Pandemonium Books & Games T-Shirt Fundraiser

Pandemonium is an excellent sci-fi/fantasy book and game shop in Cambridge. They recently re-located from the Garage in Harvard Square to a larger location in Central Square. The move was lengthier and more expensive than anticipated which has left them in some dire financial straights. They’re running a shirt drive to stay afloat. There are two spiffy designs available for pre-order now with a new design coming each month.

Stephenson’s Diamond Age Miniseries

George Clooney will executive produce a miniseries of Neal Stephensons’ The Diamond Age for SCI FI Channel.

When a prominent member of society concludes that the futuristic civilization in which he lives is stifling creativity, he commissions an interactive book for his daughter that serves as a guide through a surreal alternate world. Stephenson will adapt his novel for the miniseries, the first time the Hugo and Nebula award winner has written for TV.

RAW Needs Help

Douglas Rushkoff reports that Robert Anton Wilson is in need of help. RAW is at home, dying from post-polio syndrome, and can’t pay his next month’s rent. If you can, send the man some money and then go read [one of his books]( and be a better and wiser person for it.

>There came unto the High Chapperal one who had studied in the schools of the Purple Sage and of the Hung Mung Tong and of the Illuminati and of the many other schools; and this one had found no peace yet.

>Yea: of the Discordians and the teachers of the Mummu and of the Nazarene and of the Buddha he had studied; and he had found no peace yet.

>And he spake to the High Chapperal and said: Give me a sign, that I may believe.

>And the High Chapperal said unto him: Leave my presence, and seek ye the horizon and the sign shall come unto you, and ye shall seek no more.

>And the man turned and sought of the horizon; but the High Chapperal crept up behind him and raised his foot and did deliver a most puissant kick in the man’s arse, which smarted much and humiliated the seeker grievously.

>**He who has eyes, let him read and understand.**

>–“The Book of Grandmotherly Kindness,”
*The Dishonest Book of Lies,* by Mordecai Malignatus, K.N.S.

**Update:** And [here]( is the touching response from RAW and his daughter.

Amazon Online Book Access Program

This doesn’t seem to have gotten much press yet but it look like Amazon is taking a publisher-friendly approach to the Google Print thing.

The first program, Amazon Pages, will “un-bundle” the physical-world experience of buying and reading a book so that customers can simply and inexpensively purchase and read online just the pages they need. For example, an entrepreneur interested in marketing his or her business could purchase the relevant chapters from several best-selling business books.

The second program, Amazon Upgrade, will allow customers to “upgrade” their purchase of a physical book on to include complete online access. For example, a software developer who buys a Java programming book will not only get the physical book delivered to his or her home, but will also get 24×7 Web access to the complete interior text of the book. Buy a cookbook and you will not only have it on your shelf, but also be able to access it anywhere via the Web.

In Challenge to Google, Yahoo Will Scan Books

In an alliance with the Internet Archive Yahoo is announcing its own book-scanning project. It differs from Google’s project in that the entire text of the books will be available and any search engine can make use of the index. They’ll start with public domain books and then try to convince copyright holders to release their books under a Creative Commons license.
>When it comes to copyrighted materials, the newly formed group appears to be taking a more cautious approach by seeking permission from copyright holders and by making works available though a Creative Commons license, whereby the copyright holder stipulates how a work can be used.

>”Other projects talk about snippets,” said Brewster Kahle, the founder of the Internet Archive, a nonprofit organization in San Francisco that is building a vast digital library. “We don’t talk about snippets. We talk about books.”


Salon is publishing the first act (and probably more) of Cory Doctorow’s novel-in-progress *Themepunks* in serial form. The first chapter is up and the rest will be posted every Monday for ten weeks.