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The Diamond Age by Neal. Stephenson
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The Diamond Age (original 1995; edition 1995)

by Neal. Stephenson

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8,360135371 (4.11)200
Member:Robert3167
Title:The Diamond Age
Authors:Neal. Stephenson
Info:BANTAM. (1995), Paperback, 455 pages
Collections:Your library, Sc-Fi
Rating:*****
Tags:Sci-Fi, Nanotechnology

Work details

The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady's Illustrated Primer by Neal Stephenson (1995)

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English (128)  French (2)  Finnish (1)  German (1)  Italian (1)  Hungarian (1)  Romanian (1)  All languages (135)
Showing 1-5 of 128 (next | show all)
This book's title is stupid. It should have the subtitle as the title. Because this book IS "A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer". It has nothing to do with a Diamond Age. It's just a story about an interactive children's book. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But, I signed on to read a Neal Stephenson book, a crazy romp through cyberspace. Not some story about some stupid little girl and the whore who talks to her through this interactive book.

Okay, I admit the whore's story is kind of interesting. But this book isn't about the wore's story. It should have been! But, sadly, it's not. It's just about this stupid little girl's fucked up life, with her abusive family. I don't fucking care, okay? I just don't. There, I said it. ( )
  gecizzle | Mar 5, 2015 |
I went back and forth between greatly liking and disliking this book while I was reading it. In the end, I don't think its interesting and valuable ideas outweigh its incoherent and unpleasant ones. If your interest in the social and political implications of nanotechnology is as enormous as your tolerance for mindless violence and plot holes then this is the book for you. ( )
  wishanem | Jan 27, 2015 |
This might make the book sound stodgier than it is, but my favorite part was Stephenson's take on how "cultures" might be defined and develop on a post-scarcity earth -- particularly the role of technology, territory, history, and education.
Some quotes!
"The chief of the Ashantis bowed to the constable and graciously spun out another lengthy quotation from the fine print of the Common Economic Protocol. The constable kept making a gesture that was somewhere between a nod and a perfunctory bow. Then the constable turned to Bud and said, very fast: 'Are you a member of any signatory tribe, phyle, registered diaspora, franchise-organized quasi-national entity, sovereign polity, or any other form of dynamic security collective claiming status under the CEP?'"
"Now nanotechnology had made nearly anything possible, and so the cultural role in deciding what should be done with it had become far more important than imagining what could be done with it. One of the insights of the Victorian Revival was that it was not necessarily a good thing for everyone to read a completely different newspaper in the morning; so the higher one rose in the society, the more similar one's Times became to one's peers'." ( )
  behemothing | Oct 25, 2014 |
In a transhumanist cyberpunk future mankind instead of countries lives in 'Tribes' and can 'print' almost anything for themselves form the Feed. In this world we can follow how a little girl's life has been changed dramatically by a special book.
A bit overwritten and the end is a bit rough-and-ready. ( )
  TheCrow2 | Oct 5, 2014 |
Neal Stephenson writes science fiction that requires a certain level of attention and concentration to follow and stay on top of. You can’t lay a Stephenson novel down for a few days and hope to come back and take up where you left off. This is not pulp science fiction.

As in much of his other work, Stephenson, in The Diamond Age, crafts a complicated economic and cultural landscape with a heavy mixture of technological and dystopian overlay. Set largely in heavily populated and “tribally” stratified future Southeast Asia, the heroine of the story, Nell, an economically deprived young lady, comes into possession of a “magical” book which creates a host of new opportunities for her. Over time, her life in the magical world of the book begins to merge with that of the real world, leading to a fascinating climax.

Numerous ancillary story threads present fascinating characters and intriguing scenarios. Simply put, Stephenson is a highly intelligent, brilliant story teller whose science fiction is among the best I’ve ever read. This novel is certainly no exception. ( )
  santhony | Aug 8, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 128 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Neal Stephensonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jensen, BruceCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wiltsie, JenniferNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
By nature, men are nearly alike;
by practice, they get to be wide apart.

- Confucius
Dedication
First words
The bells of St. Mark's were ringing changes up on the mountain when Bud skated over to the mod parlor to upgrade his skull gun.
Quotations
The difference between ignorant and educated people is that the latter know more facts. But that has nothing to do with whether they are stupid or intelligent. The difference between stupid and intelligent people--and this is true whether or not they are well-educated--is that intelligent people can handle subtlety. They are not baffled by ambiguous or even contradictory situations--in fact, they expect them and are apt to become suspicious when things seem overly straightforward.
It is upon moral qualities that a society is ultimately founded. All the prosperity and technological sophistication in the world is of no use without that foundation.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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The story of an engineer who creates a device to raise a girl capable of thinking for herself reveals what happens when a young girl of the poor underclass obtains the device.

(summary from another edition)

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Audible.com

5 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 014027037X, 0241953197

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