By Poul Anderson
Flandry, right here a captain, undergoes a sequence of adventures: he's kidnapped by way of the Scothians, an alien race hoping to invade the Terran Empire; rescues the Emperor's abducted granddaughter; meets Aycharaych, his nemesis in league with the Merseians; and investigates a formerly unencountered alien race that has invaded the far away colonial international of Vixen.
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Additional info for Agent Of The Terran Empire (Ensign Flandry, Book 1)
Another version of this link is a socket, implanted behind the ear, that accepts computer chips, allOwing direct neural access to computer memory. Network users collaborate in creating the richly textured landscape of cyberspace, a "graphic representation of data abstracted from the banks of every computer in the human system. Unthinkable complexity. Lines of light ranged in the nonspace of the mind, clusters and constellations of data. Like city lights, receding. "23 Existing in the nonmaterial space of computer simulation, cyberspace defines a regime of representation within which pattern is the essential reality, presence an optical illusion.
This commonsense expectation ran into unexpected complications when certain developments within information theory implied that information could be equated with randomness as well as with pattern. 1 Identifying information with both pattern and randomness proved to be a powerful paradox, leading to the realization that in some instances, an infusion of noise into a system can cause it to reorganize at a higher level of complexity. 2 Within such a system, pattern and randomness are bound together in a complex dialectic that makes them not so much opposites as complements or supplements to one another.
Theorists at the Pentagon, for example, see it as the theater in which future wars will be fought. They argue that coming conflicts will be decided not so much by overwhelming force as by "neocortical warfare," waged through the techno-sciences of information. 37 If we want to contest what these technologies SignifY, we need histories that show the erasures that went into creating the condition of virtuality, as well as visions arguing for the importance of embodiment. Once we understand the complex interplays that went into creating the condition of virtuality, we can demystifY our progress toward virtuality and see it as the result of historically specific negotiations rather than of the irresistible force of technological determinism.