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on May 30, 2012 :
Ken is a rich industrialist who's passionately interested in things like robotics, space exploration, and artificial intelligence. He funds a project that begins to show great promise, but he's less lucky in the researchers he finds to work on it. Everyone is interested in building a sentient robot, and as they invest more and more time in working on it they tend to feel a sense of ownership, and to resist Ken's control. Eventually the project takes on a life of its own.
The human characters are not the focus of the story in Mindweb. There's not much to love or hate about them. But if you're interested in thinking about how a computer program might become sentient, and would it might do afterwords, then you should find this story fascinating. The level of detail about AI and robotics concepts is fantastic, as well as some other scientific topics. I was keeping Wikipedia open in my web browser while reading, so I could do some extra research on the side. It wasn't necessary, but Mindweb puts a lot of abstract ideas into a story format where they're easier to digest.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)