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Posts Tagged ‘fiction with science’

If not, it should be. I need more nerd fiction in my life.

And I don’t necessarily mean science fiction, although I wouldn’t necessarily exclude it. I just don’t want far future, space travel fiction.  I want contemporary fiction which happens to focus on AI.

I started with a search for ‘AI fiction’ and then tried ‘artificial intelligence fiction’ because I have been enjoying having AI show up in some of the contemporary fiction I have been reading. Sourdough had a significant AI component. Does that make it science fiction? It is fiction with science in it. The same is true of Lost and Found in Paris. One of the characters runs a tech company which uses AI, among other things.

The books have other elements I would consider nerdy. In Sourdough, there is some nerdy stuff about yeast and bread and mold and cheese and the history of food and the future of food. In Lost and Found in Paris, there is nerdiness about art history and modern art and architecture and even fashion.

I think I am defining “nerdy” as being enthusiastically knowledgeable about a subject. In Lost and Found in Paris, Joan of Arc plays a significant role, especially the art devoted to her. I know a bit about her history, and I know that she is significant to French political history, religious history, and art history, but I was unaware of just how much art is devoted to her.

Maybe I am looking for fiction that will teach me something, but that feels like much too broad of a category. I learn something from every book I read.

The AI part really has me intrigued at the moment because it’s not science fiction anymore. It is science.

I am a bit of a Luddite at heart. (I love my pens and paper, and I read only paper books.) I believe that computers make us stupid. (How many phone numbers do you know any more? Can you read a map without GPS?) But computers and machines can do absolutely amazing things for communication, for manufacturing, for medicine, for textiles, for agriculture. The list is practically endless.

What I found when I searched for AI fiction: 24 Best Artificial Intelligence Science Fiction Books – The Best Sci Fi Books (best-sci-fi-books.com)

20 Fascinating Artificial Intelligence Books, Fiction & Nonfiction | Book Riot

A number of the books on these lists are the same and sound like good recommendations.  I do still need to read Neuromancer, but some of Gibson’s newer stuff might do the trick, too.  I have plenty.  At the risk of insulting the genius and fans of folks like Ellison, Clarke, and Asimov, I want to read books written closer to the here and now when AI either exists or is getting close.  I want more Sourdough, more Lost and Found in Paris, even more Machinehood.

Any ideas or recommendations?

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