Re: A Fire Upon the Deep ending

The Low Golden Willow (
Tue, 27 May 1997 14:33:17 -0700 (PDT)

On May 27, 12:44pm, Hal Finney wrote:

} could penetrate to the core and return. Also, how could such clouds
} exist when all other forms of intelligence, machine or organic, are
} suppressed by the Unthinking Depths? (Of course this gets into the

The Depths already suppress human thought but not human metabolism. If
the Zones are some artificial mechanism embedded in the "subspace"
or something then that mechanism could distinguish between gas clouds
and our forms of life.

} If the purpose of the Zones is instead to limit the Powers to the
} Transcend and leave most of the galaxy to lesser races, it seems
} like overkill. Most of the interesting stuff goes on in the Beyond.
} The Slow Zone, which encompasses much of the galaxy where thinking can
} occur, allows only a limited standard of living to its inhabitants.

This is a limited view. The Beyond allows a limited standard of living
to its inhabitants, from the POV of a Power. Complex, sub-Power
civilizations can evolve in the Beyond; intelligent species evolve in
the Slow Zone. The Nyjoran pattern of Slow races stumbling out of the
Slowness was mentioned to be a common one. Races won't evolve in the
Beyond; it's overrun. It'd be like leaving a zone of methane pools on
Earth so that new forms of life could evolve, whereas they have no
chance now.

And the Depths could protect gas clouds from Slow Zone ramjets.

} If I were setting it up, I'd let the Beyond go all the way down to
} the core. The Slow Zone seems like protection enough for any gas
} clouds. Unimpressive "empires" like the Qeng Ho, with their ramscoops

You mean Beyond to the outside of the Core, and Slowness within? Small
volume for evolution of new races.

Hmm. Is _Fire_ the first synthesis of extropianism and intense

Merry part,
-xx- Damien R. Sullivan X-) <*>

And even priests were coming to spend some time in it, because of the
collection of religious books. There were one thousand, two hundred and
eighty-three religious books in there now, each one--according to
itself--the only one any man need ever read. It was sort of nice to see
them all together. -- Terry Pratchett, _Small Gods_