This novel tells the story of a handful of misfit Microsoft employees who realize they don't have a life and subsequently become determined to get lives inside the lightening-paced world of high-tech, 1990s American geek culture.
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Microserfs is about a group of young Microsoft employees who seem to spend all their waking hours working, holed away in their offices staring at computer screens. Matthew Perry, of television's Friends, does a remarkable job of bringing this abridged audiobook version humorously and heartbreakingly to life. In the beginning, he appropriately uses the sarcastic voice for which he is so well known, but as the story reveals the darker side of protagonist Dan's frantic world, Perry drops the attitude and uses a much more understanding tone. Dan, not yet 30, but already facing burnout, realizes he has no life and begins keeping a journal in an attempt to sort through his personal and professional plight. Halfway through the story (read as journal entries), Dan and a group of like-minded cohorts quit their jobs, pack their bags, and set out to start up their own company in Silicon Valley. This audiobook is an often hilarious foray into the risks and the rewards of the high-tech world. (Running time: three hours, two cassettes)Review:
Microserfs is not about Microsoft--it's about programmers who are searching for lives. A hilarious but frighteningly real look at geek life in the '90's, Coupland's book manifests a peculiar sense of how technology affects the human race and how it will continue to affect all of us. Microserfs is the hilarious journal of Dan, an ex-Microsoft programmer who, with his coder comrades, is on a quest to find purpose in life. This isn't just fodder for techies. The thoughts and fears of the not-so-stereotypical characters are easy for any of us to relate to, and their witty conversations and quirky view of the world make this a surprisingly thought-provoking book.
" ... just think about the way high-tech cultures purposefully protract out the adolescence of their employees well into their late 20s, if not their early 30s," muses one programmer. "I mean, all those Nerf toys and free beverages! And the way tech firms won't even call work 'the office,' but instead, 'the campus.' It's sick and evil."
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