- Hardcover: 560 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow; 1st Edition edition (September 9, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062204696
- ISBN-13: 978-0062204691
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 52 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #759,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 9, 2014
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“This collection could be the shot in the arm our imaginations need. It’s an important book, and not just for the fiction.” (Wall Street Journal)
“[A]group of visionaries have banded together to offer stories that are more utopian, which they hope will contribute to a more positive future…. …The stories still offer plenty of drama, death and destruction, but many have a sort of happy ending.” (New York Times)
“…Thought-provoking and fun.” (Pacific Standard magazine)
“This new anthology justly deserves to be ranked alongside the very best collections published within science fiction: Terry Carr’s Universe, Damon Knight’s Orbit, or Robert Silverberg’s New Dimensions.” (LA Review of Books)
From the Back Cover
Inspired by New York Times bestselling author Neal Stephenson, some of today's leading writers, thinkers, and visionaries have come together in this anthology of stories, set in the near future, that reignites the iconic and optimistic visions of the golden age of science fiction
Born of an initiative at the Center for Science and the Imagination at Arizona State University, this remarkable collection unites a diverse group of celebrated authors, prominent scientists, and creative visionaries—among them Cory Doctorow, Gregory Benford, Charlie Jane Anders, David Brin, and Neal Stephenson—who contributed works of "techno-optimism" that challenge us to imagine fully, think broadly, and do Big Stuff.
Inside this volume you will find marvels of imagination and possibility, including a steel tower so tall that the stratosphere is just an elevator ride away . . . a drone-powered Internet . . . crowdfunded robots descending on the moon . . . cities that work like a single cell of algae powered entirely by the sun . . . and much more.
Engaging, mind-bending, provocative, and imaginative, Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future offers a forward-thinking approach to the intersection of art and technology that has the power to change our world.
Top customer reviews
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General disappointment aside, some of the stories are real gems. Vandana Singh's "Entanglement" has to be my favorite - the prospect of deep intertwining of lives around the world is fascinating, but more than that, Singh presents each perspective in a delightful manner, deeply envisioned in their place, yet also deeply entangled (in ways that aren't clear until the end). Second favorite is probably "Degrees of freedom" by Karl Schroeder, a hopeful look at how similar technology could make governments irrelevant and allow real collective decision-making, in a tale focused on a father and son learning to understand one another. James Cambias' "Periapsis" was also nicely done - much more far-fetched technology-wise, but a sweet tale with a fun romantic and surprising ending.
My impression is the "big name" writers didn't really put their best efforts into this volume, but there are a few pieces of great writing and inspirational story-telling here, so I'm not unhappy I purchased it. Maybe there will be a follow-on volume with a bit more even quality.
Thus, at least half of the stories fail to meet the title criteria.
It's scary that we're so short of visions for a better future.
The stories were mixed. Some I liked pretty well, and some I didn't care anything about. That's about normal for me - I rarely read fiction, because I can't bring myself to care about the characters or the writer.
These stories almost always made sense. Competent writing... it's sometimes enough. Good job.
More books like this, please. Keep publishing these more interesting authors.