Stephen Baxter: Last and First Contacts Imaginings #2

Stephen Baxter ë 2 Read

G scientific and political uestions and challenges that humankind will face as we trace the contours of our past and present and try to imagine them into our future The biggest uestion of all I guess is whether we will ever have the technological capability to find and explore other habitable worlds and their inhabitants And by the time we do what will our world look like politically and economically Will as Baxter suggests in one of the short stories in this collection space exploration be led and conducted by the private sector Will there still be a private sectorPerhaps I enjoy Baxter s writing so much for three reasonsFirstly as Ian Whates points out in his introduction to this collection of Baxter s short stories Baxter nows his scientific stuff so his imaginings of the future are based on seemingly profound Küçük Günahlar Sokağı knowledge of present day science and where it may be leading us so much so in fact that I often struggle to understand some of the scienceSecondly Baxter seems to have a deep sense andnowledge of history His one story in this anthology based on Nazi research during the Second World War on rockets speculates on the arrival of an alien spaceship near their research site and the Nazi s plans to use the alien technology to start an inter galactic war Nice detail scientific political and personal in the storyThirdly Baxter has a fine sense of the interplay between the big things very big things in some cases and the mundanely human and personal The last story in the anthology tells the tale of a mother in rural England and her astrophysicist daughter waiting out the Big Rip when dark energy a real scientific concept permeates the universe gains precedence over gravity and eventually rips everything apart down to molecular level Not the end of the world but the end of everything of all matter The daughter is the scientist who has predicted the exact date and time of the Big Rip Her mother nowing that all is to end continues to nurse and plan her little domestic gardenSome of the stories in this collection are not so good a little bland mundane and perhaps hastily put together But there are mainly gemsThe only problem I have with Stephen Baxter is that he has not written enough works to satiate my appetite for good thoughtful realistic and imaginative science fiction Low character development high imaginative stories of humanity over eons Awesome Just what I wantI read it because Last Contact was one of my favorites in a best of anthology It was the best in this collection Pacific Mystery and Children of Time were also great I read a couple of Baxter novels a year or two ago but this is the first time I ve read any of his short stories As with any collection I found some very good stories and a couple of stories that didn t resonate to the same degree Every reader will have his or her own favorites Baxter s stories involve grand cosmological concepts unfolding over vast sweeps of time or space and several alternate histories including one of my favorites The Pacific Mystery Like many of the stories in this collection it does not have a happy ending The unifying motif in this collection is first and last contacts and sometimes the first contact is also the last contact Dreamer s LakeThe stories in this collection dramatize scientific cosmological concepts and moral issues in science but characterization is what brings stories to life and my favorite stories are those with fully realized characterizations It is this ability which puts Baxter in the upper echelon of hard science fiction writers Great collectionThis is a well written set of short stories Refreshingly old school sci fi Made me think of some of the older sci fi legends. Tacts is a collection of eleven short stories written by Stephen Baxter and selected by him for this edition.

Ometric phase is a physics concept which Wikipedia densely introduces asa phase acuired over the course of a cycle when the system is subjected to cyclic adiabatic processes which results from the geometrical properties of the parameter space of the HamiltonianIn any case the application in the story is of explorers who search comets for very old and untouched matter because they have a device that s able to read some uantum mechanical Barry phase that allows them to essentially determine what the matter was like and what was around the matter at some energetic time in the particles historiesTempest 43I skipped this one because I d read it before But previously I had enjoyed its take on sentient machines and the mid future of humanity in the face of climate change and high technologyThe Children of TimeThis was very reminiscent of Baxter s Evolution novel a series of snapshots over extremely long swathes of evolutionary timeUnlike Evolution however where humanity evolves toward and then away from homo sapiens sapiens in The Children of Time Baxter plays with the concept that humanity s ability to modify its environment stunts the normal process of evolution essentially freezing humanity as homo sapiens sapiens through the ages Though industrialized humanity used up all the easily available resources and our descendants are never able to reach a similar level of technological developmentIt makes the imperative to not mess up this particular go at technological civilization seem importantThe Pacific MysteryA particularly interesting story it contains both alternate history intrigue Nazis naturally and a non Euclidean earthNo More Stories Dreamer s LakeThese stories both deal with intelligent stromatolites The first in the context of a transformed earth and the second out in space Both also involve an exploration of a transformed humanity The first is through a biological re engineering of the species the second through a technological discovery that makes FTL travel possible opening up the universe to humanityThe Long RoadFlash fiction A cyclical story tracing a rise and fall of a civilization as seen through a roadLast ContactThis story deals with the Big Rip a number of the other stories in this collection also mention it It s actually the first time I ve been exposed to this particular cosmological theory despite the theory having been around for a decadeThe Big Rip describes an ultimate fate of the universe wherein the expansion of universe actually tears apart matter at a certain point Last Contact tells a story of that certain point being right now Love Baxter s short stories Such a buffet but always a thread tying them together This is a book of short stories by Stephen Baxter who I feel is one of the best authors writing hard science fiction I read this book as an ebook While I have enjoyed his novels and longer works this was a nice little diversion Some nice ideas were tossed about and explored For someone new to the author or science fiction I would not recommend this book only because I feel some of this work is a bit too subtle and uiet in its story telling I wonder if a new reader to the genre would want stories with a bit impact overall To be fair some of the stories do hit that mark but not all But if you are a fan of Mr Baxter definitely pick this up It shows off his talent differently than some of his other work I love science fiction because I love the journey of imagination into the human species possible futures And for reasons I m not totally sure of Stephen Baxter is one of my favourite sci fi writerscorrect thathe is the only sci fi author I read these daysSurely all of us are fascinated by the future and by the bi. Ith unlimited numbers of ebooks The ISBN is for the hardback but this is an ebook edition Last and First Con.

The curse of the short story collection the ones I like I wish would be longer The ones I don t like seem to drag on and get no where A collection of mostly recent short stories by Baxter A good number of the stories cover Baxter s familiar territory of vast sweeps of time and the fate of humanity as a minor part of a large universe My favorites in here were The Children of Time human survival over the next billion years The Pacific Mystery alternate history with a rift in the middle of the Pacific that prevents circumnavigation of the globe Last Contact cosmic inflation leads to the end of the universe and In the Abyss of Time time travel to the end of time Some of the other stories are fairly minor but the whole collection is worth reading The title Last and First Contacts is a play on Olaf Stapledon s Last and First Men and Stapledon s influence is evident in several of the stories in this collection I enjoyed the sweeping cosmological scale against which pieces like In the Abyss of Time are set but also the intimate atmosphere of some of the other stories I hadn t read anything by Baxter before but his style here struck me as something of a throwback to an earlier classical form of situational sci fi where the emphasis lies on the exploration of a core concept than on the resolution of the action very much along the lines of Arthur C Clarke s Odyssey or Rama books That s not necessarily a bad thing in itself I uite enjoy that style In this collection however several of the stories ended with me thinking Yes and There seemed to be a final beat missing This was of a problem in the first half of the book notabl Last and First Contacts was an expected little romp of short sci fi stories Most enjoyable some meh with some gems I figure I ll just blurb about all of themErstkontaktErstkontakt takes place in WWII on the Nazi side An alien euivalent of a rover arrives from Alpha Centauri and lands in the lap of Werner von Braun s rocket research facility The story is mainly meant to foreshadow the possible implications of such a landing How it might provide technological hints that would inspire the Nazis to leapfrog Allied weaponry what a Nazi space exploration agenda might look like and how they might treat the matter of contact with extraterrestrials Not peacefully the book assumesIn The Abyss of TimeIn The Abyss of Time provided one extremely memorable image The sci fi tech here was a cosmological bathysphere that utilized an abnormal concentration of dark energy to propel the vehicle through timeI can t say I m one hundred percent on the scientific conjecture but the concept relies on the relative concentration of dark energy to dark matter to normal matter changing over time The bathysphere utilizes a radically different local concentration of the three to propel the vehicle forward through time to reach the time with the euivalent relative concentration of dark energy dark matter and matter Sort of like diffusionIn any case my favorite part of the story was the image of the universe at the far edge of time when everything has expanded to near nothingness with the exception of the last remaining universal consciousness which spends most of its time dormant in order to conserve its limited resources Like the deep ocean where occasionally foodstuffs will fall from the abundant shallows to the deep this consciousness snatches the dense matter and energy of time travelers who venture to the end of time from many different species and civilizations who ve independently discovered time travelHalo GhostsHalo Ghosts I was sort of meh about It was an okay story but it did at least introduce a concept I hadn t heard of before A Berry phase or ge. Imaginings is a project from NewCon Press in the UK producing a limited number of signed hardback editions

( ONLINE Last and First Contacts Imaginings #2 ) ¶ Stephen Baxter –

Stephen Baxter is a trained engineer with degrees from Cambridge mathematics and Southampton Universities doctorate in aeroengineering research Baxter is the winner of the British Science Fiction Award and the Locus Award as well as being a nominee for an Arthur C Clarke Award most recently for Manifold Time His novel Voyage won the Sidewise Award for Best Alternate History Novel of the