Natsuhiko Kyogoku was born in Otaru, Hokkaido, and studied at Kuwasawa Design School. After working at advertising agencies, he established his own design studio. He still works as art director, designer, and bookbinder for various projects. He is also an expert in yokai (Japanese folklore of monsters and ghosts). His novel, The Summer of the Ubume, was published in English in 2009.
Scathing, bitter and funny, Eastern Standard Tribe examines the immutable truths of time, and of societies rebuilt in the storm of instant, ubiquitous communication.
Art is an up-and-coming interface designer, working on the management of data flow along the Massachusetts Turnpike. He's doing the best work of his career and can guarantee that the system will be, without a question, the most counterintuitive, user-hostile piece of software ever pushed forth onto the world.
Why? Because Art is an industrial saboteur. He may live in London and work for an EU telecommunications megacorp, but Art's real home is the Eastern Standard Tribe.
Instant wireless communication puts everyone in touch with everyone else, 24 hours a day. But one thing hasn't changed: the need for sleep. The world is slowly splintering into Tribes held together by a common time zone, less than family and more than nations. Art is working to humiliate the Greenwich Mean Tribe to the benefit of his own people. But in a world without boundaries, nothing can be taken for granted-not happiness, not money, and most certainly not love.
Which might explain why Art finds himself stranded on the roof of an insane asylum outside Boston, debating whether to push a pencil into his brain....
At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.
One beautiful autumn day, while he undergoes a routine medical procedure, something goes irrevocably wrong. Dodge is pronounced brain dead and put on life support, leaving his stunned family and close friends with difficult decisions. Long ago, when a much younger Dodge drew up his will, he directed that his body be given to a cryonics company now owned by enigmatic tech entrepreneur Elmo Shepherd. Legally bound to follow the directive despite their misgivings, Dodge’s family has his brain scanned and its data structures uploaded and stored in the cloud, until it can eventually be revived.
In the coming years, technology allows Dodge’s brain to be turned back on. It is an achievement that is nothing less than the disruption of death itself. An eternal afterlife—the Bitworld—is created, in which humans continue to exist as digital souls.
But this brave new immortal world is not the Utopia it might first seem . . .
Fall, or Dodge in Hell is pure, unadulterated fun: a grand drama of analog and digital, man and machine, angels and demons, gods and followers, the finite and the eternal. In this exhilarating epic, Neal Stephenson raises profound existential questions and touches on the revolutionary breakthroughs that are transforming our future. Combining the technological, philosophical, and spiritual in one grand myth, he delivers a mind-blowing speculative literary saga for the modern age.