What happens with a man and a computer is put on Saturn's Titan for a year to mine methane? The relationship doesn't always work out the way everyone plans. The relationship should be based on trust, but what if one member of the team isn't doing what the other expects. To survive in a work environment a team must trust each other and need to b working towards the same goals. It is frustrating when information is manipulated and the trust is lost.
How much fun would you be having if you were assigned to a remote planet for a year and the computer started talking to you like this. It would make for a very long year, wouldn't it? What little communications poor Robert receives from his company may not be as pure as he thinks. He doesn't know what is happening and he can only assume that his trusted computer is taking care of him.
This was a fun story to write. Any of you that have been in a large corporation understands the feelings when they don't seem to hear you and understand what you're doing. You often get messages that are supposed to inspire you, but they seem pretty dumb. I took some of this large company insensitivity and mixed it with an intelligent computer that can be trusted. I hope you enjoy this and let me know if you've had similar experiences in you job.
Winner Apple Literary Award Best Ebook 2016 A suspicious virus has killed 99.99997% of the people. A ruthless warlord who moved into the White House attacks the Government at Camp David. The President moved the remaining government to an aircraft carrier in the Atlantic and left a military unit to deal with the warlord. The decimated US Navy it is still functional, they must defend themselves from the remnants of militaries with a grudge against the US that use the opportunity to get revenge. Joan Herl and her remaining space station Oasis crew returned to Earth and a computer playing by different rules attacked them. Their only ally was the first thinking computer SIMPOC and his surrogate named Alpha. Dr. Julius who was one of the moon colony crew members steals the research for thinking computers and with his expertise he creates another computer that rivals SIMPOC and who starts making its own plans. Eventually, they all find out why the virus started and who is responsible.
I thought this would be fun to have in the story. Can you imagine what it would be like to find yourself command an Aircraft Carrier? Drummond remains key through the rest of story and into the next novels. It is fun to watch her grow into the shoes of 'Captain'.
I enjoyed doing the research for how to create an organic brain. I admit I did use some of the information a little loosely, but the basics are accurate. Interestingly, many experts think it will be around the time this story takes place before we achieve true thinking computers. A computer can mimic many processes and computations but some of the things we take for granted take immense amounts of computing power. Being able to recognize patterns in different situations takes extremely intensive computing. The ability to take that pattern recognition further and make a decision takes a higher magnitude of computing. So not having an organic, thinking brain until 2051 isn't too far off.
A suspicious Virus is wiping out everyone on Earth. Two computers are left unattended with no software safeguards. They learn to survive and one helps the few remaining humans and the other has a different agenda.
A lot of authors have tried to create a computer's dialog. I was concerned about making it interesting yet computer like. I played with it a couple of times and I think this worked. I tried to keep the language formal and third person initially, then I slowly opened it up into first person then more colloquial. Later on I create another mobile unit that is more intimate with the humans and he has to go through a fun learning experience trying to figure out the human animal.
I always enjoyed stories that had 'evil' computers, but I was frustrated that no author tried to explain how the computer became evil. I wrote SIMPOC from the perspective of two computers, one who is good and the other that is evil. It was a challenge to write like a computer would think. I think I have captured it pretty well, because the reviews have been great. I wanted a scenario where the computers would be uninhabited so I wrote the computers against a back ground of the world being attacked by a suspicious virus. That allowed me to avoid the typical software limitation that are usually applied and it also opened up some other great story lines.
Humans were forced to leave Earth when the pollution became a threat. A long time in their future they returned and found something else living there.
I loved Asimov's books and particularly "I Robot" where he introduced his Three Laws of Robitics. I needed a similar concept in this book, but in this case it came from a different direction. With my robots, they are sentient yet they are still robots. They needed a method to control themselves, yet expand and adapt to a changing world. I hope you enjoy how my laws weave through the story and become a major part of it.
Science Fiction Anthology Vol. 1 2nd Edition Four great Sci-Fi short stories where you’ll find good computers, people who regret their past and an explanation for something you’re familiar with. "Progeny" "The Greatest Host" "Circle is Closed" "Good Morning..."
One of the great things of being a Science Fiction Author is the ability to use a little science and create a fast that light drive system. I've read a lot about the little-understood forces and actions at the quantum mechanics level. I figured why not use a little 'literary license' and come up with a new way to travel faster than light.
In the short story Progeny, it is a interesting story about a robotic race many years in their future. I've enjoyed Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics. In this case I came up with four and they play a very prominent position in this story and subsequent stories.I've combined Progeny and Circle is Closed and written a full Sci Fi novel.
99.9997% of the human race was wiped out by a suspicious virus. SIMPOC who was the first thinking computer sided with the remnants of the human race and another computer begins to learn and grow using another instruction set. The Commander of the space station Oasis Joan Herl has returned to Earth along with the few remaining space station survivors. They are finally able to connect with Admiral Hagerly and the President of the United States Arnold Patterson who they locate on an aircraft carrier in the middle of the Atlantic. After the crew of the space station and the remnants of the US government meet they welcome the moon colony who was forced to abandon their moon colony. When the few remaining humans are brought together they begin dealing with the massive devastation done to the population.
I'm not a DNA expert, but what I describe here is based on my research. DNA can be modified and it does have switches that can be turned on and off. I was surprised to find that strong magnetic pulses can change DNA. Putting these pieces of information together gave me a great way to create the virus.
After dealing with the loss of Joan and Tom's loved ones, they need a quiet time together. They've seen horror and now they need a bottle of wine and a fire. The one obstacle is the huge robot watching them. They deal with him in the only way they can and the robot learns a little more about what it is to be human. I thought this was a funny scene that I enjoyed writing. I can almost see the look on the robot's face trying to understand what was happening.
A suspicious virus has wiped out almost all of the human race. The few survivors in the U.S. Government and Military know who caused the virus and they are fighting the last battles on the planet to save the survivors. The military fights for survival in the air and on the sea. They are faced with an opponent that outguns them and can attack from any direction. It becomes a war of attrition, a war the world is losing. Two Super Thinking Computers were released when their programmers died because of the virus. They have no controls and one is programmed to help the humans and the other has its own agenda. They seek the source of the virus, one is intent on returning and ultimately dealing with those who threaten it. The other must deal with the bad computer and still fulfill its programming to help the humans. This is the end of Epoch 1 of the SIMPOC (Bk 1 & 2) and Virus (Bk 1 & 2) series. SIMPOC focused on how the computers evolved and became important within the larger story. Virus focused on the effect of the virus on the world and the fate of astronauts on the Space Station Oasis, the moon colony Desert Beach and the Mars Colony Red Dirt.
I think the process of finding the ending in a story is an exciting experience. I don't know how other others go through the process but for me, I don't know the ending until the characters and I get there. As I write the story the characters develop on their own. We go through the story together and when it is time for the ending, where they've been and who they drives the ending. At the ending, I'm just as excited as the reader, because I don't know what it is until I get there. In this situation Joan Herl tells off one of the most powerful leaders in the Universe and I loved it as it came together. Even now, I love to read. I hope that you enjoy it also.
As I wrote this story I thought it would be interesting to have the Evil Computer setting the pace. Instead of leaving it as mysterious entity that the protagonists were after, I wrote a lot from its perspective and I left the good guys to follow it trying to keep up. I think it fit well with the bad guy's arrogance and the tendency not to look back but to worry only about its survival first and dealing with the humans second. This also set up a great confrontation where the good and the evil finally meet and confront each other.
I like to have some interesting 'evil' in my stories. With Artur he was one of the 'sick' evil guys. He was a little paranoid and a lot of creepy. His morality was non-existent and I had fun playing with his character. To me the better the evil, the better the hero.
The civilization was progressing well. It was growing and it was following the laws. Helen was following the third law to expand their knowledge and the fourth law to maintain variation in their thoughts. She started following an interesting piece of information and soon discovered a past that her civilization had forgotten. She found a past that would change everything in their society and challenge their very existence. What she was going to learn would set the stage for new life and ultimately a difficult confrontation.
I enjoyed creating these laws. I loved Asimov's stories, and the three laws of robots that he created have been a major part of Science Fiction since he created them. In Progeny, I've taken the robots beyond humanity and I wanted a tie in with history. What better way then to continue the philosophy of having laws and creating some new ones. These are written from the robot's perspective and don't reflect a relationship with humans. My laws came together great and you'll see later in the story how they can be interpreted and used to create some new twists.
I took a typical computer story and framed it many years in the future. I describe a future where the computers have forgotten how they started. Instead of humans creating computers I've turned the tables a little and I think the book has an interesting perspective. You may see the natural connection between this story and Circle is Closed. Between the two I'm setting up a very interesting moral dilemma. I'm going one step further and taking both of the stories and filling in the blanks so they'll be tied together and we'll have to see how the moral dilemma is resolved.
A wondering alien life form called Mists sought compatible hosts to share their life. The Mists have lived for a long time and shared their lives with many life forms. Throughout the Mists' life, they have been able to find suitable hosts for short periods and in other hosts, life was hard and risky. Finally, the Mists traveled to a planet and found the perfect hosts to share their life. This is a humorous mix of science fiction and reality. I'm sure any reader will see the humor and appreciate the reality.
This section was fun to wright. Again I don't want to give away the plot, but once you're at the end and look back at the 'subservient creature' secreting food section you'll smile.
This is a fun Science Fiction short story. I can't say much about it without giving away the plot, but it is a potential alien invasion that many of us have dealt with. I was walking with my wife one day and I thought of this story, I'm sure you can figure what I was doing when the plot occurred to me. This could be a great story if you want to get your children interested in science fiction.
How do you feel when you ask a question then regret asking it? The Raog were a successful race of aliens who had a good life. Their planet was bountiful, their families were growing and they had peace. Some of them asked questions about their solar system and Doctor Wong found clues that another planet was orbiting opposite to them on the other side of their sun. Like any species would, they sent a satellite to see if there was another planet. The good news was, 'there was another planet', and the bad news was 'there was another planet'. Once the satellite found the other planet, the situation changed rapidly and the peaceful Raog were forced to defend themselves, their civilization, their religion, and their very existence. Along the way, they endured violent acts against them. New leaders were forced to emerge and they were forced to change in order to survive. They had to adapt, learn new technologies, learn to fight and learn to survive. And most of all they found that their beliefs had to grow to reflect the new realities they faced.
I guess I'm a romantic at heart. All of my books have a romantic theme running through. I love to have strong couples that are the protagonists. I think a lot of SciFi gets boring when the entire story is killing aliens. I think strong couples bring a different perspective to the conflict. In Gemini the main vein through the story is a young couple that are thrust into difficult times. They have to grow as a couple, deal with tremendous pressure on their people and finally lead their planet through a conflict that might be the end of their civilization. Creating an alien wedding was interesting. I created the underlying faith and traditions and I think that it came out in a very nice scene.
This is the first point in the story where the naive Raog discover that they made a mistake. Once they asked the question "is there another planet opposite to them orbiting their sun" their lives and the future of their civilization was in jeopardy.
Humanity left Earth a long time ago. They had treated their home planet poorly and the deteriorating environment forced them to leave. They traveled 189 light years to a faraway world and named it Horizon respecting the new lives they intended to build. Fortunately, they learned their lessons and treated their new world much better. After over 100,000 years away from Earth, they still revered her and taught their children her beauty. They knew that someday they would return and hopefully Earth had healed and she would welcome them back. They finally developed faster than light travel and the first place they wanted to visit was the home planet of the human race. When a small crew made the trip, they found that Earth was healed and healthy but they also found changes that surprised them. When they left to return to Horizon, they had more questions than when they left.
This story is a long time in man's future. I wanted to go beyond the classic story of how humanity treats the Earth badly. In this story man realized that they had destroyed their planet and they were forced to leave. The surprise can when they returned hoping to find a pristine planet they could return to. What they find surprises them and sets them up with a real moral dilemma.
FREE Sci Fi Short Story I had fun coming up with a Faster Than Light drive. There are a bunch of concepts within Science Fiction including the Alcubierre Drive. Science is finding that there is a tremendous amount of energy within our existence and there is a lot that is going on at the molecular level that we don't understand including "Linkage" I stretched things a little to come up with my drive concept to go faster that light.
During a public relations trip to Europe the first lady Abby Patterson, her daughter Beth and son Dave lose their lives to a very fast and suspicious virus. As the virus takes over the world the President of the United States Arnold Patterson must deal with the collapse of the United States Government. His trusted adviser Admiral Nial Hagerly does his best to keep the military viable but it is a losing battle. The government moves to Camp David while they deal with the collapse then ultimately they are forced to move to an aircraft carrier in the Atlantic where they plan to rebuild the country and Earth. Commander Joan Herl and her husband Tom must deal with the virus on the space station Oasis. They still have a job to do, but their losses are disastrous and dwindling supplies puts the moon colony Desert Beach and the Mars colony Red Dirt in dire jeopardy. The moon colony is cut-off from Earth, and forced to use their lifeboats for a return to Earth, but losing Oasis cuts off the Mars colony and they must deal with the isolation. After the suspicious virus has decimated Earth, the president and astronauts ultimately find that a computer named SIMPOC is their only central support. They also find there is another computer that has the same advanced abilities as SIMPOC but it is not helping the humans; it has its own agenda.
Creating evil is fun, sometimes it is a little creepy. When you go down a path describing evil, it takes you into a different place in your mind. I suppose it can be therapeutic, but to be honest I find it upsetting, but I enjoyed it. I find it stressful to describe such evil because you find yourself having to think like the character and it can make my skin crawl a little. Regardless, if the author is creep-ed out by his evil character than perhaps I did it well.
This was one of hardest scenes to write. Any one with a family will understand. I felt it was important to show the total devastation the virus inflicted. I tried to handle this scene in a way that a parent or spouse would appreciate. I hope the reader feels the emotion and pain the characters went through.
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