Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Hundred Light-Year Diary : Greg Egan

Short Story

Number of words : 5500
Percent of complex words : 12.3
Average syllables per word : 1.6
Average words per sentence : 19.6


READABILITY INDICES

Fog : 12.7
Flesch : 54.7
Flesch-Kincaid : 10.5


PEOPLE

James

A husband to be.

Alison

His wife to be.

Francis Chen

An astronomer who looked for time-reversed galaxies in space.

Hazzard and Capaldi and Wu

Astronomers who work on the hardware to communicate between future and past.

Pria

James and Alison's best man.

Lisa

A political staffer and mistress of James.

Henry Kissinger

A politician.

Maura

A politician.


PLACES

Kashmir

Disputed region between India and Pakistan where war breaks out in 2079.


ORGANISATIONS

Fulvio's

A restaurant on Martin Place.

St Vincent's

A hospital with a Casualty Department.

God Averts His Gaze

A cult with the political balance of power in 2077.


TECHNOLOGY

Hazzard Machines

Allows transmissions of messages from the future, 128 bytes per person per day.

ROMs

Digital information discs.


CONCEPTS

Shunting

Fictional theory that you can avoid something preordained communicated from the future.


PLOT

Astronomers discover that time reverses with the contraction of the universe. This allows the construction of machines that allow people's past and future selves to communicate - the amount of which is limited by bandwidth, and, of course, government desires on what people should actually know when it comes to wars. People of course cannot be made to communicate with their past selves, and a mistress of James desire to not do so, her pragmatism and political job and some conversations leads him to some terrifying realisations about what is going on.


3.5 out of 5

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