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The Best Technology Writing 2009 Paperback – Oct 6 2009

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The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press (Oct. 6 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300154100
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300154108
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 272 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,647,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


“A fascinating collection… these essays will certainly resonate with you for quite some time, encouraging you to discover some gems hidden in the crevices of the Internet”—Edward Valauskas, First Monday
(Edward Valauskas First Monday)

"This is a fantastic series"—Cory Doctorow, BoingBoing
(Cory Doctorow BoingBoing 2009-12-08)

"Kim Stanley Robinson said recently that we're all living in a science-fiction novel.  The essays is this excellent collection, edited by author Steven Johnson, explore how technology is shaping our lives."—The Guardian
(The Guardian 2009-12-12)

"Chock full of great characters, ideas and passions."—Amanda Gefter, New Scientist
(Amanda Gefter New Scientist 2009-10-31)

About the Author

Steven Johnson is the author of six books, including the recent bestsellers The Invention of Air, The Ghost Map, and Everything Bad Is Good for You. He writes for the New York Times Magazine, Wired, the Guardian, Discover, and other publications, and has made numerous appearances on Charlie Rose, The Daily Show, and The Colbert Report. He lives in Brooklyn.



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Format: Paperback
I almost put the book away after the first couple of articles. They seemed to be "gee whiz, what will they think of next" or "isn't tech cool". Shallow, in other words. But there are several articles in this collection which provoke thought as much about what humans can do with technology as what technology can do for us. The last article "Gin, Television and Cognitive Surplus" is a good example. The simple comparison between the two hundred billion hours spent watching TV and the roughly hundred thousand to create Wikipedia certainly made me think about the potential of the creative media. As the author almost says, even writing this review adds more value to our shared space than another pair of eyeballs watching "Desperate Housewives".

I have been reading the The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2009 series and The Best American Science Writing 2009 series for many years. I would rate them higher than this apparently new series because the articles in both are more consistently good than this more mixed bag, but once you've read those, you'll probably appreciate this as a third choice.
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