Thursday, August 24, 2017

The Mathematician, by Tom Jolly

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(Alien SF) Cilketat thinks it’s close to a mathematical breakthrough, but needs more bodies to do the calculations. (2,457 words; Time: 08m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average

"The Mathematician," by (edited by Trevor Quachri), appeared in issue 09-10|17, published on by .

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: It’s a nice conundrum: to avoid stagnation, the Keltki mix and swap bodies, but the mixing causes a loss of  knowledge, making progress difficult. Deliberately filtering bodies—that is, performing a non-random mix—is forbidden.

So Cilketat dies, but its ideas manage to survive through Aratskat.

Con: Cilketat worried that mixing would cause it to lose knowledge, but the far more violent merger with Aratskat seems to have left most of the key knowledge intact.

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