Bitwise: A Life in Code

By David Auerbach
Read by David Marantz

9.91 Hours 08/28/2018 unabridged
Format: CD (In Stock)
  • ISBN: 9781538539651

  • ISBN: 9781538539644

  • ISBN: 9781538539668

An exhilarating, elegant memoir and a significant polemic on how computers and algorithms shape our understanding of the world and of who we are Bitwise is a wondrous ode to the computer languages and codes that captured technologist David Auerbach’s imagination. With a philoso­pher’s sense of inquiry, Auerbach recounts his childhood spent drawing ferns with the programming language Logo on the Apple IIe, his adventures in early text-based video games, his education as an engineer, and his contributions to instant messaging technology developed for Microsoft and the servers powering Google’s data stores. A lifelong student of the systems that shape our lives—from the psychiatric taxonomy of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual to how Facebook tracks and profiles its users—Auerbach reflects on how he has experienced the algorithms that taxonomize human speech, knowledge, and behavior and that compel us to do the same. Into this exquisitely crafted, wide-ranging memoir of a life spent with code, Auerbach has woven an eye-opening and searing examination of the inescapable ways in which algorithms have both standardized and coarsened our lives. As we engineer ever more intricate technology to translate our experiences and narrow the gap that divides us from the machine, Auerbach argues, we willingly erase our nuances and our idiosyncrasies—precisely the things that make us human.

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Summary

Summary

An exhilarating, elegant memoir and a significant polemic on how computers and algorithms shape our understanding of the world and of who we are

Bitwise is a wondrous ode to the computer languages and codes that captured technologist David Auerbach’s imagination. With a philoso­pher’s sense of inquiry, Auerbach recounts his childhood spent drawing ferns with the programming language Logo on the Apple IIe, his adventures in early text-based video games, his education as an engineer, and his contributions to instant messaging technology developed for Microsoft and the servers powering Google’s data stores. A lifelong student of the systems that shape our lives—from the psychiatric taxonomy of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual to how Facebook tracks and profiles its users—Auerbach reflects on how he has experienced the algorithms that taxonomize human speech, knowledge, and behavior and that compel us to do the same.

Into this exquisitely crafted, wide-ranging memoir of a life spent with code, Auerbach has woven an eye-opening and searing examination of the inescapable ways in which algorithms have both standardized and coarsened our lives. As we engineer ever more intricate technology to translate our experiences and narrow the gap that divides us from the machine, Auerbach argues, we willingly erase our nuances and our idiosyncrasies—precisely the things that make us human.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“An eye-opening look at computer technology and its discontents and limitations.” Kirkus Reviews
“David Auerbach’s Bitwise is a book like no other—a profound memoir, a manifesto, and warning about the digital world he had a hand in making, and which is now remaking us in turn. Auerbach spins out the secret history of the computational universe we all live in now, filtering insider technical knowhow through a profoundly humanistic point of view like no book since Godel Escher Bach.” Jordan Ellenberg, New York Times bestselling author

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: David Auerbach

David Auerbach is a National Magazine Award–nominated writer and software engineer. He previously worked for Google and Microsoft. He has contributed to the Daily Beast, Slate, the Times Literary Supplement, the Nation, n+1, Bookforum, the MIT Technology Review, and many other publications. He lives in New York.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : CD, Library CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Biography & Autobiography
Runtime: 9.91
Audience: Adult
Language: English