Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Interesting People: Cory Doctorow

Talking with people, listening to podcasts and looking around for books to read has lead me finding about to some interesting people.

A while ago I read a novellete by Cory Doctorow called "0wnz0red" which excited my imagination. The story is partly about programmers exploring a technology that allowed them to reprogram the human autonomous systems. For example, they could reprogram their rate of healing, muscle development and immune systems.

While the story had been in the back of my mind, I didn't think about finding out more about Doctorow until recently. Doctorow's written a lot of interesting stuff and his book, "Makers" is on my reading list. Of his novels, "Makers" attracts my attention because it follows a group of start up founders in an exciting new industry that has low entry barriers.

One of many great things about Doctorow's writing is that they occur in the near future and his writing is accessible. He focuses on the technology with just the right amount of time and detail unlike other science fiction stories I've struggled with such as "The Diamond Age" by Neal Stephenson (1995) and "Rainbow's End" by Vernor Vinge (2006).

Interestingly, Doctorow has released his work for free and has still done well for himself. I saw the book at the bookstore and thought about buying it. Then I saw it online and thought about reading it there. Now that I've read a bit of it, I'm back to buying a physical copy.

I had a look for stories related to him on Wired and Slashdot and there were a whole heap of interesting stuff there too. Looking up "0wnz0red" also lead me to the Nebula and Hugo awards where I found out about many other great things to read and also other places to find them including magazines and collections.


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