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Jun 16, 2013

Exode Pulped

link to the PULP-O-MIZER
Here is Exode on the cover of an imaginary science fiction magazine as rendered by the PULP-O-MIZER.

Strange Science
By the time of Exode, the alien Huaoshy have altered the dimensional structure of the universe, making positronic telepathy and  time travel impossible.

So, if you want even stranger science, start with The Foundations of Eternity, the prequel to Exode in which telepathy and time travel are still being used by the positronic robots of Earth.

Humans vs. Prelands
The Prelands are the designated replacement for we humans. Just as we humans replaced the australopiths, the Huaoshy have designed the Prelands to have many advantages over we primitive humans.

Prelands rarely speak, but they have symbiotic nanites in their brains that provide them with the functional equivalent of telepathic communication.

Prelands are hermaphrodites who reproduce artificially. They are several steps closer than we humans to transcending their biological existence and being transformed into an artificial lifeform.

Prelands are us...only better.

Save the Humans!
R. Gohrlay and Noÿs Lambent have been struggling to make a future for Humanity.

Gohrlay was a misguided Neanderthal who might have lived out a quite life on the Moon, but her brain became the template for the positronic brain (yes, this is fan fiction based on the famous work of Isaac Asimov). In a sense, Gohrlay was transformed into the robot, R. Gohrlay.

Noÿs Lambent is Asimov's famous time traveler from the future, Both R. Gohrlay and Noÿs object to the idea that the alien Huaoshy control the fate of Humanity.

Syon is a robot that "inherits" the symbiotic nanites that were inside Noÿs. Those nanites, and hence Syon, carry a very good record of everything that was important to Noÿs. Syon continues the work of  Noÿs long after she dies.

All in the Family
Gwyned is the daughter of Noÿs and she is a host for some "Noÿs nanites". Gwyned and Syon play important roles in preparing Parthney for his mission to Earth.

Godzilla movie poster spoof.
Parthney is a clone of Thomas, the son of Noÿs. He goes to Earth where he acts on a request from Gwyned that he always be prepared to help miserable Earthlings escape their home world. Parthney hands out business cards that say "Change Your World" and Hana takes him up on the offer.

Hana eventually falls in love with Parthney's son, Boswei. Izhiun, the son of Hana and Boswei, is the great grandson of Noÿs. He ends up going to Earth and completing the work started by Noÿs, winning Humanity a chance for continued existence past the expiration date that the Huaoshy had originally stamped on our species.

Underground Pulp
Mutiny on the Moon
Near the end of last month I decided to get serious about The Foundations of Eternity as a prequel to Exode.  I started having some fun thinking about cover art for The Foundations of Eternity, including a way to "hype" the story like a Hollywood monster movie (poster above: Galaxia vs. The Huaoshy).

I also made a poster that was inspired by Mutiny on the Bounty (to the right). I'm not sure if R. Gohrlay's revolt can technically be called a "mutiny", but "she" sure knew how to get into a heap of trouble.

Godzilla is a prehistoric sea monster from the depths and R. Gohrlay operates of of a secret underground base on the Moon.

Shaver Mystery
While looking back at old pulp magazines I came across some magazine covers for "The Shaver Mystery". I've always been amused by people who earnestly proclaim belief in off-beat ideas like "hollow Earth". Even when I was very young I knew that the center of the Earth is molten and I could not suspend disbelief for classic tales like Journey to the Center of The Earth.

The ancient Greeks could tell tales of strange monsters on Mediterranean islands. By the golden age of science fiction only remote corners of the Earth such as Antarctica retained enough mystery to qualify as locations for mysteriously hidden lost civilizations. Just a generation after that, the Earth was pretty well picked over and science fiction authors had to head for the the Moon to dig up ancient artifacts.

Since I decided to provide a living "narrator" for The Foundations of Eternity and Exode, I should be paying some attention to past examples of science fiction stories that were presented as if they were the "truth", a story of some fantastic hidden part of history. Thus, I was pleased to come across Shaver.

While reading about Shaver, I came across mention of Victor Tausk. and an article that he published in 1933. "The schizophrenic influencing machine is a machine of mystical nature. Patients endeavor to discover the construction of the apparatus by means of their technical knowledge, and it appears that with the progressive popularization of the sciences, all the forces known to technology are utilized to explain the functioning of the apparatus. All the discoveries of mankind, however, are regarded as inadequate to explain the marvelous powers of this machine, by which the patients feel themselves persecuted."

In The Foundations of Eternity, the positronic robots (particularly Nahan) discover some mysterious particles that can generate telepathic signals and they are also able to travel backwards through time. I've played around with the idea that even the young and naive Gohrlay (before she is captured and punished for her crimes) is able to receive some telepathically transmitted information from the future. She comes to imagine that Nan can telepathically "read" her thoughts.

What if some people were actually able to receive telepathic signals? In our society, would we simply describe such people as delusional? Maybe Gohrlay is subconsciously aware of signals from her future self...in the future she learns that her illegal activities, which she took pains to hide, were well known to the Overseers.

In a sense, the positronic brain that comes to hold a "copy" of Gohrlay's mind is an "influencing machine". That machine is the robotic mind of R. Gohrlay and the tool by which telepathic communication first becomes powerful enough to be recognized as a real phenomenon. R. Gohrlay used "her" influencing machine to inactivate the orbho who had long controlled Observer Base and watched over human evolution on Earth.

After Nahan can travel through time he knows that it would be a mistake to save Gohrlay from being captured by Overseer Doltun. She must be captured and subjected to the grinding cogs of Orbho Anagro's little science experiment...that is how Humanity can be liberated from the Huaoshy. However, it is not possible to prevent some signals from propagating into the past where they contribute to Gohrlay's growing anxiety about the possibility of being caught "red handed" while illegally visiting Earth.

After her capture, the inter turmoil and tensions mount for poor Gohrlay. She has the "choice" of either living out her life with huge gaps in her memory or "volunteering" to have her brain broken down into its microscopic components and converted into positronic circuits. During this time, Gohrlay discovers the small group of scientists who work in obscurity at Observer Base on the Moon. Nobody expects the scientists to accomplish anything useful, but Orbho Anagro is intrigued by positronics, a fringe science that nobody has ever previously explored.

Gohrlay is willing to sacrifice her brain and her life to help advance positronics research. Not altogether an altruist, she entertains some wishful fantasies about the possibility of having her mind reconstructed, complete with all her lost memories, in the form of a functioning positronic brain.

While deciding to have her brain destructively scanned, is she perhaps receiving subconscious telepathic encouragement from the future to go through with the grizzly process of having her brain converted into functionally equivalent positronic circuit elements?

I've never read any of the works attributed to Richard Shaver.  According to Richard Toronto, Shaver was institutionalized before he became a published author...it sounds like he could have had schizophrenia. The neurobiology of auditory hallucinations in both schizophrenics and non-schizophrenics is an active area of research. Some people might be borderline schizophrenics, moving in and out of normal contact with reality. There has been some interest in the idea that human brain systems used for "creativity" are related to those that are involved in disruption of normal thought processes in some forms of mental illness. It is tempting to write Shaver into The Foundations of Eternity, but I think I'll content myself with just Isaac Asimov John Campbell, although Thomas and Janet Asimov will be added to the mix of Sci Fi authors in Exode.

The Legend of Uvadekoto
In The Foundations of Eternity there is a story within the story. Starting with Chapter 15 there is a version of The Legend of Uvadekoto as read by Isaac Asimov when he experienced his alien abduction and was taken to the Moon. Later, when Asimov returned to Earth, he had a chance encounter with Noÿs Lambent during which sparks and nanites flew and when the dust settled, Noÿs had grabbed a collection of nanites that had been residing inside Asimov and she tucked them into the brain of her son Thomas for safe keeping. Later, Thomas passed memories of The Legend of Uvadekoto on to the editor of The Foundations of Eternity.

While on the Moon, it was useful for Asimov to read The Legend of Uvadekoto. That ancient fictionalized account of first contact between two biological species helped Asimov begin to appreciate the technological sophistication of the aliens who had scooped him up from Earth and hurried him off to their secret base under the surface of the Moon.

In The Legend of Uvadekoto, "King" Stan realizes that nucleons with mass 196 are the secret of how to obtain enough sedrons to make space travel practical. "Queen" Nora originally discovered that platinum is a source of small amounts of naturally occurring sedrons that have mass 382. Stan realizes that there is a way to convert pairs of mass 196 nucleons into a 382 mass sedron plus a less massive hierion. During this forced sedrogenesis process, the generated hierions can be used as a faster-than-light communications signal. When Uvadekoto starts desperately manufacturing sedrons, they inadvertently send out a hierion-based signal that attracts the "Huaoshy", that name being used to refer to the advanced lifeform that carried out dimensional engineering to make faster-than-light space travel possible.

I put "Huaoshy" in quotes here because it is not the correct name for this alien species. The term "Huaoshy" was later applied out of ignorance for the distinction between the artificial lifeform (composed of sedronic matter) that is the Huaoshy and the biological species that The Legend of Uvadekoto is about.

As told in The Legend of Uvadekoto, Stan and Nora are in a desperate race to launch Uvadekoto off of their home planet. Uvadekoto appears to be a large domed city, but it is actually a spaceship that was constructed by following instructions in a message received from the stars. Far in the past, the "Huaoshy" had visited and genetically modified distant ancestors of Stan and Nora. One of Nora's projects has been to fine tune the genes of her children in an attempt to produce a mathematician who can understand the instructions from the Huaoshy for how to make faster-than-light travel possible. In the middle of that project, she stumbles upon Stan who already has the needed mathematical ability.




Foundations of Eternity
Related reading. Is The Foundations of Eternity a horror story? More fun with retro cover art in my next blog post.

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