Thursday, May 13, 2010

Divining Light

Novelette by Ted Kosmatka

A depressed physicist drinks heavily, considers suicide and tells about his extension of the Feynman double-slit experiment. I don't want to give away the point of the story, and that is all wrapped up in how Argus (and the various researchers he pulls away from unrelated projects) decide to extend the experiment. SFnal implications are explored in an interesting way, although not as completely as I'd have liked. There is a nice bit of philosophizing about reality and causality. The novelette wraps up with a completely unexplored bit of implied horror which was a nice touch, but then has an obvious, not-very-interesting ending. I would have preferred the story ending a paragraph earlier.

Despite the ending, this was well written and an interesting, if underdeveloped, bit of extrapolation. The first page and beginning of the story overall particularly hit a chord with me, and when my complaint is about a paragraph rather than several pages, that is pretty good. It's interesting to take an experiment that would be weird to begin with, and then assume that the unexpected result is correct and see where it goes. A story that requires a lot of thinking, and a bit of physics. Well worth the brain power it demands. 4 out of 5 frogs aren't even aware of the well they live at the bottom of.

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