71-Year-Old William Gibson Explores ‘Existing Level of Weirdness’ For New Dystopian SciFi Novel

71-year-old science fiction author William Gibson coined the word “cyberspace” in his 1984 novel Neuromancer. 36 years later he’s back with an even more dystopian future in his new novel Agency.

But in a surprisingly candid interview in the Daily Beast, Gibson says he prefers watching emerging new technologies first because “To use it is to be changed by it; you’re not the same person.”

“I’m not someone who works from assumptions about where technology might be going. My method of writing is exploratory about that.”

That’s certainly the case with Agency, Gibson’s latest, a densely structured, complexly plotted novel that takes place in two separate time frames, which he refers to as “stubs,” and has as one of its central characters an AI named Eunice, who is one part uploaded human consciousness and another part specialized military machine intelligence. In one stub it’s 2017, a woman is in the White

Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/mfJ6uNGLQlk/71-year-old-william-gibson-explores-existing-level-of-weirdness-for-new-dystopian-scifi-novel

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XKCD Author Challenges Serena Williams To Attack A Drone

In just 16 days XKCD author Randall Munroe releases a new book titled How To: Absurd Scientific Advice for Common Real-World Problems. He’s just released an excerpt from the chapter “How to Catch a Drone,” in which he actually enlisted the assistance of tennis star Serena Williams.

An anonymous reader writes:
Serena and her husband Alexis just happened to have a DJI Mavic Pro 2 with a broken camera — and Munroe asked her to try to smash it with tennis balls. “My tentative guess was that a champion player would have an accuracy ratio around 50 when serving, and take 5-7 tries to hit a drone from 40 feet. (Would a tennis ball even knock down a drone? Maybe it would just ricochet off and cause the drone to wobble! I had so many questions.)

“Alexis flew the drone over the net and hovered there, while Serena served from the

Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/gnzOsNs_0uk/xkcd-author-challenges-serena-williams-to-attack-a-drone

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Catalog Your Books, Games and More Into Your Own Searchable ‘Library’ With Libib

Despite my constant claims that I’m going to move to an all-digital library, I still buy a ton of books. I’ve started to embrace the fact that I like having physical copies of things. Besides just loving act of holding a book while I’m reading it, it also makes things a ton easier to share with friends.Read more…

Original URL: https://lifehacker.com/catalog-your-books-games-and-more-into-your-own-search-1827421846

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Dev-Books Is a Massive Collection of the Most Recommended Coding and Programming Books

Stack Overflow is filled with thousands of questions and answers, and many of those are book recommendations from programmers with many different levels of skill. Dev-Books collects together the most recommended books.Read more…

Original URL: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/lifehacker/full/~3/YzO32BtrQTI/dev-books-is-a-massive-collection-of-the-most-recommend-1792134129

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The Joy of Coding Humble Book Bundle Features Cheap Guides for a Variety of Coding Languages and Concepts

The Humble Book Bundle has released a new collection of books aimed at coders called The Joy of Coding. It comes packed with several books from No Starch Press that teach a variety of coding languages and concepts.Read more…

Original URL: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/lifehacker/full/~3/Bk2UCShruLs/the-joy-of-coding-humble-book-bundle-features-cheap-gui-1785412184

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Supreme Court affirms Google Books scans of copyrighted works are fair use

hero_books A Supreme Court order issued today closes the book on (or perhaps merely ends this chapter of) more than a decade of legal warfare between Google and the Authors Guild over the legality of the former’s scanning without permission of millions of copyrighted books. And the final word is: it’s fair use. Read More

Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/PRh6pZuG1gA/

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Google Docs Can Now Export EPUB

An anonymous reader writes: The EPUB format is now available as an export option from Google Docs. Tests show that the feature can very accurately translate Word-style hyperlinked indexes into EPUB sidebar indices, offering the possibility of updating legacy documents to a more portable and open format. However, despite the completely open XML-based nature of the format, and how much better it handles text-reflow than PDF can, the paucity of easy-to-use editors — particularly in the mobile space — may mean that EPUB continues to be seen as a ‘baked’ format.

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Ask Slashdot: An ‘Ex Libris’ For My Books In a Digital Age?

New submitter smalgin writes: While I cannot boast an extensive library, it keeps growing every week. I share the books I like the most with my friends and acquaintances. Unfortunately, some of them are sloppy and forget to return my books, so to speak. I would like to put some mark, sticker or a stamp (Ex Libris) on my books to make them recognizable later. However, living in a digital age (blah blah yada yada) I cannot help but wonder how I could improve the ex libris beyond an ink stamp on a title page or a glued-on postcard-sized monstrosity some libraries use. Has anyone tried using RFIDs to identify his books? Please share your experience.

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The OCLC officially sunsets its library card catalog program

cardcatLibraries just reached a milestone yesterday. In some ways it’s a sad one, but in other ways it’s one that you would honestly have expected to have been reached years ago. As found on Facebook, and confirmed via the OCLC’s official catalog cards page, as of September 30, 2015, the OCLC ended support for physical paper catalog cards—it will no longer be printing or sending them out.

If you’re like me, you’re probably scratching your head in wonderment at the idea anyone actually still used those cards—even small public libraries now have access to computerized cataloging systems. But for a service as basic as that, you pretty much have to continue providing access to it long past the time most would have switched over, because some might still be using it.

But that’s over now. If anyone still is using physical cards, as of today they will have to make up cards for each new book themselves. Or else maybe they’ll finally have to get around to putting in a computer system.

Of course, we still have some way to go before e-books push out paper books in the same way, if in fact they ever actually do. But at least you can rest secure in the knowledge that the closest thing library science has to a cataloging standards body has now left the last vestiges of paper cataloging behind.

Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/teleread/KHnj/~3/3_F6QZpD3BA/

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