The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect
Holy shit, if you can get past the intense, violent sex and murder of the first chapter, this book is one of the best Singularity thought experiments I’ve ever read. 
Like, wow.

The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect

Holy shit, if you can get past the intense, violent sex and murder of the first chapter, this book is one of the best Singularity thought experiments I’ve ever read. 

Like, wow.

I, RobotIsaac Asimov
Holy fuck did I love this book. Nothing at all like the movie starring our favorite robo-stud Will Smith, I, Robot is more a series of loosely connected vignettes about the progression of robots in human society over the course of fifty some-odd years, starting from before robots could speak and ending with the Machines closely managing social, political, and economic decisions.
To start, the book was far superior to the movie that was inspired by it. Asimov does an incredible job of theorizing about robots and artificial intelligences, especially considering he did so in 1950, and he has such a talent integrating these incredible technologies with difficult ethical dilemmas. 
Two words: read it.

I, Robot
Isaac Asimov

Holy fuck did I love this book. Nothing at all like the movie starring our favorite robo-stud Will Smith, I, Robot is more a series of loosely connected vignettes about the progression of robots in human society over the course of fifty some-odd years, starting from before robots could speak and ending with the Machines closely managing social, political, and economic decisions.

To start, the book was far superior to the movie that was inspired by it. Asimov does an incredible job of theorizing about robots and artificial intelligences, especially considering he did so in 1950, and he has such a talent integrating these incredible technologies with difficult ethical dilemmas. 

Two words: read it.

A Scanner DarklyPhilip K. Dick
Told through a variety of mental states, the narratives in A Scanner Darkly are gripping and intense; Philip K. Dick is phenomenal at taking the perspective of insanity, or at least decaying sanity.
The setting is the near future of Southern California, where the United States has become a full-blown police state. Everything everywhere is under constant surveillance; police stations all across the country are fully equipped with state of the art cameras and bugs. At the same time, the country has been crippled with the rising popularity of a dangerous psychedelic drug called Substance D; most of the characters in the book are addicted to Substance D. The main character, Robert Arctor, is an undercover cop doing surveillance on himself and his friends, and over the course of the book you experience him slowly but surely losing touch with reality. There is, of course, a great little twist at the end that packs more punch than the author seems to have intended.
A fun trippy sci-fi book with neat political themes; A Scanner Darkly is one of my favorite recent reads.

A Scanner Darkly
Philip K. Dick

Told through a variety of mental states, the narratives in A Scanner Darkly are gripping and intense; Philip K. Dick is phenomenal at taking the perspective of insanity, or at least decaying sanity.

The setting is the near future of Southern California, where the United States has become a full-blown police state. Everything everywhere is under constant surveillance; police stations all across the country are fully equipped with state of the art cameras and bugs. At the same time, the country has been crippled with the rising popularity of a dangerous psychedelic drug called Substance D; most of the characters in the book are addicted to Substance D. The main character, Robert Arctor, is an undercover cop doing surveillance on himself and his friends, and over the course of the book you experience him slowly but surely losing touch with reality. There is, of course, a great little twist at the end that packs more punch than the author seems to have intended.

A fun trippy sci-fi book with neat political themes; A Scanner Darkly is one of my favorite recent reads.

Imagine a society that subjects people to conditions that make them terribly unhappy then gives them the drugs to take away their unhappiness. Science fiction, it is already happening to some extent in our own society. Instead of removing the conditions that make people depressed, modern society gives them antidepressant drugs. In effect antidepressants are a means of modifying an individual’s internal state in such a way as to enable him to tolerate social conditions that he would otherwise find intolerable. — Kaczynski (via hellabay)

(via thegrazing)