One of the web’s most celebrated high-tech culture mavens returns with this second collection of essays and polemics. Discussing complex topics in an accessible manner, Cory Doctorow’s visions of a future where artists have full freedom of expression is tempered with his understanding that creators need to benefit from their own creations. From extolling the Etsy makerverse to excoriating Apple for dumbing down technology while creating an information monopoly, each unique piece is brief, witty, and at the cutting edge of tech. Now a stay-at-home dad as well as an international activist, Doctorow writes as eloquently about creating real-time Internet theater with his daughter as he does while lambasting the corporations that want to profit from inherent intellectual freedoms.
“Cory Doctorow’s Context is a treat for those who live in the digital world—as well as for those who would like to know more about it.”
New York Journal of Books
“If you are interested in the context of our Internet-centric lives, Context is a must-read collection of essays.”
San Francisco Book Review
“Context is a deeply interesting and thought-provoking book…The resulting collection is golden: and an absolute must-read for anyone who’s ever asked where all of this technology stuff is heading.”
“Cory Doctorow is the apotheosis of what we talk about when we talk about the Web.”
“There is plenty here to chew over here and will make you think.”
“Doctorow makes the complicated accessible throughout this great little guidebook, a GPS for the digital age.”
“A good introduction to Doctorow, the volume collects his most recent work and will be of interest to a wide audience: anyone who teaches, reads sf, follows tech news, or wonders why one can’t read the same books on a Kindle as on a Nook.”
“Part Poor Benjamin, part Dr. Spock, Doctorow is by now a wise, trusted guide in this messy—but eminently navigable!—world in which we’ve landed.”
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A Kindred ThinkerJune 18, 2015Having listened to three of Cory’s novels, this collection of essays gives me a much clearer look at who Cory Doctorow is and how he thinks. To tell the truth, these essays endeared him to me much more than his novels have.
Cory is an odd amalgamation of someone who adulates over antiquated technologies and practices and “things” while extolling modern and future technologies, especially those relating to the computing and internet arenas. Overall, I find in a Cory someone who shares many of my views on the topics he discusses. He demonstrates how computers can be gateways to enriching play with one’s children as well as points out the many issues with Apple. All the points he made about the iPad, for example, match the ones I made prior and during its introduction to the world. I wonder if he was excoriated to the extent I was for making such arguments against the iPad and Apple in general when he originally posted these essays.
The only thing I wish was different with this book is for each essay to have included the date on which each was published. As a fan of archiving for the sake of going back in time to see what else was happening in the world, you’d think he would have included the dates.
If you’re a fan of Doctorow’s fiction, this audiobook will give you a deeper look into his fiction. For example, he describes objects in his office. Sitting on his desk is a super-ancient ax head. Have you read or listened to "Eastern Standard Tribe"? No spoiler alerts, but I can’t help wondering how many hours Cory spent milling around the ways he could incorporate that ax head into his fiction.
I enjoyed Paul Michael Garcia’s narration well enough. But considering that Cory is an active podcaster, I really would have preferred to hear him read his own essays.
Paul Michael Garcia, an AudioFile Earphones Award winner and former company member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, received his classical training in theater from Southern Oregon University, where he worked as an actor, director, and designer.
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- Publisher: Blackstone Audio
- Genre: Nonfiction/Social Science
- ISBN-13: 9781504601696