The shockwave rider
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The shockwave rider

3.99 of 5 stars 3.99  ·  rating details  ·  1,801 ratings  ·  100 reviews
One man has made it his mission to liberate the mental prisoners. to restore their freedom in a world run mad.

Nickie Halflinger, the only person to escape from Tarnover- where they raise hyper-intelligent children to maintain the political dominance of the USA in the 21st century – is on the run, dodging from loophole to crevice to crack in the computerised data-net that b...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published August 14th 1975 by Harper & Row (NY) (first published 1975)
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Michael
TSR is not a plot book, and it is also not a character book, but it IS an idea book. Brunner was ahead of the curve (or the shockwave) on so many things, and managed to write about the modern Internet in 1975, anticipating terms like 'bandwidth' and 'computer worm'. This is great social SF.
Ugur
1975 yılında yazılmış olan Şok Dalgası Süvarisi, yazıldığı döneme göre çok orijinal bir konuya sahip ve yazarın uzağı çok iyi öngördüğünü göstermekte.

Gelecekte devletler güvenliklerini ve üstünlüklerini sağlamak için genetik mühendislikten ve bilgisayarlardan yararlanarak yeni bir toplum düzeni yaratmak istiyorlar. Tüm insanlar tek bir veri ağına bağlanmış durumda, gelecek veya herhangi bir konu ile ilgili tahminler yapılırken tüm insanlardan alınan veriler ile gerçek değerlere ulaşılmaya çalışı...more
Adam
A proto-cyberpunk text by Brunner that I didn’t warm to that much but fairs alright in hindsight(and as a piece with quartet, sometimes refered to as his "American Quartet".), the images aren't as vivid and the plot is more opaque. Some interesting moments with an ending somewhat echoing Bester’s Tiger! Tiger! (Fine, Stars my Destination, blah!) Interesting book (especially the thoughts on identity which seem very prophetic for the identity theft age) some elements seem to have been better handl...more
Kiri
This book starts out a little rocky and disjointed (possibly an intentional style by the author to match with the subject material), then pulls together and ultimately soars by the last third. Written in 1975, much of the technology forecast in this book is amazingly prescient, especially that relating to the Internet ("datanet"). I'm not usually a fan of the elliptical writing and shallow characterization typical of older sci-fi, and I'm not a huge fan of puns (wordplay is used liberally throug...more
Tony Daniel
Prescient proto-cyberpunk classic. Highly influenced by Alvin Toffler's Futureshock, down to having a Toffler-like philosopher quoted in the book and a Toffler blurb on the back. Used the idea of the computer worm and virus (called a phage in the book) for maybe the first time in sci-fi. Eventually devolves into a 70s aging hippie luddite critique of of technological advancement, completely failing to foresee the individual, antitotalitarian empowerment the information revolution brought about....more
Mutlu Cankay
Uzak gelecek. Kabilelere dönüş yaşanmış, iktisadi kıyametin ardından külçe birimi nakit yerine geçmiştir. Ağ, herşeye bağlıdır, her şey de Ağ'a. Ekonomik ve sosyal koşular üzerine bahis oynanan bu gelecek kendi "felaket" borsasını yaratmıştır. Tahakkümde son noktalara ulaşan insan genetik shirbazlıkları ve insan mühendisliğine soyunmuştur. Modern çağın heykeltraşları Davranış bilimciler, toplumu ve bireyleri uyumlu bireylere dönüşmeleri için törpülemekte, insanlar baskı karşısında bir boşalma ol...more
Lee
The Shockwave Rider is a book before its time, published in 1975, the book provides a vision for the future of computer networks today. The term 'Web' was used in this book years before the Web as we know it emerged. A riveting story of freeman vs Big Brother society which contains the classic values of privacy still being debated vigorously today. Computer worms and self replicating code - all the cyber components.

The increasing rate of change has sent most Americans into mental distress. Every...more
Valeria Lozano
El jinete de la onda del shock (título en español)

El 2º libro de ciencia-ficción que logro acabarme sin contar novelas juveniles (es mi género maldito)y me ha encantado. Me costó mucho engancharme porque a parte de que como en toda buena obra de ciencia-ficción lo normal es al principio no enterarse de nada con tantos términos científicos inventados xD, el inicio del libro es confuso, lento y denso, pero la idea me parecía muy buena y me intrigaba saber a dónde iba a llevar todo y no me arrepien...more
Billy Conn
Overall, a read, but has some technical flaws a review would be remiss not to mention:

Brunner was cyberpunk before cyberpunk was cyberpunk. The Shockwave Rider was written years before Neuromancer, and ARPAnet less than 50 nodes. As far as I know, the first recorded use of the word worm to describe a self-replicating - without human intervention - computer program. He brought up the concept of "Information wants to be free" years before Brand, if only his wording had been more clever. Much of th...more
Jim
I think the futuristic lingo is a little over done - makes it a bit more difficult to read than it has to be - he is painting a very scary look at a future that is now here in very many ways. This is pretty remarkable when the main thrust is a computerized society that was only beginning in 1975 & the Internet was a twinkling in ARPANet's juvenile eye. Well worth reading.
M. Tatari
Şok Dalgası Süvarisi bildiğimiz romanlardan biraz farklı. Bir maceradan ziyade bir fikir anlatıyor çünkü.

Nick Haflinger uzun zamandır sistemden kaçan ve sürekli kimlik değiştirerek farklı hayatlar süren biri. Kimi zaman mütevazı bir rahip rolünü üstleniyor, kimi zamansa havalı bir iş adamı. Kitap Nick'in yakalanmasıyla ve bir tür sorgu odasında sorgulanmasıyla başlıyor. Gelişmiş bilgisayar teknolojisi sayesinde Nick'i hafızasında geriye döndürüyorlar ve geçmişini tekrar yaşamasını sağlarken bunc...more
Olethros
-Muy visionaria en su momento.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. En el siglo XXI, un hombre que en este momento se llama Arthur Edward Lazarus y es ministro propietario de la Iglesia del Infinito Discernimiento, pero que ha sido antes muchas otras versiones de sí mismo con ocupaciones muy diferentes, está internado de nuevo en Tarnover, institución perteneciente a un programa gubernamental estadounidense de localización y adoctrinamiento de individuos especialmente dotados que resultan...more
Ralph McEwen
The book written in 1975 uses technological terms (IE: bandwidth) with a foresight unlike any before it. It's a up dated version of other "Big Brother" type stories but very readable.
Shawn Garbett
This book is a long interrogation, and was where the term worm and virus was coined in computer terms. The whole premise is a lot like the show, "The Prisoner", but far better. What's truly odd about it, is the parallels with Snowden and Manning, the pervasive surveillance of an unemotional state obsessed with controlling it's populace. They've profiled the psychology of the masses, and feel omnipotent, if they could just gather enough data then control based on stimuli response observations wil...more
Mark
"One of the first science fiction books I read in high school (late 1970s). Brunner took the increasing rate of change being experienced discussed in Future Shock and extrapolated that into the future. He envisioned a world wide data network which was used by everyone. Since everything was in the web, privacy was also extremely limited. Being able to manipulate (hack) data in ""the web"" gave people incredible power. The rate of change was so quick that most people have significant problems copi...more
Mary
This is one of the books in what is called Brunner’s “Club of Rome Quartet”. This novel deals with information, who controls it, the power the control of that information and its availability brings and its effects on society. Written in 1975, like Brunner’s other novels, the story takes place about forty or fifty years in America’s future…so about present time. He takes the title (and many of the ideas) from Alfred Toffler’s popular 1970 book “Future Shock” which deals with the premise of “too...more
Ove
It’s been said that John Brunner invented the term “worm” for a program that replicates itself on a network in this proto-cyberpunk novel from 1975.

Future Shock!

In the obsessively technological, paranoidally secretive and brutally competitive society depicted by John Brunner, even personal identities are under threat. But one man has made it his mission to liberate the mental prisoners. to restore their freedom in a world run mad.

Nickie Halflinger, the only person to escape from Tarnover- where
...more
Matt Conrad
The novel starts off very rocky. In fact, the entire first half is slow and divided into segments - the shortest of which merely a paragraph in length - told as flashbacks by the novel's protagonist and hero, Nick Halflinger, and not necessarily in chronological order. This is all indeed the very intentional structure and style of the book that takes some getting used to at first, but in the end rewards the reader. So I advise to stick with it. Simply put, it is unclear at first but don't give u...more
Dan
Feb 25, 2009 Dan rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: die hard cyberpunk fans
This book was very interesting. It was an early cyberpunk novel. Written in the early seventies, about a decade before Neuromancer, it predates the labeling of the genre. This book has some very interesting ideas, it predicts computer hackers, computer viruses and worms working through the global computer and telephone network.

The main character is a fugitive computer hacker who uses the telephone networks to hack the global network to create new identities for himself and outrun a government ag...more
ovon
A friend recommended this (enthusiastically) to me. I liked a lot of the things about it, but overall I was pretty down on the book. Just want to quickly mention what I liked, though.

First, Brunner paints a really interesting future. He gets the idea of the internet pretty well down, although he misses the mark on most of its contents and the way we interact with it.

Second, the idea of the 'brain race' was also really interesting. I wished there was a bit more exposition (I feel this was his st...more
Erik Graff
Jan 04, 2011 Erik Graff rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: sf fans
Recommended to Erik by: James Koehnline
Shelves: sf
During the early eighties, after the brothers Miley moved out of our 1134 W. Chase apartment in East Rogers Park, Chicago, Jim moved in, staying a few years. Jim, an artist, later an author, was an aficionado of the bizarre, of conspiracy theories, of the democratic potentials of new technologies and of all that Michael Miley had called "high weirdness." Primarily self-educated, he was an ever-enthusiastic source for new ideas and controversial opinions, introducing me to quite a lot during our...more
Richard M. Sala
Le pongo 3 de 5 porque, aunque sea igual de escalofriante que la distopía presentada por Orwell en "1984", no tiene:
- Agilidad de narración. Casi siempre me encontraba leyendo discursos por parte de 1 de los personajes que conformaban el diálogo. Notabas que era el autor y no Nick o Paul o Kate o los de Precipio. Y además se asemejaba al discurso de Platón a la hora de exponer filosofía.
- Empieza bien, muy sombrío y desesperanzador, pero el giro hollywoodiense le da un toque irreal a todo, al fi...more
Wayne
Quite a book, reads like it was published yesterday. First usages of "the net" (as in, datanet) and "worm" -Brunner consulted heavily with futurist Alvin Toffler to concoct this amazing tale of fluid identity in an oversaturated infosphere and the loss of basic privacy in the interest of the private sectors (here called hypercorporations) crafting a "better world." Written in the early seventies, but for some semantic differences John Brunner is able to evoke quite a contemporary voice forty yea...more
Isabel
"Say you know something? I get nightmares now and then. About how I punch my code into the board and the signal comes back: deeveed!"
Ina said, "Me too! And I can't believe we're the only ones."


This book was written in the mid-1970s, and inspired by the concepts in Alvin Toffler's book "Future Shock", but it hasn't dated. Its themes of government conspiracy, and the population's inability to cope with the rapid range of change in the modern world are still as relevant today as they were back then...more
Brett Bydairk
As with much of Brunner's work, this involves the social impact of science an people, both as individuals and in groups.
Although published in 1975, he predicts the widespread availability and use of the "data-web", and refers to surfing it as "mousing around".
Very good handling of the theme, as well as his usual good writing.
Ted
I've tried reading this book a couple of times and could not get beyond the first chapter. There are books like that (good and bad). This summer I pulled it off the shelf one more time with the intention of finishing no matter what. Boy, was it worth it. Once you sync. up with the pace and tone of the book it all makes sense. Basic plot is this: Young boy is indoctrinated into a new generation of U.S.A school think tanks. These schools are geared to compete with other nations to produce America'...more
Duane
The late Mr. Brunner predated the cyberpunk genre in this and it's two companion volumes (The Sheep Look Up and Stand On Zanzibar). Unfortunately for the cyberpunks, John Brunner was a far better writer than any of them, and his vision more far-reaching. The plots of all three of these books almost have to be absorbed rather than analyzed to get the full effect (show, don't tell), and each has at least one character that really stands out, in this case Nicky Halflinger. I still have the hardcove...more
Parsia
One of my professional activities is "Malware Analysis", so reading this book was long overdue. It has the first notion of a "Computer Worm". The Data-Net Tapeworm is essentially a modern worm that can be reproduced by each of its segments. While the book discussions about the worm are not that technical, I find the idea fascinating at that time.

The book has interesting discussions about society, humans and relationships. I don't feel I am knowledgeable enough to comment on them so I focused on...more
Ian Williams
Read this, read this now! For all that it's almost forty years old, this book almost nails today's hyperconnected society.
Karl
This is another book I have seen for years and ignored. I mistakenly assumed I would not like it because I tried Brunner's Jagged Orbit and Stand on Zanzibar and never finished either one.

This computer story is great though possibly a modern reader will need to forgive the old technology a little. But it is what is done with technology not its sophistication that makes the story. Here we have a hacker versus the government. The world is at the point of deciding how to cope with this cybernetic s...more
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23113
The late John Brunner was perhaps as well known for much of his career in the US as in the UK. A leftwing activist, with particular connections to the peace movement, much of his best and most mature fiction is involved in a complex analysis of social trends and where they will take us--novels like Stand on Zanzibar which deals with overpopulation, among other things, and The Sheep Look Up, which...more
More about John Brunner...
Stand on Zanzibar The Sheep Look Up The Crucible of Time The Jagged Orbit The Squares of the City

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“There are two kinds of fools. One says, "This is old, and therefore good." And one says, " This is new, and therefore better.” 46 likes
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