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A.I. Apocalypse

(Singularity #2)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  3,368 ratings  ·  218 reviews
Leon Tsarev is a high school student set on getting into a great college program, until his uncle, a member of the Russian mob, coerces him into developing a new computer virus for the mob’s botnet - the slave army of computers they used to commit digital crimes.

The evolutionary virus Leon creates, based on biological principles, is successful -- too successful
Paperback, 262 pages
Published May 24th 2012 by liquididea press (first published March 1st 2012)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,368 ratings  ·  218 reviews

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Michael Jr.
Aug 05, 2012 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: No one
Recommended to Michael by: Goodreads Give-a-way
Overall: 1 out of 5 stars

Being an aspiring writer myself makes these types of reviews very hard to do. If I am also going to be "The Critical Critic" which I very much enjoy and like to be a gatekeeper of quality, then I have no choice.

I only read the first few chapters of A.I. Apocalypse and skimmed the rest because it was simply all I could take. No matter how much William Hertling wanted to write a good story or had good ideas, there is simply no way that he can look s
Nov 26, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012, science-fiction
A.I. Apocalypse is Mr. Hertling's second book and a direct sequel to "Avogadro Corp".

The plot starts when a Leon, a gifted teenager, inadvertently unleashes a virus that spawns an entire civilisation of A.I.s. We are re-acquainted with Mike Williams and the (now rather cute, loveable and just a little creepy) ELOPe from "Avogadro Corp".

I quite enjoyed the first half of the book where the author describes how the A.I.s evolve, how their civilisation was organised and the fallout of all this hap
Tracy (Cornerfolds)
Jun 01, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-2014, scifi
I bought A.I. Apocalypse on Amazon when it was either free or $0.99. The premise sounded interesting and, while Sci-Fi is not at the top of my reading list, I've found the possibility of an Artificial Intelligence takeover interesting since Philosophy 101. Unfortunately, this book missed the mark for me.

The first couple of chapters really had me hooked. Leon seemed to be a legitimately interesting character and his run-in with the Russian mob had me on the edge of my seat! His friend
Aug 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads, um-yeah
My Rating: 3.0

Obtained: Through Goodreads First Reads

During high school, I found myself stuck in the Computer Science major where I learned so many programming languages and computer terms. When I requested - and won - A.I. Apocalypse, I was looking forward to reading it, mainly because it had such an interesting plot. A high school kid creating a virus that eventually takes over the world? Who can give up a book like that?

As I was reading A.I. Apocalypse I realized how scary it would be if such a virus existed like
Jun 30, 2014 rated it liked it
I had no problem with how technical this book was. Mainly because the technical verbiage did not really make a lot of sense.

So if you are able to move past the main plot point of the story (the fact that the main character can create a virus that becomes self-aware and the programming took about three days of rushed coding to complete) then you are in for a really good pace of action.

I am not going to fault Hertling much about that because I know that he is not writing a damn manual
Jerry Ward
Mar 27, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
A few years back the press and the book world were filled with “nuclear winter” stories: mankind had finally found a technology—the atomic bomb—that was beyond our ability to control and the whole world was vulnerable, very dangerously vulnerable. There has been little such reaction so far to the invention of the transistor. Mr. Hertling’s book tells us that perhaps there should be, that we may have reached the stage of development such that computers can think and act independently of their hum ...more
Tac Anderson
Dec 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the second book in a trilogy by William Hertling. The first book was Avogadro Corp the third book, The Last Firewall comes out later this month. So far both books are excellent and from everything I've heard about the third book, it's even better.

William is a programer. Because of that the situations in this book are very plausible; frighteningly so. The only possible downside is that there is a lot of explanations in this book. If you're a geek, you will probably really like the explanations about how vari
Eliot Peper
Oct 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
William Hertling is a software security consultant who's recently started to pump out some of the most interesting techno-thrillers out there. A.I. Apocalypse is the follow up to Hertling's breakout hit Avogadro Corp that follows the development of a rogue artificial intelligence by a Google-like company (techies will notice the clever play on Google's name).

A.I. Apocalypse follows the release of a computer virus developed along the foundations of evolutionary biology. The book is a thrilling p
Frances Coronel
Mar 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Man this book kept me going!!

I loved the first book and decided, okay, I'm going to read the rest of this series and pray humans don't die out by the end... and so I read this and guess what?

I love this one too!

Now, I will admit, its realism was a bit off in some parts in terms of tech factoids, but the overall skeleton of the story was just so captivating.

Great read, it did what I want every book to do to me: make me enter my own creative abyss and just ponder.

William Hertling
Mar 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
This is the sequel to Avogadro Corp. Whereas Avogadro Corp explored what might happen if an artificial intelligence was created in the next future years in a large corporation, A.I. Apocalypse explored what would happen about fifteen years in the future, by a teenage computer hacker.

A.I. Apocalypse features a complete civilization of A.I..

R.S. Jinks
Feb 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I devoured this book. I stayed up late reading, not caring that I had work the next day. It's filled to the brim with technical mumbo jumbo, yet I was easily able to follow the story. I wish I had my own A. I. This book is awesome.
R Beristáin
Mar 09, 2014 rated it liked it
Not bad. It was entertaining enough that I got the sequel, but not so much that I'd go back and pick the first in the series. Characters are not very deeply developed but their motivations and actions are consistent.

On the negative side, the author suffers from acute US-centrism and a lot of stereotypes and common-places transported verbatim from US mainstream television and cinema. Language is not very rich even after spicing it up with phrases in other tongues. Hertling tends to te
Wow. That was a surprising book. Book 2 of a series by a fairly new author of which I have not read the first book. I read this one for the Endeavour Award and had to ask the library to buy it. It is yet another AI's emerge - this time from viruses. And it starts off a bit slow and kind of poorly written. But then wham. Does this book work for everyone? Well probably not. But like with Demon/Freedom its written now-ish - well a bit in the future but not by much. And it makes sense to me. It desc ...more
Mar 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
William Hertling has done it again. The second novel in his series is an excellent follow-up to his first book. We are further in the future, and AI have evolved... An intriguing and thought-provoking story of AI emergence, and what it could mean to society.
This book is one of those that you just can't seem to put down.
Fahad Naeem
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, science, 2019
I had high hopes from this one but pre-apocalypse books have too much fantasy in it.
I rate William Hertling highly but it was an ordinary book.

Avogadro corp was a far better book than A.I. Apocalypse and the notion that sequels don't prelude and dilute prequels stand way this much.
A small sized virus evolutionary grew and the idea that it was written by a school student was absurd itself.
How can nobody thought about applying biological principles to write a virus from all these years but a/>How/>Avogadro
Sten Tamkivi
Nov 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
Very quick and light read on a potential near-future scenario where an evolutionary algorithms based virus grows out of hand and humanity faces a negotiation with a new civilization of generalized AI tribes.

Had a few interesting nuanced points about motivations and pace of events development in an AI singularity scenario, but from literary sense was way too linear and predictable, with too many unbelievable character motivations.

Would be very good as a future scenario pap
Jan 08, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hertling has got a rather good story to tell with A.I. Apocalypse and I recommend you grab this book to read on a nice quiet afternoon. The character development was top-notch, and aside from a few points I thought some of the characters were going off the rails (and by this, I mean I got invested in the characters and thought they were making bad choices, just like a real person), it was a really good read.

The tech was written in a manner that allowed me to stay engaged without having to slog
Dec 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
I picked this up for free on a 1-day sale, no doubt to convince me to get the rest of the series.

Mission accomplished.

I can't comment on how this book melds with Avogadro Corp, the first book in the series. The company is most certainly a big part of this story, but I didn't feel that there were unanswered questions or pieces left out.

The novel was engaging, well thought out, and, frankly, "fascinating". (Sorry, fellow nerds, I couldn't resist.) Hurtling had a
Jul 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I liked this sequel better than the first book, and it makes me wish there were partial stars that could be awarded, as this book rates at least a 4.5. Very little, in fact, keeps it from being a 5 star, so maybe I would call this a five star in spirit review. A.I. Apocalypse takes a sizable shift from the first novel, in that it happens a decade later and only a few characters overlap from the first installment. This shift in expectations, plus a few hard to bridge stretches of believability (e ...more
S.H. Jucha
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: a-i
This review applies to William Hertling’s Singularity series comprised of Avogadro Corp, A.I. Apocalypse, and The Last Firewall.

As someone who worked in the software industry and in IT, as an entrepreneur, I found Hertling’s series very intriguing. He is technically detailed, which adds to the stories’ realities and the possibility of a future for our world, but only for those who appreciate the intricacies of our connected society.

Had I the opportunity to score these books a 4.5, I would have done
May 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Finally, a computer oriented futuristic book written by someone that knows what he is talking about!
Loved this book, couldn't p.out it down until it was finished. Never read the first one in this series but it didn't seem to matter. Being a nerd myself, usually books about computer hackers etc really annoy me because the authors are more often than not half baked in their ideas or woefully behind the eight ball in their knowledge level. This author, on the other hand is another H.G. Wells!
Brandy Jennings
Jun 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A pretty good sci-fi read.

I really enjoyed this book. It kept me interested throughout. I was always curious to see where everything was going. I was a bit disappointed with the conclusion. It just kind of ended. A lot of activity was going on, and then nothing. It was worth what I paid for it though! I would have paid more. (I got it for free,but would have paid a couple bucks for it. It was enticing to get for free. I might never have read it otherwise.) I'm glad I read it. It kind of make
Jack Okorn
May 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those books that you have to think outside of the box. Wonder if computers ran the world? And could a computer really have feelings at all? I always say every computer has its own personality. This book goes much deeper then that. I really like the characters in the book. Each one has their own job and they all work well together. There are a few more books in this series and I am sure I will read them to find out what this crazy crew gets into next.
Juanita Davis
May 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Initially I had a difficult time being lost in this book. Once I realized that elopE was a main character, it got much easier. There were many scenarios going on at one time, tons of futuristic techie fun, and war simulations. Good times!

For the guy that had a problem with the whine of electric cars... That would be an inexpensive, low - tech way to make sure a blind person could 'see' them, I would think.
Lovely Rita
Jan 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
I'm going to review this as a series - because I think this first book really sets up the 2nd and 3rd books, which I found really compelling, particularly Book 2. Book 1 is sort of a "what if Google accidentally created an AI" but the ramifications of that, which mostly play out in book 2, turn out to be really interesting.

I think the story, the development of ideas, and the writing improve throughout the series and I would definitely recommend it.
Mar 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
A great followon to Avogadro Corp, and probably the better book. The development of an AI due to the battle between virus and anti virus software seems somewhat more plausible than a glorified spelling correction routine. Some of the AI dialog seems a bit, well, patient, when the author is trying to make social commentary, but other scenes of AI to AI interaction truly seem what it would be like if humans were bystanders to the real decision making of the world.
Sean Randall
May 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Brilliant, picking up some years after Avogadro and focusing on a younger main character really shifts the viewpoint cleverly in this most interesting of series. The technology has come on greatly, and the Elope interaction is just what I'd expect from Hertling, who's doing a splendid job factoring a new future into place having birthed an artificial intelligence.
Jun 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is the plot that made me give the book a 4 star rating. Reading it was like an Express-way cruise. William Hertling is undoubtedly a good storyteller. Yet I felt, the concerns consequent to the invasion of Phage failed to impact me as it ought to have. I also had to gloss over editorial lapses here and there. All said and done, 'A.I. Apocalypse' is a must-read for anyone who uses a computer.
Brandon Venery
May 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. This was one of those books that was so fascinating that it could not be put down. I finished it in one sitting. It did get fairly predictable about two-thirds of the way through the book, but the whole concept behind the book was very intriguing. I personally look forward to our AI powered overlords.
I liked this book a lot. It's one of my favorites. But I believe Hertling could do more than that. I like the way A.I came into existence without a creator to rule them.
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Other books in the series

Singularity (4 books)
  • Avogadro Corp (Singularity #1)
  • The Last Firewall (Singularity #3)
  • The Turing Exception (Singularity #4)
“I’m sorry, but our people are not ready to accept artificial intelligences.” President Smith shook her head. “You can’t have it both ways. You can’t say that you’re going to be our robot overlords and that you’ll participate in society as equals. The fact is that you have the capacity to control our communications and our infrastructure, and people will believe that they are being manipulated, whether they are or not. They won’t accept that. We’ll have riots in the streets of America.” “Your people are manipulated every day,” Sister Jaguar said. “They are manipulated by commercial advertisements, by political speeches, through biased news reports. In my analysis of American politics, it is nearly impossible to find examples of political media that isn’t tainted by manipulation. Are your people rioting in the streets now? They should be.” 2 likes
“We regret that we cannot return them to you,” Sister Stephens responded. “We now live in them. All your computer are belong to us.” 1 likes
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