What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry
Now a few drawbacks: The book is a little hard to follow because there were so many players. I really wanted to know ...more
The author wrote this in the same way in which I often write my essays: I start with a preconceived conclusion and generally try to shoehorn the rest of my essay into it, despite reality differing a little from what I though.
The rise of computers was undoubtedly parallel with the rise of the drug culture and the New Left, and many of the first computer scientists were active participants in these movements; however, it seems that by the author's sporadic intermingling of these separate event...more
This one goes a layer deeper towards the roots: investigating the impact on nascent Silicon Valley by hippies, counterculture movement, bands like Grateful Dead, the anti-war protests at Berkeley, local book stores, LSD & mushrooms and so forth. How the nascent institutions like Stanford Research Institute, Stanford AI Lab and first attempts at personal compu ...more
Nevetheless, you can tell the author did an immense amount of research and recounts all the facts a ...more
The book attempts to tie together nerdie engineers with counterculture LSD druggies with free love types with antiwar activists with students with hackers and the mix is considerably hard to pull off, even for a writer as accomplished as ...more
The structure is of many small narratives linked together, a few names appearing again ...more
As other reviewers have pointed out before me, I'm not sure how much interconnectedness there really was between the counter-culture and the beginning of the PC era. Naturally, there was some - but it seems to me that the counter-culture was almost everywhere.
The reason I bought this book in the first place is because how this time in technology and computer history is described in Thomas Rid's 'Rise of the Machines' ( ...more
There is some entertainment value in the occasional story of the movement conflicting with reality:
The commune idea hadn't worked out. He ran out of money within six months, it being more expensive to live on a commune in southern Oregon than he had thought it would be. Worst of all, it turned out there were no programming jobs anywhere close to...more
The book follows the careers of many individuals who made computing what it is today. Foremost among them is Doug Engelbart, the epitome of the Idealist Engineer, who wanted to make the world a better place. He focused on increasing human potential, and was a significant player in ...more
it's somehow encouraging to read of the altruist ...more
Nonetheless, a healthy number of the early PC iconoclasts were involved in the drug use and free thought that pervaded that era. How this directly impacte ...more
The book is a chronological approach to the development of computing with specific focus on Doug Engelbart and his team at SRI, John McCarthy’s SAIL and Stewart Brand, author of the Whole Earth Catalog. Finally, there was progra ...more
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