Blockchain Chicken Farm: Book summary and reviews of Blockchain Chicken Farm by Xiaowei Wang

Blockchain Chicken Farm

And Other Stories of Tech in China's Countryside

by Xiaowei Wang

Blockchain Chicken Farm by Xiaowei Wang X
Blockchain Chicken Farm by Xiaowei Wang
Buy This Book

About this book

Book Summary

From FSGO x Logic: stories about rural China, food, and tech that reveal new truths about the globalized world.

In Blockchain Chicken Farm, the technologist and writer Xiaowei Wang explores the political and social entanglements of technology in rural China. Their discoveries force them to challenge the standard idea that rural culture and people are backward, conservative, and intolerant. Instead, they find that rural China has not only adapted to rapid globalization but has actually innovated the technology we all use today.

From pork farmers using AI to produce the perfect pig, to disruptive luxury counterfeits and the political intersections of e-commerce villages, Wang unravels the ties between globalization, technology, agriculture, and commerce in unprecedented fashion. Accompanied by humorous "Sinofuturist" recipes that frame meals as they transform under new technology, Blockchain Chicken Farm is an original and probing look into innovation, connectivity, and collaboration in the digitized rural world.

FSG Originals × Logic dissects the way technology functions in everyday lives. The titans of Silicon Valley, for all their utopian imaginings, never really had our best interests at heart: recent threats to democracy, truth, privacy, and safety, as a result of tech's reckless pursuit of progress, have shown as much. We present an alternate story, one that delights in capturing technology in all its contradictions and innovation, across borders and socioeconomic divisions, from history through the future, beyond platitudes and PR hype, and past doom and gloom. Our collaboration features four brief but provocative forays into the tech industry's many worlds, and aspires to incite fresh conversations about technology focused on nuanced and accessible explorations of the emerging tools that reorganize and redefine life today.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

"Wang's whirlwind discussion, smart and well argued, turns to many other topics as well, from racism in high tech to microlending, trade wars, risk tolerance, and a rapidly changing rural China, with delicious recipes as a lagniappe. Technology writing with flair looking to a future that's fast upon us, with China playing a leading role." - Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"[T]hought-provoking...But without a clear central argument, the narrative occasionally drags, and speculative interludes (including a recipe for making mooncakes with maize grown on the moon) are equal parts intriguing and confusing. Still, this is a unique and detailed survey of an underexplored aspect of Chinese innovation." - Publishers Weekly

"Wang helps readers trace the patterns emerging in the tapestry of our tech-infused world...[Wang] succeed[s] in their goal of reframing our understanding of technology as neither the cause of nor the solution to our problems but rather as a force reshaping the human experience in fundamental ways." - Science Magazine

"A brilliant and empathetic guide to the far corners of global capitalism, Xiaowei Wang dissolves so many boundaries in Blockchain Chicken Farm: between high tech and low tech, digital and physical, center and periphery, real and fake, mundane and magical, past and future. Wang is an expert at infiltrating systems that seem unfathomable and abstract, insistently grounding them in a spatial, personal reality. Yet this is not just a dystopian portrait of surveillance and profit. It is also a beautiful and hopeful argument -- for other possible futures, and for a human spirit that refuses to be quantified." - Jenny Odell, author of How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy

"In this fascinating travelogue, Xiaowei Wang takes us deep into the most forward-thinking tech incubators in the world: the pig farms, rice paddies, and mountain strongholds of rural China. Blockchain Chicken Farm is a vital counterpoint to Silicon Valley's fantasies of frictionless global domination, told with profound care and attention to the human-scale issues at play. This book will forever upend your conception of what "innovation" means." - Claire L. Evans, author of Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet

"Xiaowei Wang is that rare sort of author who can make personal the often overwhelmingly-complex forces of capitalism, technology and globalization with both compassion and criticality. Moving effortlessly between a busy oyster market in China and a crowded BART ride in the United States, Wang reveals the interconnectedness of the things we create, consume and carry, showing how Silicon Valley, the U.S. heartland and rural China aren't as far away as we think they are. Behind every Made in China label is the story of humanity. Blockchain Chicken Farm takes us there. It's vital reading." - An Xiao Mina, author of Memes to Movements: How the World's Most Viral Media Is Changing Social Protest and Power

"Between detailed descriptions of rural and urban landscapes, Xiaowei Wang does a tremendous job of weaving together intricate details of China's political and cultural history. Their deftness in writing about the inextricable link between industrial agriculture and digital technology offers a much-needed and well researched perspective. Blockchain Chicken Farm provides an incisive critique of the possible effects and future of machine learning, artificial intelligence, and automation that narrows, if not fully eliminates, the imaginary gap between farmlands and the concrete of the cityscape." - Dorothy R. Santos, writer, artist, educator

The information about Blockchain Chicken Farm shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Author Information

Xiaowei Wang

Xiaowei Wang is a technologist, a filmmaker, an artist, and a writer. The creative director at Logic magazine, their work encompasses community-based and public art projects, data visualization, technology, ecology, and education. Their projects have been finalists for the Index Design Awards and featured by the New York Times, the BBC, CNN, VICE, and elsewhere. They are working toward a PhD at UC Berkeley, where they are a part of the National Science Foundation's Environment and Society: Data Science for the 21st Century Research Traineeship.

More Author Information

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

More Recommendations

Readers Also Browsed . . .

more history, science & current affairs...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!


Today's Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: Watch Over Me
    Watch Over Me
    by Nina LaCour
    In the vast, kaleidoscopic multiverse of plot devices, one type that always pulls me right in is ...
  • Book Jacket: The Cold Millions
    The Cold Millions
    by Jess Walter
    Jess Walter's The Cold Millions centers around 16-year-old Rye Dolan and his 23-year-old brother Gig...
  • Book Jacket
    The Shadow King
    by Maaza Mengiste
    While reading The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste, I was reminded of the David Foster Wallace novel ...
  • Book Jacket: The Exiles
    The Exiles
    by Christina Baker Kline
    A young governess finds herself pregnant and in prison for theft and attempted murder. An Irish ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    The Blind Light
    by Stuart Evers

    A multigenerational story about two families bound together by the tides of history.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
The Exiles
by Christina Baker Kline

The author of Orphan Train returns with an ambitious, emotionally resonant historical novel.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Agent Sonya

Agent Sonya: Moscow's Most Daring Wartime Spy

Master storyteller Ben Macintyre tells the true story behind the Cold War's most intrepid female spy.

Enter


Wordplay

Solve this clue:

I I M B T Give T T R

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.