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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

“Makers” by Cory Doctorow

The reason the steering apparatus is in the back of sailing ships is so the helmsman can keep the wake between two pegs on the taff rail. You keep going straight forward by paying attention to where you’ve been.

Most of my navigation is the same way. Great insights usually come from blinding flashes of the obvious lubricated by perspiration.

Makers, a book by Cory Doctorow, is a much easier glimpse of the future. The book is a near future business fantasy, a half dozen interrelated stories covering different types of businesses.

As the characters play out, I kept thinking, “I know him!” or “I’ve met THAT guy many times,” so the activities portrayed are part of today’s reality. What is different is the perspective of the environment people are playing in. Seeing this was disquieting, believable, and reading it offered some strategies.

My favorite William Gibson quote is, “The future is already here, it’s not evenly distributed.”

Makers provides a welcome context for the current future.



  1. "Great insights usually come from blinding flashes of the obvious" - painfully true. But its also because those great insights were 180 degrees from where we were looking and didn't find anything but marginal answers.

    Looking forward to reading Cory's book.

  2. Wonderful review. I usually like post that are brief and concise, but your writing is so rich that I would actually prefer a bit more.

    Keep up the great posts!!!

  3. Words of Wisdom! I am very interested in reading this book. The blind flashes of wisdom usually come with a lot of perspiration. You have to learn to achieve. Using others knowledge to avoid the pitfalls is a recommended method. I have perspired too much!