Tuesday, June 24, 2003

I got some major work done on the Mars book last night. Unless I'm tragically mistaken I'm basically done with the exception of printing out a hardcopy and burning the illustrations onto a CD for the publisher. Then half a year of pre-publication limbo . . .

Rudy Rucker (see the nicely dressed guy in the photo below) read my extrapolation of his "personality recorder" idea and mentioned putting me in the acknowledgements to a potentially forthcoming book on future computers. This was extremely flattering, as I really don't know a hell of a lot about the nuts and bolts of computing while Rucker is a longtime hacker (in the benign sense of the word). I'm sort of like William Gibson circa 1980: to me, computers are sleek metaphors with lots of potential as sheer Idea. So while I can relate to Gibson's wired characters (i.e., Cayce Pollard from "Pattern Recognition"), die-hard programmers/"cypherpunks" like the ones so perfectly captured in Neal Stephenson's "Cryptonomicon" remain vaguely alien. And I'm not saying that just to extricate myself from "geekdom." I may very well be a geek, but I'm a relatively novel sort of geek. (Comforting thought.)

By the way, I like my new glasses.

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