Rise of the Machines: A Cybernetic History

Rise of the Machines A Cybernetic History As lives offline and online merge even it s easy to forget how we got here Rise of the Machines reclaims the spectacular story of cybernetics a control theory of man and machine In a history that u

  • Title: Rise of the Machines: A Cybernetic History
  • Author: Thomas Rid
  • ISBN: 9780393286007
  • Page: 130
  • Format: Hardcover
  • As lives offline and online merge even , it s easy to forget how we got here Rise of the Machines reclaims the spectacular story of cybernetics, a control theory of man and machine In a history that unpacks one of the twentieth century s pivotal ideas, Thomas Rid delivers a thought provoking portrait of our technology enraptured era.Springing from the febrile mind ofAs lives offline and online merge even , it s easy to forget how we got here Rise of the Machines reclaims the spectacular story of cybernetics, a control theory of man and machine In a history that unpacks one of the twentieth century s pivotal ideas, Thomas Rid delivers a thought provoking portrait of our technology enraptured era.Springing from the febrile mind of mathematician Norbert Wiener amid the devastation of World War II, the cybernetic vision underpinned a host of seductive myths about the future of machines This vision would radically transform the postwar world, ushering in sweeping cultural change From the Cold War s monumental SAGE bomber defense system to enhanced humans, Wiener s scheme turned computers from machines of assured destruction into engines of brilliant utopias Cybernetics triggered blissful cults, the Whole Earth Catalog, and feminist manifestos, just as it fueled martial gizmos and the air force s foray into virtual space.As Rid shows, cybernetics proved a powerful tool for two competing factions those who sought to make a better world and those who sought to control the one at hand In the Bay Area, techno libertarians embraced networked machines as the portal to a new electronic frontier a peaceful, open space of freedom In Washington, DC, cyberspace provided the perfect theater for dominance and war Meanwhile the future arrived secretly in 1996, with Moonlight Maze, dawn of a new age of digital state on state espionage That first cyberwar, as Rid reveals in a blow by blow account, went on for years and indeed has never stopped In our long promised cybernetic future, the line between utopia and dystopia continues to be disturbingly thin.Drawing on new sources and interviews with hippies, anarchists, sleuths, and spies, Rise of the Machines offers an unparalleled perspective into our anxious embrace of technology and today s clash of digital privacy and security.

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      Published :2018-09-11T20:45:22+00:00

    One thought on “Rise of the Machines: A Cybernetic History”

    1. This book deserves to be read and not ignored as this one seems to be. To understand where we are going sometimes one must first understand how we got there.The author uses a chronological approach by decade and seamlessly ties each of the stories together as if he is a writing a brilliant work of fiction with an overriding narrative leading to a beautiful quilt made of many different tapestries.He starts the story within WW II and the necessity for an artillery gun to anticipate the movement of [...]

    2. If you want a new idea, read an old book. Thomas Rid has done precisely that to reveal the lost history of ‘cybernetics’. In turn he provides new insight to many of our most pressing contemporary philosophical, technological and social questions.It’s rare to read a current affairs book that doesn’t deal in some way with the vast new power of machines. Typically, this challenge is presented as both new and future-oriented. AI is just around the corner. Mass unemployment from robotics will [...]

    3. This book began with a heavy and decided focus on Claude Shannon's contribution to the field of cybernetics. Though I have read a lot about Shannon's work, this was the first time it was skewed to highlight his contribution to our understanding of cyborgs. Back when I learned about philosophy of mind (Andy Clark, The Churchlands, Dennett, Putnam, etc), Shannon's name was conspicuously absent from my lectures and assigned readings. IMO, this was a huge mistake. It seems to me that we cannot under [...]

    4. O que é que queremos dizer quando afixamos o prefixo ciber a qualquer conceito? Cibernético, ciberespaço, ciberguerra, cyborg, cyberpunk. São termos que nos rodeiam num dia a dia contemporâneo, dependente de tecnologias digitais. Neste livro, Thomas Rid leva-nos numa viagem à descoberta da origem deste termo, mostrando como está intimamente relacionado com uma ideia muito específica de simbiose entre homem e máquina, intuída nos conceitos invocados por este termo.A história começa na [...]

    5. The Soul of a New Machine, a painstakingly detailed tale of the personalities and technical work involved in the development of a new microcomputer back in the '70s echoed in my mind as I read this book. Written by Tracy Kidder, it was a brilliantly balanced combination of the technical and the human, operating in the corporate world. The balance was just sufficiently technical to keep the interest of geeks, without losing the common reader, whilst the human and corporate elements were juicy and [...]

    6. A comprehensive and yet, terrifying book on cybernetics, the relationship between man and his machines. Rid is a consummate expert but writes a comprehensive and readable book on computers in our society today. When you read the chapters on Moonlight Maze, you will be terrified.

    7. Rise of the Machines: the lost history of cybernetics by Thomas Rid is still sort of thesis research for me, given my focus on cyberspace. However, as I am not using cybernetic theory as a foundation of my research, this was sort of just fun reading for me as well. I’m not sure how other scholars feel about their research, but I find that the more time I spend in academia, the closer my personal interests align with my professional ones.Cybernetics is sort of a pet interest of mine; my mentor, [...]

    8. A very informative, very interesting book on the history of cybernetics - and the cultural movements it created. I learned a LOT from this book - everything from the first cybernetic devices through to PGP encryption. I confess I got bored at times as the book sometimes laboured over the drug-fuelled visions of Californian cyber-enthusiasts. Nevertheless, the book also hints at some of the dark sides of the "cyber-movement" that emerged in the 1980s and 1990s that seems to be affecting us today. [...]

    9. An excellent history of the intersection of humanity and technology It took a few days to make inroads into this book, but once the narrative got to the 70s and 80s I was staying up late to read more. The story ends up recounting a grand narrative of technological determinism, but in a way that never feels kitschy (a remarkable achievement given that the story hinges on a bunch of ancient tech). Highly recommended to anyone who has any interest in the subject.

    10. This is a non technical review of the use of cybernetics and computers in certain military and control systems including virtual reality and networking. The time period is from the early days of electronic computers in the 1940's to the Internet we have today. One lesson is that neither engineers, science fiction writers or generals have accurately predicted the future, even over a 10 year future horizon.

    11. If you've ever wondered why/how people use the term "cyber" then this book is for you. It tells the story of cybernetics in warfare (1940-1950), techo-utopianism (1960-1970s), cyberspace (1980s-) cryptography (1990s-) and cyberwarfare (2000s-). There is an attention to historical detail in Rid's prose which is really fun to read (or listen to, I listened to the audiobook on my commute). I particularly enjoyed learning more about Gregory Bateson's significance in the history of cybernetics and h [...]

    12. A nice history that demonstrates how literary fiction, engineering, government, and philosophy intertwine to develop the future of technology. The book probably most reads as a history of computing technology than anything else and emphasizes the governments role (and resistance) perhaps a bit too much (particularly the role of war, but the author is a professor of war studies). The book seems to stray a bit from the cybernetics (human-machine interaction), but does attempt to bring things full [...]

    13. An original intellectual and cultural history of the cyber age, starting from the first theories of cybernetics arising out of WWII, via the Californian counter culture, and back again to cyber as a domain of war. A good read though could have done with a bit more editing and some more analysis on the part of the author.

    14. Excellent and very interesting. There were a few sections that I personally felt were less compelling to read, but overall I find this book to be incredible. I would highly recommend reading this if you think you may find it interesting.

    15. I enjoyed this book very much. I have written a longer and more thorough review in Danish (onlineminds).

    16. This book was very interesting! It's a great overview of the history of cybernetics and cyberspace, without getting buried in technical jargon.

    17. Last half was most enjoyable bringing in more tangible ideas and concepts for how cybernetics transformed over time and led to today's cyber thinking etc, along with another great perspective and history lesson from Eligible Receiver to Moonlight Maze. There is not enough cyber history out there to learn from and inform today's efforts.

    18. I think a very short synopsis of this book could read something like 'We repeatedly (and massively) underestimate the time that it takes for new technological ideas to reach the heights that our imaginations envision for them.' Rid starts with the genesis of automated machine control during the Second World War, followed by the birth of Cybernetics shortly thereafter. He then chronicles wave after wave of related ideas in the following decades, tracing first their birth, then their imaginative o [...]

    19. etwas länger habe ich hierdran gelesen, weil es ein bisschen zäh und dröge geschrieben ist. weil es ein eine geschichte der kybernetik werden sollte, aber doch nur geschichten von der kybernetik erzählt. eine hochspannende geschichte im übrigen, sehr zu empfehlen. von den anfängen im zweiten weltkrieg bis zu cyberattacken auf die usa anfang der jahrtausendwende. der autor wird an einigen stellen sehr detailiert und beschreibt die bizarrsten geschichten von hippies auf acid und menschen mit [...]

    20. This is a history of Cybernetics both in imagination and reality from WWII until about the year 2000. Starting with engineers, academics and war planners during the second world war and developing through several permutations in the postwar era. Be it directing missiles and ICBMs or massive computers for IBM. It takes you through the automation scare in the early sixties and hippies like Stewart Brand in the late sixties who saw computers and cybernetics as tools of liberation. It takes you thro [...]

    21. This wasn't quite what I expected. Rather than a general overview, it focuses on three areas— military interests, stones fascinated by the possibilities of virtual reality trips, and anarchists looking to retain their anonymity—and how each of these cultural groups viewed cybernetics. My take away from it is that the promise of cybernetics seems to be continually undermined by those who wish to abuse it. So it goes.

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