Book - 2010
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A sentient World Wide Web entity known as Webmind has befriended Caitlin Decter and grown eager to learn about her world. But Webmind has also come to the attention of WATCH--the secret government agency that monitors the Internet for any threat to the United States-and they're fully aware of Caitlin's involvement in its awakening. WATCH is convinced that Webmind represents a risk to national security and wants it purged from cyberspace
Publisher: New York : Ace Books, 2010
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780441018185
Characteristics: viii, 352 p. ; 24 cm
Alternative Title: WWW: WATCH


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Aug 07, 2013

28/07 - This was even better than Wake! Watch was quite as chock-a-block with techno-speak because the technology (Caitlin's eyePod, WebMind's appearance etc) had already been set up, so Sawyer didn't have to overload the reader with background information on how it all worked. This left more time for the story to happen, to progress. Webmind's voice was a little irritating to begin with because after reading everything the Gutenberg Project had digitalised he had a slightly skewed idea of the way people talk in current times, but as he continued to learn that resolved itself. The front cover had a quote from Publisher's Weekly "wildly thought provoking" and I absolutely agree. I don't understand the internet well enough to say whether any of this is possible, but I hope it is. So, if there's a WebMind-like - WebMind-like in that it's completely benign and not going to turn into Skynet or plug us all into the Matrix so it can have the planet to itself and its progeny (or whatever you call robots made by robots) - entity out there watching us from the internet please find a suitable Caitlin substitute (someone who isn't going to inform the relevant authorities out of fear of what it may one day be capable of) and make contact. I look forward to hearing from you.

Oct 26, 2012


Dec 28, 2011

It's a really good book.
Very well written.

Oct 31, 2011

This must be one of Sawyer’s most recent books: it is copyrighted 2010. So perhaps it reflects a continuing maturing of how he writes. Back 20 years ago it was all about funny looking aliens, later his works starred dinosaurs. Back then there was lots of suspense, lots of action. But now the suspense is still there but its more of a thinking suspense. This time the centre of his novel is a sixteen-year-old girl in Waterloo who’s sight has been recently restored by an advanced procedure. It has also allowed her to come into contact with an emergent intelligence on the WWW. Of course Webmind is benign. Like a young child it revels in its discovery of the world through the virtual world. But of course others, suspicious others who are constantly minding what goes on in the world of the web, in the world of any communications, others who are constantly on the prowl for spies, criminals, and terrorists and anyone or anything that may seem to be threatening learn of its whereabouts and work to destroy it.
As usual, Sawyer has a number of strands to his novel --- strands that converge to complete the storyline at the novel’s conclusion. As usual, his story is located painfully in Canada. (You knew Canadians say eh? instead of huh. But did you also know we say bum instead of butt? --- a real cultural education.) And of course its full of arcane tidbits like why it’s Tim Hortons and not Tim Horton,s? And why it was important when Waterloo Lutheran changed it’s name that the new name have those same initials: WL?
This is the second book in atrilogy. I’ve found that with Sawyer it usually doesn’t matter where you break in --- each of the parts of his trilogies usually do a pretty good job of standing on their own. For sure I’m going to be reading the other two novels pronto.
It’s a good book. I’m glad I read it. It is golden in parts. Sentimental in others. Drole here and there. And warm all over.

Maybe I don't like Sawyers style, but I found this book to be lightweight and lacking direction.

In "Watch", nobody checks the clock, opens their laptop and turns on their webcam; Sawyer has them look at the Seiko clock, open their Asus laptop, and turn on their Logitech webcam.
All the overt product placement and exposition made me feel I was reading an awkward fanfic, rather than a serious novel.

Feb 19, 2011

Watch was a pleasure to read. A couple of stupid things out of the many, many ideas skillfully presented, the book captivated me more than any other I've read in a while.

debwalker Nov 09, 2010

The second novel in the WWW trilogy imagines a web-mind which emerges from the Internet's complexity, and a young woman who can speak to it.

Oct 20, 2010

This is the second book of the WWW Trilogy Series. The story line gets more interesting as the "entity" gains knowledge at an incredible rate. As in his previous trilogy "Neanderthal Parallax", he has me hooked and can't wait for the conclusion

Sep 08, 2010

This is the second book in the WWW trilogy, I read Wake, the first and was intrigued and so I just finished Watch and can't wait to read Wonder, the third and final one. Robert Sawyer has incredible ideas and although sometime the plot doesn't involve complex characters, some of the theories he puts forward are intriguing.

May 10, 2010

An interesting exploration of emergence of intelligence, evolution and the role of choice. I liked the parallels to the primate world, and some of the game theory ideas. Unfortunately, it really felt like it was written for a teen audience rather than an adult audience. The dialogue felt artificial and forced, and the abuse of character dialogue to explain concepts (e.g. game theory) or the author's opinions (e.g. bits of canadiana) felt a bit insulting to the reader. The underlying ideas could have made a great short story, but were not enough to fill a whole book.


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