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Thread: Robot books

  1. #16
    I am in the same boat, Arthur!

    I have read so much "about it" and have seen pictures of the
    set designs and advertisements for the play. I have also read
    synopsis of it and some discussions by critics.

    Capek wrote in an era when labor unions were in continuous struggle
    for survival, unity, higher salaries, and job security; and industrialists
    were pushing aggressively for more automation and less human dependency.
    The factory owners considered the human workers as part of the assembly
    line, with the common attitude that: This is my factory, that is your job,
    go and do your job. I have always been very curious as to how much
    Capeck was influenced by the Bolshevik revolution of 1917.

    I would really like to see a discussion among our expert comrades on this
    forum in regard to this original play. I think the puppet master should take
    the lead...

  2. #17
    Lord of the Wild Hunt Mithfânion's Avatar
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    This Robota book by Chiang and Card, does it acually have a decent story or it just art? Because it seems rather thin...

    Is the story good then?

  3. #18
    Mystic and Misfit Gkarlives's Avatar
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    Yes, Robota has a decent story with a nice twist in it. Hey every one, how about Metropolis? I have yet to watch or read the whole story, but does it not center around a robot?

  4. #19
    the puppet master ArthurFrayn's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Couple of things

    Looking at this thread, it doesn't seem that there are many stories about robots out there. Plenty of books with robots in but not many specifically centred on them.
    >You might have something there, Ropie. I did a Google search in consideration of that point, and came up with-asimovasimovasimovasimovasimovasimov...
    so apparently he owns this category. And there are a series of pastiches set in his world of robots called Robot City written by Michael P. Kube-Mcdowell and Mike Mcquay. They might be worth investigating:

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/067...lance&n=283155


    >I'd like to thank folks for responses made and to future respsonses. Thanks for links Goony. That one page has a nice stash of Magnus Robot Fighter covers.

    >I did finish the sequel to The Soul of a Robot entitled Rod of Light and while it didn't turn out to be a five star book, it's a 3 and a half or 4 star. I like the main robot character Jasperodus, and would love to see him in further adventures. This one is a richly textured read, and goes into greater depth concerning the issue of robot conciousness. Both books are very recommended. Fun, with a nice big chunk of metaphysics, which is Bayley's specialty.
    Last edited by ArthurFrayn; June 19th, 2006 at 08:30 PM.

  5. #20
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    For what it's worth Arthur, I've got the first of those Robot City books and didn't think much of it. So memorable that I can't remember much about it.

    Though now you mention it, I have remembered Caliban by Roger McBride Allen which was OK (but again based on Asimov's ideas). Stil not sure it's what you want, though. More like The Naked Sun or The Caves of Steel if I remember right.

    Hobbit
    Mark

  6. #21
    the puppet master ArthurFrayn's Avatar
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    Thanks for the warning, Hobbit. Usually those "world of/so and so's universe" pastiches are a trip to Mickey D's. But I confess I might have been tempted to take a look.

  7. #22
    When you say robots what exactly do you mean? AI in human form, artificial bodies or AI personalities in any form. If it's the second there are a few about, but I'm having trouble remembering them now. One would be;
    Diaspora by Greg Egan - Though they are pretty human robots.

  8. #23
    Administrator Administrator Hobbit's Avatar
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    Just had a thought: I have got a copy of short stories about Robots, selected by Issac Asimov somewhere. (Obviously not recently. )

    Would that be any good?

    The reason I bought it was that it included Harry Bates's short story Farewell to the Master, on which The Day the Earth Stood Still (My favourite movie!) is broadly based.

    I'll have to dig and see if I can find it. But it is short stories.

    Hobbit
    Mark

  9. #24
    Member of the Month™ Ropie's Avatar
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    Now I remember Brian Aldiss wrote a nice little parable called Who Can Replace a Man? about a decision that a group of agricultural robots have to take.

    Then of course there's his Supertoys Last All Summer Long collection which features the story on which the film AI is based, robot teddy bears and all, though I didn't think much of these.
    Last edited by Ropie; June 25th, 2006 at 09:11 AM.

  10. #25

    Ai

    I know this is a bit off-topic, but back during university years whenever I was passing through the EE department, there was this AI laboratory. The students there had posted a sign on the wall that said:


    Artificial Intelligence is better than no Intelligence


  11. #26
    Member of the Month™ Ropie's Avatar
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    Just found these pages whilst browsing - might prove helpful to those desperate for robot stories.

  12. #27

    Thumbs up Robot Reference

    Great job Ropie!

    It is a great reference specially for anybody doing research work. Many
    university students, now and in the future, who might be doing term paper
    for a related course find these references very helpful.

  13. #28
    the puppet master ArthurFrayn's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Yeah, I was looking for one of those general SF reference pages, but just couldn't find it. Thanks Ropie!

  14. #29
    Member of the Month™ Ropie's Avatar
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    Just finished Soul of a Robot. Great ending to what was a really fine book and I have to agree that Jasperodus is one of the best characters I have come across in SF. He has just the right combination of good and bad traits to make him amongst the most engaging of constructs.

    The story itself was largely just a background to Jasperodus' voyage of discovery and the parts where the story came to the forefront I actually found distracting. It may have been better to have had a slightly shorter book and missed out much of the detail on the Empire and the proposed take-over of Mars, but still it's not a big drawback: Bayley is a writer of quality, along the lines of a Stanislaw Lem or Christopher Priest so the prose never faulters. I particularly enjoyed the episodes where Jasperodus manages to get a taste of the more bacchanalian of human pastimes

    Overall, I'd say this is a minor classic and offers a very different view of the life of a robot to the more well-known Asimov stories. 4/5

  15. #30
    the puppet master ArthurFrayn's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Glad ya liked it. I agree with your assessment -4 out of 5 stars.

    It's a shame more people don't know about Bayley-he's the least well known of a group of New Wave Brit SF writing pals, including Moorcock and Ballard, and I like him just as much, if not more, than those two.

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