Ben Smithgall

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Bit pusher at Spotify. Previously Interactive News at the New York Times, U.S. Digital Service, and Code for America.





The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O

By Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland

Finished reading on December 31, 2018

Fun! Stephenson’s obsession with many-worlds theory strikes again, this time manifesting itself as magic: witches were real and reaching across various worlds to manifest things into this one. This is the basic premise behind Stephenson and Galland’s joint work. There is a lot to like in this book which has more of a traditional story structure than previous Stephenson works. I really enjoyed the many different forms that you find in the book: there are fictional emails, corporate chats, memos from HR, posts from the internal wiki, letters, and even a Norse poem.

Since I was traveling when I read the book, I read it on the Kindle which diminished the experience a bit. I think that all of the various forms that you find in the book would be better experienced in a physical book.