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1. Critical Care: A Novel
2. White Man's Grave (Advance Reading
3. Brain Storm
4. Bet Your Life
5. Rapture for the Geeks: When AI
6. Watsons Brainstorm. Roman.
7. Men Seeking Women: Love and Sex
8. Brain Storm (Spanish Edition)
9. Bett Fünf.
10. Grab des weißen Mannes.
11. Brain Storm
12. Soins à hauts risques
13. Blue Streak
14. Rendezvous in Black (20th Century
15. Biography - Dooling, Richard (Patrick)
16. Critical Care, By Richard Dooling,
17. Bush Pigs: A Short Story
19. White Man's Grave: Complete &
20. Meen Seeking Women - Love And

1. Critical Care: A Novel
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 256 Pages (1996-06-15)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$2.44
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0312143044
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
Dr. Peter Werner Ernst is an internal medicine resident at a major hospital's intensive care unit.He functions on eight hours of sleep for every three shifts at work.Overseeing the care of eight patients, Dr. Ernst's job is to keep death at bay--at least until the day shift comes on, and any potential death goes on someone else's record.

When Felicia Potter enters the ward to visit her comatose father, Dr. Ernst sees the opportunity to spice up his grim routine with a little romance.What he cannot see is how his relationship with the young attractive model will call into question his integrity, his dedication to his career, and just how far he will go for the sake of his lust.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

1-0 out of 5 stars This was an attempt to be funny but I didn't think so...
This book was boring...I couldn't finish it...I am so tired of the jokes regarding medical professionals and most of all the disrespect for older patients.The book was just not funny and was definitely not entertaining!

5-0 out of 5 stars One of my all-time favorites
I work in the medical field, and I can tell you that this book is based on truth.I have read all of Mr. Dooling's books, after discovering this one first.I've bought this book for at least five people as gifts.

Reading this book, I SO wanted to crawl into the plot as one of the ICU nurses, preferably another Stella.Then the ending sneaks up on you, and it isn't at all what I expected, but in a good way.I re-read this book at least once every year.Thank you, Mr. Dooling, for the entertainment and for surprising me and making me think at the end.I'm sure I'm not the only reader who would like to hear more from Werner.

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't get sick.Just don't get sick.
Don't get sick.That's all I can think after reading this book.

My wife used to work as a hospice nurse.She's out of it now, totally burned out.Most of her patients were just fine to work with, she says, it's the family that drove her nuts.

Families don't come off well here: they either keep people alive waaaaaay to long, or want them immediately dead in order to get their inheritence.

Mind you, doctors don't come off so well either.The main protagonist is a doctor for want of something to do with his life.His immediate supervisor - another doctor - is clueless but has great style.The main admitting doctor is a chronic alcoholic.

The patients?Well, they're suffering from fat, cigarettes, booze, or old age.

Only one nurse comes off at all well.

This is one damned cynical book.Like I said: don't get sick.

5-0 out of 5 stars This book is sharp and funny
Writing Excellent
Plot Excellent
Pace Moderate

I love this author's work -cynical, black humor, my personal favorite.He writes exceptionally well.His writing could make an insurance brochure interesting.The plot itself often takes a back seat to his cynical description of the medical field.As a professional in the health care field, a lot of this stuff is sad but true.The plot moves along well even though it's frustrating watching the protagonist sink into a quagmire brought on by his bad decisions.This book is an excellent read.That being said, dark humor is definitely an acquired taste.

4-0 out of 5 stars A must-read for those those in the medical profession
Before taking on Richard Dooling's "White Man's Grave" (a National Book Award finalist), I decided to try out a shorter work of his, namely this 1992 debut work.Frankly, there's not much of a story here.I think even each of the five-star reviewers on these pages would attest to that.

What there is, however, is wonderful insight on the medical profession, especially regarding the dynamics and motivations of ICU care.For anyone in medicine, or even for someone who has a good friend or relative in the profession, "Critical Care" is a must-read.For those who live the life depicted in Dooling's book, there will surely be laughs, head-shaking assents and the occassional exclamatory "Yes!"

Where this book also excels is in its depictions of where the medical and legal professions intersect.In fact, the hospital's in-house counsel has some wonderful things to say to the book's protagonist, Peter Werner Ernst, about 'the truth':

"You must understand that in any litigation conducted by competent attorneys the truth will come out; it's only a matter of when.you must also understand that it is far better for both you and the Medical Center if the truth comes out sooner rather than later."

"Cross-examination can be a very unpleasant experience, even for a witness who is telling the truth.Successfully telling lies is almost impossible.Lies change.The truth does not change.If the honest witness gets confused during questioning, he or she need only remember the truth and cling to it and give the same, consistent answers to every question, even questions for which the witness is unprepared.If the witness is not telling the truth, his or her story will change.A good lawyer will easiliy detect that change and will let the witness go on changing the story.Then the lawyer will confront the witness with each change and ask him to explain it.In his panic, the witness can't cling to the truth because he is lying under oath, which is a crime.More changes inevitably appear.Then, as you can imagine, things get worse...It can be a humiliating experience."

Not only is that superlative writing, it's also about the most spot-on writing on that subject I've ever encountered.I was recently a witness to a cross-examiniation in which that exact sequence of events unfolded.A witness got tripped up in a key lie- he told it once in the morning depostion, then messed it up when trying to re-tell that afternoon.When the lawyer pounced on those differences, it wasn't a pretty sight.The truth would have been a far more effective strategy.Kudos to Mr. Dooling for brilliantly encapsulating that important 'life lesson.' ... Read more

2. White Man's Grave (Advance Reading Copy)
by Richard Dooling
 Paperback: Pages (1994)

Asin: B0044A38UG
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (24)

4-0 out of 5 stars If you've been there...
This is a tightly written, fast-paced, highly entertaining adventure story for any reader - you wont be disappointed.Unless you miss the point.This is not a look into the intracacies of West African politics so much as a funny and honest skewering of the young idealistic American's (read, Peace Corps Volunteer's) fantasy of African mystique, American boorishness, and his own importance in the world - as one of the few who understands deeply both sides of the Atlantic. If you've ever been young, stupid, full of yourself and overseas, and lived to cringe when you remember it, you'll enjoy this novel.

5-0 out of 5 stars Just read it
I was introduced to Dooling by my dad, who is a radiologist and book collector in Warren, MI. He loved Critical Care (a scathing satire of the medical industry) and White Man's Grave is one of his favorite novels.

All I can say is White Man's Grave is hilarious. That's the best thing about it... its a really funny book. Yeah it has a lot of deep and profound messages but its lighthearted and fun to read. Looking forward to reading Brain Storm.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mid West Bankruptcy Atty searching for lost son in Sierre Leone
first our erstwhile anti-hero expects a few terse words in the right places will solve everything but not so in fact words are of almost no use when other means of communication are in process.READ THIS BOOK.Particularly if you are from or still residing in the Midwest, if you want to find a person or a memory but, andmost particularly, if you want to read an incredible serious realistic and fun to read book that is an education into american litigation as well as a very decent introduction to Sierra Leone culture. Not to mention the ending which rivals stephen king and alfred hitchcock, very good stuff.

4-0 out of 5 stars A great book with a few unrealistic touches.
I loved this book to its full extent.It is a perfect representation of some Americans travelling abroad, both of the foreign native extremist types that want to become like those of the native land and that of the American tourist type that can never fully appreciate a land and its people.It also has many implications on the development of West Africa and its role in the global economy.The only part that was disbelievable was the African magic that was actualized in the old American's closet.It is certainly worth a read, not only for the story, but for the cultural content that is difficult to find in other sources.

5-0 out of 5 stars Welcome to the Jungle
If you ever wanted to understand the futility in our attempts modernize third world countries(morally, economically, or otherwise), this is your book.Not to mention it's excellent pace and overtones of the spiritual void of western society.
Dooling doesn't preach to any cultures, he simply shows the inherent differences between them in an attempt to facilitate their coexistence. ... Read more

3. Brain Storm
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 401 Pages (1999-09-02)
list price: US$16.50
Isbn: 0099274833
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
There's been a murder, a "hate crime", and the fearsome Judge Stang has assigned the case to Joe Watson. Joe has been to court exactly once - to be sworn in as a lawyer - and Judge Stang's decisions are never revoked.Amazon.com Review
It's 2002, and Joe Watson, who came straight out of HarvardLaw to a job doing online research at one of St. Louis's top lawfirms, has never spent a day in court. Now he's been appointed todefend a sleazeball accused of killing a deaf African American, whichviolates not one but two tough new Federal hate-crime statutes. Attheir first prison meeting, this Client from Hell not only demands anextra blanket and two-ply toilet paper, but also that Watson get himpermission to have a racist tattoo removed before it gets himkilled. "There are a lot of Afro-Americans of color inhere," he tells Watson. "I don't mean anything by that. Someof my best friends are friends of people who have talked to friends ofAfro-Americans. You maybe saw on the news where a lot of men ofcolored end up in here because they are discriminated against orwhatever..." Richard Dooling's combination legal/medical thrillerand deadly satire of political correctness is a pure delight, asWatson has to juggle everything from a sexy scientist doing brainresearch who seems bent on destroying his marriage to a growingconviction that maybe the murder victim died just because he was a badguy. Other examples of Dooling's artfully hilarious fiction availablein paperback are Critical Care andWhite Man'sGrave.--Dick Adler ... Read more

Customer Reviews (38)

5-0 out of 5 stars My favorite novel of recent years.
This was my first encounter with Richard Dooling and was not my last. I've read each of his books and look forward to more. This is atill my favorite and I have read it several times over the years.
He tackles difficult subjects here and does it with wit and courage. Far more than a legal thriller, this novel explores the a schism in the American psyche as relates to hate crimes and the unintended consequences of legislating morality.

1-0 out of 5 stars Cliches Abound
I bought this book in the dollar bin at Target since I was traveling over the summer and needed some light reads.Let me just say it's not worth the $1 I spent on it.

To give the author credit, he sets up an interesting premise with a man assigned to a pro bono case through the courts that he takes an interest in even with all of the odds against him, and all of the problems it will cause him.

However, that's about as far as the good writing goes.For starters, every single one of the characters is flat and seem to be taken out of a mold of 'common characters.'The seemingly insane judge who really knows what's best, the short, funny lawyer friend who's crude on the outside, but a sweetheart to her kids, the rich inlaws who think they know what's best for the 'hero,' etc, etc.

Nevertheless, I suffered through the 400 some odd pages thinking that perhaps the setup will end in a way worthy of its premise, but it doesn't.It almost seems as if the author couldn't decide a good ending so he just ties up all of the knots and finishes it.

I would not reccommend this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Covers Broad Ground with Decent Depth, But Plot Gets in Way
Okay, so how can plot get in the way?It's more like the plot seems in a hurry to wrap up in the end.A lot of the plot information gets dumped in the last pages rather than dispersed among, say, the whole latter half of the book.

Here's the basics of the plot:
Watson is the protagonist.He's a Midwestern guy with a young family, and also a Harvard Law graduate at the biggest firm in St. Louis.From a slightly loony judge, Watson gets a pro bono assignment to defend a man suspected of murder.Even worse, his defendant is an acknowledged racist who killed a black man.Working every angle, Watson gets fired from his big-firm gig when his pro bono work takes up too much of his time.He goes back to a defense attorney for whom he worked one summer in law school.As he passionately pursues his case, he almost loses his family to his infidelity (both sexual and time-wise).

What are the angles in this book?
1.) Large law firm critique--bureaucracy slows down a genius lawyer, and then the profit-seeking firm ditches a great lawyer, supposedly in violation of one of the firm's arcane rules. Plus, young associates must align themselves with a powerful partner to ensure they one day make the cut to partner.Ever wonder why Grisham's lawyers either start out or end up independent?

2.) Computer Technology vs. the Brain--very postmodern here, and that was appreciated by this reader!Search engines contrast with human memory and experience.And, the femme fatale doctor is the merging of these two fields--she uses high powered computers to map and study the brain.However, her self-aware self-gratifying behavior is repugnant; whereas our protagonist is torn apart by his semi-adultery.The unanswered question--is it natural brain chemistry that differentiates these two or is it Watson's Catholic upbringing?

3.) Fact and Law--this book does a good job discerning the difference between law and fact.Watson fights a scholarly law battle against the constitutionality of a hate crime statute.This battle, like all legal differences, is decided by judges, not juries.Then, Watson has to figure out the truth behind his case.Were his defendant's actions really premeditated, or is he being set up?Kudos to Dooling for letting us root for Watson without pulling for his despicable client.

4.) Sex--there's plenty of lust in this novel, and it works well with some of the richer themes discussed above.

Richard Bernstein called this "A thinking man's John Grisham thriller."True.However, too bad the plot isn't quite as well-paced as Grisham's earlier stories.But, the challenges this book presents more than make up for it.

4-0 out of 5 stars Neuronal advocate
...Dooling has made a serious attempt to show how poorly the law reflects the workings of the human mind.Changes must be made and the changes must be based on firmer understanding.

A story of a struggling lawyer isn't unusual, although this one is tempered by a grasping wife and her Big Money father, a lush suburban house and a position with the city's leading law firm.The case itself seems simple.A vocal racist is accused of murdering a "African American" [the "scare quotes" are an essential facet of this book] - who happens to be deaf.There are heavy implications in this event, not the least of which is conviction for a provable "hate crime" invokes the death sentence.How is a young lawyer, with neither criminal law nor trial experience to cope with the enormity of this situation?

The legal issues are more than words in the statute books.Dooling's knowledge of science and technology introduces some fresh twists.The circumstances, convoluted enough, become even more intricate as Joe Watson becomes mired in trying to understand the new "hate" legislation permeating American law.How is "hate" defined?As he researches the case, he meets neuroscientist Rachel Palmquist [whose name becomes an essential factor in their relationship].Palmquist tries to educate Watson on the latest findings in human cognition as part of her efforts to seduce him.Watson is better at cognition than seduction, as you will likely be as you follow her lectures on why we lack free will and what happens when electrodes are used to stir emotions.All this cognitive studies material is, of course, the basis for the book's title.

The issue in this story isn't attorney Watson's struggles with morality nor the respective merits of corporate or criminal law.What's really at stake is how the law defines and treats "hate" crimes and other politically correct issues.Dooling's point is what laws are now on the books and the prospects for future legislation.He wants proposed laws to consider the recent advances in behaviour studies.Can the cure be implemented before the symptoms come to light?Dooling, through his projection Watson, examines the science, the implications and the possible outcomes.We are shown how some of the studies are done, not always a pleasant vista, but with human and legal implications.Reading this book, it's easy to dismiss Watson as an over-focused simpleton.When you realize he's speaking for lawyer Dooling, however, who likely went through much of the introspection Watson relates, this book gains in importance as a social statement.Dooling uses several good sources for material for this book, although you have to go to his web site to discover who they are.

Dooling has given us an entertaining view of law and science brought in conjunction.How good a job he's done depends on your tastes.This is certainly not escapist crime fiction.His concentration on legal and neuroscience issues far outweighs the specific crime involved.His characters try fervently to express the many concepts this book deals with, but fall short of the mark.The one success is Federal Judge Stang, whose seniority and astute understanding of law and lawyers make him the star of the book.If you want "mysteries", go elsewhere....Dooling's ideas and discussions of practical issues, however, are an excellent start in either direction.Read it, but don't stop here.

2-0 out of 5 stars Hard to stomach
Dooling makes a decent attempt at a philosophical take on the way that modern science perceives the self and the soul in the guise of a legal thriller. It seems that his extensive research into brain scanning technologies left him little time to clean up the rest of the book.

There are a number of irritating inaccuracies throughout the book, and it is hard to fathom why it is necessary to give a character the "600 mhz Pentium VI" instead of a computer that actually exists. Descriptions of search engines and web surfing technology have similar flaws.

Worse than these details, the plot seems to be pulled from a manual on deus ex machina. The lawyers and judges are pulled from prototypes, and those looking for the subtle word play that makes legal fiction so fun will be sadly disappointed. The underlying crime is so far-fetched, and the odds so against the protagonist, that every extreme must be reached for the book to achieve a happy ending. After about three implausible plot turns - and I have nothing against an exciting plot twist, when somewhat feasible through human nature, or even good luck - it was hard to take the book seriously at all. ... Read more

4. Bet Your Life
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 352 Pages (2003-10-01)
list price: US$13.95 -- used & new: US$0.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0060505400
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
  ... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

2-0 out of 5 stars So-so
Dooling is a good writer, although he is too fond of mixed and and corny metaphors that feel, say, shoulder to shoulder with the treacly taste of a butterscotch malt on steroids. The language play does not impede, though, and this book is a fast read. But what about the characters and situations?

--A young uber-geek, strung out on computers and recreational drugs.
--The 30-ish insurance fraud investigator Carver, obsessed with an ambiguous sex object, and imitating private dick speech from film noir.
--The ambiguous sex object Miranda, another fraud investigator whose religious fanaticism pops up often and annoyingly.
--An older and grumpy insurance section head who hypocritically reminisces too often about the old days.
--A stereotyped police detective whose skill set embarrasses the inept FBI goons.
--And other minor players recognizable from movies. Or wait, maybe Dooling had a movie script in mind here.

This cast is set in the context of selling insurance policies (viaticals) that sit on the edge of, or jump into, fraud. If you are VERY interested in viaticals, you might like this book and its goofy twists and turns. But you will have to tolerate bizarre relationships, especially between Carver and Miranda. The oddest scene happens toward the end of the book when Carver storms Miranda's apartment and furiously shrieks out a metaphor with Jacob and Esau of Genesis fame. It goes on for pages. So far, so bad...and then...huh? Instead of dialing 911, Miranda suddenly gets all snuggly and Carver gets rewarded for his ranting.

If I had cared about any of the characters, I might have enjoyed this more. I can't wait to avoid the movie version.

5-0 out of 5 stars inventive read
This is a gripping tale, inventively-written in a style like no other and very funny. I instantly gave my copy to a good friend to read when i finished it.

4-0 out of 5 stars A mystery worth reading
I really liked this story, as it's so rare to be completely in the dark throughout a mystery. Usually you can feel yourself being led in one direction or another, hints are given so obviously that you have to suspend your disblief AND ignore the hints to stay with the story.

The techno-speak and detailed insurance information was a tad on the tiring side, but not too bad.

I really enjoyed the read and will certainly look for more from this author.

5-0 out of 5 stars Midwest Book Review -noir voice, tidy suspense tale
In Bet Your Life, Richard Dooling spins a tidy mystery suspense tale with twists and turns aplenty.Think Raymond Chandler complete with hi-tech savvy and a contemporary edge.Press releases dub this book "classic noir", and it certainly is that, combined with well-defined characters and an unusual plot

Carver Hartnett is a straight arrow insurance fraud investigator who tells the story in first person.Miranda Pryor is the chaste but seductive object of Carver's desire.And Lenny Stillmach is the friend who manages to be a high tech genius despite manic-depression and chronic drug and alcohol abuse.These three friends comprise the team of fraud investigators who are very good at what they do.Each brings different but effective skills to the team.

Lenny's unexpected death under strange circumstances casts suspicion on his friends.These suspicions are compounded by the discovery that he has purchased multiple six figure life insurance policies naming Carver and Miranda, as well as others, as beneficiaries.Seems that Lenny's boss, the local police, and FBI think he has been running a lucrative scam by buying and selling high dollar policies for fun and profit.Carver can't trust anyone, including Mrianda, and he finds himself up to his eyebrows in a local and federal investigation.His life is in danger and it's up to him to find out why as he tries to separate the good guys from the evil doers.

Richard Dooling is an award nominated author because his wordsmithery is unique.His style is modern with the noir voice of past masters of the genre.Bet Your Life is not a simplistic tale.Intelligent fans of the genre will enjoy the experience.

1-0 out of 5 stars slow and convoluted
Granted, making insurance seem interesting or even exciting takes special skills but this book makes you force yourself to pay attention. Not a good thing. There is nothing particularly interesting about the protagonist Carver Hartnett who pines after his co-worker Miranda for too many pages.

When Lenny, a co-worker of Carver and Miranda who has some risky personal habits, dies under mysterious circumstances, Carver sets to find out what happened. Despite's Dooling's attempts to create witty banter among the friends, I just didn't care enough to know what happened to Lenny who had no apparent traits to justify Carver and Miranda's loyalty to him. In addition, Carver doesn't come off as very bright in many of his actions. It's hard to sympathize with such a character.

Plodding dialogue with occasional religious references also slow the story down. I can't recommend this one. ... Read more

5. Rapture for the Geeks: When AI Outsmarts IQ
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 272 Pages (2009-11-24)
list price: US$14.00 -- used & new: US$4.12
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0307405265
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
“Nimble and entertaining . . . A fascinating historical review of our longtime obsession with machines.”
–David Takami, Seattle Times

In Rapture for the Geeks, Richard Dooling looks at what some of the greatest minds have to say about our roles in a future in which technology rapidly leaves us in the dust. Is the era of Singularity, when machines outthink humans, almost upon us? Will we be enslaved by our supercomputer overlords, as many sci-fi writers have wondered? Or will humans live lives of leisure with computers doing all the heavy lifting?

With antic wit, fearless prescience, and common sense, Dooling provocatively examines nothing less than what it means to be human in what he playfully calls the age of B.S. (before Singularity)–and what life will be like when we are no longer alone with Mother Nature at Darwin’s card table.

“One doesn’t expect a nonfiction book to be fascinating, chilling, thoughtful, and funny in equal measure. This one is.”–Kurt Andersen

“Dooling really is onto something here.”–Ars Technica ... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

1-0 out of 5 stars The first 50 pages I read have nothing to do with the jacket description of the book
The jacket description intrigued me, and thus I bought this book.I thought I was buying a book about the future of computers and how they would change and change our lives.

What I got was a book that for the first 50 pages that I suffered through only talked about how the author currently used his computers, I really don't need to know how another person blogs or emails or spends their day with their computer.

I am assuming that at some point in the book, the author does in fact get on-target and actually write about what the book was *supposed* to be about, but after 50 pages, I gave up and am moving on.

I feel like I was a victim of a bait-and-switch, thus I gave this book 1 star.

I'm just glad I only paid $4.99 for it at a discount book store, what a waste of time...

5-0 out of 5 stars To a niche audience, this book is awesome!
Reading some of the other customer reviews on here kind of bums me out.It seems like people are judging this book based on their own expectations rather than for what it is: an entertaining tour of the most important ideas about artificial intelligence.

I loved this book.But I realize that I am a quirky guy who happens to be fascinated by theoretical science, and who is already fairly well-read about the singularity concept.For me, the book was an entertaining opinion-piece in which Dooling takes the reader on a tour of singularity's main ideas, while making sure to keep the reader entertained the whole way.He touches all the bases from Moore's Law to basic programming concepts (and hits on most of my favorite topics including consciousness, free will, and memes), and he gives the reader a glimpse at the contributions and opinions of all the key personalities from Ray Kurzweil to Bill Joy.Rather than being in depth and technical, the book presents the ideas in an everyman style, and Dooling provides enough specific links and references to point anyone interested in learning more about specific technical topics in the right direction.

In my opinion, Dooling also makes some noteworthy contributions in the form of opinions and hypothetical scenarios.I've spent considerable time reading about artificial intelligence, and Dooling came up with quite a few interesting twists to the usual analysis that were new to me!As long as you have sufficient background knowledge, you will be able to tell when Dooling gets into opinion/speculation mode, and you should take it as such.For example, I personally disagree with his idea that singularity might be just another form of religion, but I am glad to have been exposed to the interesting idea.Bottom line: it is a book of ideas and hypotheticals, not a book about technical information.And I think it's filled with some superb ideas!

2-0 out of 5 stars Loses focus
Richard Dooling discusses the growing power of artificial intelligence and the possibility of the "singularity", the point at which artificial intelligence could become self-aware.

Dooling is very amusing, tossing out some great one-liners, and bringing together a wide range of knowledge from the fields of technology, science, and philosophy. He discusses Turing tests, the classic test for "true" artificial intelligence, and expounds on the implications of Moore's Law (that computer processing power doubles every two years).

He talks about current dependence on technology and about a future when man and machine become inseparable and indistinguishable, and about the possibility that humans are well on the way toward inventing the species that will supplant us as the dominant life-form on Earth.

This is serious stuff, and it's pretty fascinating, and all told with lots of humorous anecdotes and bits of trivia. If only Dooling could have stuck to the topic.

Instead, he goes off on tangents based on what appears to be his personal gripes with Microsoft, World of Warcraft, and Richard Dawkins, each of which gets roughly a chapter of general ranting in of the sort you can find in a million blogs and message boards. And none of which have much at all to do with the topic at hand.

I was also disappointed in Dooling's playing up of gender stereotypes, particularly with his attempt at humor regarding World of Warcraft. Dooling loses some his credibility by appearing to have missed the news that there are female gamers. Most of us figured that out about ten years ago. Some of us married one.

The Microsoft stuff was another disappointment. Not that Dooling is fundamentally wrong in his issues with Microsoft. It's just that the same complaints have been bandied around the internet for years, and they have little bearing on the book that Dooling seemed to set out to write.

In fact, the whole second half of the book feels like the author ran out of ideas and was simply grasping and ranting on whatever he felt like.

Which is too bad, because it was all off to a really good start. This is still a very funny book, and a very interesting one. I was entertained. Dooling tells some good stories. If he could have told them in a more coherent way, he might have really had something here.

2-0 out of 5 stars Some interesting content, but you have to look for it.
I bought this book in hopes that it would offer a detailed, analytical discussion of the origins, present state, and possible futures of machine intelligence.In that regard, I'm disappointed.I suppose the subtitle would more aptly read, "Based on Hunter S. Thompson's narrative style, but with the gonzoness".The book dwells more, as other reviewers have noted, on vaguely relevant citations of jargon, quotes taken out of context, snarky comments on hacker and gamer culture, and insubstantial, plebeian drive-by sniping at Microsoft.Sure, the discussion of the parallels between Faust and the scientists of the Manhattan Project is fairly interesting, but I believe this is old hat for most geeks.The 25-page anecdote describing the conspiracy of a father and son to circumvent the wife/mother's effort to get the boy involved in sports instead of the playing World of Warcraft was entertaining, but took up 23 pages more than it needed to.There is definitely no engineering insight into machine intelligence, unless you're able to find something that I missed in the author's retrospective of the early days of word processing and the supposition that Microsoft is trying to screw us all to death with their license enforcement and lack of file-format portability.Several other folks have mentioned the tongue-in-cheek code snippets that the author included; I think he'd actually have been ahead to include, instead, a sprinkling of illustrations from XKCD.

Prior to reading this book, I'd read the wikipedia article discussing the Technological Singularity.It offered a much more concise and technically insightful discussion of this material.I wish I'd saved my money and time, and stopped there, and spent my time reading in-flight magazines instead of trying to get value from this book.

1-0 out of 5 stars Rambling Rehash of Other People's Ideas
Dooling has an interesting idea: the Singularity is a religious phenomenon, as well as a technological phenomenon. Dooling introduces this idea, then does not bother to expand upon it until the very last chapter. In the meantime, he proceeds to spend most of this book paraphrasing the work of people like Ray Kurzweil and Bill Joy, when not criticizing Microsoft or praising Linux.

As a professional computer programmer, I also need to say that Dooling's belief that everybody should learn a programming language before the Singularity is incorrect. Dooling presents Python-language code boxes as examples of the type of programming the reader should learn. However, in my experience, the more intelligent and capable the programmer, the more likely he/she is to use "harder" and less readable computer languages. In theory, I suppose, an ultimate intelligence would write programs directly in machine code, or ones and zeros. Such an intelligence would not need compilers or human-readable programming languages at all. So Dooling can code in Python as much as he wants, but he's deluded if the thinks an AI would be impressed that he took the time to learn some human-readable language which needs a compiler to be converted into machine code. An AI might very well regard him with disdain instead, much like the uber-geeks Dooling describes who disdain Microsoft. Or an uber-geek like myself who disdains the fact that someone is promoting learning Python as a long-term survival strategy.

Mr. Dooling needs to unplug his computer and get out to some conferences and conduct some interviews. I've read every book and essay he lists and the originals are much better organized and more interesting. Dooling adds nothing to any of them: he simply paraphrases these people's work. If Dooling had bothered to phone or email Kurzweil (or anybody at all) then he might have come up with some fresh insights into the religious aspects of the Singularity. Conferences around this happen several times a year, but Dooling has apparently written a book about the subject without attending any of these. Dooling's editor should have insisted that he get out from behind his screen and go talk to somebody. That would have greatly helped this book.

The only religious insights we get from this book are that Dooling worships Linux and he "has faith". We know he has faith because he dislikes Richard Dawkins' "The God Delusion". Dooling spends a section criticizing Dawkins: basically Dooling claims religion should not be subject to reason or logical inquiry. This explains why this book is such an utter failure: Dooling claims that the Singularity is partly religious, then refuses to engage in the necessary inquiry to try to explain how it affects faith or belief. But isn't the entire point of this book to examine how the Singularity affects religion? If Dooling won't use logic or reason to examine this, then why did he write this book in the first place? Apparently, not only is he not qualified to write about this topic, but does not even want to write about it.

So for future AI's who wish to know how ordinary humans viewed their coming: this book will not help you very much. You already know everything from other, better writer's work. Dooling has simply paraphrased it and has added nothing new of his own. ... Read more

6. Watsons Brainstorm. Roman.
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 551 Pages (2002-07-01)

Isbn: 3423205407
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7. Men Seeking Women: Love and Sex On-line
by Po Bronson, Richard Dooling, Eric Garcia, Paul Hond, Gary Krist, Alexander Parsons, David Liss
Paperback: 208 Pages (2001-03-20)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$3.95
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Asin: 0812991672
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Men Seeking Women: Love and Sex On-line is an exciting and original collection of new short fiction by men about men seeking women, and women seeking men in the digital age.

The Internet revolution has altered the look of the traditional relationship.Through e-mail correspondence, chat room chats, and message board postings, the manner in which we meet and mate has drastically changed.While the search for love is a timeless one, how and where we look has never been more a sign of the digital times.

Here, ten talented storytellers offer thoroughly contemporary portraits of relationships in the world of new media and high technology in chat rooms, porn sites and other on-line realms. Men Seeking Women is a fresh and unconventional look at the cyber-landscape of love, sex, and companionship.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great fun
"Men Seeking Women" is a genuinely entertaining collection of stories that all, in one way or another, center around sexual relations on the internet (with the curious exception of the last story by Po Bronson which, while good, doesn't seem to have anything to do with the rest of the collection).This is a really strong group of stories that explores the impact of the internet on the interactions between the sexes in a variety of different ways and from a variety of different angles.Some of the stories were better than others, of course, but I particularly liked "Payback Time" by Gary Krist, which takes as its theme the way men develop powerful crushes on enigmatic women they encounter on-line but of whom they know nothing; "Minesweeper" by David Liss, which is about a serial internet liar and how he justifies his awful behavior to himself; "The Face in the Glass" by Paul Hond, which is basically just effective and creepy; and "Prisoners of the Heart" which is, perhaps, not particularly realistic, but a whole lot of fun. ... Read more

8. Brain Storm (Spanish Edition)
by Richard Dooling
 Paperback: 416 Pages (2005-06-30)
list price: US$30.90 -- used & new: US$28.00
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Asin: 8478889094
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Un libro al igual de los de Grisham, un misterio legal. ... Read more

9. Bett Fünf.
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 317 Pages (1999-01-01)
-- used & new: US$33.68
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Asin: 3423125594
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10. Grab des weißen Mannes.
by Richard Dooling
Paperback: 480 Pages (1998-06-01)

Isbn: 3423125144
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11. Brain Storm
by Richard Dooling
Audio Cassette: Pages (1998-12-21)
list price: US$104.00 -- used & new: US$9.20
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Asin: 0736643354
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12. Soins à hauts risques
by Richard Dooling
Mass Market Paperback: 370 Pages (2006-11-22)

Isbn: 2352870151
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13. Blue Streak
by Richard Dooling
 Hardcover: Pages (1997-08-19)
list price: US$3.99
Isbn: 0517193698
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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A funny, provocative, and knowledgeable book about cursing and swearing, Blue Streak includes chapters on political correctness and on foul-ups in the workplace and in the courts caused by language regulations. It explores the tendency of men to swear more than women, the history and implications of some of the more common swear words, and obscenity in social, personal, and even theological conversation and literature.

In this volume you will find a fascinating and hilarious explanation of what "f--- you" actually means. (It turns out to be a strange little piece of syntax.) You will tour Hell as a piece of real estate. And you will learn why God would probably rather have us swear than not. The writing is playful and sophisticated, and it takes Blue Streak far beyond mere naughtiness and into the realm of literature. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars A romp through ribaldry
Dooling asks why we, particularly men, swear.He searches through history and psychology, sometimes successfully, for the roots of expletives and why we use them.He also considers the reactions to such outbursts and their justification.We are trained as children to eschew "bad" words, but males tend to overcome that brainwashing and use profanity under a wide range of circumstances.Swearing is a near universal and must be contemplated in that setting.Recognizing that fact, he argues, could provide a seawall against the tsunami of "harassment" litigation pending in the courts.

If profanity, which Dooling provides almost to saturation, has a natural basis, then the laws covering workplace expression are irrational and doomed to failure.Worse, they seem to be having more negative impact on lives than on improving workplace conditions.Worse still, is the potential for all this legal [and social] activity leading to thought control?That ultimate question is Dooling's purpose in this rather impudent illustration.He sees the application of civil rights legislation of the 1960s has led along unanticipated paths.Civil rights, originally intended to protect voting and job rights, now extends into the realm of "feelings."Overt discrimination has been replaced by legislated politeness.Dooling wants to curtail the highly questionable practices resulting from vague definitions and decisions.This collection of essays boldly confronts us with past practices.We need to recognize what has occurred and reverse the process. It's not a question of manners, but of reality.

The illogical roots of "political correctness" are now being exposed by many good studies.This one happens to be one of the more senses-assaulting ones, but is no less valuable for that.Dooling's position as a lawyer provides a solid foundation for his arguments, and his delightful style will amuse any but the defiant reader.The examples he offers in support of his case should be noted carefully, they are being joined by others.There will be more until the populace awakens to the threat.Heed Dooling's call for your attention and follow his lead.He's gaining company in other areas - Gross and Levitt's "Higher Superstition" is another defence against the assaults on our liberties.[stephen a. haines - Ottawa, Canada] ... Read more

14. Rendezvous in Black (20th Century Rediscoveries)
by Cornell Woolrich
Paperback: 240 Pages (2004-03-16)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$6.00
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Asin: 0812971450
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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On a mild midwestern night in the early 1940s, Johnny Marr leans against a drugstore wall. He’s waiting for Dorothy, his fiancée, and tonight is the last night they’ll be meeting here, for it’s May 31st, and June 1st marks their wedding day. But she’s late, and Johnny soon learns of a horrible accident—an accident involving a group of drunken men, a low-flying charter plane, and an empty liquor bottle. In one short moment Johnny loses all that matters to him and his life is shattered. He vows to take from these men exactly what they took from him. After years of planning, Johnny begins his quest for revenge, and on May 31st of each year—always on May 31st—wives, lovers, and daughters are suddenly no longer safe. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars Five Star Noir
This book is raw every which way. The sentences are ungrammatical, compound words invented by Woolrich pop out at you.Rendezvous in Black is a masterful anarchy of both structure and language. And it all works together as a suspenseful, surreal narrative.

The main guy, Johnny Marr is the everyman become unhinged. At the outset we are introduced to him as one of those faces in the crowd, an unremarkable man, what they used to call in 1940s parlance an "Ordinary Joe." He thinks he's got it pretty much figured out, he's staked out his claim-- he's got his girl, and has a little money in his pocket. But security is an illusion.

A nightmarish accident kills his longtime sweetheart. Her battered body is displayed in death as a gory sideshow attraction on a nighttime street crowded with the sensation seeking public.

The freakish and the unforeseen have just sent Johnny an express message straight from Woolrich's parallel universe. Fate has stepped up with a lesson: a cosmic smack in the face that knocks him back and sends him reeling. Now Johnny is compelled to take a detour from familiar and commonplace reality and ditch Main Street for a road of biblical wrath and revenge. This average guy is now on a fantastically contrived mission to make the "killers" pay for the death of his lost love and the end of all his hope for the future--by making them suffer the excruciating pain he suffers.

Both Cornell Woolrich and Jim Thompson are masters of grit, the keynote of the noir genre. Woolrich could have been a celebrity name like Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett and James M. Cain. He wasn't however a self-promoter. He was reclusive, tortured by personal demons and called seedy New York City hotel rooms his home.

This book is an unremitting dark ride; the best of it's kind.

5-0 out of 5 stars Discover a hidden gem
Cornell Woolrich is a little known master who deserves to be discovered. I encourage you readers to walk down his inky black streets, to hide among the shadows, and know what it is to live in fear.

3-0 out of 5 stars Operatic, energetic, schematic
RENDEZVOUS IN BLACK, one of the final novels in Cornell Woolrich's famous "black" series that have formed the basis for so many films noirs, is one of his most highly praised works. It is enormously suspenseful: an anonymous young man whose fiancée has been killed in a freak accident instigated by a group of wealthy hunters in a low-flying plane takes his revenge by systematically murdering the woman most beloved to each of the five men so they can share in his grief. Each of the five murders occurs in a different chapter and told in a different style: we know that a woman is going to get it and when, but we don't know how and sometimes we don't even know who. Simultaneously, a police detetctive begins assembling clues to catch the killer. Certainly Woolrich can draw out the suspense in each chapter, and the schematic narrative (which often refers to the characters as "the man" or "the woman") invests the narrative with an almost allegorical quality that makes the whole work seem over-the-top. But there's very little character development in the text, and the shoddy ironic twists in several of the stories seem telegraphed a mile away. Also, the misogynistic undercurrent to most romans noirs seems queasily overemphasized here: except for the first victim (who dies the most gruesome of the deaths), each of the killer's targets intentionally defies the dictates of male authorities in her life, as if to suggest she deserves what's coming to her.Although on one hand this seems almost a pure distillation of the operatic fatalism of the roman noir, it's simply not as good a work as Woolrich's more fleshed-out books like WALTZ INTO DARKNESS or I MARRIED A DEAD MAN--not to mention such superior suspense novels of the period as (for example) Kenneth Fearing's THE BIG CLOCK or Elisabeth Sanxay Holding's THE BLANK WALL.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Hitchcock of the Written Word
The introduction to this novel says that Woolrich has been described as the "Hitchcock of the Written Word," but adds that maybe he wouldn't have liked this description.It might be even more accurate to say that Hitchcock is the Cornell Woolrich of the cinema - since many of Woolrich's works came before Hitchcock's, and Hitch even adapted one of Woolrich's stories into one of his most famous movies, Rear Window.

The point, though, is that this guy writes suspense like you've never seen.I say "seen" because reading his novels is really a visceral experience.I don't know how he does it but Woolrich can write a beautiful, elegant story that you can sort of just almost SEE unfolding like a movie --- a movie that will move you emotionally and also scare the bejesus out of you.

Rendezvous in Black contains six interlinked stories about six doomed love affairs threatened by violence. Five of these are labelled "The First Rendezvous" through "The Fifth Rendezvous."The sixth is the story that ties them all together (but it comes first in sequence).I don't want to spoil the experience of reading this book for anyone, but overall it is just amazing and I cannot recommend it more highly.Woolrich, as has been noted here already, was a protege of F. Scott Fitzgerald's.Like Dashiell Hammett, he's an author who makes mysteries somehow as beautiful as what passes for "literature" - yet so emotionally gripping that you hardly notice till you are done how beautiful the craft of what you just read really was. The characters are spectacular and each one is described with wonderful psychological details.One of my favorites is this description of the police detective:

"He was too thin, and his face wore a chronically haggard look...His manner was a mixture of uncertainty, followed by flurries of hasty action, followed by more uncertainty, as if he already regretted the just preceding action.He always acted new at any given proceedings, as if he were undertaking them for the first time.Even when they were old, and he should have been used to them."

Little gems like this are on almost every page of this book and they make for a wonderful reading experience you won't forget.

I envy anyone about to read Cornell Woolrich for the first time.This book is a great place to start.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Now you know what it feels like. So how do you like it?"
On a mild midwestern night in the early 1940s, Johnny Marr leans against a drugstore wall. He's waiting for Dorothy, his fiancée, and tonight is the last night they'll be meeting here, for it's May 31st, and June 1st marks their wedding day. But she's late, and Johnny soon learns of a horrible accident - an accident involving a group of drunken men, a low-flying charter plane, and an empty liquor bottle. In one short moment Johnny loses all that matters to him and his life is shattered. He vows to take from these men exactly what they took from him. After years of planning, Johnny begins his quest for revenge, and on May 31st of each year - always on May 31st - wives, lovers, and daughters are suddenly no longer safe ... Cornell Woolrich's most justly famous novel is one of the true masterpieces of suspense. Johnny exacts his revenge in five meticulously planned and utterly unpredictable murders that Woolrich unfolds with an almost demonic fatalism while the marvellously unheroic police officer MacLain Cameron is in accelerating pursuit. Woolrich's prose is unique. His style is strongly visual - we'd now call it cinematic even though it prefigured much of the film-noir effects that render it, today, almost cliché. His syntax is occasionally tortured, his word choices odd. Yet as his biographer Francis Nevins has noted, Woolrich's imperfections are a happy marriage of form and function. Without the sentences rushing out of control across the page like his hunted characters across the nightscape, without the maniacal emotionalism and indifference to grammatical niceties, the form and content of the Woolrich world would be at odds. Between his style and substance, Woolrich achieved the perfect union. There are moments when the melodrama builds to such an intensity that it tumbles over into a kind of empathy, e.g. Cameron's late visit to Dorothy's childhood home. You know it's ridiculous, but you feel something all the same. As monstrous as Johnny Marr's revenge is, few readers will be able to damn him completely. This kind of amoral centre is the dark sun around which much of the noir world turns, and Woolrich gives us one of the genre's finest examples. The Modern Library's 20th Century Rediscoveries edition is particularly valuable for its Reading Group Guide, and for Richard Dooling's fine introduction which points to further reading and finds the origins of the novel in Woolrich's own startlingly sad biography. Strongly recommended. ... Read more

15. Biography - Dooling, Richard (Patrick) (1954-): An article from: Contemporary Authors Online
by Gale Reference Team
Digital: 7 Pages (2005-01-01)
list price: US$9.95 -- used & new: US$9.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0007SGHXE
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Product Description
Word count: 1802. ... Read more

16. Critical Care, By Richard Dooling, Unabridged 8 Cassettes, 11.5 Hours, Narrated By Richard Ferrone
by Richard Dooling
 Audio Cassette: 8 Pages (1992)

Asin: B000FVW18S
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17. Bush Pigs: A Short Story
by Richard Dooling
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-05-26)
list price: US$0.99
Asin: B003O86PPO
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Product Description
Originally published in the New Yorker, this harrowing tale of reverse culture shock is a cult favorite among expats who wander abroad and are unprepared for the shock that awaits them upon return to the first world.

After three years in the bush, a Peace Corps Volunteer is evacuated from war-torn Sierra Leone and sent home to Omaha, Nebraska, where he attempts to celebrate his return in a steak house. What happens next is called reverse culture shock. G.K. Chesterton put it this way: "The whole object of traveling abroad is not to set foot on foreign land; it is to set foot on one's own country as a foreign land when one returns."

By Richard Dooling, author of White Man's Grave, a novel.
... Read more

by Richard Dooling
 Paperback: Pages (1994)

Asin: B002JSKUY2
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19. White Man's Grave: Complete & Unabridged
by Richard Dooling
 Audio Cassette: Pages (1995-08)

Isbn: 0788701088
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20. Meen Seeking Women - Love And Sex On-line
by Jonathan - Editor. Bronson, Po; Dooling, Richard; Garcia, Eric; Hond, Paul; Krist, Gary and others Karp
 Paperback: Pages (2001)

Asin: B000TU7A8G
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