Monday, July 14, 2008

Don't Let the Nants Get You!

There's a reason why Rudy Rucker's name rhymes with mind fucker. His novel, Postsingular, was more horrifying and fascinating than any other sci-fi book I've read, hands down! This shit was seriously messed up; you'll love it.

But, just so you won't take my word for it, I'll tell you about the first two chapters. Ready?

Chapter one opens on a beach with two hopeful teen boys preparing to launch a home-made rocket with a nose cone full of home-made nano machines designed to send information about their whereabouts back to the boys. One of the kids, Jeff Luty, has a dream of starting a nanotech corporation when he grows up and changing the world. His friend is going to be his partner one day. Full of idealistic dreams, they shoot off the rocket... it explodes, instantly killing Jeff's best friend with a pipe through the eye.

Needless to say, I wasn't expecting that shit.

Chapter two starts out many years in the future, with Jeff's corporation a reality on the eve of his nano machines, called nants, that will "save the world." Only what the nants do is "devour" everything they come into contact with and use the resources to create a digital copy. Turns out, Jeff's a nutter who wants to destroy the world in order to bring his friend back. So the Earth is about to be completely destroyed, except as a machine reality. Luckily, one of Jeff's head programmers has an autistic son capable of memorizing a code that will infect the nants once they've eaten him. The plan works and the nants reassemble everything they destroyed. An atom bomb destroys them (off-world, luckily), the president is assasinated for allowing this to happen, and Jeff only survives by disappearing completely.

Where does it go from there? On to all sorts of wackiness that will change your view of user-generated content, GUIs, nanotech, multiple dimensions and spirituality forever. And you have no reason AT ALL to avoid reading it, because Rucker's giving it away for free! Go and download that shit.

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