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28 Years Later, Pioneering Tech Magazine 'Mondo 2000' Relaunches Online ( 35

In 1989 Mondo 2000 magazine ran an editorial promising they'd cover "the leading edge in hyperculture...the latest in human/technological interactive mutational forms as they happen." 28 years later, they're now heckling that editorial as they relaunch into a web site. Slashdot reader DevNull127 quotes Motherboard's interview with R.U. Sirius, the founder of Mondo 2000 (as well as its predecessors High Frontiers and Reality Hackers): "It was my idea to merge psychedelics and emerging technologies, and the culture around technology," Sirius said, citing Timothy Leary, writer Robert Anton Wilson and counterculture magazine The Whole Earth Catalog among his inspirations... "I kind of found my way into that particular stream of bohemian culture. It was probably a minority, but there had always been that idea of letting robots replace human work." Soon High Frontiers evolved into a glossy magazine, Reality Hackers ("Some distributors at the time thought it was about hacking people up, and put it on the shelf next to murder mystery magazines"), and later Mondo 2000, which ran from 1989 till 1998...

"We really had to work to convince people that technology was defining the future. Nobody really got it. Doug Rushkoff wrote his book Cyberia, and his first book company cancelled its publication because they said the internet was a fad and that it would be over by the time the book came out"... While he uses Facebook and Twitter, Sirius is critical of their role in colonising what was once a more democratic and open space. "People are being herded into little buildings -- or huge ones -- in what was supposed to be a wide open space in which everybody created their own sites. It's a complete corporate takeover of the net, Facebook in particular... It's definitely not what we were expecting."

Mondo 2000's new online relaunch includes audio of a conversation between William Gibson and Timothy Leary about a Neuromancer game to accompany a proposed film back in 1989. (Gibson complained "That was no interview! That was a drunken business meeting!" when first informed of the magazine's plans to publish it, though he eventually "became friendly.") There's also a 1987 discussion about mind technologies with 73-year-old William S. Burroughs (who was also "an advocate of high technology, and the 'brain machine'"), plus an unpublished John Shirley essay titled "The Next Fifty Years: Why I'm Optimistic Because Everything Will Be Terrible" and new pieces by Paul Krassner ("Alternative Facts") and M.Christian ("La Petite Mort: The Death Of Sex").
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28 Years Later, Pioneering Tech Magazine 'Mondo 2000' Relaunches Online

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  • Mondo 2000 was the magazine that Wired was a bad sold-out imitation of.

  • No Cultural Home (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Sunday August 13, 2017 @12:24AM (#55001575) Homepage

    Problem with that kind of magazine is it needs a cultural home, a place where readers interact directly with each other and digital technology. It's a cafe culture with the cafe. To work it needs to create the real world space where it would actually exist, different, yet inclusive. So a franchise within existing independent large cafe, where people stay, chat and share technological interaction, rather than drink and leave, a lan cafe and lounge, to share a culture expressed in the magazine.

    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      by lucm ( 889690 )

      Here's a quote from one of the articles in this "magazine that needs a cultural home".

      If Trump and Pence were both to be kicked out of the White House, the next in line would be the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan. Steve Bannon described him as “a limp-dick motherfucker who was born in a petri dish at the Heritage Foundation.” In turn, professional communicator Anthony Scaramucci boasted, “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own cock.” Ah, but Bannon said he wanted to destroy Ryan.

      I don't see the digital technology element, and I also don't see the cultural element. All I see is unfiltered liberal vomit. Maybe it's because I'm not in that cultural home you mention.

      • All I see is unfiltered liberal vomit.

        As a moderate conservative, this looks like entertainment. The Republican Party is long overdue for a circular firing squad. Praise the Lord and pass the popcorn.

        • by lucm ( 889690 )

          a circular firing squad

          Unless they're using supersonic ammunition or standing shoulder to shoulder and shooting at point-blank range, a circular firing squad is unlikely to cause the kind of damage you're implying because of the combined effects of yaw of repose and the torque vector caused by the inward shooting angle.

          If you wish them harm, maybe you should find something else, such as having them ride naked on a sadleless bike or read the huffington post without an ad-blocker.

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          It's a modern era cafe culture, just like this [], out of similar style as []. It's about having a good time share intellectual fun, I would assume, politics like all other topics would be discussed and played with for fun. Mainly about creative and challenging intellectual exchange and probably very much places conservatives would avoid, just not their nature. The high school jock strap douche thing of picking on the smart people, yeah, if you h

      • All I see is unfiltered liberal vomit.

        Bannon and Scaramucci are liberals now?

  • Mondo 2000 ain't shit. [] is where it's at.

    • by Megane ( 129182 )
      That's nothing, I remember when was a site about a meme soft drink with little gelatin balls in it. Also, Kibology will never die.

  • I wish people would scan those old copies already. I'm not paying $30 an issue on ePay.

  • "Dangerous Minds" meets "Boing Boing".

  • I Remember Them (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Sunday August 13, 2017 @03:46AM (#55001921) Homepage Journal
    You see, back in the day we didn't really have the internet yet, so all human knowledge was printed on paper and bound into "books." If you wanted a local cache of knowledge or reading entertainment, you would go to a "book store," which I know is a rather antiquated idea. There you would "buy" these "books", and they had no way to prevent you from doing whatever you wanted with them! It all seems terribly quaint now! Anyway if the "book store" were particularly "hip," as the kids said at the time, they might have on hand several choice publications, including Magical Blend, Heavy Metal Magazine, 2600 and Mondo 2000. Mondo 2000 was rather glitzy, but Magical Blend was grittier. There, you might find Timothy Leary speculating about the cleanliness of W Bush's asshole, or Robert Anton Wilson going on about... the federal reserve... or whatever it was he was usually going on about. I was always rather vague on the subject.

    It was a more innocent time, back when W seemed like a pretty bad president, and we didn't have to worry about getting measles or whooping cough. Back then you didn't have people hooking up with pokemon in the streets, and if you wanted to call someone you actually had to go find a telephone. But that's why people call them the good ol' days. What's that? Mondo 2000 is coming back? Why, I shall have to fire up the old gyrocopter and find my way to the nearest book store, then, I suppose. I believe there's one in the antique store.

"Well, it don't make the sun shine, but at least it don't deepen the shit." -- Straiter Empy, in _Riddley_Walker_ by Russell Hoban