May 26, 2004 8:54 PM   Subscribe

PDU-1 A Novella of the Remote Future.
posted by plexi (5 comments total)
Hmmm. The author has clearly never read the Turkey City lexicon of SF writing faults. Thrill to the:

Tom Swifty: Jorgensen turned slightly, said quietly ... ``And if I fail too?'' I said softly ... ``You won't fail,'' he said flatly ... ``Of course he did,'' said V-Kay, soothingly.

Calling a rabbit a smeerp - tahn: a long-necked, foul-tempered desert animal with a large hump on its back ... tonga: A large, herbivorous, marsupial animal with a small head, large ears, long, powerful hind legs, small forelegs, and a long thick tail ... can move rapidly by ... hopping on their hind legs

Information Dump: ``Structurally, the New Frontiers for Humanity project was divided into four broad but overlapping departments,'' Viggen said. ``Hardware, Software, Biometrics, and Administration. Hardware was subcontracted to Boeing's Defense & Space Group, which built PDU-1 and its infrastructure; Software was subcontracted to Sun Microsystems' AI division; Biometrics was subcontracted to Consolidated Pharmaceuticals' Special Projects division; and RJR handled Administration, which not only had overall responsibility for the project, including design and management, but contained the Political Action, Billing, and Public Relations departments as well.''

And so on. This is supposed to be up with PKD, Blish and Bill Gibson?
posted by raygirvan at 3:56 AM on May 27, 2004

The story is wannabee Greg Egan with extra adjectives and one too many visits from the exposition fairy... but that Turkey City link is excellent. See also Strange Horizons' Stories We See Too Often.
posted by ook at 9:35 AM on May 27, 2004

Well, it's not horribly bad though. It's kind of interesting to me. There's a whole lotta Unix geekery in there huh? :)

Might make a fun video game!
posted by zoogleplex at 1:29 PM on May 27, 2004

raygirvan, you are *so* my new best friend. What a fabu link. :) Ook, you too. Danke! Any other goodness like those that you have hidden in your bookmark files, you may feel free to send me, should you feel so inclined. :)

As to PDU-1, I'm a huge sci-fi reader...but this just didn't reach out and snag my interest. Perhaps it's just that I've had a particularly trying day...because I generally agree with Ziesing's reviews. As someone who practically worships at the alter of PKD, I didn't see this as in the same league at all....but again, I could just be being overly critical.

I'll go back and give it another try on a day when the inlaws aren't scheduled to arrive and the baby hasn't been coloring on the walls. ;)
posted by dejah420 at 1:35 PM on May 27, 2004

Seriously -- if you find the premise interesting at all, read Permutation City, and if that floats your boat follow it up with Diaspora. Egan's take on the whole life-as-software thing is just beautifully worked out... detailed, fully believable, entirely self-consistent; makes you feel like we could get started on it tomorrow if we felt up to it. (And it just pains me to watch his books go out of print so quickly -- somebody get the man a PR agent!)
posted by ook at 8:04 AM on May 28, 2004

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