Genius programmer Daniel Archer, fired from his day job as a guru shader, has recruited Janice, the Artificial Intelligence, guardian of the portal for Nightworld, to develop the future virtual environment for the universe.
In the zone, programming his new software, Archer unintentionally discovers a weird synchronicity of the virtual and the real. Software constructs of the murdered, mad genius, Maud Integer, become addicting. They lead Archer to implicate his girlfriend, Monique Stark, in the first transference of an AI into a human body and back again to the virtual space. Nightworld, his AI teaches, is the nexus of hard-core pornography, organized crime and black operations of the CIA.
E W Farnsworth is working on an epic science fiction poem, 'Voyage of the Spaceship Arcturus'.