Out of Control Book Summary - Out of Control Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro
00:00

Out of Control summary

Kevin Kelly

The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems and the Economic World

4.2 (39 ratings)
20 mins

Brief summary

Out of Control by Kevin Kelly explores the future of technology and the ways in which it can help us better understand the world around us. The book advocates for using technology in a more organic and decentralized way, which can lead to a more sustainable and fulfilling future.

Table of Contents

    Out of Control
    Summary of 10 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 10

    The future of technology will see the merging of natural and artificial characteristics.

    Think back to the year 1994 – if you were alive then. Remember how back then the internet had not yet really caught on, and there were no social networks, tablets or camera phones?

    Well, despite this technological “primitivity” scientists and technologists back then were already asking the same questions raised today about the future of technology.

    One such key question is: How can we drive technological progress by learning lessons from nature?

    As an example, consider artificial intelligence. At the moment, computers and machines can only perform the tasks they are programmed to do: they only exhibit clockwork logic. For instance, if you program a machine to build a car door, it can repeat this task over and over again, but it can’t do anything else without being reprogrammed.

    But in nature, we find far more complex “technology.” Take the human brain, for example. It can think, learn and evolve thanks to the experiences it gathers. This is known as vivid logic, and if we wish to improve on artificial intelligence, we need to emulate this vivid logic in machines too.

    Yet learning from nature is just one lane in a two-way street: we can also add elements of technology to nature. In other words, while we can learn from nature to build machines that are capable of learning, we can also enhance natural systems with the help of technology.

    One example of this is bioengineering: breeding and modifying plants and animals in specific ways designed to benefit mankind – for example, by selectively breeding cows so that their offspring produce more milk.

    Going even further, we can also see the convergence of nature and technology in bionic vivisystems: networks of individuals and machines in which the network itself is a living entity. One natural example of a vivisystem in nature is a beehive, which is capable of learning, adapting and surviving, but is not an individual organism in itself.

    Want to see all full key ideas from Out of Control?

    Key ideas in Out of Control

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is Out of Control about?

    Though written from the perspective of 1994, these blinks paint a startlingly current and still futuristic image of how technological developments like the internet and artificial intelligence could affect society and humanity.

    Out of Control Review

    Out of Control (2019) by Kevin Kelly is a thought-provoking exploration of the complex systems that shape our world. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    1. It offers insightful perspectives on how technology, biology, and society interact, revealing the interconnectedness of our world.
    2. Through vivid examples, the book demonstrates how emergent behaviors and self-organization play a crucial role in shaping our future.
    3. With its engaging storytelling and thought-provoking ideas, Out of Control challenges conventional thinking and dares readers to embrace the chaos and unpredictability of our complex world.

    Best quote from Out of Control

    A law of God: When something works, dont mess with it; build on top of it.

    —Kevin Kelly
    example alt text

    Who should read Out of Control?

    • Fans of science fiction
    • People interested in the long-term impact of the internet on society
    • Futurists and visionaries

    About the Author

    Kevin Kelly is the founding executive editor of Wired magazine, a leading source of analysis on the societal effects of cutting edge technological advances.

    Categories with Out of Control

    Book summaries like Out of Control

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    30 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    Out of Control FAQs 

    What is the main message of Out of Control?

    The main message of Out of Control is that complexity and chaos can lead to emergent order and innovation.

    How long does it take to read Out of Control?

    The reading time for Out of Control varies depending on the reader, but it generally takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Out of Control a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Out of Control is a fascinating read that explores the relationship between technology and nature. Highly recommended.

    Who is the author of Out of Control?

    Kevin Kelly is the author of Out of Control.