10 Things You Didn’t Know About Bringing Up Mike @askmarpub
10 Things You Didn’t Know About Bringing Up Mike
- The idea for Bringing Up Mike came from a lecture at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA where Dan Kaufman, Director of the Information Innovation Office of DARPA observed that the problem with today’s artificial intelligence systems is that sooner or later they tell you something stupid. He suggested that one avenue of solving this would be to have a baby AI that grows up with you, with which you would have a two-way conversation, correcting and educating it over time—like raising a child.
- Mike gets his first name from the artificial intelligence in Robert Heinlein’s The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. His last name comes from John McCarthy, the computer science professor who coined the term, “artificial intelligence.”
- The idea for Martha and George’s son, Marvin, to have died of a soft tissue sarcoma came from a friend in their twenties who died from it.
- Part of Martha’s character is based on a person I know who loves animals and has had a long and painful experience in dealing with Lyme disease.
- I’ve spent little time in Tennessee. All of the descriptions and events come from research, in particular from used books that I purchased via Abe Books on the state’s attractions, wildlife and flora. On the other hand, I’m very familiar with Pasadena and Stanford having lived in their vicinity for many years.
- While I’ve ridden horses and know several horse owners and riders, I actually didn’t know much about equines before researching and writing Bringing Up Mike. It was very helpful to watch videos on YouTube and various websites to observe horse and owner behavior.
- The meals at the Tennessee restaurants in Bringing Up Mike represent what you would find at many fine Southern cooking establishments.
- There are approximately eighty characters in Bringing Up Mike. All of the names are unique to make it easier to proofread the novel. Most of the names are short, e.g. Joe, Sue, George, Martha, April, Ed, and Allen; to make it faster to write and less likely for them to be misspelled. I created a character sheet to keep everybody straight. http://www.askmarpublishing.com/books/bringing_up_mike_files/Characters.pdf
- I created a unique conceptual mind model to show the relationship between the prefrontal cortex and the limbic system. This facilitated writing about the difference between innate emotions (happy, sad, laughter, cry, anger, fear, love, hatred) and learned emotions (desire, despair, trust, distrust, hope, worry, good, bad). http://www.askmarpublishing.com/books/bringing_up_mike_files/Mind.pdf
- Part of Joe’s character is based on a friend who was a child prodigy who passed the high school graduation test at age eight. He subsequently got his Ph.D., has long hair, and gets around on a bike.
Mark will be awarding a $50 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the banner above to follow the tour commenting at all stops increasing your chance in winning. To enter scroll down and leave a comment for the author then enter the rafflecopter. While waiting to win click over to Amazon and buy your copy. Thanks for visiting.
Bringing Up Mike
by Mark Duncan
What happens when Joe, a teen prodigy makes drastic changes to his life and attends high school incognito with Mike, an artificial intelligence? His plans take an unexpected turn when he buys a neglected former racehorse.
Bringing Up Mike is a tapestry of intertwined stories over the course of a school year: A teen genius who has grown up too fast, a neglected former racehorse, a bereaved couple morning the death of their son, a girl struggling to attend college, and a former mobster determined to be top dog.
Bringing Up Mike is about people given a second chance at happiness and success and how they become better people and mature.
“Mike, what’s the Rebel going to look like?”
“Tonight, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you…” said Mike in the voice of Josef Fischer in The Illusionist.
Sue looked at the first website. “That’s a bit gaudy. It looks like a coloring book. How about something with all the headings and text in black with white backgrounds?”
“Behind door number two.”
“That’s better. But I didn’t mean no color—rather, to reserve it for use in photos, graphics, maps, and clip art. Put one big visual at the top, and a small one elsewhere on the page. A feature story under the main headline, with room for two or three smaller stories to follow it. Some tabs for the various departments.”
“And behind door number three.”
“Yes, you got it.” Sue looked puzzled. “Mike, how can you possibly prototype a website so quickly?”
“My dear, a magician never reveals his secrets,” said Mike in the voice of Gypsy from A Bug’s Life.
“What are you, superhuman?”
“They’re just off-the-shelf WordPress templates. I selected a subset developed for online newspapers. You change the CSS and bibbity-bobbity-boo, presto-chang-o, a new website!” Now he used the voice of the fairy godmother from Cinderella.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Mark Duncan grew up in Pasadena, not far from Caltech. In high school he spent Friday and Saturday nights at the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Lab (SAIL) and subsequently was a member of the Homebrew Computer Club. He received his BSEE from UC Berkeley. He has worked or consulted for numerous startups in Silicon Valley. He lives in Menlo Park, near Stanford and has written extensively on emerging technology topics. He enjoys photography, movies, theater, fine dining and has visited all 50 states and much of Europe. He is the author of Bringing Up Mike, www.askmarpublishing.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Book Website: http://www.askmarpublishing.com/books/bringing up mike.html
Publisher Website: http://www.askmarpublishing.com
Author Website: http://www.askmaroublishing.com/authors/mark duncan.html
Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/askmarpub
Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/askmar