Homo Deus

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Harari, Yuval, Noah. Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow. Hebrew edition, ההיסטוריה של המחר (Israel, 2015). English edition London: Harvill Secker, 2016. Available as an audiobook, which we have "listened." For brief summary and numerous translations, see Wikipedia article, as of January 2024, here.[1]

From Audiobook Publisher's summary:

Yuval Noah Harari, author of [...] Sapiens, returns with an equally [...] provocative book, turning his focus toward humanity's future and our quest to upgrade humans into gods.

Over the past century, humankind has managed to do the impossible and rein in famine, plague, and war. [...] For the first time ever, more people die from eating too much than from eating too little; more people die from old age than from infectious diseases; and more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists, and criminals put together. [...]

What then will replace famine, plague, and war at the top of the human agenda? As the self-made gods of planet Earth, what destinies will we set ourselves, and which quests will we undertake? Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams, and nightmares that will shape the 21st century - from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution. This is Homo Deus. [...][2]

©2017 Yuval Noah Harari (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

See also Devs at internal link.

Users of the wiki will find Deus useful for real-world background, with some SF references for AI, the theme of computer or robot takeover, and questions on consciousness and whether it can be stored or transferred. It is also useful for extrapolations into a future of greater human/machine interfacing and/or upgrading human bodies (etc.), as in Bruce Sterling's Mechanist/Shapers stories. Note that Harari talks of computer take-over stories ending with a human victory, notably the triumph of human love; spoiler, but in Colossus and COLOSSUS: THE FORBIN PROJECT the upshot is much less promising for human freedom.

RDE, finishing, 24Jan24