There was a horrible sound from Bruno. Felix crawled toward him and looked into his face. Felix strained to see. The dark shimmered. He heard a howling in his ears; his eyes rushed forward through a confusion of colors; he expected to collide with a wall at any moment. Nothing for us, Bruno was saying, only constraints, humiliating chains for a will that can expand to infinity or focus into smallness….
The continuum tilted and Felix was falling. Chaos crept into him. Not the sense of chance or statistical disorder obeying its own laws, but mindless, unpredictable fluidity, cruel, unrestrained and unredeemable—the pulsing substratum of reality. He perceived it in the only way possible, with the narrow gauge of finite senses—a gray, alien mass at the center of time, at the heart of mind, enveloping all space, a cosmic jack-in-the-box always ready to give the lie to all pretense, a centrality which could never be defeated, only held in degrees of check.
Bruno looked up, but he seemed to be on the other side of a barrier. Wic wore tos repelton, he said, smiling. They stared at each other as the last quantum of information slipped across the bridge of silence, revealing the situation to them. Felix took a step forward, but Bruno seemed to retreat, as if there were a frame around him and something had moved him back. Cages, Felix realized. He would never touch June again, or even speak to her; they would look at each other through the wrong end of a telescope, trying to rename the simplest things with gibberish.
Our illnesses, our desire to transcend the world, have deformed everything.
Zebrowski, George 1945–
Bruno was waving at him. Wixwell, mamtom ono! He shrugged. Prexel worbout it, he added. Felix cursed, but the word was indecipherable as two copies appeared and settled to the ground near his feet. People talk too much. And of the making of books there is no end. And Ian Watson commented that the story stands out for its originality and power, as an excellent enigmatic metaphor.
The French translated it as Piles de Mots in Fiction, which sounded right to me. You might guess that I had a lot of fun writing it. Visual was a silence of stars, audio a mindless seething on the electromagnetic spectrum, the machine-metal roar of the universe, a million gears grinding steel wires in their teeth. Time was experienced time, approaching zero, a function of near-light speed relative to the solar system.
Thought hovered above sleep, dreaming, aware of simple operations continuing throughout the systems of the sluglike starprobe; simple data filtering into storage to be analyzed later. Identity was the tacit dimension of the past making present awareness possible: MOB—Modified Organic Brain embodied in a cyborg relationship with a probe vehicle en route to Antares, a main sequence M-type star light-years from the solar system with a spectral character of titanium oxide, violet light weak, red in color, solar diameters across….
The probe ship slipped into the ashes of other-space, a gray field which suddenly obliterated the stars, silencing the electromagnetic simmer of the universe. MOB was distantly aware of the stresses of passing into nonspace, the brief distortions which made it impossible for biological organisms to survive the procedure unless they were ship-embodied MOBs.
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A portion of MOB recognized the distant echo of pride in usefulness, but the integrated self knew this to be a result of organic residues in the brain core. When the ship reentered normal space, MOB would come to full consciousness, ready to complete its mission in the Antares system. MOB waited, secure in its purpose.
MOB was aware of the myoelectrical nature of the nutrient bath in which it floated, connected via synthetic nerves to the computer and its chemical RNA memory banks of near infinite capacity. This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue? Upload Sign In Join.
Save For Later. Create a List. Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere. A dog ran by in the empty street. Felix noted the muzzle.
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No problem there. Love, June The words angered him, bringing back the tension in his stomach. Felix relaxed and lay back again.
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The new message read: You bastard! Is Bruno with you again?
What do you two do together? He read an early entry: 23 July When the words started materializing, the difference between language and physical reality was blurred. Someone started pounding on the front door. Felix stood and went out to check. He closed the door and faced her.
The clock over the fireplace read four A. June, he said softly, wanting her. He walked through the open door, sat down at the desk, and read: Disturbance reported at the landfill. Check when your shift begins this morning. Webber One of the others has gone nuts, he thought, and they want me to bring him home. He reached the top and stopped. He got back on the seat and coasted downhill. Hello, Bruno. The words formed and slid down the sandy slope. Felix started down. Only the first three words formed, falling at his feet. Notice that? No words formed this time, as if the effect was beginning to die away.
Felix sat down next to the ruddy-faced man and looked at him carefully. Bruno—you know me? What are you doing here? Bruno brushed them away with a bearlike swipe. Felix, I may really know. Have you got a shovel? No, Felix said, but I can get one. Again no words. Bruno was watching him. Bruno—how long has all this been here? About a month. All this grew in a month? It all made a peculiar sense. I just look bad. Why not natural?
Felix asked. Why did it all start? He paused. Bruno might simply be crazy, Felix thought, nothing more. Felix climbed out of the hole and gave Bruno a hand up. You mean there may be no machine? Bruno asked, pointing. A local station in the net? Suddenly, Bruno clutched at his chest and fell forward, easing himself down with the shovel. My heart… but listen. I may die, but you have to listen….
But maybe it is an alien yoke, Felix said. I would prefer that, but this silly machine…. He coughed and clutched his chest. Felix struck the machine a third time. I see it, Bruno croaked, his words trembling. Felix looked around. A black bag had been pulled down over the world. What is it? I see it all! The words vibrated, but did not form. The blackness was impenetrable. Senseless… blind, nothing there for us, Bruno muttered. Nothing for us, Bruno was saying, only constraints, humiliating chains for a will that can expand to infinity or focus into smallness… The continuum tilted and Felix was falling.
The darkness faded and he saw Bruno sitting up against the tree. Felix shouted in relief. Repelton, tos? Starcrossed Visual was a silence of stars, audio a mindless seething on the electromagnetic spectrum, the machine-metal roar of the universe, a million gears grinding steel wires in their teeth. Identity was the tacit dimension of the past making present awareness possible: MOB—Modified Organic Brain embodied in a cyborg relationship with a probe vehicle en route to Antares, a main sequence M-type star light-years from the solar system with a spectral character of titanium oxide, violet light weak, red in color, solar diameters across… The probe ship slipped into the ashes of other-space, a gray field which suddenly obliterated the stars, silencing the electromagnetic simmer of the universe.
Start your free 30 days. Page 1 of 1. See more. Musings of a Strategist. The author effectively gives an enchanting fusion of theory and practice to the corporate strategy thought process. Management students on the threshold of entering the industry will derive great value from these application oriented articles. Defying Gravity: Adventures of a Corporate Entrepreneur. Polly Courtney. Tony Sharp is an ambitious manager in a company leading the creation of a new business unit. He realises that a more radical approach is required, but can he convince those around him to take the risk?
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The Gunsmith had to find out, even if it killed him John Tarant. A biography of Peter Drucker, one of the most pre-eminent businessmen and theorists. Hometown Brew. Ellen Akins. From a writer whose work Robert Coover has described as "subtle, wise, intricate, innovative," a rich novel of family rivalries, corporate maneuvers, and sexual intrigue--set in a small Wisconsin beer town. In the background: a small family-run brewery, Gutenbier, whose backward business practices have been miraculously transformed into an asset by the new vogue for microbreweries and designer beverages.
At the center: two women whose world is the brewery. In , Zebrowski released another collection: this one of his fiction. The book, Swift Thoughts , contains twenty-four stories written by Zebrowski over the course of thirty years. All of the stories deal with the frailty of humanity, though they take the form of futuristic stories or alternative histories. A Publishers Weekly reviewer wrote that the stories "demonstrate impressive discipline, logic and mastery of his craft.
Swift Thoughts was followed by another compilation, In the Distance, and ahead in Time , which includes ten more out-of-print stories written by Zebrowski. A Booklist contributor considered the rescue of these stories a gesture "on behalf of the good guys and their readers," and found the first three stories, which follow the adventures of a character named Christian Praeger, "unpretentious but intelligent.
A Publishers Weekly contributor found the stories to be both "outstanding" and "disturbing," while a California Bookwatch writer opined that the book "displays another edge to [Zebrowski's] creative talents.
Zebrowski once told CA: "I have been described as a 'hard SF writer with literary intent'—which makes me sound like a difficult person about to commit a crime of some sort. What 'literary' means in this description, I believe, is that I pay attention to the writerly virtues of style, characterization, and lucid storytelling, as much as I do to what makes a work science fiction—its scientific facts, speculative ideas, and philosophical considerations.
Nothing wrong with that; I wouldn't think much of any 'hard SF' writer who would deliberately leave all that out. James Blish, a favorite writer of mine, once said that SF should be hard thoroughgoing all the way through—in its ideas and literary virtues, which seems to me to be beyond argument as a prescription. It's the ideal I started with as a writer.
One writes fiction which deals with the human impact of possible future changes in science and technology. Even if you remove 'science and technology' you still have 'the human impact of future changes. The 'human impact' makes it literature; the 'plausible imaginary changes' make it SF. How well the 'literary' and 'science fictional' conceits come out depends on the ambition and skill of the writer. Elliot, Jeffrey M. Shippey, T. Booklist , June 15, , review of Sunspacer , p. Extrapolation , fall, , G. Utopian Studies , winter, , Lynn F.
Williams, review of Beneath the Red Star , p.