To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
White Light (Cortext : Science Fiction That Changed the World) Paperback – September, 1997
A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at beyond the speed of light. The beacons are built to be robust. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to. Learn more
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Before the existence of the current virtual worlds came to be so common, William Gibson imagined and coined the term "cyberspace". Gibson and other writers like Bruce Sterling and Neal Stephenson wrote stories of "cyberspace" and its relation to the human spirit and evolution. I think, however, it was probably necessary for computer technology to advance to a certain level before imagining these stories was possible. Or, was there synergy? Did the desire, inspired by cyberpunk authors, to create these worlds further drive the development of computer technology once it had achieved a level that inspired the authors? Ah, now I have a headache.
Well, before the computer technology was such as would inspire the concept of "cyberspace", there was a similar concept out of which the concept of "cyberspace" also likely grew. That concept involved a higher plane of reality that could be experienced by achieving "enlightenment" or having and out-of-body experience, sometimes with the assistance of drugs and/or sensory-deprivation tanks. This is the time and place that (I think) probably inspired the book "White Light" by Rudy Rucker. If you consider it a while, you can also see how these concepts extend in many ways into human history.Read more ›
Nor is that an accident, as it was written at about the same time as _Infinity and the Mind_ and deals with the same primary theme: the soul's quest for God, the Absolutely Infinite. And Rucker's is my kind of mysticism.
For this novel is about a mathematician who went to college to dodge the draft and winds up working in set theory in an attempt to (as Lord Buckley would have put it) dig infinity. At one time, Rucker himself was a mathematician who was supposed to be working on Georg Cantor's Continuum Problem while stuck teaching at a college in upstate New York; the novel's protagonist, Felix Rayman, is closely modeled on Rucker in this and other respects. (Some of the other characters are modeled on real and fictional people as well: for example, "Franx," the giant cockroach, is modeled on Franz Kafka -- author of "Metamorphosis," in which Gregor Samsa finds himself turned into a giant cockroach -- and "Donald Duck" is modeled on Donald Duck.) In fact, the original subtitle of the novel was "What Is Cantor's Continuum Problem?" -- which is, incidentally, to determine what order of infinity the points in space make up.
This is thus the first novel in Rucker's series of "transreal" novels -- "transrealism" being defined as somewhat metaphorical storytelling based pretty closely on the author's own experiences. In the present case, we're talking about mystical experiences, some drug-induced, some not.Read more ›
This particular edition was published in associated with Wired magazine - despite the awful essay that introduces it, it has nothing to do with cyberpunk at all (there are *no* in-line skates, and at no point does our hero plant explosives in somebody's head), and is all the better for it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Recommended to me by a friend, to try to help me expand my literary horizons past non-fiction educational books. I'm glad I read it. Read morePublished 15 months ago by W. Chandler
I found this book in a bargain bin before a bus trip, I lost that copy and searched for 10 years while it was out of print. Read morePublished on May 5, 2010 by TankGirl
I had a.. Friend who took LSD once and he, err told me about it, and if I ever want to be reminded of his experience I just need to read White Light. That does it for me. Read morePublished on July 25, 2009 by A. McLaren
I've been looking for a copy of this in the used book bins for a couple of years now. I finally got sick of looking at it in my "to read" database in my PDA. Read morePublished on November 17, 2006 by Scott C. Locklin
I read somewhere, once, that Rudy Rucker was the original and actual father of cyberpunk, and that White Light was his seminal work. Read morePublished on October 27, 2006 by Joseph Pellerin
Felix Raynor is a new assistant math professor at SUCAS Bernco, a cow
college in upstate New York -- but wait, Rudy Rucker... Read more
Light, fun writing style. Concepts beyond human comprehension presented in humorous and approachable style. Read morePublished on February 29, 2004 by Michael Mcginnis
What can I say? Rucker, a mathematician, does a splendid job of writing a math lesson (or many lessons) into an engaging story. Read morePublished on September 2, 2002
In the strange worlds of quantum physics and the mathematics of infinity, things happen which defy common sense. Read morePublished on October 13, 2001 by Robert Carlberg