If you are anything like me, and curious about how new enterprise tools will transform our relationship with work and business-technology, then you are probably reading a lot about artificial intelligence. There’s likely no other topic that’s been written about in more depth in recent years, yet much of it is unrealistic or poorly reasoned hype.
This is why I’ve been reading more books from trusted authors on the subject. In previous years, I’ve read books such as Erik Brynjolfsson’s and Andrew McAfee’s Race Against the Machine, and Martin Ford’s book Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future. Both were great books that brilliantly framed AI. Last year, I wasn’t as fortunate.
Last year, my reading included The Master Algorithm by Pedro Domingos. It was an interesting look at machine learning algorithms, and specifically the quest for the algorithm—the master algorithm—that would create all future algorithms without the need for humans. This book proved a disappointment because the author seemed as convinced, almost dogmatically so, that general AI success was as close around the next corner as the AI pioneers of the 70s and 80s believed success for them was around the next corner.
The next book up for me was Life 3.0 by Max Tegmark. While this was a good read, it proved to be too much of an analysis of what has been already written than a book that significantly pushed the subject of AI forward in a new or unique way.
Hopefully, my next batch of AI reads will prove better. I realize I’m playing catch-up here, as most of these aren’t new books. But they do look to be important books on the subject.
Here’s what I currently have lined up.
Author: Kai-fu Lee.
Following the defeat of the world’s top player of the game Go, to Google’s AlphaGo AI, the government of China set ambitious plans to become the global AI hub by 2030. In his book, Kai-fu Lee contends that China has quickly caught up to the U.S. and that dramatic changes from AI developments are happening much more quickly than many expect.
In his book, Lee examines universal basic income, and examines what jobs may be enhanced with AI the possible solutions to the biggest changes AI promises to bring to us all.
Authors: Peter Norvig and Stuart Russell.
At 1152 pages, Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach (due out this April) isn’t a light read. The latest edition of this book looks across the entire field of AI, and a deep dive into machine learning, deep learning, transfer learning, multi-agent systems, robotics, natural language processing, causality, probabilistic programming and more.
I have high hopes for this book, as it’s treatment appears to be exactly what I’m looking forward to reading: an overview of the state of AI without going too light on the treatment of each topic.
Authors: Mariya Yao, Adelyn Zhou and Marlene Jia.
This book is made the list because it’s AI as it can be applied to business-technology. It promises to be a roadmap on how to use data, technology, design and staff to solve enterprise business problems.
“We teach you how to lead successful AI initiatives by prioritizing the right opportunities, building a diverse team of experts, conducting strategic experiments and consciously designing your solutions to benefit both your organization and society as a whole.”
That’s exactly what enterprises need to do to succeed at integrating AI into their companies in order to get value from this growing enterprise technology.
Authors: Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson.
I learned and enjoyed both Race Against the Machine and The Second Machine Age. The latest book from MIT Principal Research Scientist Andrew McAfee and Director of the MIT Center for Digital Business Eric Brynjolfsson, looked at the impact of machine intelligence and big data. In this book, the authors look at another form of augmented intelligence: our collective intelligence, and what it means for transportation, medical research, financial services and more.
That’s it for the reading list for now. I’d appreciate hearing what AI-related business books you are reading this spring and summer.