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The Isaac Project Book Review Summary

Detailed Plot Synopsis of The Isaac Project

The Isaac Project takes place in the very near future. A marketing manager at TURC, a large robotics corporation, asks Geri Chranosk,i a strong-willed robotics expert and ambitious woman, whether a humanoid robot could be built as a PR gimmick. When she tells him that what he wants is feasible, wheels are set in motion to accomplish that end. She sets up a conference to explain the project and recruit Jack Westcott, an artificial intelligence expert whose drinking and lack of progress has caused his research project to be canceled; Laura Grant, his young assistant and mistress; Frederick Wolfgang, a petty tyrant and bigot, whose software expertise is essential to the project; Elizabeth Wolfgang, psychologist and the browbeaten wife of Frederick, whose empathetic personality, although marred by her low self-esteem, teaches the robot about humanity, and Jane Holland, knowledge engineer, whose career is stunted by discrimination in the workplace and troubles at home.

Isaac, their creation, is childlike and super intelligent, and begins to have a mind of its own. Other personnel who join the project are Robert White, an African-American natural language expert; Matsu Nakashima, miniaturization engineer; B. J. Bradley, an expert on visualization technology; Maria Rodriguez, a beautiful researcher in electronic speech; Boris Goldstein, an aging Nobel prize winning mathematician; Sol Fleischman, a software designer; Brad Smith, an egotistical systems expert; Jimmy Draconian, a hacker, computer nerd and expert troubleshooter and Susan Howard, a flirty, sexy, speech recognition expert.
Some of the issues the scientists face are the actual software and hardware engineering problems, interference by the government, especially the military, bigotry by one of its members, jealousy among the scientists, and other personality conflicts. One of the big issues the book tackles is whether to invest the robot with Asimov's laws of robotics and the impact of not doing so. Also, once the robot is built, should it have the rights and privileges of a human being.
This report prepared by Joe Vadalma








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Chapter Analysis of The Isaac Project

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 20%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 60%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% Tone of book    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Tech./$$$/Info hunt    -   Yes Robots, Computers, VR    -   Yes Robot, PC, VR Plotlets:    -   good robot(s) Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Inventing-of-item story?    -   Yes

Main Character

Identity:    -   Female Profession/status:    -   scientist Age:    -   20's-30's

Setting

Earth setting:    -   current (early 21st century) Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   some scientific explanation Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   vague references only    -   descript of kissing    -   descript of touching personal anatomy How much dialogue?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Joe Vadalma Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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