Skynet? That's so 1980s. Evil artificial intelligence has a new name, and it's Archos.
Archos is the villain in Daniel Wilson's new novel "Robopocalypse," and it's bad-ass. The time is the near future, and Archos has taken control of every intelligent machine on the planet, from household robots to airplane autopilots to self-driving cars. All of them are trying to kill or enslave humans:
In the first months after Zero Hour, billions of people around the world began a fight for survival. Many were murdered by technology they had come to trust: automobiles, domestic robots, and smart buildings. Others were captured and led to the forced-labor camps that sprang up outside major cities. But for the people who ran for the hills to fend for themselves--the refugees--other human beings soon proved to be just as dangerous as Rob. Or more so. ("Robopocalypse," p. 195)
The premise isn't new. But Wilson, who has a doctorate in robotics from Carnegie Mellon University, invests it with a remarkable realism. It's also a fast-paced, multifaceted tale of survival told by characters ranging from an elderly engineer in Japan to a U.S. Army technician in Afghanistan to a resistance fighter in Alaska. As relentless as a Predator drone, this mind-bending thriller will make you tread a lot more carefully around your Roomba. … Read more