Typogram I.I - Why a Man Saved by Grace Could Still Be So Bloodthirsty

Bill: Ready?

Allana: ...as I'll ever be.

Bill: Hello!

Allana: Hi!

Bill: Ok, so... how far have you got?

Allana: Exactly to the end of the First Iteration. It is much, much easier reading than I was predicting.

Bill: Perfect, I did the same. First thoughts?

Allana: I was pleased that a character I assumed they were going to make major ended up dead. Then again, I shouldn't've expected anyone to be "major," given what I know about these "unconnected, meandering" plotlines. I just like murder, really.

Wilson Bowies Knives
This catalog of Wilson Bowies Knives linked to from Trenton Rock's Flickr photostream.

Bill: It was a very well written murder. Brutal efficiency is always effective to read about. I love the way they turned the implications of "Angel" around in the character who is the Angel of Goliad in this book. Instead of a female angel of mercy, we get a male angel of death. I'm glad you looked that up before we read - knowing the story behind that name in the real world significantly added to my enjoyment of the episode... you get that added pleasure of realization when the darker reflection of history becomes clear.

Allana: That's funny; I was sort of upset that they didn't seem to be referencing the historical term. I was expecting that maybe the book's angel would make reference to being saved by the factual angel; they could've made some interesting moral argument about why a man saved by grace could still be so bloodthirsty.

Bill: Wow. That's good. I'm just going to imagine that is what happened now, but nobody in the book talked about it. That is already retroactively increasing my enjoyment of that episode.

Allana: At least they could've thrown in some sort of acknowledgement.

Bill: I think there is just sort of an assumption that you'll know.

Allana: ... If you have Google?

Bill: I think there'll be a lot of that kind of thing here, probably the reason it was such a muddle to me the first time I read it. So much just sailed over my head.

Allana: Yeah, that's true, which will be good to look forward to.

Bill: Like the references to Lady Ada Byron - that's Ada Lovelace, the first programmer...

Allana: I made a little list of all the things I mean to look up, which is where my post about the Jacquard loom came from. Ada Byron would've been next to tackle.

Bill: I'm doing some reading on her now, I want to flesh out a post, but now I feel some time pressure, as I suspect she'll become a focal character later on.

Allana: I tend to gravitate towards those female characters that do something characteristically male with their lives, so she'll be perfect if I need a ... totem, or something.

To be continued in Typogram I.II - Future Ethical Transgressions


  1. Ada's biography is pretty interesting to read, if only because it's the easiest way to pick out the 'for want of a nail' moment that leads to this alternate history.

    It's not happy reading though.

  2. Is there a specific biography you'd recommend? I've been gathering info by grazing online. An actual book would probably be better.

  3. If The Difference Engine had a sound track, it would be minimalist Glass stuff played on a steam organ.

  4. We should do an 8tracks soundtrack list!

  5. I think we've all got enough awkward cabaret-from-hell music in our collections to make that happen.