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We, Robots, a story of the Singularity [Kindle Edition]

Sue Lange
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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Book Description

"...a funny and disturbing satire, and a refutation of the more facile writings in our genre." — Sean Melican, Ideomancer

"Lange gives us a quiet and sad look at the world of institutionalized timidity we are heading towards with or without robots, intertwined with a hilarious send-up of just how we're getting there." — Racheline Maltese, Gather blog

"We, Robots does a grand job of laying the foundation for conversation for someone not versed with the concepts; and it is an interesting story in its own right, told with somewhat of an Asimovian tongue." --GUD Magazine

Poignant tale of humans and robots and the meaning of life.

"This is a short novel, about 100 pages, but it says a lot about concepts of humanity. It is easy to read, and very much worth reading." -- Paul

"It has the comprehensibility of Asimov, the wry social commentary of Dick, the conscience of Serling’s “Twilight Zone” and the heart of Bradbury. However, as much as Lange has drawn from the masters, she has created something completely unique and has a voice of her own that is equal to any of them." --Sandi

Product Details

  • File Size: 142 KB
  • Print Length: 74 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Book View Cafe (March 18, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003D7K0PC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,152,692 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed the story, only wish it had been a bit longer. It reminded me a little bit of Millenium Man, where Robin Williams played a household robot who kept getting upgrades to become more "human" including getting feelings. He almost outlived all the family that he loved, but that is another story. In this one, Avey (nickname for AVI which stands for artificial something intelligence) is a household drone, going about its duties for the family who bought it from Walmart in New Jersey (I liked that touch). Eventually, all the AVIs are recalled for a so-called upgrade to add a pain-sensing function, with the belief that the fear of pain will keep these machines subservient to humans, as the balance of intelligence on the planet shifts from human to artificial. Had they only left well enough alone but, no, people have to go and muck things up.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Big Ideas Come in Small Packages May 28, 2010
By Pete D
Format:Kindle Edition
The novella, that often unloved form, is sometimes looked upon as merely a puffed-up short story in need of pruning, or a would-be novel that runs a little low on the page count.

But a novella done right can offer the best of both worlds, while being its own unique entity. Such is the case with Sue Lange's We, Robots.

This is a story full of Big Ideas, in particular The Singularity, that theoretical future point at which computer intelligence surpasses human intelligence. We're not just talking about running millions of iterations of pi, here, but full-on artificial humanity. The humans in We, Robots, much like ourselves, seem to feel they'll get around to worrying about the implications of that later. Like, when it's about to happen.

Even though We, Robots is conceptually about the Singularity, it's more accurate to say this story is about The Regularity--the humanization of the robots. They don't surpass humanity, they simply remind us of its true potential.

We, Robots is not just a story of Big Ideas (a failure of many science fiction stories)--it's also a story full of small graces. The central character, nanny robot AV-1 ("Avey" to his friends) steps toward humanity in logical, incremental, believable ways. Instead of emotional awareness springing suddenly out of devotion to Avey's charge Angelina, the fatal confluence of human and robot is begun more realistically: the humans, who fear the power of uncontrolled robots, install in them the ability to feel pain. Rather than keeping the robots under control, however, pain leads to the desire for avoidance of pain. Pain leads to empathy. Empathy leads to humanity.

We, Robots is truly affecting, perhaps because we see things so much clearer through the eyes of an outsider.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cute, interesting, wish it had been longer. February 26, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Told from the point of view of a tiny robot AI who eventually gets implanted with the ability to feel pain, this is a cute and sometimes troubling story. I know it says "novella" right on the cover (and in the title), but I do wish it had been longer.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A funny thing happened on the way to the singularity August 30, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Like my The Face in the Mirror: a transhuman identity crisis (Reflections) this is a story that subverts some of the ideas of the singularity/transhuman sub-genre. It raises an interesting question too. If we create truly self aware AI, what are they going to want? Will an AI be content to just be discarded and replaced by the newer better model? Or as Sue Lange proposes will they refuse to take part in creating their successors? It also raises the question of whether the singularity (the point of creation of an AI that's smarter than us, where technological advancement comes so fast we can't predict the other side) is inevitable? Can we avoid it? Should we? Or as I have suspected (looking at things from the perspective of the last few thousand years) are we already in the early stages of the singularity. We may not have true AI yet, but with how computers expand what we can do, it's already getting hard to guess where technology is going to go.
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More About the Author

My work is easily digested yet delves into deep subjects and asks profound questions. And sometimes even answers them. I try to be entertaining without being shallow.

I'm a founding member of Book View Cafe (, an authors' collective that includes such writers as Ursula K. Le Guin, Vonda N. McIntyre, Sarah Zettel, Sherwood Smith, Judith Tarr, Deborah J. Ross and many others.

My latest book, The Perpetual Motion Club will be published in August 2013. Sign up for the announcement as well as news of free ebooks and deals:

My ebook, Tritcheon Hash, was made available by Book View Cafe in 2011. Kirkus included the book in their "Best of 2011" list.

The print version of Tritcheon Hash, was published by Metropolis Ink in 2003. We, Robots was originally published by Aqueduct Press in 2007 and then as an ebook by Book View Cafe in 2010. Her anthology of previously published short stories, Uncategorized, is available as an ebook as is her space adventure, The Textile Planet.

My story, Princess Dancer, is included in the anthology of updated fairy tales entitled Beyond Grimm. We put out a book trailer with the story and you can see it on YouTube at:

My book Perpetual Motion Club will be published in August of 2013. See you then!


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