• The Artificial Intelligence Contagion

  • Can Democracy Withstand the Imminent Transformation of Work, Wealth, and the Social Order?
  • By: David Barnhizer, Daniel Barnhizer
  • Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 12 hrs
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (175 ratings)

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The Artificial Intelligence Contagion

By: David Barnhizer,Daniel Barnhizer
Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
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Publisher's Summary

Artificial intelligence/robotics: Have we opened a Pandora’s Box? 

As AI and robotics eliminate jobs across the spectrum, governmental revenues will plummet while the debt increases dramatically. This crisis of limited resources on all levels - underfunded or nonexistent pensions, health problems, lack of savings, and job destruction without comparable job creation - will drive many into homelessness and produce a dramatic rise in violence as we fight over shrinking resources.

©2019 David Barnhizer and Daniel Barnhizer (P)2019 Blackstone Audio and Skyboat Media, Inc.

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Confused About Its Purpose and Premise

This is a very, very thorough exposition of the threats and risks of Artificial Intelligence's imminent arrival and likely result. At the same time it is very, very confused where it claims to be talking about artificial intelligence and somehow construing AI with the social effects of the internet, which is not relevant to the premise of the book. The social effects of the internet have nothing whatever to do with artificial intelligence, yet the subject occupies several chapters of the book. Using the social nastiness of the internet as an example of what would happen with AI-enhanced Humans might be the point for SOME of this belabored internet bashing, but the amount of, well, internet hating being heaped up FAR exceeds being just an example of our bad Chimpanzee traits that would come out more strongly with AI enhancement - rather it seems as if the authors are not sure of (or have lost track of) the purpose and title of their book, and they lose their way for a laboriously long anti-internet rant.
On a different subject - I used to really enjoy Stefan Rudnicki's narration, but he leaves me very flat with this one. His attempts at "performing" accents and female speech are not successful, at least to my ear. He also either is exaggerating a latent Eastern European accent, or he has decided not to hide it behind his former mid-western sound, and I do not appreciate the new style quite as much as I used to do.

10 people found this helpful

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I Dislike This Book

I found this book repetitive and aimless. The tone was inflammatory and judgmental. I learnt very little and ended up being more agitated than educated.

6 people found this helpful

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Better books on the subject out there

Very negative conspiracy and misinformed book
good thing I didn't have to pay for it

4 people found this helpful

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Reads like Qanon Propaganda

After chapter 5 the book is no longer about artificial intelligence and more about a radical dystopian view of the United States under the control of some global cabal. Utter paranoid dribble of conspiracy theorists and not worth the time of anyone looking for a read on AI.

3 people found this helpful

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Brilliant

loved it. It greatly represents and predicts how societies are likely to be without being too optimistic neither pesimistic.

1 person found this helpful

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Profound despondency

This book discusses mega social trends, such as wealth disparity, and it also expresses the sinister side of artificial intelligence.

I'd be fine with pure gloom and doom if the chapters had more coherence. There were too many rabbit holes in the story, such as the nation's debt crisis. In my view, these chapters were not made relevant to the subject of artificial intelligence. Maybe that was something the author intended to do but instead had to get the book out before finishing it.

The narrator was certainly competent but uninspired, in my opinion. Further, I experienced this narrator in 'Ender's Game', and that is one great performance. But every performance has to feel inspired and cannot be simply good pronunciation.




1 person found this helpful

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Not really about AI,

This book was mostly complaining about society and the author's view of what the problems are, such as millenials playing on their cell phones and such. The social commentary could have been written by Newt Gingrich. So if 90s era conservative think tanks are your thing, this is the book for you.

the parts about AI have been said better and more concisely elsewhere.

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Didn’t finish it - waste of time

I made it through Part I, marked it as finished and will not finish it. It’s a one-sided, exaggerated opinion that sounds like propaganda, fear-mongering attempt against AI. Just in the few chapters I listened to, examples given of AI advances are stated as FACT when they are only barely research experiments. I work in AI/ML research and the assertions in this book are simply not true. We may ONE DAY be able to accomplish some of these scientific research experiments, we are FAR from achieving anything close to what they authors say. The entire perspective of the narrative of this book is negative, doom and gloom. There are many benefits to AI/ML which we enjoy right now. And there are plenty of social scientists in the field looking at ethics and the philosophical underpinnings for the future of AI/ML. All in all, this book sounds extremely biased without proper references or argument posing both sides of the argument.

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It’s ok

Although the material is interesting, it’s highly superficial and doesn’t touch on the actual applications and examples of how IA is really impacting society.
The second half is the book was mostly about socioeconomic topics and barely even touched on AI. It’s like the author wanted the book to be long but didn’t have the content so he went on a tangent

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Doom mongering

This book offers no possibility for a beneficial outcome for AI. It only astounds the most drastic of potential outcomes in an apparent effort to stir uproar in a demographic that's prone to believe that only the worst is possible. Furthermore this book uses statements the authors make from the beginning of the book, for which they present little to no evidence, as a justification for statements they make in the later parts of the book.