About the Book
Here are two well-known facts:
Artificial Intelligence is reshaping the world as we know it.
The United States has long been, and remains, the global leader in AI.
That first fact is correct. But in his provocative new book, Dr. Kai-Fu Lee—one of the world’s most respected experts on AI—reveals that China has suddenly caught up to the US at an astonishingly rapid pace. As the US-Sino competition begins to heat up, Lee envisions China and the US forming a powerful duopoly in AI, but one that is based on each nation’s unique and traditional cultural inclinations.
Building upon his longstanding US-Sino technology career (working at Apple, Microsoft and Google) and his much-heralded New York Times Op-Ed from June 2017, Dr. Lee predicts that Chinese and American AI will have a stunning impact on not just traditional blue-collar industries but will also have a devastating effect as well on white-collar professions. Is the concept of universal basic income the solution? In Dr. Lee’s opinion, probably not.
In AI Superpowers, he outlines how millions of suddenly displaced workers must find new ways to make their lives meaningful, and how government policies will have to deal with the unprecedented inequality between the "haves" and the "have-nots." Even worse, Lee says the transformation to AI is already happening all around us, whether we are aware of it or not.
Dr. Lee—a native of China but educated in America —argues powerfully that these unprecedented developments will happen much sooner than we think. He cautions us about the truly dramatic upheaval that AI will unleash and how we need to start thinking now on how to address these profound changes that are coming to our world.
The Guardian: Best books of 2018
AI Superpowers by Kai-Fu Lee (Houghton Mifflin) is a superb and very timely survey of the impact of AI on the geopolitical system, the job market and human society. Unlike most books of its kind, it is written from the perspective of China rather than Silicon Valley. It raises important concerns about the cataclysmic disruptions AI might cause, and avoids the naive techno-utopianism that reigns on both sides of the Pacific. If the AI superpowers enter an escalating arms race, whoever wins, humanity will be the loser.
FT readers’ best books of 2018 AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley and the New World Order by Kai-Fu Lee
There are so many great books on artificial intelligence out there, but this one in particular was of great interest as it looks at AI from a Chinese, not US, perspective. One point that stood out was his observation of how many US tech companies are developing AI/algorithms in a US environment for US consumers/users, and then simply applying these to foreign markets without taking into account any of the unique intricacies of those countries. A great read for anyone interested in AI or international business — or both. — Oil CPA
The Economist’s Books of the Year AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley and the New World Order. By Kai-Fu Lee
A former manager at assorted American tech giants—and now the boss of a Chinese venture-capitalist fund—anticipates the coming contest to dominate artificial intelligence. He thinks China will crush Silicon Valley because it has more data, disdains privacy and competes more ruthlessly. Thought-provoking, if not altogether convincing.