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Ever wondered what the hell we were really planning when we started NTK "now"? Here's our manifesto for the print version from 1996, originally planned during the dying moments of our encarceration at Wired. Enjoy our rage!
- dob 2000-11-10

Unnecessarily huge logo that you'd probably hate. 
Facts. Theories. Lies, lies, lies.

Gedankenexperiment: What kind of periodical, do you think, believes that the experimental method is not only a good for establishing the empirical truth of hypotheses, but is also a great way to shop?

Who believes that piracy should be compulsory? Or that emotions are no longer necessary?

Who knows how to create a telepresence robot for under £50? Or a color TV projector for under £100? And will show you how, step by dangerous step?

Who publishes a 'How To...' guide for SGI owners in the form of a four panel cartoon strip? 

And who will always love you, even when everyone else thinks your some kind of sinister, hyper-obsessive, technology-loving freak?

This is the Kanji for NTK. It is. Really.
If it makes you happy, how can it be sad?

Need To Know is the world's most militant geekzine. Originating as proscribed samizdata on a blue chip company's intranet, mutated by the demands of the Access All Areas 3 hacking fraternity, boiled in the bile of its bitter editors' wrangling with the Evil Established Media, it now lives on printed form only until all lusers leave the Net, and we can go back to running our gopher sites in peace. Oh, all right, we'll put up a proper site soon, but you have to keep writing in and demanding it in petulantly toned e-mails, okay?

NTK has been described by Malcolm Maclaren as 'the future of art and science', but don't let that put you off. It's more like The Modern Review written by Douglas Coupland if he'd packed in novels and stuck to technical manuals. Inside every resistance-sapping issue, you'll find vast enclaves of good reading - divided into four podules that simply give no quarter:

Excite Stage
News and opinions by experts who understand the difference between good and evil - but no longer care.

"Bake and microwave-stable, Cheedex III is third in a series of Cheedex cheese analogues, providing ALL THREE organoleptic sensations of regular cheese!" 
- 'I Can't Believe It's Not A Bovine Secretion! New Food This Month'

"Actually, the intravaginal Tesla coil can be used as a contraceptive, although department heads at the Cyclotron Unit have no plans to exploit this functionality." 
- 'It Lives: Technology We've Waited Too Long For'

Technical Living
Tips and cheats on how to get onto the next level of life.

"I wish real life was more like Windows 95 because I would like my partners to have the option of cancelling breaking up with me during a shutdown procedure. But then, if it was more like that, then they could begin the process of breaking up by just pressing the Windows button, then 'U'. So perhaps it's best that life is not like computers, after all." 
- I Wish Life Was More Like Computers (readers' column)

"Rather than use macros for often used shell commands, I have learnt to type them with my hands crossed at the wrist. My cow-orkers are consistently amazed at my 'Jerry Lee Lewis' flourishes at the keyboard, and I am sure that I am more popular as a result." 

Extreme Science
If you can't plug it in, then we ain't interested.

"Get that scene off of Aliens where the aliens are gettin' dead close and the men and ladies are measuring how close on their little radar, and they're counting down how many metres, and it gets closer than the walls are... and then they realise that the aliens are above them... and just overdub the word 'science' wherever the words 'bastards', 'motherf***kers', 'they' or 'naughty aliens' appear."
- Sampling For A Rainy Day

Ideas Turbulence Yard
Discussions, arguments and thinly veiled threats - philosophical and fun!

"Challenge 6: go to comp.amiga.misc, and find an article laughing at ataris and macs. 
The canonical example here is taken from a 1991 posting: 'F***ing mac's couldn't do real time updates even if they did have a real time clock, and ataris? They're just big 'Game Boys'.'" 
- Viva La USENET Scavenger Hunt!

"There's a thousands-of-years tradition in the East of meditation techniques which evolved to still and balance the human body and spirit. The Hindus developed Yoga systems; the Japanese have Tai Chi. Britons have Heads and Shoulders Knees and Toes Knees and Toes."

This is the Kanji for NTK. It is. Really.
More than sane - less than human

Need To Know is maintained by Danny O'Brien and Dave Green, although legal responsibility for the magazine resides within a complex financial instrument incorporated under the laws of Anguilla in 1993 and which is now close to self-awareness.

If you'd like a copy of Need To Know or desire to join our proper paper mailing-list, send your name and address to the subscribot at If you'd like to contact one of the editors using an address they're likely to look at more than once an issue, e-mail

And remember: if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate.

Our manifesto: GAT d- !s a? C++++ ULS++++ P++++ L++++ E++ W+++ N+++ o*$ K--- w--- !O M++ !V PS+++ PE* Y++ PGP++ t@ 5--- X* R--- tv+++ b++++ DI++ D--- G+++ e+++++ h++ r* z**