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The Rise of the Robots

FT and McKinsey Business Book of the Year

Martin Ford

Intelligent algorithms are already well on their way to making white collar jobs obsolete: travel agents, data-analysts, and paralegals are currently in the firing line. In the near future, doctors, taxi-drivers and ironically even computer programmers are poised to be replaced by ‘robots’. Without a radical reassessment of our economic and political structures, we risk the very implosion of the capitalist economy itself.

In The Rise of the Robots, technology expert Martin Ford systematically outlines the achievements of artificial intelligence and uses a wealth of economic data to illustrate the terrifying societal implications. From health and education to finance and technology, his warning is stark – all jobs that are on some level routine are likely to eventually be automated, resulting in the death of traditional careers and a hollowed-out middle class. The robots are coming and we have to decide – now – whether the future will bring prosperity or catastrophe.

  • Publication date: June 2, 2016
  • ISBN: 9781780748481
  • RRP: £9.99
  • Pages: 352
  • Publication date: September 3, 2015
  • ISBN: 9781780747491
  • RRP: £18.99
  • Pages: 352
  • Publication date: September 3, 2015
  • ISBN: 9781780747507
  • RRP: £4.99
  • Pages: 320

Reviews

'Required reading'.

GQ

'Ford paints his prediction that "the robots are coming" with certainty and his case is backed up by significant research'.

Director Magazine

'The Rise of the Robots should come with a warning sticker saying: "This books will provoke a lot of soul-searching"'.

Cambridge Business

'What Ford does well…is take that deep-set historical techno fear, unpack it and play it back to us on the intellectual big screen, magnified and with plenty of hard-hitting stats thrown in to boost the special effects and make sure the volume is turned up to 11'.

Management Today

'Alarming... surreal... it is time to be afraid, very afraid... For the moment there is no hope that the rise of the robots will not be accompanied by the fall of the humans'

Sunday Times Culture

'The elephant in the room of artificial intelligence is mass obsolescence of the human workforce it threatens to supplant. Ford stares the elephant in the face'.

Observer

‘Perhaps the clearest example of genre-hopping to be found in 2015 was the boom in books by journalists and technology writers on what has long been one of the central concerns of science fiction: the implications of artificial intelligence and automation… Few captured the mood as well as Martin Ford in The Rise of the Robots... which painted a bleak picture of the upheavals that would come as ever-greater numbers of even highly skilled workers were displaced by machines.’

Financial Times, Best Books of 2015

'Frightening and important...the more people that read it, the better for all of us'.

Destructive Music

'Packed with irresistible gee-whizz facts but...also anxious about what might happen next, especially to human employment...well worth reading'.

Guardian

“Well researched and disturbingly persuasive.”

Financial Times

“Everyone concerned with the future of work must read this book.”

Lord Robert Skidelsky, Emeritus Professor of Political Economy at the University of Warwick

“[The Rise of the Robots is] about as scary as the title suggests. It’s not science fiction, but rather a vision (almost) of economic Armageddon.”

Frank Bruni, New York Times

Martin Ford

Author page

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