Customer Review

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but a bit repetative and contradictory, 6 Aug 2007
This review is from: The Meaning Of The 21st Century: A Vital Blueprint For Ensuring Our Future (Paperback)
Overall, its a good read, the first few chapters really highlight the problems facing the planet and proposes some good solutions. I hope those in power read it.

The second half of the book declines in quality (hence 4 and not 5 stars), not only does it repeat in detail items which were nicely summarised earlier in the book, but the author can't seem to make up his mind. We're told that super intelligent computers will revolutionise the world without taking over humanity, as they'll always lack human emotion and appreciation of the arts, we're then told soon after that the human brain, complete with all human thought processes, will be completely digitised to fit on a chip accessable to computers! Sadly thats just one of many such contradictions.

The Author sees technology through massively rose tinted spectacles (i'd advise him to watch the Terminator series of movies) and vigorously asserts timelines for every improvement, each of which are implied to be uncorruptable. The book misses many negative historical precendents and seems to be divorced from reality in places. If history is any yard stick to go by most of timetable for the 'improvements' will certainly be incorrect, as were the estimates for widespread nuclear fusion power, men on Mars, etc (pick almost anything from a previous decade), and politics will ensure any such 'improvements' are perverted.

It's a book that delivers hope and despair in equal measure, but should be read by all to widen the debate about what kind of planet we want our children to inherit.
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Location: UK

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