Saturday, August 14, 2004

Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom

If you are a Neal Stephenson fan (especially of Snow Crash), or if you like stories that talk about futuristic society such as Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, then you will probably like Cory Doctrow's Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom. It is relatively short, only about 140 pages or so but it is pretty good. You can buy it at Amazon or some other similar place in hard cover or paperback, or download it for free at the author's website.

Here is a blurb from the book:

Jules is a young man barely a century old. He's lived long enough to see the cure for death and the end of scarcity, to learn ten languages and compose three symphonies...and to realize his boyhood dream of taking up residence in Disney World.

Disney World! The greatest artistic achievement of the long-ago twentieth century. Now in the keeping of a network of "ad-hocs" who keep the classic attractions running as they always have, enhanced with only the smallest high-tech touches.

Now, though, the "ad hocs" are under attack. A new group has taken over the Hall of the Presidents, and is replacing its venerable audioanimatronics with new, immersive direct-to-brain interfaces that give guests the illusion of being Washington, Lincoln, and all the others. For Jules, this is an attack on the artistic purity of Disney World itself.

Worse: it appears this new group has had Jules killed. This upsets him. (It's only his fourth death and revival, after all.) Now it's war....

Anyway it is a good read so check it out.


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