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The Happy Mutant Handbook

4.01  ·  Rating Details ·  90 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
In the wrong hands, this book would receive a dousing of gasoline and a quick flick of the Bic. In the right hands, this is a delightfully subversive manual for a lifetime of fun.

This is the do-it-yourself handbook for enjoying our media-saturated world by tinkering with how it works. Pulls together the kookiest and most engaging ideas from the Internet, great suggestion

Paperback, 205 pages
Published November 1st 1995 by Riverhead Trade
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Aug 13, 2008 Swankivy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favoritebooks
I read this thing cover to cover and have had loads of fun with it. If the word "happy mutant" appeals to you and seems to describe you, you might consider checking this book out and learning about how to do things that have amused others of your kind. There are many pranks (of which I am very fond myself) and cool stuff that you can do on the computer. It is a rather disorganized book, but that doesn't really matter. I've learned a lot from this weird little book and you will too. Recommendatio ...more
Apr 28, 2008 Rosminah rated it really liked it
This was a gift from a friend, right about the time I had a growing interest in Burning Man and other assorted randomness. I had just moved to England, so this book was my link to the quirkiness I could no longer get at in the bay area and black rock city.
I still like the graphic designs of the book and occasionally grab images out of it for little art projects.
Maybe there isn't much to learn from it today, the book is now over a decade old, but it can probably be bought used for cheap and turne
Julie Decker
Jul 23, 2014 Julie Decker rated it it was amazing
This collection of suggestions, ideas, fun information, and resources for weirdos was a fantastically amusing book for me when I was growing up in the late 90s, teetering on the edge of a real Internet, excited about all the nerdy ways I could reach out and be weird to other weird people. There's a fair number of straight-up articles and interviews in here--bits on coding experiments, perspective from SubGenius leader Ivan Stang, digital evolution--and there are also some hilarious resources, li ...more
Keith Davis
Jul 14, 2013 Keith Davis rated it really liked it
I love weirdness but not weirdness for its own sake. If someone writes a book, records music, or makes a movie and it ends up being weird then that is wonderful. But when someone deliberately sets out to create something weird the end result is usually tedious or pretentious; see: Burning Man.

I read this back in 1995 and it had a very positive effect on my world view. It is one thing to be weird and be content with it, but it is something else to know you are not alone. Not that the Happy Mutant
Justin Hudnall
Dec 16, 2010 Justin Hudnall rated it liked it
Man, it's weird going back to publications that were all about how being technologically cutting-edge led to some kind of marginal anti-establishment statement. Especially from the 90's. Tim & Eric's Awesome Show Great Job! really feels like a documentary after rereading this. I loved this as a kid as much as I loved the movie "Hackers", but now they both feel like a bunch of Gen X'ers were trying to start a super-secret club house and couldn't come up with what made them different.
Now all t
Oct 31, 2007 dvnt_23 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: only a select few
A dear dear friend gave this to me and I have used it as a guide for life ever since deciding to get a day job and get 'all growed up'......
Apr 16, 2008 Karl rated it really liked it
Strange book... like a practical Slack book. Out of date, though, so not so practical anymore.
Jan 30, 2008 Jill rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jill by: The Lundsfords
This book pretty much made me into the person that I am today. Someday, my children (or neices and nephews) will be raised on this book.
May 12, 2010 Steven rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone that does not take themselves too seriously,
Shelves: nonsense, humor
Fantastic book. Funny, witty and at times down right accurate.
Jun 23, 2011 Freder rated it really liked it
It's dated now, but in its day it was an amazing toolbox for rewiring one's own brain and worldview. Still a lot of fun.
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Editor-in-chief of MAKE magazine. Founder of

My books: The Happy Mutant Handbook (1995, Riverhead), a guide to offbeat pop culture. Mad Professor (2003, Chronicle), science experiments for kids. Worlds Worst (2005, Chronicle), a guide to the worst stuff on Earth, The Computer (2005, Carlton books), an illustrated history of computers. Rule the Web (2007, St. Martins), a guide to onl
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