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Oceanic (Collected Stories #3)

3.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  464 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
From the electronic frontier to the wilder shores of hard physics, Greg Egan's new collection is powerful, shocking and unmissable!
Paperback, 512 pages
Published May 13th 2010 by Gollancz (first published January 1st 1998)
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(showing 1-30 of 973)
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Ami Iida
Nov 03, 2015 Ami Iida rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
I read it once upon a time then I read it twice just now.
Since I learn Quantum mechanics,General relativity and IT,
I am easy to understand the contents of it.
Generally speaking science fiction are many physics novels
but Eagan's short stories contains the contents of Molecular biology.
Dec 31, 2014 Daniorte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Último libro del año y qué mejor que Greg Egan en su mejor faceta: Los relatos cortos.

En Oceánico se encuentran tres relatos que, para mi, muestran lo mejor del autor ya que ninguno flaquea.

Oceánico: Un relato menos especulativo de lo que acostumbra. Más centrado en la evolución del personaje y en un conflicto científico religioso en un futuro lejano y en un planeta lejano. Lo más destacado para mi sería el desarrollo de las ideas de la sexualidad que, en parte, recuerdan a Distress pero algo ma
Greg Egan es quizás el escritor de ciencia ficción hard más destacado actualmente. Su escritura se caracteriza por sus ideas revolucionarias, mezcla de matemáticas, física, biología, informática y filosofía. Todo esto hace que sus obras exijan mucho del lector, e incluso puede provocar que éste se pierda entre tanta información científica. Además, a Egan se le suele achacar que deja un tanto de lado la caracterización de personajes en detrimento de la ciencia. Sin embargo, esto no es óbice para ...more
Feb 12, 2014 Cristian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tres historias: una que cuestiona los orígenes de las creencias religiosas, la siguiente, un mano a mano de una versión alternativa de Turing y C.S. Lewis, y la ultima, las connotaciones de la construcción de una inteligencia artificial. Como acostumbra, Egan es un escritor muy exigente con sus lectores, proponiendo ideas y escenarios novedosos sin que estos afecten el desarrollo de buenas historias. Muy recomendado.
Ahmed Naqshbandi
This review is only for the novella 'Oceanic'.

Oceanic is a brilliant and very thought-provoking novella.

I wouldn't want want to give away too much by describing the plot, but suffice to say that the story is narrated from the point of view of a slightly-not-quite-human boy who is a member of a race that had been created by powerful technology-wielding group of people who had left Earth to settle on another planet.

The prominent themes are: the nature of religious experience, the nature of humanit
Ami Iida
Nov 03, 2015 Ami Iida rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
I read it once upon a time then I read it twice just now.
Since I learn Quantum mechanics,General relativity and IT,
I am easy to understand the contents of it.
Generally speaking science fiction are many physics novels
but Eagan's short stories contains the contents of Molecular biology.
Some of the stories were interesting because it was the first time that someone took me to the future and presented me with the 'utopia' world; including eternal life. For that I give the 3 stars.

In general however I felt that all the stories did not have any interesting story/conclusions to them. My impression was that this book was written by a scientist who wanted to say what is possible, and never spent much time on thinking about the story. Moreover, the 'what is possible' very often is he
Feb 25, 2016 Cryptid rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short stories. The Dark Integers is a sequel for Luminous, so I advise you to read the Luminous collection before this one, but not to seriously... The idea of (multi/)universe being divided by different competing mathematical theorems making up sort of their own dimensions of consistency that would lead to kind of a cold mathematical war between parallel universes is made pretty clear.
You can also look forward to (or get scared away by) Quantum Soccer an
Timothy Lohrey
May 13, 2015 Timothy Lohrey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The stories in this book were overall very interesting. I particularly liked the stories with the amalgam. I did not read two of the stories: Dark Integers, and Border Guards.

Crystal Nights: 5/5. I loved this one. It's a story that inspired me to seek more fiction similar to it. It's about AI, biology, evolution, and more. Really liked it due to the idea of 'playing' with civilizations.

Glory: 4.5/5. Another one I heavily enjoyed, an Amalgam first contact story.

Lost Continent 3.5/5. While
Du football quantique, rien que ça.
Et encore, ce football quantique n'est qu'un avant-goût de l'univers présenté. Pour être honnête, je suis à peu près certain de ne pas avoir tout compris. Parce qu'entre l'espèce de multivers fractal, les personnages virtuels immortels, et l'incapacitié à communiquer typique d'Egan, cette nouvelle était plutôt difficile à appréhender.
En fait, je n'ai pas trop saisi où ce trouvait le coeur de cette histoire : la description d'un sport étrange
Sep 05, 2013 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This strong collection from hard SF maestro Greg Egan features his signature blend of fitful characterisation, competent prose, and exhilarating speculation.
- "Lost Continent" is a flat, nonspeculative criticism of Australia's refugee policy; while politically admirable, it is unsubtle and bathetic. **
- "Dark Integers" and "Crystal Nights" are computation-oriented stories which clearly prefigure the second half of Permutation City. "Dark Integers" also explores the notion of mathematics "superve
Jun 24, 2013 Sbulf rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

"Oceanic" getta le basi per degli spunti di riflessione teologici e sociologici non da poco, sia per il lettore e la lettrice ate* o agnostic* che per il/la credente di una qualsivoglia fede. Il romanzo di Greg Egan ci mette in guardia sul ripetersi delle tragedie umane passate, sul ripresentarsi di eventi drammatici già avvenuti nella storia umana, anche a distanza di millenni, qualora venissero storicamente dimenticati. L'essere umano può vincere la sua
Nov 14, 2013 Klerik rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the third collection of short stories by Egan I've read. It definitely does not disappoint, and I'd say it's somewhat better than Luminous, though not as good as Axiomatic. I'd also say that though ideas are often the main focus of Egan's writing, a lot of the stories in this collection are written with what I imagine to be somewhat more relatable characters than before. Notable stories in this regard are Oceanic, starring a religious scientist discovering evidence which sheds new light ...more
Mårten Ericson
Aug 15, 2015 Mårten Ericson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this collection of short stories Greg Egan proves himself to be skillful, but perhaps not a virtuoso. Most stories are interesting, some are better than others, but I never really felt fully imbedded in the stories. Quite a few of them draws from the same ideas, which on the other hand made the collection feel homogenous. i finnished it - I seldom do that with shortstorie collections - so it can not have been all bad :)
Juno Silkshade
A good introduction to Egan. Great style and themes; Some of his ideas are simply awesome and his delivery is very convincing. About 1/2 of the collection involves very complicated mathematical and sciency stuff which I found difficult to follow. But the other 1/2 didnt have much of the complicated theories.

(below might contain spoilers)

Steve Fever: 4/5 (nanopunk)
Induction: 5/5 (space travel, mind upload)
Lost Continent: 3/5 (time travel, parallel universe)
Dark Integers: 3/5 (parallel universe,
Egan keeps writing amazing shorts but this is an uneven collection. It feels more mature than his previous collection to me, less angry and more earnest.
It's also somewhat QM-heavy. It features some fantasy physics and engineering porn while a few stories could appeal to humanists who aren't into science. I found the partially autobiographical titular story quite touching for instance.
Egan develops some of his previously established settings in this collection which features many far-future stor
Ben Bederson
Feb 16, 2014 Ben Bederson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved the stories about "Amalgam" - where taking your mind out of your body and sending via gamma rays across the universe was fairly common. Wish there was more about the algorithms for when the backups would automatically get re-activated, and how to avoid duplicates though.
Sep 17, 2012 Dylan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Egan has the flaws that are typical of science fiction writers but on the other hand he's one of the most exciting science fiction writers I know of. His ideas are exciting. I don't really know anyone to compare him to except maybe Neal Stephenson and that comparison does neither of them justice. The point is, this guy knows his mathematics and he knows his science and he's great at looking at possibilities that will never have occurred to you, and then doing cool stuff with them. This is the on ...more
Nelson Minar
Jan 22, 2014 Nelson Minar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent hard sci-fi story collection, of the 12 stories I thought 11 were great. I particularly liked "Hot Rock" for its weirdness, Egan's not afraid to depict truly alien species, cultures, etc. All the stories are excellently speculative. Sometimes he indulges a bit too much in nerdy world-building and a few of the stories could use a more human touch on the characters, but overall it's really solid writing. File next to "Vernor Vinge".
Jul 31, 2011 Cameron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another tight set of head bursting hard sci-fi from Egan - not an easy read but always rewarding. Slow going at some stages, but very rewarding when it all comes together at the end of each story.
Most of the stories are set in "The Amalgam" of highly advanced races capable of corporeal-data person transfer and intergalatic travel. "Oceanic" itself is set in probably the strongest story of the collection and is set in a re-corporealised post Amalgam society.
"Dark Integers" carries on the alterna
Tracey Pal
Some really interesting ideas and a couple of very good stories. However while I found the high level mathematical (??) theories intriguing to begin with, I ended up getting bogged down with them after a while. Maybe it would have helped if I'd read some of his other work. There seems to be stories which stand alone, while others are very much part of an oeuvre.
Jun 28, 2015 Matti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Border Guards. Oh man. "The match was being played by the oldest, simplest rules: semi-classical, non-relativistic". Of course it takes a Greg Egan short story to make football interesting to me.
Salvatore Pulvirenti
Dopo tante letture su tale argomento ho finalmente trovato pane per i miei denti.
Sono sempre stato attratto dall'argomento e pur se non mi ha convinto la conclusione devo levare tanto di cappello ad un Egan favoloso.
Avevo gi avuto occasione di leggere un altra sua opera ma per gli ipertecnicismi che ci mette dentro l'ho dovuta abbandonare.
Questo racconto invece scivola via velocemente e speditamente facendosi leggere da solo.

Consigliato a chi vuole mettersi in discussione sull'argomento, perlome
Nov 04, 2013 Sam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Stunning. Every one of these short stories is epic, and the only thing that stops you from being angry at the author at not writing each new layer of the universe into their own trilogy, or at least book, is the fact that each new protagonist allows Egan to blow your mind even further, and that he has published some long form. Each must have been extremely forward thinking for the time that they were published. I didn't know that I liked SF short stories until I read this book!
Aug 09, 2014 Anduim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ciencia ficción en estado puro. Tres historias cortas, pero densas.
Scott Morrison
Apr 23, 2014 Scott Morrison rated it liked it
Some good stories, but not a patch on Permutation City - which is a 6 star book!
L. Straker
Feb 21, 2014 L. Straker rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Greg Egan writes some of the best short hard SF fiction around. Reading these stories one can almost feel one's mind opening up to new possibilities, strange amalgamations of maths and physics and philosophy. Figuring out what is going on in some of the stories, just as the characters within those stories also come to those realisations, adds another level to the experience. I would recommend this collection to any hard-SF fan, along with the collection Axiomatic.
Francesco Galdieri
Premio Hugo nel 1999, il libro presenta molti spunti di riflessione sul binomio scienza-religione. Il problema che, per quanto mi riguarda, non ci ho trovato niente a cui non avessi gi pensato e su cui non avessi rimuginato per molto tempo. Resta (per me) quindi una lettura pi che piacevole, nello stile inconfondibile di Egan, di una storia accattivante e, tutto sommato, interessante. ...more
Aug 15, 2011 Ethan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Hard SF for folks who enjoy ideas over characterization and style. Some of the ideas are intriguing, and a bunch of people seem to think Egan is some sort of genius for rambling on about esoteric subjects, but I don't understand the hype.

The blurb about the book says Egan writes stories about "what it is to be human." I think maybe they read a different book.
Feb 19, 2013 Andria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
A fascinating novella (free at, in case they decide to kill my newly created edition) about a young boy's / adult's experience of religion. And also happens to have some interesting thoughts about post-diaspora, terraforming (ecopoiesis), and gender. Took me an hour to an hour and a half to read.
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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 about Greg Egan...

Other Books in the Series

Collected Stories (3 books)
  • Axiomatic
  • Luminous

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“Mathematics catalogues everything that is not self-contradictory; within that vast inventory, physics is an island of structures rich enough to contain their own beholders.” 28 likes
“Death never gave meaning to life: it was always the other way round.” 11 likes
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