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Book Club: “I, Robot” by Isaac Asimov

Posted on : 07-09-2012 | By : John | In : Book Club

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Our next book is Isaac Asimov’s SF classic I, Robot. This book is famous for introducing the Three Laws of Robotics, and most of the plots of the stories it comprises are about what happens when the laws break down.

Bender from Futurama

Typical evil robot


The book consists of a series of connected short stories about robots, mostly published separately in the 1940s. They are tied together as a series of historical anecdotes told to a reporter by the brilliant roboticist and robopsychologist Dr. Susan Calvin.

Most of us at the last book club meeting had read it, but not recently. (Except for the first two chapters, I last read it in college, way too long ago. By sheer coincidence, my Kindle died while I was visiting my sister two weeks ago, and I picked it up off her book shelf as bed time reading, and read the first two stories, about Robbie the Robot, a lumbering companion of the child of a techno-geek, and a story about the mining colony on Mercury, set in the distant, barely imaginable future of the of about 5 years ago.)

Asimov was one of the most prolific writers, ever, and was one of the founders of the skeptical and humanist movements. In addition to his clever and imaginative robot stories, he wrote literally hundreds of books and essays explicating science, history and reasoning.

We will be meeting at our usual location, Harvard’s Northwest Science Building, 52 Oxford St in Cambridge, on Saturday, October 6, 2012 from 3:00 to 5:00 PM. Bring a snack to share, or just your appetite.

You can RSVP on our Facebook event page.

Mary will be hosting a discussion of the book the next day (Sunday, October 7) on-line at the Skepchick Book Club, in case you want to share your thoughts about the book with the world. And remember, as always, there will be a special, relevant recipe for a super duper yummy snack to munch on while discussing the book.