Accelerando (2005)


Charles Stross (writer).


“Economics 2.0”, with its hoarding of information for market value, resembles the City of Mind in Always Coming Home (1985) but is appropriately more diverse. In Stross’s version, 15-20 years after Le Guin, it takes so much matter and energy to build the processors and storage media that the inner planets are under way to total conversion by the 2070s:

The informational density of the inner planets is visibly converging on Avogadro’s number of bits per mole, one bit per atom, as the deconstructed dumb matter of the inner planets (apart from Earth, preserved for now like a picturesque historic building stranded in an industrial park) is converted into computronium.

The City of Mind seemed to have an extremely small footprint by comparison, despite a complete description of all matter from the subatomic upward being one of its goals.

fiction text