What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories
SOLVED: Adult Fiction > SOLVED. Short story: Standing on a butterfly during time travel makes the whole world less intelligent in the future [s]

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message 1: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Brand (pixieauthoress) This one should be pretty simple. It's a well-known, sci-fi short story, kind of Ray Bradbury-style (in fact, maybe he even wrote it!) where the technology in the future enables this company to create trips back in time to kill dinasaurs. Kind of like computer-games come to life. The company does research into when the dinosaurs are going to die, and takes a group of people back in time and allows them to shoot the dinosaurs - for fun. They make sure they shoot them just before they die so that they don't end up canging anything in the future; this is the main point of the story.
The group of time-travellers are meant to keep to a certain path, and not touch anything, but one man is clumsy and stands on a butterfly. The guy running the tour freaks out, and they all head home. When they reach their time period, they immediately notice that something isn't right - the sign advertising the time-travelling trips are misspelt. The guy in charge of the tour then asks the guy at the desk who won the last election (they had been discussing this at the start of the story) and it's the other guy; the one who wasn't to be trusted.
Basically, standing on one little butterfly caused humans to be less intelligent.

I'm sure someone here will know what this story is called, and who wrote it. I read in English class in third year (eight grade) and it came from a book of short sci-fi stories, including - I think - "The Murderer" by Ray Bradbury.

message 2: by Jess (new)

Jess (jessartisan) Could it be "A Sound of Thunder" by Ray Bradbury?

message 3: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Brand (pixieauthoress) Yes! I knew the title was so bizarre, and had little to do with the story! I wasn't sure if it was a Bradbury one, but it sounded like his style.

Thank you!

message 4: by rebecca j (new)

rebecca j (technophobe) | 12 comments They also made a movie of this story.

message 5: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (moanalisa) | 43 comments I wonder if the "butterfly effect" theory came from Bradbury's short story; or he knew of the theory and wrote a story around it?

When you think about it, any small change of environment would end in big changes later in history.

I remember reading this story years ago but had forgotten about it. I love Bradbury!

message 6: by Deb (new)

Deb (lupatrian) | 7 comments I just saw a movie about that. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Sound_...

message 7: by Veronica (last edited Nov 07, 2008 06:45AM) (new)

Veronica Sounds a lot like that episode of the Simpsons in one of the Treehouse of Horror specials. Homer goes back in time due to a broken toaster (of course), slaps a prehistoric mosquito which bites him, and returns to find that Ned Flanders is the tyrannical global ruler.

Jackie (thelastwolf) Theresa, that's an interesting question!

I wonder if anyone knows what year The Sound of Thunder was published or written?

What is now known as 'The Butterfly Effect' was originally known as a mathematical equation called 'Chaos Theory' attributed to a meteorologist, named Edward Lorenz in the early 1960.

message 9: by Claire Michie (new)

Claire Michie | 22 comments Veronica - that episode of the Simpsons is based on Sound of Thunder, nothing like a world where it rains donuts!

message 10: by Kate (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kate Farrell | 4070 comments Mod
For those looking for a book with this story: A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories by Ray Bradbury.

He writes excellent, though-provoking stories.

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