Vinge's BRILLIANT "Rainbows End" as a free download


20 Responses to “Vinge's BRILLIANT "Rainbows End" as a free download”

  1. loftwyr says:

    Oh sure, release the book for free months after I’ve bought it hard cover and read it.

    You authors and your slowness…

  2. TrevorFSmith says:

    Too bad it’s not CC licensed, because I just whipped up a purple numbered version and it would be damn handy to have it online. So many times I’ve wanted to link to a specific piece of that text.

  3. Church says:

    Awesome. I just gave this book away (never lend books) last week.

    Trevorf, I’m not sure what a “purple numbered version” is, but write to Vernor. Authors putting their stuff up for free tend to be pretty cool about derivative works.

  4. Nerdberockin says:

    I finished this book up just a month or so ago, and I still find myself flashing on it when people are sitting around talking about where the internet will be in 20 years. It’s very tempting to say, “just read this.”

    Nina, I’d say there had better be a sequel planned. I still have a little questions that need answerin’!

  5. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Loftwyr, that’s blisteringly fast compared to his writing speed.

    Nina Katarina, it’s not part of a series. Try A Fire Upon the Deep and then A Deepness in the Sky.

  6. Michael R. Bernstein says:

    Here is a description (and toolset) for ‘Purple Numbers’:

  7. Kytsune says:

    I really loved reading Rainbows End. With it as a free electronic document, it should be more easy to get some of my geekier friends to sit down and read it.

    Although, I myself have trouble giving up the tactile sense of holding onto a book (something that actually gets discussed in the subject literature, I notice.)

    Lovely times.

  8. Michael says:

    What? What? No “Vinge isn’t actually very brilliant” trolling? Is this still BoingBoing?

    For the record, I love Vernor Vinge’s work, all of it.

  9. hemidemisemiquaver says:

    The text is kind of littered with these tags. TO get rid of them, you need to do a search and replace with an actual html tag, like


  10. jjpr says:

    This has been my subway book for the last few weeks. Just getting into the climax, and wishing I were reading it all in one go.

  11. woodka says:

    Vernor is brilliant, and he’s a really nice guy too. ;^)

  12. Nelson.C says:

    Hemidemi @17, the tags are part of the text, for flavour and verisimilitude. If you read the book, you’ll notice that they are part of the intaweb chat between the characters, not just randomly left in by poor proof-reading.

  13. Peter says:

    Bought this in paperback some time ago, and quite enjoyed it… not my favorite of Vinge’s work, but quite a lot of neat ideas there, and some technology I really wish we had now (and some not-so-much).

  14. justanotherusername says:

    This (translated) quote should sound familiar:

    And that’s why he (Hans Jansen) thought of a revolutionary plan. The books need to be destroyed, it’s the only way to safe them. “I see only one solution: cut open the back of the books and run them through the scanner as a pile of papers. You’ve lost the book that way, but you’ve made a digital copy for les than 10 bucks.

    (Hans Jansen is head of Research & Development of the Royal Library of Den Haag)

    From: Dit boek moet kapot (NRC Handelsblad, 22 November 2007)

  15. Clay says:

    I keep intending to read this (and now have even fewer excuses than before) but I keep hearing that I should read earlier Vinge first. Is the consensus A Fire Uopn the Deep?

  16. Anonymous says:

    The download is, sadly, not available anymore. I wonder, would it now be a crime to get a copy via BitTorrent?

  17. Crash says:

    This alone is reason enough to resurrect a defunct PDA.

  18. abb3w says:

    loftwyr: Oh sure, release the book for free months after ‘ve bought it hard cover and read it.

    Actually, it’s been quietly available since at least early June. I’ve pointed five local university faculty at it on-line; one ignored my recommendation outright (bastard!), two bought copies, one just read it online. The last… is worried; she does not understand that world, but also sees far too much of it growing around her. She’s still debating whether to buy it or not.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Have no fear, it is still available via the wayback machine:

  20. Nina Katarina says:

    Spent the day alt-tabbing between this book and a very boring document. Wonderful piece. Is this a series? Can I have more, please? Must get the hardback and throw it at everyone I know.

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