Home Book Reviews Burn-In and the Social Impact of Jobs Lost to Technology
Burn-In and the Social Impact of Jobs Lost to Technology

Burn-In and the Social Impact of Jobs Lost to Technology


Co-authors P.W. Singer’s and August Cole’s latest book, Burn-In, is billed as a novel of the real robotic revolution. The setting for the book takes place in a Washington, DC of the future when computers and robots have been utilized by companies and the government to replace employees, putting many people in America out of work.

The authors’ familiarity with technology and its capabilities in artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics makes their narrative more convincing. The plot of Burn-In revolves around FBI Special Agent Lara Keegan and her partnership with a Department of Defense robot on loan to the FBI. As Keegan and her new partner continue to find and fight criminals, their activities lead them to uncover the mastermind of a plot against the government using the technology that he and his co-conspirators want to destroy.

While the crimefighting action in the book makes it a candidate for an action movie, the co-authors of Burn-In credibly write about the social impact of job elimination due to technology and the political ramifications across the U.S. It’s an engaging story about the future that might be closer than we think.



Wally Boston Dr. Wallace E. Boston was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of American Public University System (APUS) and its parent company, American Public Education, Inc. (APEI) in July 2004. He joined APUS as its Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in 2002. In July 2016, he retired as APUS president and continued as CEO of APEI. In September 2017, he was reappointed APUS president after the resignation of Dr. Karan Powell. In September 2019, Angela Selden was named CEO of APEI, succeeding Dr. Boston who will remain APUS president until his planned retirement in June 2020. Dr. Boston guided APUS through its successful initial accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association in 2006 and ten-year reaccreditation in 2011. In November 2007, he led APEI to an initial public offering on the NASDAQ Exchange. During his tenure, APUS grew to over 100,000 students, 200 degree and certificate programs, and approximately 90,000 alumni. In addition to his service as a board member of APUS and APEI, Dr. Boston is a member of the Board of Advisors of the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA), a member of the Board of Overseers of the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education, a board member of the Presidents’ Forum, and a board member of Hondros College of Nursing and Fidelis, Inc. He has authored and co-authored papers on the topic of online post-secondary student retention, and is a frequent speaker on the impact of technology on higher education. Dr. Boston is a past Treasurer of the Board of Trustees of the McDonogh School, a private K-12 school in Baltimore. In his career prior to APEI and APUS, Dr. Boston served as either CFO, COO, or CEO of Meridian Healthcare, Manor Healthcare, Neighborcare Pharmacies, and Sun Healthcare Group. Dr. Boston is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Management Accountant, and Chartered Global Management Accountant. He earned an A.B. degree in History from Duke University, an MBA in Marketing and Accounting from Tulane University’s Freeman School of Business Administration, and a Doctorate in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. In 2008, the Board of Trustees of APUS awarded him a Doctorate in Business Administration, honoris causa, and, in April 2017, also bestowed him with the title President Emeritus. Dr. Boston lives in Owings Mills, MD with his wife Sharon and their two daughters.


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