consciousness/creature/disease that turns all matter into molecular sludge and wants to take over all available minds. This is a must-read.
Read about the other books on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue