The New Breed Book Summary - The New Breed Book explained in key points
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The New Breed summary

Kate Darling

What Our History with Animals Reveals about Our Future with Robots

4.1 (43 ratings)
19 mins

Brief summary

The New Breed by Kate Darling is a thought-provoking exploration of human-robot interaction. From military drones to companion robots, it examines the ethical implications and challenges of our evolving relationship with machines.

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    The New Breed
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    Future robots are likely to be closer to animals and pets than humans.

    Are robots coming for our jobs? Is artificial intelligence one of humanity’s greatest threats? Certainly, there’s no shortage of panicked headlines designed to make us fret over this possibility. But this catastrophic reaction has a lot to do with our persistence in seeing robots as being strictly analogous to human beings.

    There are good reasons why we tend to think this way, but in the end, it’s both a limited perspective on the benefits robotics can provide, and misleading as to what we should be concerned about. Make no mistake: there will be more robots in the future, but who says they’re going to look or act like humans?

    The key message here is: Future robots are likely to be closer to animals and pets than humans.

    Many of us grew up with science-fiction stories involving robots. More often than not, those robots had two arms and two legs, they talked like humans, and their superior strength and intelligence made them seem like a threat to humanity. So, in a way, we’ve been programmed to think they might take our jobs – whether as truck drivers, office workers, or supermarket clerks.

    But so far, there’s little to suggest that the threat is so imminent. AI is nowhere near the level of the human mind. In fact, a human toddler is better at performing simple tasks such as identifying a glass of water or momentarily stopping a task to pick up something that fell on the floor.

    Increased computer power is unlikely to resolve this issue. The human mind is simply too complex – too capable of contextualizing new information, switching tasks, and making appropriate decisions. But AI can act like a different kind of autonomous being. It can learn, it can react – albeit in ways that are different from humans, but perhaps not so different from animals.

    Humans have always found ways to improve their lives through animal relationships. Oxen made it possible to transform agriculture on a mass scale. Horses and camels made long-distance transportation feasible. Dogs helped us hunt for food and became such beloved companions that we consider them family members.

    These are the kinds of things that robots can already do, or are very close to doing. Instead of replacing human beings, they’re proving to be tools that can assist us and perhaps even improve our well-being. In the following blinks, we’ll look at how our relationships with animals can provide more insight into how we can integrate robots into our lives in the years ahead.

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    What is The New Breed about?

    The New Breed (2021) offers new insights into the ongoing debate surrounding robots and artificial intelligence. Instead of looking at robots as a human replacement or threat, the author sees a more accurate comparison in the long relationship we’ve had with autonomous animals, which have helped us feel better and get work done.

    The New Breed Review

    The New Breed (2021) by Kate Darling takes readers on an eye-opening journey into the world of robots and the ethical dilemmas they present. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It offers a fresh perspective on how humans and robots can coexist, bringing attention to complex questions regarding robotics and our future.
    • With a blend of compelling stories and insightful research, the book sparks thought-provoking discussions on the impact of robots on society.
    • The book delves into the emotional relationships between humans and robots, providing a fascinating exploration of our evolving connection with these machines.

    Best quote from The New Breed

    Just like animals, robots dont need to be a one-to-one replacement for our jobs or relationships. Instead, robots can enable us to work and love in new ways.

    —Kate Darling
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    Who should read The New Breed?

    • Popular science enthusiasts
    • Panicking futurists
    • Technophobes

    About the Author

    Kate Darling works as a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab. With a focus on ethics, law, and economics, she’s interested in how technology converges with society and the challenges lawmakers and the public will face in the future.

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    The New Breed FAQs 

    What is the main message of The New Breed?

    The main message of The New Breed is to question our assumptions about robots and explore the potential of human-robot interaction.

    How long does it take to read The New Breed?

    The reading time for The New Breed varies depending on the reader, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is The New Breed a good book? Is it worth reading?

    The New Breed is worth reading as it challenges our understanding of robots and their impact on society. It offers fresh perspectives and insights in a concise format.

    Who is the author of The New Breed?

    The author of The New Breed is Kate Darling.

    What to read after The New Breed?

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