Azeroth and Anathem

Now that Ramadan has ended, I’m taking up my geeky pursuits again. I’ve got a copy of Anathem from the library and added some game time back to my Warcraft account. I have to confess that it’s a hard choice πŸ™‚

Just saw the movie 17 Again starring teen heartthrob Zac Ephron and former teen hearthrob Matthew Perry. I was delighted to note the supporting “best friend” character was a geek otaku of the highest caliber, who also managed to score an otaku dreamgirl. You can always tell when writers are genuine geeks – it shows, unlike gross and absurd representations like Revenge of the Nerds and Urkel and whatnot.

8 thoughts on “Azeroth and Anathem”

  1. Get hold of the Anathem audiobook and listen to it while playing. Best of both worlds. (Seriously, that’s what I do while I’m grinding dailies.)

  2. Good luck with Anathem! The first 50 pages or so are a bit of a slog due to all the new vocabulary and whatnot, but it’s not that bad and once you get used to it, things proceed nicely…

    You make an interesting point about Revenge of the Nerds, though I do think it deserves some credit for being among the first to posit that nerds aren’t all that bad. That being said, my favorite of the 80s geek comedies remains Real Genius (when I first saw that movie, I attempted to build a laser in my backyard, but a flashlight and a magnifying glass do not a laser make).

  3. I’m actually about 50 pages in πŸ™‚ I am using the glossary, and thus far teh hardest part was visualizing the monastery. I kind of wish hed included a map, but given teh philosophy of the monks, i can see why he didnt πŸ™‚

    its really an amazing book so far. I dunno if I could multitask it as an audiobook though – its really forcing my attention and slowing me down from my usual pace. Maybe thats just bec of the frst 50 pages of vocab, though πŸ™‚

  4. I’ve given up pushing Stephenson on my geek friends after yet another failure with Anathem. He’s pretty polarizing. The gonzo style and loose respect for factual detail tends to enrage a certain class of pedantics, among whom, apparently, are a number of my friends.

  5. I’ve definitely come to the conclusion that Stephenson apparently has a very specific appeal to a very specific type of person, and outside that segment, people just don’t get him. Fortunately, I’m in that segment. Strangely, it’s difficult to tell if someone falls into that segment or not. I’ve recommended Cryptonomicon to several people who ended up not especially liking it…

    Glad you’re enjoying Anathem Fledge! Things speed up a lot once you get outside the monastery (which I agree is somewhat difficult to visualize)… And once you get the hang of the vocab, it’s smoother sailing…

  6. ok, this book is supremely bloggable. i might have to re-read it after I’m done, and take notes.

    am now about halfway in, and finding it much easier to read, but still missing a lot of explication about historical chronology and the various orders. I wish there was a copy of The Lineage (in dowel form) to reference. plus i am just unable to visualize the robe, chord and sphere, though I find their correspondnce to line (distance), plane (area), and sphere (volume) significant. by manipulating these three things, avouts are just performing topological deformations on them; these are teh building blocks of geometry.

    The main appeal is the vocabulary. they verge on being puns, obviously on purpose. i could devote entire blog posts to each term in the glossary.

  7. first, given the form of the narrative as socratic dialogs, i could read about 30 pages, and then I would go fish or grind in the World [of Warcraft] and digest what I read.
    Later, the narrative morphs into more of a scifi pageturner, and I could drink great 100 page draughts of that at a time.
    But the back story, the language, definitions and historical matrix are sort of neccessary to really get the book.
    I agree about the clever punning.

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