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Good science fiction books about intelligence, AI, artificial life forms, etc.?
8 points by dunefox 54 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 16 comments
I recently read Blindsight by Peter Watts and there were some interesting ideas about non human, non conscious intelligence. Any recommendations with these themes?



Solaris by Stanislaw Lem but it's also kinda dramatic so it's not just pure speculative sci-fi about intelligence.


If Lem is mentioned, his Cyberiad should be too :) .


Yup, also a good one.


Well rule 34 by Charlie Stross have some interesting ideas about a non-human, non-conscious intelligece, its just very subtle.

Neptune's Brood by the same author is a science fiction book without any humans in it.


Iain M. Banks. One of the overarching themes of his Culture novels is the tension between human and artificial intelligences, which are considered citizens in their own right.


Hyperion and Endymion by Dan Simmons are quite good.

It's set in the far future, when humans have colonized the whole Galaxy, and AIs have become so advanced that they are sentient and have their own world, somewhat parallel to the human world.


I've mentioned this before (on HN) but I will say it again... Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovksy was one of the best books I've read in recent years. Since you asked, one of the main characters is an AI.


Read both and they're very good.


Adrian Tchaikovsky - Children of Time. Outstanding, philosophically charged sci fi.


Yeah, they're both great.


I just finished Neuromancer by William Gibson (published in 1984) – a mind-bending story with elements of AI consciousness, corporate overlords, and human augmentation. Personally, I loved the whole book.


You just reminded me that I have it somewhere in my book shelf already, but I've never read it!


His Master’s Voice by Stanisław Lem is mind-blowing, it’s a slow burn, but I’d highly recommend it.


The Rifters Trilogy, also by Peter Watts is a great read as well. It focuses a bit more on the transhumanism aspects but non-conscious intelligence is a secondary theme of the last two books.

Pretty much any book by Greg Egan covers these ideas since nearly all of his stories take place somewhere in a shared universe at different points of humanity approaching the singularity. Check out his short stories in Axiomatic or the full length novels Permutation City and Schild's Ladder.


A Fire Upon the Deep by Vernor Vinge


I read it a couple of years ago and it's pretty good indeed.




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