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Axiomatic (Collected Stories #1)

4.24  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,187 Ratings  ·  160 Reviews
Axiomatic is a collection of Greg Egan's short stories that appeared in various science fiction magazines (mostly Interzone and Asimov's) between 1989 and 1992. Some of the more interesting stories include "Into Darkness," the tale of a rescue worker whose territory is a runaway wormhole, and the title story "Axiomatic," which is about a man looking to find meaning in the ...more
368 pages
Published March 4th 1996 by Orion Books Ltd. (first published April 17th 1995)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Oscar
Jun 19, 2012 Oscar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans de la ciencia ficción hard
Greg Egan, el hombre de las ideas. ‘Axiomático’, calificada como la mejor antología de relatos de ciencia ficción de los últimos 20 años (tal vez junto a ‘La historia de tu vida, de Ted Chiang), es una obra imprescindible para el aficionado. Cada uno de sus relatos contiene ideas que darían para varias novelas. No había leído nada parecido desde la Trilogía de Marte, de Kim Stanley Robinson, que incluía capítulos plagados de ideas. Tipos como estos te hacen pensar si no se habrán dado un viajeci ...more
Ben Loory
May 28, 2015 Ben Loory rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
brilliant. every story is literally amazing and his voice is one of a kind-- so calm, understanding, intelligent, and rational, while still being fun (not funny but actually fun). there's a part of me that wishes he could actually land an ending, but i'm not sure it's even really possible in this mode. so don't wait for the big cathartic moment; i think he probably sees catharsis as a low-level trap.

anyway, i'll certainly be reading this book again. as well as all his others.
Derek
Jul 21, 2014 Derek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, anthology
If there's a common thread in this collection of short stories, it's "what makes me, me?"

From the opening story, in which a man travels the multiplicity of parallel universes, assassinating the people who cause breaches between them; to a pair of tales involving the use of neural implants to change what a person believes; to the stories about the Ndoli Jewel: a device that everybody has implanted in their skulls at birth, that learns everything they do, and is eventually used to replace the bra
...more
Tom
Nov 19, 2011 Tom rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Axiomatic is an absolutely incredible collection of hard science fiction short stories, comparable to Ted Chiang's best work. Reading this book meant being bombarded by idea after idea, challenging my imagination as well as thoroughly taxing my scientific knowledge. The biologically-leaning stories were the easiest to comprehend for me, as I have tertiary biological education. High-school physics (and my history of reading sci-fi) was enough to arm me for the rest of the stories, although some c ...more
Juan
Apr 06, 2013 Juan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Esta es la primera vez que leo una novela de Greg Egan y tengo que decir que la experiencia ha sido más que satisfactoria.

Axiomático esta compuesto por una colección de relatos, todos ellos de enorme calidad, que se podrían encasillar dentro de lo que se denomina ciencia ficción dura (Hard SciFi).

Como decía, el libro consta de 18 relatos, algunos mejores que otros, pero todos con una gran capacidad de provocar en el lector momentos de reflexión que te acompañan durante varias horas después de su
...more
Matthew Gatheringwater
Who are you, really? It isn't always easy to tell, especially when you live in a society where 18-year-olds routinely have their heads scooped out like melons and replace their brains with computers. Sure, the computer does everything the brain did and it is less likely to malfunction, but what if something does go wrong, just every now and then?

This is the premise of one of an interesting collection of stories by Greg Egan. Most of the stories have something to do with the way technology shapes
...more
Richard M. Sala
Aquesta antologia m’ha obert els ulls cap a una Hard-SF que mai m’havia plantejat llegir. Estic confús, i sobretot, espantat per algunes històries molt creïbles però horrorífiques. Inicialment volia posar-li sols 4.0/5.0 perquè Egan utilitza una narració molt similar en tots els relats; però els conceptes són tan bons, i tenim aquí relats tan originals, que no puc treure-li el seu mèrit... Que parlem de contes escrits fins el 1992!
Volia quedar-me amb la simple recomanació, però per futures relec
...more
Ubiqua
Jul 22, 2015 Ubiqua rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Axiomatic è una raccolta di racconti di fantascienza cyberpunk, o post-cyberpunk, ambientati spesso sui fondali polverosi di un noir (poliziotti, investigatori privati, situazioni “muscolari”) che nei momenti migliori prende la strada dell’assurdo, dell’imprevedibile perché improbabile.

Il cyberpunk si trova nel tema ricorrente del potenziamento dell’umano, in virtù del quale l’uomo vive la propria mente e il proprio corpo come una realtà biologica aumentata attraverso dispositivi di sua invenzio
...more
Manu Prasad
Apr 08, 2015 Manu Prasad rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review
I have always been amazed at Neal Stephenson for being able to write Snowcrash and The Diamond Age in 1992 and 1995 respectively. I am now equally amazed that Greg Egan wrote this in 1995. In fact, even more, because while the first two books were novels and dealt with a smaller number of concepts, this book is a collection of short stories, and except for a (connected/repeat) couple, are unique concepts. Imagine, 18 stories with ideas that would still be regarded as science fiction!
In addition
...more
Daniorte
Mar 31, 2014 Daniorte rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Axiomático es una recopilación de relatos con la que he disfrutado tal como si fuera "Yo, robot". Cada relato es una posibilidad futura de lo mas enrevesada y en mayor o menor medida incluso plausible. Desde ciencia ficción enmarcada en la biología,los avances tecnológicos pasando incluso por los universos paralelos.

Cada relato te deja ganas de que continuara y sobretodo te deja un rato pensando y con ganas de contarle a alguien lo que acabas de leer e imaginarte si eso fuera posible. Te plantea
...more
Outis
Egan is evidently a remarkably clever author. And he's got a clue. It makes for a most satisfying read.
Looking at the publication dates, I've got to say he was ahead of his time as well.

There are naturally a few duds among these stories but enough really good ones to make up for them.
Peeking at the other reviews, I noted with interest that some people loved stories I hated and vice-versa so I'll play the game: my faves are The Hundred-Light-Years Diary, The Safe-Deposit Box, Seeing, Learning to
...more
Elchamaco
Apr 14, 2015 Elchamaco rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4,7

Un libro muy interesante, con una calidad muy alta en todos los relatos. Algo que sorprende porque incluso en recopilaciones de distintos autores que en teoría sería más sencillo poder tener todos los relatos muy buenos lo normal es que varios flojeen, y no sucede con esta compilación de Greg Egan.

En cuanto al libro la mayor parte de los relatos se construyen planteando una tecnología y las implicaciones que tienen, es más un libro de filosofía sobre el ser que de ciencia ficción en realidad.
...more
Adam
I've only read some of this guy's stuff online, and once his short fiction appears in affordable versions i will snap it up. A hallucinatory, mind warping, and terrifying combination of Triptree jr.,Ted Chiang,Ballard, and Borges. Hard Science and painfully realized concepts that will effect the way you view each moment of your life.
Malapata
Apr 26, 2015 Malapata rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un libro con un puñado de relatos realmente brillantes junto a otros que me han dejado indiferente. Abre con uno de mis relatos favoritos "El asesino infinito". Es difícil para un matemático no emocionarse ante el espectacular dominio que demuestra Egan de las complejidades del infinito. El problema es que junto a relatos de gran nivel, como "El diario de cien años luz", "Aprendiendo a ser yo" o "Hacia la oscuridad", se encuentran otros que no pasan de ser una buena idea alargada demasiado, como ...more
Pablo Bueno
Mar 20, 2015 Pablo Bueno rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Axiomático está considerada hoy en día como una de las antologías de relatos más importantes de la Ciencia Ficción de las últimas décadas. Ciencia ficción Hard. Muy hard en algunos casos.

Mi experiencia con este libro ha sido curiosa: para empezar, no soy un gran consumidor de este tipo de literatura salvo en su versión menos dura; para seguir, llegué a él con respeto y temor reverencial por todo lo que había leído al respecto y las innumerables referencias que existen. Sea como sea, tengo que co
...more
Jason
Dec 12, 2009 Jason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nodozejoze
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aaron Arnold
Great stuff. My favorite author as a kid was Isaac Asimov, and his Foundation and Robot novels gave me a permanent appetite for books that try to take ridiculous ideas about the future as seriously as possible, factory-farmed MFA-approved "literary" qualities be damned. The average story in this collection of 18 is twenty pages long, but each one has an absurd number of nutcase ideas per page, and it's wonderful. There's no way I can summarize all of the stories so I only want to talk about two, ...more
Albert Martínez
Suelo ser un lector rápido, un 'pasapáginas' compulsivo, pero éste libro no puede leerse así, quiere que vayas volviendo atrás continuamente para releer párrafos y páginas, que vuelvas a leer relatos una vez llegado al final para ver como se van poniendo los firmes ladrillos de cada desenlace...

Cada relato es una joya en si mismo, por lo que no voy a entrar en detalles y os dejo que los descubráis por vosotros mismos.

Ahora voy a ver si encuentro algún médico que me ayude con la mandíbula, a ver
...more
Emilio
Apr 30, 2016 Emilio rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ci-fi, distopia
Que conste que me ha entretenido.

Las dos primeras historias y la última me han gustado bastante. Me han resultado geniales, muchísimo. La forma en la que trata el concepto de infinito y las iteraciones me parece genial. El dominio de las abstracciones es de lo mejor que me he encontrado.

En medio, unas 15 historias, que son una sombra de filosofía especulativa. Una suerte de relatos de distopía emocional, no muy afortunados, en los que trata, fundamentalmente, de inadaptados en mundos futuristas.
...more
Olethros
Jun 10, 2015 Olethros rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
-Frialdad, belleza y reflexión.-

Género. Relatos.

Lo que nos cuenta. Dieciséis relatos del autor previamente publicados en distintos medios entre 1989 y 1992 más dos inéditos, que desde premisas Hard (pero no desarrollos) de Ciencia-Ficción en cuanto a los conceptos y bases nos ofrecen diferentes ejercicios dramáticos que nos llevarán a conocer, entre otros, a un virólogo que cree en el castigo divino, unas personas que han leído ya sus diarios del futuro, el trabajo de creación de un bebé de capa
...more
Joe Silber
A heady collection of hard sci-fi short stories mostly revolving around themes such as identity, free will, and the nature of consciousness. Egan's prose isn't the greatest, but his ideas are so unique and fascinating that the pages fly by. Some of these stories will blow you away. Highly recommended.
Sonya Christine
Aug 13, 2013 Sonya Christine rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read for hard sci-fi lovers. Mr. Egan knows his business and his ideas are mind-blowing!
Leemaslibros
Mar 11, 2013 Leemaslibros rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Voy a tener bronca con Elías por dejarme pasar tanto tiempo este libro. Alucinante.
Juan Mikalef
Dec 01, 2015 Juan Mikalef rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This was my first Greg Egan book. It blew my mind, the only other recen author that caught my eye so completeley in the first read was Ted Chiang with his Stories of your Life and others. The stories in this book are heavily inclined towards the hard sci fi, as with most of the Egan writtings I read after, the strong part is not the science extrapolation, but the social and pilosphical implications of them, which I find particularly masterful. After this book, I suggest Permutation City or Distr ...more
Roddy Williams
This is an interesting collection of Egan's published stories from the early Nineties, many of which examine the Dickian issue of what it means to be conscious and how we define 'the personality'. Egan often looks at this question from intriguing and sometimes oblique angles.

The Infinite Assassin (1991)

Interzone 48 - June 1991

The protagonist is a man employed because his self tends to remain consistent across infinite realities in a worlds where a drug called S allows access to these parallel w
...more
Charles Dee Mitchell
I might have enjoyed these stories more had I understood them.

That is a slight exaggeration. I was not completely in over my head with every story, but since Egan is known for writing the hardest of hard SF, I am sure I would have been having a different experience at times if I knew more about the physics of parallel universes or the behavior of wormholes. When Egan builds the stories around psychological or biological concepts I was on surer footing.

My favorite story was his last, “Unstable O
...more
Rafal Szymanski
Sep 08, 2014 Rafal Szymanski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a collection of some really fantastic SF stories, with the caveat that you need to be fluent in mathematics (at least two stories require knowledge of fractals, cantor sets, set theory, different types of infinities, complex systems and their attractors, strange attractors, basins of attractions, etc...) to understand them in full. Some also require knowledge of physics (which I don't have much of) and hence I probably missed a little bit on some stories. I'm not usually a fan of SF beca ...more
Kris
Aug 06, 2014 Kris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic read, and highly recommended for anyone who enjoys sci-fi even in the least. Most sci-fi I've read (small sample) and most collections of short stories are doing very well to get 4 stars from me, but this is easily a 5.

This is a collection of speculative, philosophical, and deep sci-fi short stories, some of which are even somewhat mathematical in their basis for the twist on the universe (not that you need to understand the math to appreciate it, but a bonus if you do). Many pose som
...more
Benjamin
Apr 28, 2014 Benjamin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There is a lot of good stuff in this collection. Read it. Spoilers follow.

For the majority of the stories, the premise alone justifies the reader's time (The Company, Hazzard Machines, and the jewel are, to me, the three most striking examples). However, there were stories for which there both an incredible premise and a compelling narrative left me mulling over the intricacies long after I had stopped reading.

Some thoughts on individual stories follow. They should be read in the context spelled
...more
Graham Storrs
Jul 11, 2012 Graham Storrs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
I bought this book a while ago and I've been saving it because I love reading Greg Egan and didn't want it to be gone. Know what I mean? Anyway, I hung on so long that I began to worry. Maybe I'd misremembered how good Egan is. Maybe I was in for the mother of all disappointments.

So I started reading with some trepidation and then, half-way through the very first page, a feeling of sheer happiness spread through my body, that loosening of all tension, that relief I imagine an addict feels on tak
...more
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Greg Egan specialises in hard science fiction stories with mathematical and quantum ontology themes, including the nature of consciousness. Other themes include genetics, simulated reality, posthumanism, mind transfer, sexuality, artificial intelligence, and the superiority of rational naturalism over religion.

He is a Hugo Award winner (and has been shortlisted for the Hugos three other times), an
...more
More about Greg Egan...

Other Books in the Series

Collected Stories (3 books)
  • Luminous
  • Oceanic

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“All we can ever know about are the portraits of each other inside our own skulls.” 6 likes
“A sei anni i miei genitori mi raccontarono che dentro il mio cranio c’era una gemma piccola e scura, che imparava a essere me.
Microscopici ragni avevano tessuto una ragnatela dorata nel mio cervello, perché l’istruttore contenuto nella gemma potesse udire il sussurro dei miei pensieri. La gemma origliava i miei sensi e interpretava i messaggi chimici trasportati dalla circolazione sanguigna: la gemma vedeva, udiva, odorava, gustava e toccava il mondo esattamente come me, mentre l’istruttore monitorava i suoi pensieri e li confrontava con i miei. Ogni qualvolta questi pensieri erano sbagliati, l’istruttore, più veloce del pensiero, dava una risistemata alla gemma, facendo una piccola modifica qua e là, apportando i cambiamenti necessari per correggere i suoi pensieri.
Perché? Perché quando non avessi più potuto essere me, la gemma avrebbe potuto esserlo al posto mio.
Io pensai: “Se ciò che sento mi fa sentire strano e mi dà le vertigini, cosa deve provare la gemma?”. Esattamente la stessa cosa, riflettei; non sa di essere la gemma e anch’essa si domanda cosa può provare la gemma, rispondendosi poi:
“Esattamente la stessa cosa, non sa di essere la gemma, e anch’essa si domanda cosa può provare la gemma”.
E anch’essa si chiede...
(Ne ero certo, visto che io me lo domandavo.)
... anch’essa si interroga se è l’Io reale o se semplicemente è la gemma che sta imparando a essere me.

Divenuto un dodicenne pieno di superbia e di scherno, mi presi gioco di quelle preoccupazioni infantili. Tutti avevano la gemma, salvo i membri di oscure sette religiose, e sprecare tempo su una banalità simile mi appariva una perdita di tempo. La gemma era la gemma, un fatto universale della vita, una cosa comune come una cacca. Io e i miei amici vi costruivamo battute stupide, come facevamo con le cose del sesso, per provare a noi stessi quanto eravamo saputi in quel campo.
In realtà, però, non eravamo saputi e imperturbabili come pretendevamo di essere. Un giorno, mentre giocavamo nel parco chiacchierando del più e del meno, uno della banda, il suo nome l’ho dimenticato, ma lo ricordo come una persona troppo intelligente per il suo stesso bene, si mise a domandare a ciascuno di noi: — Chi sei tu? La gemma o l’essere umano?
Noi tutti rispondemmo indignati, senza esitare: — L’essere umano!
Quando tutti ebbero risposto, lui rise e affermò: — Bene, io no. Io sono la gemma. Siete degli stronzi perdenti e mangerete merda, perché voi tutti finirete spazzati via nel cesso cosmico, ma io, io vivrò per sempre.
Lo picchiammo fino a fargli colare il sangue dal naso.

Dal racconto Imparare a essere me.”
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