You have entered the realm of a writer.

Welcome to A Writer's Landscape!

You have entered the realm of my mind where words play with the fabric of our existence. This is the map of my imagination: the very foundations of inspiration, musing, and thought splayed for your wandering eyes. Dive deep into the tides of these forces and experience my reality, my fantasy, my world; and if you should be so inclined, share your words with this land.

Peace and Love!

J Hart F

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

"I, Robot" by Isaac Asimov: AMAZING!

It has taken me a while to grip the wondrous novel I, Robot by Isaac Asimov. Usually I know how I feel as soon as I finish a novel, whether I'll read it again, and how prominent it will be on my bookshelf. This wasn't entirely simple with I, Robot. I knew by the third chapter this book would be one of my favorites. Asimov completely blew my mind on a level that's only happened a handful of times. I, Robot put me in a trance when I read it and wouldn't let go. That's why I couldn't easily judge the book; I was so enthralled I couldn't look at it objectively. I feel I have a better grasp of the situation now, though.

One of the main features of this novel is the structure. The story which links the chapters together is based on a reporter interviewing the revered robopsychologist, Dr. Susan Calvin, who witnessed the birth of the contemporary robots. Each chapter, until the final three or four, is a short story revealing the birth of the robotic sentience which mirrors, in many ways, the evolution of society in a very symbolic manner. My favorite of these chapters was the one entitled "Liar" which follows the story of a mind reading robot who finds conflict with the "Three Laws of Robotics." I started reading this chapter on the airplane on the way home and disappeared from the world. That action in itself hasn't happened in such a long time.

The overall theme or message of the novel blew my mind, and by telling you the message I spoil the ending, so I will refrain and hope you read it. Once I finished reading I, Robot, I couldn't move. Thinking was the only option; considering humanity's future along this path inspired, threatened, and convinced me of Asimov's predictions. Even without the existence of robots, Asimov makes intelligent predictions, some of which are obviously coming true as we live. European Union anyone?

My favorite passage starts in chapter 7, on page 179 and follows:

When Susan Calvin entered the fantastically guarded vault that held The Brain, one of the current shift of technicians had just asked it: "If one and a half chickens lay one and a half eggs in one and a half days, how many eggs will nine chickens lay in nine days?"

The Brain had just answered, "Fifty-four."

And the technician had just said to another, "See, you dope!"

Dr. Calvin coughed and there was a sudden impossible flurry of directionless energy. The psychologist motioned briefly, and she was alone with The Brain.

I simply LOVE the description of the "directionless energy." I couldn't help but laugh.

All in all, this is truly, ultimately, and unavoidably a must read. Socially, I, Robot makes important statements. Artistically, it is a bold, innovative, beautiful, and well written piece of literature! Personally, it's one of my all time favorite books. I look forward to reading more of Isaac Asimov, and I hope you make the time to read this quick book: I, Robot!

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