A book with the highly ambitious title The Meaning of the 21st Century: Humanity's Greatest Challenge was bought by Riverhead publisher Cindy Spiegel in a six-figure deal for North American rights. The author is computer guru James Martin, whose amazingly prescient book forecasting the future of computer networking was published as The Wired Society as long ago as 1978. In the new book, Martin, who was a pioneer in computer-aided systems engineering, will examine the various trends most likely to affect us in the century ahead—many of them adversely—and lay out a blueprint for possible change in humanity's direction. The book will be published to coincide with a four-part American Public Television documentary, narrated by Martin, in fall next year. The book was signed with agent Loretta Barrett at her own agency.