Rudy Rucker, author of the Software tetralogy and White Light, possesses a quality that could endanger his cyberpunk credibility: enthusiasm. No sullen antihero, Dr. Rucker is a computer science professor and a devoted family man, but his fiction has kept many a reader up all night with visions of humans uploading their consciousnesses into robots that eventually return the favor. His collection of short nonfiction, Seek!, is just as clear and sassy as his novels. Whether he's having visions in Yosemite with his son, flipping the bird at Jerry Falwell's second in command, or playing with his favorite artificial life forms, Rucker seems to know he'll be telling us about it later; his uncanny knack for perfectly apt descriptions must arise from this knowledge. Once you've been told that the "Mandelbrot set is shaped like big fat warty buttocks ..." you're not likely to forget it.|
Divided into three sections ("Science," "Life," and "Art"), Seek! reads like a user's guide to the New Renaissance: after reading "A Brief History of Computers," we can move on to "Cyberculture in Japan," visit Industrial Light and Magic, and examine Brueghel's Peasant Dance in depth. All are infused with Rucker's intense delight and frustration with the things and people of this world; they inevitably provoke the kind of staring-into-space reveries long thought lost to our youth. He provides Web page URLs so that readers will have natural starting points for continuing research, including his own Web site's free software for playing with cellular automata and other funky almost-living critters. As Rucker says to his students, referring to the boundary between order and chaos (and providing a title for this book): Seek Ye the Gnarl!
Source: Rob Lightner, Amazon.com.
The essays and memoirs collected in Seek! trace Rudy Rucker's trajectory through thefinal decade of the second millennium. His topics include artificial life, chaos, the big bang, Pieter Brueghel, the church of the subgenius, live sex, mathematics, science fiction, and TV evangelism. A computer scientist and programmer, Rucker is an articulate, engaging guide to the world on either side of the computer screen.