Microserfs: the name

So Paul asked me to explain the name of this particular forum — it's a very special reference, and we want people to understand it.

When I was fourteen years old, Douglas Coupland published a book called... Microserfs. I bought it in hardcover the week it came out. It had a bright aluminum cover that looked like this:


It was an amazing book for someone like me — it celebrated tech culture, software development, and general nerdery in a way that I'd rarely encountered before, and I read it voraciously in one go. Then I read it again, and several times more in the years that followed. The first part of the book is set at Microsoft during its period of uncontested dominance in the 90s, with several reverential sections about Bill Gates, and the second part is about startup culture in Silicon Valley. It's great — you should go read it, if you haven't. It made me proud to be a huge nerd with enormous glasses.

Eventually I got contacts, but I think you all know I never stopped being a huge nerd.

Anyway, I'm very happy to have named this small part of site after the book — it's a little nod to something that pointed a lot of us down the path of technology as a cultural force, just as I hope our site does for our own younger readers. Go forth, Microserfs!