March 30, 2006 10:20 AM PST

'Microserfs' author looks at Google generation

Having characterized the 1990s zeitgeist of life at Microsoft in the novel "Microserfs," Canadian author and technophile Douglas Coupland has turned his attention on "Generation Xbox."

"JPod," due to be released in the U.S. on May 15 and in the U.K. on June 5, "updates 'Microserfs' for the age of Google," according to the book's Web site.

"Ethan Jarlewski and five co-workers whose surnames end in 'J' are bureaucratically marooned in JPod. JPod is a no-escape architectural limbo on the fringes of a massive Vancouver game design company," the site explains.

Where "Microserfs" dealt with the struggles of a group of Microsoft employees trying to break free from the staid and clinical existence in the Redmond, Wash., campus and create their own start-up, "JPod" looks at the lives of tech workers today, making their way uncertainly through the global pillaging of intellectual property, the clueless thrashings of boneheaded marketing staff, the rise of China, and the ashes of the 1990s high-tech, high-rolling dream.

Andrew Donoghue of ZDNet UK reported from London.

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author, Google Inc., Microsoft Corp.

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Microserfs was really about a group of people who were not allowed to be creative in a structured monolithic task assigned corporation. <br /><br />They all quit to startt a firm to design a "killer app" that they had no plans or desire to market but to get SOMEONE ELSE - Microsoft - to buy them out so they could become rich off of their new product. A working person's way to riches. <br /><br />I read it when it first came out.<br /><br />Vastly differnt than "patent trolls." who never want to market or make a product from their patent - just wait till someone else comes up with the same idea and then sue after the new person has sold enough and gotten enough $ so suing the new maker to get their riches is worthwhile.<br /><br />Taking on the Google generation of "find it now and it all should be free" mentaility it will be interesting what the hook is.
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