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"Anathem" Exclusive Video At MySpace

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the chants-of-a-lifetime dept.

Sci-Fi 57

Shawn M. Smith writes "We've recently discussed Neal Stephenson's imminent new novel 'Anathem.' Now, MySpace has an exclusive video, The World of Anathem, that accompanies the book, filled with the 'Gregorian chants' and ambient noise that were so eloquently described by numerous Slashdotters who had scored advance copies of Stephenson's latest tome."

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Last! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24855547)

This is the end, no more posts!

Really looking forward to this... (1)

Mindragon (627249) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855549)

Neal Stephenson's books have always been very compelling to me. This one looks to be astonishing. And actually, I think it is the first time that I have ever seen a video introduce a book. It actually makes me want to read it all that much more and wonder if they will actually make a movie of this.

Re:Really looking forward to this... (5, Funny)

Anpheus (908711) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855691)

You actually want to read the book more after seeing that video?

You must be the one getting invited to all these market demographic studies. Did they ask you about Crystal Pepsi too?

Math music (4, Interesting)

F34nor (321515) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855565)

One description of the chants is that they are based on mathematics. If this is interesting to you, you might want to check out a band call Slint. They tried to create a kind of fractal timing where different threads would converge and digress over time. Dark intense and interesting music.

Re:Math music (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24855983)

I recognize it as throat singing [wikipedia.org] - at least the first 90 seconds of the video is. There may be a mathematical relationship between the different notes in throat singing but it is not by design, it is just the way the human vocal system works.

Re:Math music (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24856031)

Forgot to add that there is a really good movie about one American musician's journey to Tuva in order to compete in the national throat singing contest over there. It is called Genghis Blues. [imdb.com]

Re:Math music (1)

Muad'Dave (255648) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857237)

I agree it sounds a bit like sygyt-style Tuvan throat singing, but it sounds like there's a little of what sounds like a bowed instrument of some kind. There's also some khoomei-style in there, down low (the kind that Paul 'Earthquake' Pena sang).

Re:Math music (1)

F34nor (321515) | more than 5 years ago | (#24889339)

Not the chanting. Slint is not a Gregorian style it is a punk style. Interesting side not the ablum Spiderland made a cameo in Gilmore Girls; (wife loves the show) the characters are in NY record store where the owner is famous for being all knowing, one character pulls it from the bin and asks what it is. Just goes to show there is more to that show than banter and boobs.

Re:Math music (2, Insightful)

LS (57954) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856075)

I like Slint and have their album Spiderland, and they supposedly started the style of music called "math rock", but I fail to find the patterns that you and others speak of in their music. Is there someone out there that has done a breakdown analysis of the music to clearly demonstrate these patterns? I think all it is is just good rock music.

All music is mathematical, and many types of music, especially classical, have all kinds of threads going all over the place that eventually converge. What is so different about slint? strange time signatures aren't enough to garner the name "math rock".

Re:Math music (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857429)

I think F34nor's description is a little on the lyrical side. The music isn't quite fractal, but it definitely jumps around between time signatures a fair bit. If you like Slint, you may want to check out some stuff by Breadwinner [seeqpod.com] or Rodan [seeqpod.com] too.

Apparently, this IS news for nerds since (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24855625)

Apparently, this IS news for nerds. I've never heard of this Stevenson guy. Not a nerd, see.

Re:Apparently, this IS news for nerds since (2, Funny)

Rick Bentley (988595) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855819)

I've never heard of this Stevenson guy

...dude, how many free minutes do you have left on your AOL account?

Re:Apparently, this IS news for nerds since (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24856203)

What makes you think I have an AOL acc

NO CARRIER

wow (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24855643)

slashdot is now digg. Time for more iphone leaks zmog omfgbbqbacon.

Err (3, Funny)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855653)

Is this a parody? Or...? I can't imagine N. Stephenson signing off on this. I'm not a big fan of reading a synopsis ahead of time; if I hear good things about it I'll buy it and read it. The jocks in football jerseys sort of ruined any idea of the book being good. Or is this written in the tongue-in-cheek style of Snow Crash?

Re:Err (3, Insightful)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855777)

Right on, I didn't want to be the first person to say this video sucked. I kept turning the volume up thinking that bad sound levels were preventing me from hearing dialog. The only way it could've been more lame is if it was posted on MySpace.

Oh, wait...

Re:Err (2, Interesting)

kochsr (144988) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857241)

yeah this was pretty bad. i imagine pretty much any video interpretation of his fiction is going to be terrible because his stuff is pretty far out there, and you would need a high budget to make half of the stuff actually look believable.

Re:Err (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857969)

You should have seen the original "OMG, ponies!" version.

Re:Err (3, Interesting)

TimeZone (658837) | more than 5 years ago | (#24860107)

The jocks in football jerseys are the "extramuros", the people who live outside the mathic concents. Most of the extras have nothing against the avout, but some (those in the video) do not trust the avout and become violent. The extramuros culture in Anathem is pretty reminiscent of the culture described in Snow Crash (consumerism run amok). For the record, there are not many fight scenes in the book, so I don't know why the video was so heavy on the kung-fu. If you enjoyed Snow Crash and / or Cryptonomicon and enjoy math-based humour (xkcd anyone?), then I'd highly recommend Anathem. I read an advance copy a while ago, then sent it on to a friend of mine who also enjoyed it.

As for the video, it really only makes sense if you've already read the book, so it's not particularly successful IMO.
TZ

Re:Err (2, Funny)

SputnikPanic (927985) | more than 5 years ago | (#24865251)

That video, at least what I saw of it, was horrendous. By the time I saw the guys in the football jerseys, I had had enough. At that point I closed the page about as quickly as I could because I didn't want that video negatively affecting my reading of the book.

That was my first, and likely last, time ever going to a MySpace page. It lasted all of probably 50 seconds, quite sufficient for this lifetime.

Finally Found his Genre (5, Funny)

Immortal Poet (1048010) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855735)

I'm glad that Stephenson finally figured out that it wasn't postcyberpunk or historic fiction that was his genre - it was battle monk epic.

Re:Finally Found his Genre (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855849)

I'm glad that Stephenson finally figured out that it wasn't postcyberpunk or historic fiction that was his genre - it was battle monk epic.

How I wish.
From that video preview, it looks like the space men are going to be bringing laser guns.
And you know the old saying about bring a bat'leth to a phaser fight.

Re:Finally Found his Genre (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 5 years ago | (#24865819)

"And you know the old saying about bring a bat'leth to a phaser fight."

"It's hard to pull a trigger when your severed arm's on the other side of the holodeck?"

Or was it "big bat'leth, big... shoes?"

Video (2, Funny)

I don't want to spen (638810) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855805)

I like his writing, but the video is more of an anathema.

Re:Video (2, Interesting)

Izabael_DaJinn (1231856) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855945)

No kidding. They don't give sci-fi authors much budget or something..even at big publishing houses? I suddenly feel better about the one I did [izabael.com] (almost) all by myself for my book on almost zero budget. Then again maybe Neal filmed this himself as well ;-)

Next time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24856493)

Next time invest in a better setup. This one seems to be 4-bit color, and I thought we left those in the early eighties...

Re:Video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24855999)

I like his writing, but the video is more of an anathema.

Really? It seemed more like an anthem to me.

Myspace = Metaverse? (1)

Rick Bentley (988595) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855855)

Myspace? Really? That's what Stephenson thinks is the closest thing we have to the Metaverse? This must be the idea of some tool at the publishing company, this can't be Neal's ... can it?

Oh, and hat video was so bad I think it gave me cancer. Super let down from the Snow Crash Universe with cars with enough potential energy to put a pound of bacon in the asteroid belt and side-car nukes and dual samurai swords and dentanas...

Re:Myspace = Metaverse? (1)

MRe_nl (306212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857171)

"dual samurai swords and dentanas..."

Dentatas IIRC. Me thinks you got your Katana's crossed ; )

Re:Myspace = Metaverse? (2, Funny)

trashbird1240 (1149197) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858029)

No, he's thinking of a Snow Crash-inspired self-defense device: a vaginally-mounted katana, the dentana.

Re:Myspace = Metaverse? (1)

MRe_nl (306212) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858491)

LOL. And ouch. The Sharp Strap-on.
Butt, where does the wakizashi go :)

Does anyone else feel like... (4, Insightful)

VirexEye (572399) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855881)

...they just watched a bad college film project?

Re:Does anyone else feel like... (1)

Walson (559696) | more than 5 years ago | (#24855961)

heh, yeah. I half expected a 'fin' at the end...

Re:Does anyone else feel like... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24856091)

heh, yeah. I half expected a 'fin' at the end...

And a frickin laser beam strapped to it.

Re:Does anyone else feel like... (3, Funny)

steevc (54110) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856165)

A fan trailer for a book? Strange. I gather it's about monks and chavs who fight, but then some bloke with a dazed look gets involved. Can't wait for the game.

It may work, but (1)

Armakuni (1091299) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856065)

How do you get an advance copy of Anathem? Amazon just pushed back delivery on my pre-ordered copy, and without the book, it's hard to see how this audio stuff fits in.

"Quotes" seen in "every other" Slashdot story (4, Funny)

Sits (117492) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856083)

A rash of "quotes" broke out of locked compound today and have been rampaging across various websites. Many feared that "The quotes" (as the gang was known inside) would seek to liberate their brethren leading to misattribution and thus striking a blow against punctuation.

"The quotes" have now been sighted on several Slashdot stories with many wondering if there is a pattern to their current appearances. Police say that "even 'single quote' should not be approached lightly as other gang members may be close by".

"advance copies" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24856561)

numerous Slashdotters who had scored advance copies of Stevenson's latest tome

Right. That's what they call bittorrent now, 'advance copies' ?

Re:"advance copies" (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856823)

What else?

"In a world..." (1)

Lurker2288 (995635) | more than 5 years ago | (#24856803)

I can't help but feel that a trailer beginning with the phrase "In an world..." is particularly poignant today, given that the real 'In a world' voiceover guy, Don LaFontaine, just passed away. Not the same without those gravelly, dulcet tones.

Re:"In a world..." (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857597)

It is kind of sad. He was one of those recognizable voices that seemed to be beyond an actual human.

Re:"In a world..." (1)

laejoh (648921) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857731)

Indeed :(

Narrator: For more than a year, ominous rumors had been privately circulating among high-level Western leaders that the Soviet Union had been at work on what was darkly hinted to be the ultimate weapon: a doomsday device. Intelligence sources traced the site of the top secret Russian project to the perpetually fog-shrouded wasteland below the Arctic peaks of the Zhokhov Islands. What they were building or why it should be located in such a remote and desolate place no one could say.

An awful lot of kung-fu (1)

TimeZone (658837) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857513)

in that video. Especially considering that there are only like 2 or 3 fight scenes in the whole book. The video also managed to avoid mentioning math, which is weird. The "monks" in the video are "math monks", not "kung-fu monks" (although there are some people in the book that are both). The scene at the beginning with Erasmus and Ala is pretty cool though. anyways, the book is awesome.

TZ

Re:An awful lot of kung-fu (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858937)

The scene at the beginning with Erasmus and Ala is pretty cool though. anyways, the book is awesome.

Wait. So what I'm getting here is that the video is much cooler if I've already read the book and understand what it is the video is about?

Re:An awful lot of kung-fu (1)

TimeZone (658837) | more than 5 years ago | (#24859839)

I would say, yes. Soooo, not a particularly successful video. Really what I was getting at.
TZ

RIP-OFF of "A Canticle for Liebowitz" (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24857583)

This book is totally derivative. "Canticle" was written in 1961 and covers the exact same subject matter. Cloistered scientists keeping the flame of knowledge alive in a willfully stupid and ignorant world that wants the fruits of knowledge but not the wisdom those results came from.

Re:RIP-OFF of "A Canticle for Liebowitz" (1)

Buzz_Litebeer (539463) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858599)

Have you read the book?

The problem is that is how the book is marketed, but it is not about that at all.

Knowledge has destroyed the world several times, knowledge created by the avout and released into the public.

The avout are kept separate so that any knowledge that they create can be filtered, and they are not allowed to practically apply any knowledge that they have.

Every time the saecular world destroys the avout (called Sacks) it is because the avout invented something that lead to near destruction of the people, or fear of that destruction. Such as something cute called "Everything Killers" which essentially would be like nuclear anthrax. IE little bundles of this could be spread, each little bundle able to kill anything (or everything) biological within some very broad radius (say a football field) but the little bundles are about the size of a pin.

Since these "everything" killers were used at one point, everyone has been relatively afraid of those able to generate the knowledge for such things. At least that is some of what I got out of the books. The avout are left around because their society is stable and the outside world periodically destroys itself, and during times of rebuilding its nice to have a group with knowledge around, otherwise i get the feeling from the book that the avout would have been destroyed outright several times.

Re:RIP-OFF of "A Canticle for Liebowitz" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24858897)

> Have you read the book?

Highly unlikely, considering that it won't be out until September 9th...

Non-Gregorian, non-Tibetan Chanting (1)

trashbird1240 (1149197) | more than 5 years ago | (#24857905)

None of that was Gregorian chanting. Does anyone know of a dojo where I can learn that robe-fighting technique?

Re:Non-Gregorian, non-Tibetan Chanting (1)

Ssquared22 (1349497) | more than 5 years ago | (#24859783)

None of that was Gregorian chanting.

No, the soundtrack that accompanies the advance copies has the chanting, this is some crazy mouth harp stuff. My bad if that was misleading.

Bad summary, terrible video! (1)

korean.ian (1264578) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858007)

There are no gregorian chants in the video. The author's name is Stephenson, not Stevenson; and eloquence is generally not an attribute one assigns to slashdotters! (I jest...)

That video was terrible. Someone above mentioned a college video project, high school seems to be a more appropriate designation.

At least there's one good omen this year, which is that the book comes out on my birthday.

Oh please. (1)

yttrstein (891553) | more than 5 years ago | (#24858411)

"Avout" and "Saecular"?

I shut the video off right there. We need better writers than that.

Where should i start in Cryptonomicon? (1)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 5 years ago | (#24860823)

i read the first few chapters and lost interest. When does the story start?

Re:Where should i start in Cryptonomicon? (1)

moofrank (734766) | more than 5 years ago | (#24865283)

With Stephenson, usually the story starts 2/3 in...

Seriously.
He is more obsessed with describing the setting and world that in a particular story. He's not particularly good with the whole character thing, either. ...or perhaps the story is buried in the setting. There are hints of James Burke Connections kinds of things going on in some of his stuff. (Especially in Cryptonomicon.)

I adore his stuff. I've had the book on preorder for months. That video is making me regret my choice...

Re:Where should i start in Cryptonomicon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24866535)

When does the story start?

There isn't a story. Imagine if four or five people kept sporadic journals for a year or two, sometimes writing down mundane stuff like what type of cereal they ate that day and conversations they had with dentists at parties. Now, imagine if all of those journals were shuffled together into one big book, with no editor.

That's the plot of cryptonomicon.

Cryptonomicon is better than most books based on Star Trek or D&D characters. But that's about all the praise I can give it.

Comment 55 (1)

cyberspittle (519754) | more than 5 years ago | (#24866227)

This is comment 55.
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