Friday, November 26, 2010

What's Expected Of Us - Ted Chiang

Vignette

Number of words : 880
Percent of complex words : 13.3
Average syllables per word : 1.6
Average words per sentence : 15.5


READABILITY INDICES

Fog : 11.5
Flesch : 56.2
Flesch-Kincaid : 9.3


PEOPLE

Godel

Austrian logician, mathematician and philosopher.


TECHNOLOGY

Predictor

Contains a circuit with a negative time-delay.


MEDIA

Bartleby the Scrivener

A Melville novella.


CONCEPTS

Lovecraftian

Of cosmic horror.

Akinetic mutism

People affected by this do not talk or move.


PLOT

A Predictor device has implications on the nature of free will, because it can communicate with the past. It has a light on it that flashes a second before you press the button. Using this for a while leaves a lot of people affected by Akinetic mutism. So if you can't change things, what about devices like this that reach over greater distances?


4 out of 5

http://www.concatenation.org/futures/whatsexpected.pdf

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