Our society has gone through a weird, unremarked transition: once a novelty, the Net is now something that we take for granted, like mains electricity or running water. In the process we've been surprisingly incurious about its significance or cultural implications. How has our society become dependent on a utility that it doesn't really understand?
John Naughton has distilled the noisy chatter surrounding the internet's relentless evolution into nine clear-sighted areas of understanding. In doing so he affords everyone the requisite knowledge to make better use of the technologies and networks around us, as well as highlighting some of their more disturbing implications.
©2012 John Naughton (P)2013 Quercus Publishing Plc
"A fantastic read and a marvel of economy.... This is the kind of primer you want to slide under your boss' door" (Cory Doctorow, Observer)
"An accessible guide to the Internet, which covers the nine need-to-know ideas about its cultural significance." (Sunday Times)
One of the best books I have listened to this year.
It's everything you would want to know about the development of the internet and what this may or may not imply for the future.
It's entertaining and incredibly well written.
It's as light and entertaining as a ted talk and it still feels that way after 8 hours. The author manages to intertwine the great thinkers of philosophy and literature with the development of the internet in all its parts, great and small. And yet following the discussion through the book is effortless.
IT is often considered a bit boring, but John Naughton gives it life and colours in a literary style that reminds me of Stephen Fry.
The part on copyright law really made me understand the problems lawyers have been discussing for years about the internet.
The narrator also does a very good job, making the book easy to follow and understand, while at the same time being pleasant to the ear.
I find it to be a profound master piece on internet history.
Oh if only I had, had professors like this at university, what delightful pleasure learning would have been…
Thank you John Naughton for this wonderful book.
How the information was presented.
He makes it easy to understand and comprehend.
Laugh, think and go; hmmm...
Yes definately just to get my head around some of technical info.
The insight into complexity and the impossibility of predicting the future expressed in such a hopeful and positive light. I found this uplifting.
Not applicable but Daniel Weyman is an intelligent and expressive narrator, with a lovely voice that is a pleasure to listen to.
The title is a brilliant tag line.
I purchased this audio book last August (2013) and have only just got around to listen to it as I anticipated it might be a bit dry and geekish. It was one of those books that I thought I should read to understand the technology around me. HOW WRONG COULD I HAVE BEEN. The content is brillant a perfect balance of technological info and human interest perfectly narrated by Daniel Weyman. Strangely enough it also gave me a sense of connectedness to the world and a sense of technology being part of our evolution. LOVED IT. Thanks to John Naughton and his insightful and intelligent contribution that has given me a sense that just may be things will work out for the planet after all.
"A bit dull"
Really hard going. Hardly groundbreaking. Maybe ok for a first timer. Starting to feel outdated as written in 2011. Sorry
"(Re)orientation for leymen and everybody else"
Yes this is definitely a book to return to, my Audible iphone app's, bookmark feature was working over time. In fact I've just ordered the hard copy for reference purposes, if that's any indication of it's value!
'Favorite character's' is not applicable here, however Naughton introduces key historical figures and contemporary authors in an engaging way.The author's use of Huxley and Orwell's distopian futures, as a means of discussing the possible realities we could be collectively sleep walking (running?) into, although borrowed from cultural critic Neil Postman; was very refreshing. With the notable exception of Nicholas Carr (also making an appearance here) so many pop-technology writers seem to prefer the position of sideline cheerleaders of the internet revolution, rather than that of serious critical commentators. The platitudinous 'if you do nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear' sentiment is not in evidence here, on the contrary, the author is at pains to state that if we don't wise up to how the web is being used by governments and corporations on a global scale, we may find ourselves with plenty to be concerned about! I digress. However, I'm not sure where a previous reviewer found so much to be uplifted and optimistic about after reading this book?
Faultless, if only all audio books were read by Weyman.
Yes the bit where my iphone was described as a luxury furnished jail cell, I was moved to use one of the 'cell's' luxury features to book mark that bit.
The one small criticism I would have, is that in one instance the author borrows heavily from a TED talk by Copyright expert Lawrence Lessig, to the degree that he describes in detail a video which is he presented at the talk. Perhaps a URL would have sufficed? In the book Naughton actually writes that he often asks the question in his own presentations 'hands up if you have never stolen an idea from someone's PowerPoint presentation?' Perhaps what he should say is 'hands up, if anyone has every stolen an idea from someone's PowerPoint and based an entire chapter of a book on it? To sum up though, I cant really recommend this book more highly, for laymen, business leaders (particularly in the Music and entertainment sectors like me), educators will find plenty here of use too. Indeed, I suspect it's a book which will become more important to the internet discussion over time and not less so.Buy it and enjoy!
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