Almost 200 years after Mary Shelley made AI an object of fear and awe in Frankenstein, humanity is looking at a proliferation of super-smart creations: robots. As tech and publishing guru Kevin Kelly writes in his brand new book The Inevitable, out in June, automated technology of all sorts – from industrial to humanoid to seemingly harmless conveyors of “artificial smartness” – will soon transform our lives. (Some already have, like your calculator, the automatic braking in your cars, or Siri). But need we fear it? Will AI take our jobs away? Or will robots, by handling all the mechanics and rote work necessary for economic productivity, liberate us to be more creative, caring and “humanly intelligent”? What, in the end, can humans do that machines cannot?
Kevin Kelly started as a photojournalist, in the US and in remote areas of Asia, before working as publisher and editor of the Whole Earth Review, from 1984 to 1990, which became the first consumer publication to report in significant ways on AI, VR, ecological restoration, the global teenager, and Internet culture. In 1993, he launched Wired magazine, where he was Executive Editor and is now “Senior Maverick.” Under him, it won the National Magazine Award for General Excellence (the Oscars of the industry) twice. He has since written multiple books and has been involved with a variety of long-term, deep-thinking technological projects. The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future is available in bookstores and on Amazon in June.
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