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Antibodies | [Charles Stross]

Antibodies

Everyone remembers where they were and what they were doing when one of the great and the good is assassinated. You can kill a politician, but their ideas usually live on. They have a life of their own. How much more dangerous, then, the ideas of mathematicians? The announcement of the solution to the traveling salesman problem heralds the imminent destruction of humanity.
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Publisher's Summary

Everyone remembers where they were and what they were doing when one of the great and the good is assassinated. You can kill a politician, but their ideas usually live on. They have a life of their own. How much more dangerous, then, the ideas of mathematicians? The announcement of the solution to the traveling salesman problem heralds the imminent destruction of humanity. No more salesman; no more problem.

The story begins when a computer programmer is notified by RSS feed that all NP-complete problems lie in P, and thus computer encryption is forever compromised. Knowing the disaster for what it is, he flees, but with this being such a hard take-off, he might not make it.

Stross' ideas are hard, cold, pure, and funny, but it is his storytelling - the effectiveness of the complete tale - that elevates his ideas into science-fiction excellence. Stross goes from alpha to omega faster than you can guess, and in so doing delivers a solid entry into SF's growing dialogue about the Singularity. "Antibodies" brings to mind Isaac Asimov's similarly elegant short story "Living Space".

©2000 Interzone; (P)2005 AudioText

What the Critics Say

"With a running time just shy of one hour, you aren't likely to have a more quintessential Strossian experience on audio." (sffaudio.com)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (25 )
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    Amazon Customer Raleigh, NC, United States 06-08-11
    Amazon Customer Raleigh, NC, United States 06-08-11 Member Since 2005

    ummm.. hi.. be my friend..

    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    93
    7
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    FOLLOWING
    2
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    Overall
    "Quite a ride.."

    If you understand the technobabble, its quite funny and exciting. Loved the last two words...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Max Draco 07-28-08
    Max Draco 07-28-08 Listener Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    49
    5
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    Overall
    "Not worth the time."

    This story was horrible. It rambled incoherently and was rife with wild paranoia's that I suspect the author suffers from schizophrenia. I feel sorry for the narrator for having to try and comprehend what he was reading.

    1 of 8 people found this review helpful
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  • Amazon Customer
    Shrewsbury, UK
    7/11/11
    Overall
    "Great story, unbelievably bad production."

    I absolutely love Charles Stross' stuff normally.Altered State is probably my very favourite story of his. BUT...this audiobook production is an utter horror. Particularly hearing the American voices stumbling over common English terms like 'Boots the Chemist', and attempting faux-cockney accents. If you're English...it's hideous. If you're American it'll probably just sound odd. Nothing wrong with the story - classic Stross, really, but this is drowned out by the poor audio version.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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