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Did Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash predict the world of today?

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That's what a number of venture capitalists and futurists told the Wall Street Journal recently. They cite Stephenson's classic novel as a harbinger of many current staples, from World of Warcraft to Google's search capabilities.

As the WSJ writes:

"We are living in Neal Stephenson's story," says Bijan Sabet, a partner at venture-capital firm Spark Capital. "The thing about 'Snow Crash' is that every few years something happens that makes the story come alive again and again for me."


Tech investor Fred Wilson compares "a celebrity-stocked section of the Metaverse" to interactions on Twitter. Execs tell the WSJ that Stephenson predicted the search capabilities of today's Google with the Librarian character. Hiro's pizza delivery methods predict the pervasive use of GPS. And Second Life founder Philip Rosedale says Snow Crash made him feel as though "A person had written a novel about what I very practically had been thinking about my whole life."

So what do you think? Are they overstating Snow Crash's predictive powers or influence? Or is it really a prescient novel about the world of today? [WSJ]