Computer Intelligence

With Us or Against Us?

Non-Fiction - General
296 Pages
Reviewed on 10/10/2019
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite

Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? by William Meisel delves into the impact computer intelligence has on society, economy, and daily lives. Meisel opens with a detailed history of the origins of computer intelligence before delving into the current state and a look at what the future holds. The author explores the pros and cons of computer intelligence in how it helps shape our society and the dangers certain advancements present. Computer Intelligence uses detailed facts and statistics to help you gain a complete understanding of every side that computer technology has to offer society and daily life.

The aim of this book is to help people fully understand computer intelligence (CI), to educate readers on what it is and for them to learn how it shapes everything around us in society from social media to the economy. William Meisel has a well-organized style with thorough details and an honest voice. Computer Intelligence is the perfect resource for those seeking a deeper understanding of the technology in their lives. The history of CI will help you understand where the technology came from with Meisel touching upon various influential people in the CI field such as Claude Shannon, Ivan Sutherland, and Alan Kay. These influential people and others lead the way toward the companies that have changed society which includes Microsoft, Apple, and Google. Meisel goes into depth about various advances to give a well-rounded perspective to the understanding of technological advances and the role they play in our lives.

Several of the CI details are well-known parts of our daily lives such as cloud computing, online shopping, ride-sharing, and other apps, and Artificial Intelligence. Broadcasting and entertainment are a notable aspect covered in which Meisel focuses on how the industry has changed drastically through recent years thanks to CI. Meisel delves into the role of CI in healthcare and the global challenges, detailing technologies that can help notify about health, advances in food production, and resources to help children with literacy. Meisel honestly details the darker side of CI usage through the internet with examples including YouTube, fake accounts and hate speech on Facebook, cyberattacks, and overloading on screen time. Computer Intelligence is an eye-opening and educational read that details the history and impact of computer technology on healthcare, jobs, and social media.

K.C. Finn

Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? is a work of non-fiction focusing on technology, and was penned by author William Meisel. Whilst the current buzz around advances in Artificial Intelligence continues to dominate the mainstream news, this instructional volume encourages us to look beyond AI to the wider frame of CI: the combination of the power of the computer itself, and the sophisticated software that results from that power. In this in-depth examination, Meisel takes readers through the history and development of CI, unveiling its true power and current capacity, and then goes on to discuss the developments beyond the current crucial ‘tipping point’ as we go forward into the future.

One of the most impressive things about this highly technical guide is the ease of access with which author William Meisel presents his information to readers. The narrative style is clear and concise, never burdening readers with too many terms at once, and making asides to explain them fully. This results in a thorough consideration of how CI actually works, which is a great base to begin discussing its true capacity. The suppositions Meisel makes about the future have great grounding in the current field of technological capability that we all see and use today, and so his realistic extrapolation of its evolution makes for some fascinating food for thought. Overall, Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? is a highly recommended read for technology enthusiasts, but also the everyday person who would like to be better informed about the technology they use every day.

Rabia Tanveer

Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? by William Meisel is an educational book that explores computer intelligence and the impact it has on our lives. Computers are in our lives; we depend on them and rely on them in ways that can be dangerous if we are not careful. The author artfully carves and creates a debate that focuses on the fact that Computer Intelligence can be a foe or a friend. We decide what we want it to be. I enjoyed how the author gave facts not opinions on how it is affecting our lives at the moment. Meisel talks about the history of CI, how it developed, how it took the form of Artificial Intelligence and how it is still being developed to reach new heights. While most people understand the technology, they don’t know enough about it to understand how it can be dangerous.

This book is very educational; it specifically talks about how computer intelligence is becoming an integral part of life and how we can safely use it to our advantages. The author uses simple language to describe some very difficult technologies on a level that is understandable by all. More than that, he ensures that the reader is able to digest the information and make something of it. I enjoyed how strong the arguments were, how these were not just speculation but arguments with facts. This is a great book for people who enjoy reading up on material that will add to their knowledge.

Astrid Iustulin

Technology is everywhere, but why are many of us are so worried about computer intelligence? Perhaps it depends on the analogy between computer intelligence and human intelligence, even though this is a misconception. In his no-nonsense book, Computer Intelligence, William Meisel shows that artificial intelligence is a useful tool rather than a threat. Meisel collects information about the past, the present, and the future of technology and explains that it expands human abilities instead of replacing them. Computer Intelligence tackles every topic that can interest the reader, including the influence of technology on the economy and if it is true that in the long run there will not be enough jobs for everyone; regulation and privacy; addiction; and also cyberattacks and hacking as new forms of war.

On the whole, Computer Intelligence presents a well-balanced and informative account. If you approach this book without prejudice, you will benefit from its valuable considerations. Meisel does not conceal that some aspects of technology can harm people and governments. Anyway, he makes you realize that some preconceptions are easy to overcome. He does not achieve this result with abstract theories but uses real-life examples and refers to facts that happened in recent times. These references are among the most instructive aspects of Computer Intelligence. This book is also an engaging read. It invites reflection, and in the end, you will be sure you have learned something new. I recommend Computer Intelligence to anyone who wants to know more about technology and its impact on our lives in the future.

Asher Syed

Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? by William Meisel is a non-fiction book that offers a thoroughly contextual understanding of computer intelligence, its history and its evolution, how its tools and techniques are used for artificial intelligence (deep learning, neural networks, machine learning, and algorithms), a critical examination of computer intelligence, and an informed future trajectory analysis. Meisel digs even deeper on the global impact and all its facets as well as the impact it has on society as a whole, serving up a comprehensive guide for individuals who have both a full understanding on the topic and also acting as a meticulous resource for those who have little to no understanding at all.

Computer Intelligence: With Us or Against Us? by William Meisel initially caught my eye following a documentary on the subject, and I am supremely glad it did as it was so much more informative than I would have thought possible. As a casual reader, I was grateful that the writing was as straightforward as it was exhaustive, compiled in a manner that allowed me to go back and share certain aspects with my wife—namely, the sections on Healthcare, Digital Payments, and Criminal Investigations, which were fascinating to me. Additionally, the chapter titled “Are AI Dangers Real” is one that I admit I jumped to first (sorry). Overall this is an excellent, timely book that, frankly, should be mandatory reading for high school and college students who are studying both in and outside of the field.