Reprogramming the American Dream
From Rural America to Silicon Valley—Making AI Serve Us All
** #1 Wall Street Journal Bestseller **
In this essential book written by a rural native and Silicon Valley veteran, Microsoft’s Chief technology officer tackles one of the most critical issues facing society today: the future of artificial intelligence and how it can be realistically used to promote growth, even in a shifting employment landscape.
There are two prevailing stories about AI: for heartland low- and middle-skill workers, a dystopian tale of steadily increasing job destruction; for urban knowledge workers and the professional class, a utopian tale of enhanced productivity and convenience. But there is a third way to look at this technology that will revolutionize the workplace and ultimately the world. Kevin Scott argues that AI has the potential to create abundance and opportunity for everyone and help solve some of our most vexing problems.
As the chief technology officer at Microsoft, he is deeply involved in the development of AI applications, yet mindful of their potential impact on workers—knowledge he gained firsthand growing up in rural Virginia. Yes, the AI Revolution will radically disrupt economics and employment for everyone for generations to come. But what if leaders prioritized the programming of both future technology and public policy to work together to find solutions ahead of the coming AI epoch? Like public health, the space program, climate change and public education, we need international understanding and collaboration on the future of AI and work. For Scott, the crucial question facing all of us is this: How do we work to ensure that the continued development of AI allows us to keep the American Dream alive?
In this thoughtful, informed guide, he offers a clear roadmap to find the answer.
Praise For Reprogramming the American Dream: From Rural America to Silicon Valley—Making AI Serve Us All…
— J.D. Vance, New York Times bestselling author of Hillbilly Elegy
All good futures for our society and for humanity broadly require harnessing technology. Kevin has written a very important book here. He shows how and why to have optimism about artificial intelligence, harnessing the technology to restore the American Dream. What's the future we should work towards? Kevin's book shines the light forward. Highly recommended.
— Reid Hoffman, co-founder of Linkedin and author of Blitzscaling
"Kevin's examination of AI and the future of rural communities like the one in which he grew up in rural Virginia provides an unusually personal and empathetic perspective on how we can, together, create opportunity for ourselves, our organizations, and our world."
— Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft
"Scott’s version of our AI future is a refreshingly optimistic one, and it’s coming from someone who knows the technology very, very well."
— Fast Company
Harper Business, 9780062879875, 304pp.
Publication Date: April 7, 2020
About the Author
As executive vice president and chief technology officer of Microsoft, Kevin Scott’s 20-year career in technology spans both academia and industry as researcher, engineer and leader. Prior to joining Microsoft, Scott was senior vice president of engineering and operations at LinkedIn, where he helped build the technology and engineering team and led the company through an IPO and six years of rapid growth. Scott is the host of the podcast Behind the Tech, which features interviews with technology heroes who have helped create the tech industry of today.
Scott holds an M.S. in computer science from Wake Forest University, a B.S. in computer science from Lynchburg College, and completed most of his Ph.D. in computer science at the University of Virginia.
J.D. Vance grew up in the Rust Belt city of Middletown, Ohio, and the Appalachian town of Jackson, Kentucky. He enlisted in the Marine Corps after high school and served in Iraq. A graduate of the Ohio State University and Yale Law School, he has contributed to the National Review and the New York Times, and works as an investor at a leading venture capital firm. Vance lives in Columbus, Ohio, with his family.