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Web Weaving Wreviews

Summer 1996
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Filed November 12, 1996

Wrambling On

What do David Duchovny, John Howard and the Devil's Dictionary all have in common?

They're all on the net and they're all in Jon Casimir's Postcards from the net.

book cover, Postcards from the Edge, Jon Casimir
Postcards from the net (An intrepid guide to the wired world), Jon Casimir

Allen & Unwin, p/b, RRP$19.95
ISBN 1 866448 280 X

If there is one secret to writing successfully, it is to cover a topic as many times and as many different ways as you can. So it is not surprising that computer journalists are publishing net books.

Postcards from the net is by Jon Casimir who writes for the Sydney Morning Herald (a column which is also picked up by the Melbourne Age).

Jon was involved in the Herald's Olympic web site, a monumental task where they ported the copy from the traditional print media (all six Fairfax papers) onto the web. He is responsible for the Herald's web site, which averages about 250,000 hits a day.

"Blah blah blah information superhighway blah blah blah brave new world blah blah blah democracy and freedom for all …." Jon Casimir, Postcards from the net

My first dunking in this book came from one of my co-reviewers who read excerpts to me while I cooked dinner. It's that kind of a book, you find a good bit, read it aloud to someone else, and somehow appear witty by association.

The book begins with a short glossary, freely interspersed with informed humour, introductory subjects such as how to behave, what to avoid, and what are the big issues surrounding the net. It then goes on to give with broad strokes a picture of what is on the net.

8:30 p.m.: Begin daily hunt for pornographic and violent material. Immediately find loads of things that could corrupt and warp the minds of Australia's kiddies.

8:35 p.m.: Turn television off and go back to computer.

Jon Casimir, Postcards from the net

buyfrom_amazon.jpg - 1947 Bytes Postcards from the Net is sort of an Internet directory with wit. If you want an idea of what the Internet offers, this is a great resource. If you have friends who haven't tried the net, this would make a great gift. Chapters deal with such diverse subjects as Australian film and media bodies, Alternative alternative religions, Australiana, strange beliefs and more - basically, something to boggle the mind of everyone.

Jon's aim was to create something in between the "how to" books and "phone book guides" that you find in bookstores. Something to encourage those who haven't yet visited the net, as well as pointing to fun places to visit. "I've tried to get across … this feeling that it's not a scary place", he told me.

Go to index of book reiews Go to technology bytes section It's a really good book, people, you should read it -- and I'm not just saying that because Casimir writes reviews of web sites, honest, trooly, rooly.

by Ali Kayn (November, 1996)

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ISSN 1328-8008
Published in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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Filed: 12-Nov-1996 : Last updated: Aug-1999 : Last tested: 22-Oct-2001: Last compiled: 16-Aug-2014
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