From bOING bOING Issue 9: Bruce Sterling interview

bOING bOING was a zine that my wife Carla and I launched in 1988 to cover comic books, cyberpunk science fiction, consciousness technology, curious phenomena, and whatever else surprised and delighted us. That zine, which ran for 15 issues until 1997, evolved into the very website you're reading right now.

 Images Bb-Ms-Cover We've made available a free anthology of some of our favorite interviews from bOING bOING, the zine. You can access it for free with Microsoft's Office Web Apps on SkyDrive, whose sponsorship has made this project possible.

The anthology, called bOING bOING: History of the Future! is a collection of interviews with and articles by some of our favorite writers and thinkers - Robert Anton Wilson, Rudy Rucker, William Gibson, Kevin Kelly, Marc Laidlaw, and Bruce Sterling.

For the last several weeks, we've been running posts about the articles included in the bOING bOING: History of the Future anthology. Last week, I wrote about bOING bOING's interview with Rudy Rucker. This week, I'd like to introduce the interview that our friend Jon Lebkowsky (one of bOING bOING's early editors) conducted with author, design consultant, and investigative journalist Bruce Sterling. Bruce talked about hackers and phones freaks, which he covered in his book, The Hacker Crackdown. The interview appeared in bOING bOING #9. Bruce was a great supporter of bOING bOING in the early days, and wrote some excellent pieces for the zine.

bOING bOING #9 (64 pages) was published in 1992. It contained the following quote by poet Gary Snyder: "Three-fourths of philosophy and literature is the talk of people trying to convince themselves that they really like the cage they were tricked into entering."

The document is in Microsoft Word format and you can view it for free with Office Web Apps on SkyDrive whether you have Word on your computer or not. And if you'd like to download it for local perusal or printing and don't have a recent version of Microsoft Word or one of the many other applications that can open the document, you can use the free Word Viewer for Windows or Quick Look built into Mac OS X.

The History of the Future! A free anthology of articles from the bOING bOING print 'zine 1989-1997 (SkyDrive)


  1. Thanks, Mark, though you and I both know a PDF would have been better. Thats ok, we understand.

    1. This reminds me of one of those episodes of Hawaii-5-0 or Bones where someone pulls out a Windows Phone 7 phone and starts talking about Bing or voice calling.

    2. Gee, but we don’t. You lose your license for social commentary when you whore for one of the very folks that deserve criticism and commentary.

      And especially when it makes your product HARDER to read than a standard, open method and is completely unnecessary except for commercial gain.

      Don’t expect any response but it eases my conscience.

  2. I’ve liked bOINGbOING immensely for years, it was a window to the world when I was stuck in a rural area with a 2400 baud AOL connection when the rest of the country was playing with ISDNs or at least on 56K…

    IMO, why not scan and release .pdf copies of the issues?
    Yes, I’d buy them. I mean since no dead trees and old make it cheaper than regular paper cover, but still imagine even at a big cut off cover price most of the fans and many curious new readers wanting to complete/archive their collections?

  3. I’m loving the content and I wish I’d known about it when it was first out, but I have to say that your covers were dreadful!

  4. This was the first issue I bought n’ read.

    Zines like bb and Whole Earth Review were windows on a weird and wonderful world, no matter where you lived!

  5. This was the first issue I bought n’ read.

    Zines like bb and Whole Earth Review were windows on a weird and wonderful world, no matter where you lived!

  6. the good news… pleasantly surprised to find the Microsoft skydrive page worked on Firefox 3.6 on Linux… and even more surprised to find the downloaded document opened fine in OpenOffice 3.1.1 and saved it back out successfully into a fully open format


  7. I had that issue at one point (the first one pictured) and several others. I may still have’em in a box somewhere…

    Sterling is kinda how I found Wired, too. Was in a shop with a rack of magazines and saw the first issue and thought “Why is the top of Bruce’s head on this magazine cover?”

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