Thoughts on Accelerando by Charles Stross

Posted on February 19th, 2008 — permalink

Accelerando is one of The Books about the Singularity– one of the fiction books, that is. Approaching any book on this topic means you suddenly have baggage trailing along with you as tenacious as the Luggage from Discworld. There are some who think about the Singularity with near-religious ferver, looking forward to it in a manner similar to how some other religious fanatics may look forward to the Rapture. It will happen, they think, and it will be wonderful. Meanwhile, there is the backlash of people who see the technolphiliacs waxing eloquent about The Singularity, themselves thinking “what a bunch of geeks with no life and no sense of perspective!” So that any book about the Singularity then is viewed with suspicion.

And it’s hard to approach this book without all that baggage in mind. This is a book that’s received some glowing reviews (e.g. Cory Doctorow’s mini-review on Boing Boing); however, a co-worker of mine also dismissed it with saying about the first chapter or so, “It’s like someone put boing boing posts in a blender and published it.”

But let’s try to leave that aside.


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