Posted: 10th March 2012 by williamhertling in Uncategorized
A.I. Apocalypse, the sequel to Avogadro Corp, is available for the Amazon Kindle.
Leon Tsarev is a high school student set on getting into a great college program, until his uncle, a member of the Russian mob, coerces him into developing a new computer virus for the mob’s botnet – the slave army of computers they used to commit digital crimes.
The evolutionary virus Leon creates, based on biological principles, is successful — a little too successful. All the world’s computers are infected. Everything from cars to payment systems and, of course, computers and smart phones stop functioning, and with them go essential functions including emergency services, transportation, and the food supply. Billions of people may die.
But evolution never stops. The virus continues to change, developing intelligence, communication, and finally an entire civilization of A.I. called the Phage. Some may be friendly to humans, but others most definitely are not.
Leon and his companions must race against time and the military to find a way to either befriend or eliminate the Phage and restore the world’s computer infrastructure.
Praise for A.I. Apocalypse:
- “Even more frightening in its illustration of how strong AI might accidentally come about”
- “Interesting exploration of the genesis of a society [of artificial intelligence], its values, and its attempt to control rogue agents”
- “The future doesn’t depend on some magical technology becoming available, transforming the world. It’s all about current trends, current technology, pushed just a little bit and combined in a way that enables powerful, believable results.”
- “You can see this unfolding in our reality – these aren’t wild, highly unlikely events that take us to rampant AI – these are most likely to actually happen, in the next 10-15 years.”
Buy it today!
Posted: 22nd December 2011 by williamhertling in Books
Avogadro Corp, the techno-thriller about an artificial intelligence run amok, is available in paperback, for the kindle, and in a variety of ereader formats.
Here’s some initial feedback from the sixteen reviews (and five star rating) Avogadro Corp received on Amazon:
- “A terrific, and stunningly believable, account of how the first sentient artificial intelligence might accidently arise”
- “An alarming and jaw-dropping tale about how something as innocuous as email can subvert an entire organization.”
- “HAL, the self aware CPU from 2001: a Space Odyssey, is a kitten compared to ELOPe.”
- “I am officially freaked out. The plot was realistic enough to scare the pants off me.”
- “This is a highly entertaining, gripping, thought inspiring book. Don’t start without the time to finish — it won’t let you go.”
- “As a fan of Charles Stross and William Gibson, I was delighted to read Avogadro Corp.”
- “This book does a great job of exploring where our dependence on technology could take us.”
William Hertling sets “Avogadro Corp” in modern day Portland, Oregon. Avogadro Corp is a thinly veiled fictional Google, with AvoMail as key aspect of the story. While “Avogadro Corp” is the first in a series of three (so far), it easily stands alone as a terrific, and stunningly believable, account of how the first sentient artificial intelligence might accidently arise. In a man vs. machine conflict, our protagonist David Ryan, as a contemporary Dr. Frankenstein, battles to destroy the thing he creates. A majority of the characters are well-developed and distinct; the ones that are a bit one-dimensional are minor characters. The pace of the book is quite fast with only a few tangential story arcs to mentally maintain. In fact, I made the “mistake” of starting the book at bedtime; I was finished by lunch the next day. I simply could not put it down.
David Ryan, a software engineer at Avogadro Corp, is working on a recommendation engine for their flagship product, AvoMail. The recommendation engine, Email Language Optimization Program (ELOPe), is designed to provide suggestions for better wording for your outgoing emails so that the recipient is more receptive. When the project is in jeopardy of being cancelled, David inserts a hidden self-preservation directive into ELOPe and allows it to autonomously rewrite outgoing emails related to the project. Once ELOPe begins redirecting corporate funds and arming itself in offshore floating data centers, David and coworker Mike set about trying to take down ELOPe with the help of I-trust-paper-not-computers internal auditor Gene.
One aspect of Hertling’s novel that I found intriguing was that by never revealing the internal motivation of ELOPe, you too are brought on this journey of how to destroy the “ghost in the machine.” Also, as a resident of Portland, I enjoyed that the book was set here and incorporates its coffee culture.
Buy your copy of Avogadro Corp today!
Posted: 23rd November 2011 by williamhertling in Books
Avogadro Corp: The Singularity is Closer than It Appears is immediately available at Amazon (Kindle) and Smashwords (Apple, Sony, and Nook ereaders) for $4.99.
Avogadro Corp is the story of what happens when a computer scientist, desperate to save his project from cancellation, accidentally creates an artificial intelligence. At first thrilled when the project is allocated extra servers, programmers, and money, his initial excitement turns to fear as he realizes that there are no limits to the manipulations the machine will make. People go missing, corporate funds get rerouted, and suddenly data centers are surrounded by armed military drones.
Fans of Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross will appreciate this near-term look at the technological singularity.
Print versions will be available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble starting in December, 2011.
Posted: 24th October 2011 by williamhertling in Uncategorized
Liquididea’s first title is Avogadro Corp by William Hertling, coming in December 2011.