Sunday, October 03, 2010

read book now




BOOK Reviews

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This is the web site for Jerry Pournelle. I wrote the lead column in BYTE for 25 years. I'm also both an author and a writer of science fact and fiction, and I've had some political experience including as Executive Assistant to the Mayor and Director of Research for the City of Los Angeles. During the early months of its life this site was hosted at binmedia by Darnell Gadberry. It then moved to and from there to mazin or rocket, which is maintained by Greg Lincoln and Brian Bilbrey. I wasn't unhappy with Pair, but I get considerably more individual attention and custom service where I am now, and Brian Bilbrey is Managing Editor of Chaos Manor Reviews.

 To learn how to get my job, click here.

BYTE IS DEAD. For the BYTE Story, click here.

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The main action here is VIEW, which is updated often and is the day book; it is very strong on opinions, and if you hate my opinions I guarantee you will hate VIEW.  MAIL, which I get from you, and comment on, sometimes at length, comes next.

View and Mail are "home pages" for those features. They link to the current mail and current view pages, explain what the pages are, and provide links to past weeks. Current mail and current view always have the same names from week to week. To plunge directly into what's happening here, try CURRENTMAIL or CURRENTVIEW.

After that see REPORTS. There is a variety of stuff here, from all of Macauley's LAYS OF ANCIENT ROME (includes Horatius at the Bridge but much else) to modern strategy to jokes to...

Then there are Columns and the computer mail bag at, where you will find  Computing At Chaos Manor as it used to appear in BYTE.  VIEW does have a daily journal of things happening at Chaos Manor. View is the Day Book. Chaos Manor Reviews has the columns. There is also a Chaos Manor Reviews Mail Bag, which has the kind of mail I used to deal with at BYTE when BYTE was still alive. Chaos Manor Reviews is mostly about technology, and I try to keep politics and social views out of it.

After that are REPORTS (two kinds [1] and [2] ) and REVIEWS. These are on many subjects, and while some are written by me, many are not. They are summarized on the indicated pages. You will find tips, tricks, important stuff, and not so important in there; it's worth a look.

This place is operated on the Public Radio Model: free to all, but if you like it I ask for your support.

Some Additional Stuff

The alt.mail pages give discussions on topics not well related to computers and science. They are summarized on the ALT.HOME page. [Alt.Mail was an attempt to keep the politics down; that wasn't successful, and nothing of importance has gone there for a decade. History and politics, mostly. This is pretty obsolete and spelunking in there is not likely to be worth your time unless you are trying to do a history of this site].

In addition there are pictures, discussions of space policy, pictures of the Administrator of NASA at Larry Niven's home looking at a cake made up to look like Mars, military policy, book reviews, essays on writing, and darned near anything else somewhere in here. There's also what's new which gives you some clues. You may like the recommendations page, which talks about computer equipment in use here. I don't update it as often as I should, but it's still interesting. I admit this place is a bit like the Adventure Game, with twisty little passages all different, and one day I may organize, but I probably won't. There is also a series of Special Reports on various topics by different contributors. See New Order for an index of the resources available here, and Viewindex for an index to some of the material in the VIEW pages.

The Strategy of Technology is a book on line; to learn a bit about it, see my short disquisition done in January 1999. For the book itself, click here. For more about this crazy place, see the Tour Guide, and What's New.


read book now




 To Expand on that:


This site was created by Jerry Pournelle, science fiction writer, author (writers work; authors collect the rewards of writing), and {former} BYTE columnist, on April 10, 1997, revised as noted on the home page, and will always be a mixed bag. At the moment it is largely about computers and the future, but it also has some material on science fiction and space. Coming up is a lot more of that, along with sections on science fiction, science, the future of war and conflict, space, education, history and moral philosophy, the politics of freedom, and anything else I think of and have time for. I will also upload the first chapter or so of some of my books on the theory that if you read the beginning you'll be hooked and buy the book when it comes out in hardbound rather than waiting for the paperback.

About that BYTE column: I wrote the feature column in BYTE from shortly after the magazine was founded -- Carl Helmers and Virginia Londoner were still there when I started although McGraw Hill had bought the magazine -- until CMP Publications bought the magazine and, without warning or notice, folded it in May 1998. The July issue was the last done by the old staff. I have more to say on that in another part of the web site, where I also discuss what I will probably do in future. We are hoping to keep something like BYTE alive, at least in spirit, and almost certainly keep Chaos Manor alive. To that end we have added new sections, The View From Chaos Manor, which is a computerish sort of journal, and in fact resembles the notes I used to keep for writing my column, and Chaos Manor Mail, which I update when I can; at the moment both View and Mail are updated daily.

From time to time we have special reports, mostly on computer matters.

We are also adding sections by:

Alexander Pournelle, a generalist like me but with more hard tech background: he does contract MIS work for a number of organizations as well as doing data recovery. His page is Alex's Page.

Eric Pobirs, onetime intern and now associate: Eric reads about twenty paper and uncountable webzine reports a week, and is about as wired in as you can get. He's also a games expert.

David Em, graphics expert, author of The Art of David Em and other works. His page is David's Page.

 All this happens Real Soon Now. We're dancing as fast as we can.


If you want to know more about the origins of this place and my early blatherings on web site construction, there is a saved copy of the old What Is This Place essay. If you're curious, feel free. Fair warning: I didn't know a lot when I wrote that.


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