I was digging through the stacks of used science fiction at San Francisco's Green Apple bookstore when I came across this absolute gem, H. Beam Piper's The Cosmic Computer. Falling into Piper's Terran Federation universe, The Cosmic Computer tells the story of life at the edges of mankind's crumbling galactic society.
Conn Maxwell is a smart kid who gets sent to Earth for some learning. His backwards home-world, Poictesme, is nothing but grapes, distilleries and a mountain of left over war surpluss from the last big one. Folks on Poictesme are hoping he comes back with knowledge of MERLIN, a legendary war computer they believe can kickstart their economy. In typical H. Beam Piper fashion, Conn uses the hunt for the computer to do the kickstarting for them, but the mystery of MERLIN still looms...
I love finding great, old books like this for $1 or $2 used. Having them on the shelf is really nice however, a great thing about H. Beam Piper's work is that you can usually find it legally free on the net.
Free for Kindle: H. Beam Piper's The Cosmic Computer
Previously on Boing Boing:
H. Beam Piper's Space Viking
Archie Comics is on a years-long tear to reinvent Archie Andrews and his friends as a thoroughly contemporary, hilarious, and brilliant new series — Archie has reappeared as a zombie hunter, he’s got a gay friend, and lots more — but now, Jughead has come out as asexual.
The Princeton Bitcoin Book by Arvind Narayanan, Joseph Bonneau, Edward Felten, Andrew Miller and Steven Goldfeder is a free download — it’s over 300 pages and is intended for people “looking to truly understand how Bitcoin works at a technical level and have a basic familiarity with computer science and programming.”
See sample pages from this book at Wink. Yay! Another captivating DK book for children has just come out today. 100 Events that Made History is an encyclopedia of ideas, inventions, wars, scientific breakthroughs, disasters (both natural and human-made), and other historical happenings that had a major influence on how our world looks today. The […]
If you’ve been blessed enough to avoid them yourself, you’ve definitely heard the horror stories. Late night, crushing out a ton of work, writing, coding, anything, then boom – your computer crashes. The battery blows, you spill water or coffee all over the place, or it just shuts down with no explanation, and you’re screwed. […]
You travel around a lot. It might be that jet set life from New York to LA to London to Tokyo, or it might be back and forth from the coffee shop to the office, or from the kitchen to the couch. Any which way, you’re mobile and that’s the way to live. When you […]
It’s 2016 and we like our technology really small. Our phones fit in our pockets, our remotes are lighter than ever, and even our cars seem to be shrinking. So your new drone shouldn’t be an exception. This Axis VIDIUS Drone is 21% off right now and it’s so little, your biggest problem won’t be […]