Homo Deus

Homo Deus

A Brief History of Tomorrow

Book - 2017
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"Over the past century humankind has managed to do the impossible and rein in famine, plague, and war. This may seem hard to accept, but, as Harari explains in his trademark style--thorough, yet riveting--famine, plague and war have been transformed from incomprehensible and uncontrollable forces of nature into manageable challenges. 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. The average American is a thousand times more likely to die from binging at McDonalds than from being blown up by Al Qaeda. 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 twenty-first 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" -- provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers,, [2017]
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9780062464316
0062464310
Call Number: 909.83 H2125h
Characteristics: 449 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 24 cm

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f
flygt
Jun 22, 2018

Prof. Harari is clearly the product of a feminist indoctrination centre, err I mean university. I think it's well written but I think he's out in left field on most of his points. He praises feminism though it is cancer and worries about climate change though it is fantasy. These are both pc dogma that he presents as undeniable facts. He equates science with religion which is nonsense. Science is self correcting and always challenging and updating its understanding of nature whilst religion is divine revelation, accepted on faith, that cannot be challenged. Although I can buy that religion and political affiliation are cut from the same cloth. Tell me where someone was born and raised and I've got a pretty good shot at guessing their politics and religion correctly. He plays with semantics a lot and words have a very fluid meaning. Music and poli sci are science. Wha??? He displays a very shoddy understanding of economics and doesn't understand why one wouldn't be happy to sit on a hundred grand. That's easy, inflation. What you'll get for that hundred grand will be far less in 25 years or whatever than you'll get today. I think he's overly optimistic about science and technology fixing all humanity's problems. I think gynocentrism and economics will play the largest role in the immediate future. Gynocentrism has led to poor birth rates in the 1st world, misandry is driving men underground, and the welfare state is unsustainable. I think what's coming isn't a god-like state but rather, collapse.

Cynthia_N Feb 12, 2018

A good read but I did not enjoy it as much as Sapiens. Homo Deus presents a grim view of the future.

a
advicenurse
Jan 18, 2018

Like "Sapiens" an unreadible Mishmash-rehash History of western civ; an unoriginal farce, like "exit through the gift shop" mockumentary mishmash art to trash its intellectual value as it juxtaposes disney and di vinci . Who is the intended reader? 14 year olds who know nothing of world history? Or is this intended mirror for our dumbed down contemproary moment when fools are elected president of the US and the end of the enlightment's hopes social of evolution. While the mockumentary film was humorous for a moment, history is too real to be reduced to nothing but "light bulb" jokes

s
saracsmith
Dec 02, 2017

Recommendation from Wash Post 2017 Summer Beach Reads. Social Science book about three scenarios: 1. Humans are expendable 2. The elite upgrade themselves 3. Humans see everything else as expendable

k
kneice
Nov 21, 2017

Wonderful read. But doesn’t live up to the front-flap hype that, “The main products of the 21st century economy will not be textiles, vehicles and weapons but bodies, brains and minds.” And, “The industrial revolution created the working class, the next big revolution will create the useless class.” Or that humans will be treated by superhumans the way animals have been treated by us. Or that democracy will collapse once Google and Facebook know us better than ourselves through networked algorithms. There are no real details unveiled about those themes by the end of the book, but it does pick up where Sapiens lets off and presents data as a new religion, and algorithms as a new bible. That may scare off a few folks, but he successfully describes modern humanism as a religion where we believe ourselves to have individuality, the answers within us, freedom and other myths that don’t come out through the scientific wash, even Darwin’s theory of evolution has no room for souls. The theme I think is to provoke thought about how our “truths” about ourselves will be challenged over and over in the coming decades, and that those who don’t change will probably be left behind. The author deftly shows us how far we’ve come in the past 100-plus years compared to the 5,000 or so years of “civilization” before that, when we could not move faster than a galloping horse unless falling off a mountain. I like the part where algorithms build out the solar system, galaxy and beyond, taking humanity’s discoveries and sharing them into eternity long after human extinction! Book seeks to broaden the view of possibilities over the next few decades, not predict an imminent data takeover or foretell doom for humankind. I was hoping for more detail about “bodies, brains and minds” being the next big products and the creation of the "useless class," but I will settle for this huge vision and keep on the lookout for new information like this.

c
ChrisMcMil
Oct 09, 2017

This book offers many interesting anecdotes and insights from a historical perspective, however the attempts to offer scientific insight often seem simplistic to the point of being seriously misleading, particularly with respect to what science is, what an “algorithm” is (the fact that organisms use algorithms doesn’t mean that they are algorithms, or that they can be replaced by algorithms), and what makes “data” important. However, at the very end he hedges his words by questioning what he had just been saying, so on balance much of his message rings true, and it is certainly a stimulating read.

r
ricklegault
Sep 23, 2017

Homo Deus is possibly the most seminal book on the consequences of computing technology since Hofstadter's GEB. Much more insightful than Kurzweil's Singularity.
With his coining of 'data-ism' to name the new religion, Harari missed a wonderful opportunity for a much better meme. I would have called it 'algorism' (heh-heh).

Richard J Legault

JCLChrisK Sep 06, 2017

Absolutely fascinating. Daring and provocative. Complex, philosophical, and thoughtful. Engaging, absorbing, and relatively easy to read. This is science nonfiction: extrapolating the history of humanity in light of current scientific, technological, and political trends to make predictions about what might come next.

The basic premise: the great challenges of the twentieth century were overcoming famine, plague, and war, and in the most general terms those pursuits have been successful. They were aimed at safeguarding the norms of human existence. With those goals met, we have moved into the new territory of surpassing those norms, and thus the new projects of the twenty-first century are gaining immortality, bliss, and divinity.

Those are bold claims that immediately riled up my natural skeptic, but Harari hooked me enough that I gave him a chance to convince me. I'm glad I did. "This is a historical prediction, not a political manifesto," he writes in the introduction. It is food for thought, not a road map, meant to raise questions and create thoughtful intercourse more than provide answers. And it offers a feast to mull and consider. Absolutely fascinating.

squib Aug 19, 2017

A watered-down follow up to "Sapiens" that repeats a lot of the same material, and then adds levels of speculation. An interesting exercise, although I find he's dismissive of many points of view he doesn't share.

s
stevie22
Aug 15, 2017

Interesting and thoughtful perspective on the future of human beings. Easy to follow and well researched. Good read.

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