Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Five sci-fi works featuring homicidal artificial minds

Jeff Somers is the author of Lifers, the Avery Cates series from Orbit Books, Chum from Tyrus Books, and We Are Not Good People from Pocket/Gallery. He has published over thirty short stories as well.

At the B & N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog Somers tagged five sci-fi books featuring homicidal artificial minds, including:
Newton’s Wake, by Ken MacLeod

This one is fun because it uses an A.I. apocalypse not to drive its narrative, but merely to establish its setting. Long after artificial intelligence took over and nearly drove humanity to extinction, much of what was formerly human has evolved into post-singularity beings forcibly combined with A.I.s and shipped off to other parts of the universe. The human remnant no longer lives on Earth, where the dormant sentient war machines doze, and they attempt to use the technology left behind despite having imperfect knowledge of the science behind it all. Both hopeful and dour about humanity’s fate in the wake of an A.I. genocide referred to as the “Hard Rapture,” the novel’s unique focus on survival makes it more interesting than Ultron’s overly complex and ultimately doomed plans.
Read about another entry on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue