Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Book: Yuval Noah Harari's "Homo Deus"

My eleventh book of the year was Yuval Noah Harari's "Homo Deus".  The book attempts to project how Homo Sapiens will transform in the coming decades and centuries.

I have a lot of mixed feelings about this book.  Most of the book talks about humanism and how our beliefs have transitioned from animism to deism to humanism.  The author then suggests that the rise of evermore powerful algorithms will supplant the human in most decision making thus making humanism moot.

The author seems to believe that we have solved our traditional problems of hunger, disease, and violence.  He thinks the next goals will me immortality, happiness, and divinity.  I'm not sure we have solved the old problems yet (we have improved in all of them) and I'm not sure about the new goals.  He puts a lot in the hands on algorithms to fix everything.  It's like when steam was the new tech everything was steam powered including the human body.  The highest tech is always used to explain our greatest mysteries.  Most of the time these analogies are way off the mark.

I can't say the book was not well written.  It was and it flows well.  I just can't say I agree with all the conclusions.  But difference of opinion is what makes the world go round.

I gave the book four stars out of five on Goodreads since it did make me think of other possibilities.

No comments:

Post a Comment