Sunday, August 5, 2018

The Fall of the House of Kepler, by Ian R. MacLeod

★★☆☆☆ Not Recommended

(SF Fantasy) A future intelligent space probe meets the ancient Kepler space probe to share information. (1,654 words; Time: 05m)

This is loosely inspired by “The Fall of the House of Usher,” by Edger Allan Poe, there’s no need to be familiar with that story to appreciate this one.

Although this was originally published in the UK in 2017, the first US Publication was in March 2018, so it should be eligible for the 2019 Hugo Awards at the 2019 WorldCon, to be held in Dublin.

"The Fall of the House of Kepler," by (edited by Nick Gevers), appeared in (RSR review), published on by .

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

Pro: What destroys Kepler is learning that all of its bright hopes for humanity are in vain, because all humans are dead, Earth is lifeless, and the machine talking to it is the last working AI, which is itself almost out of fuel.

Con: Kepler is an ordinary space probe. There’s no way it could evolve into the machine described here. If it did, there’s no way it would be unaware of what was happening back on Earth.

The ultimate message of “we’re all doomed” is just annoying.

The title implies some connection to the Poe story, but there isn't any.

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