No species has ever reached for the stars without the guidance of a patron--except perhaps mankind. Did some mysterious race begin the uplift of humanity aeons ago? Circling the sun, under the caverns of Mercury, Expedition Sundiver prepares for the most momentous voyage in history--a journey into the boiling inferno of the sun.
David Brin's Uplift novels--Sundiver, Hugo award winner The Uplift War, and Hugo and Nebula winner Startide Rising--are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction tales ever written. Now David Brin returns to this future universe for a new Uplift trilogy, packed with adventure, passion and wit.
The planet Jijo is forbidden to settlers, its ecology protected by guardians of the Five Galaxies. But over the centuries it has been resettled, populated by refugees of six intelligent races. Together they have woven a new society in the wilderness, drawn together by their fear of Judgment Day, when the Five Galaxies will discover their illegal colony. Then a strange starship arrives on Jijo. Does it bring the long-dreaded judgment, or worse--a band of criminals willing to destroy the six races of Jijo in order to cover their own crimes?
In New York and Baltimore, police cameras scan public areas twenty-four hours a day. Huge commercial databases track your finances and sell that information to anyone willing to pay. Host sites on the World Wide Web record every page you view, and “smart” toll roads know where you drive. Every day, new technology nibbles at our privacy. Does that make you nervous?
David Brin is worried, but not just about privacy. He fears that society will overreact to these technologies by restricting the flow of information, frantically enforcing a reign of secrecy. Such measures, he warns, won’t really preserve our privacy. Governments, the wealthy, criminals, and the techno-elite will still find ways to watch us. But we’ll have fewer ways to watch them. We’ll lose the key to a free society: accountability.
The Transparent Society is a call for “reciprocal transparency.” If police cameras watch us, shouldn’t we be able to watch police stations? If credit bureaus sell our data, shouldn't we know who buys it? Rather than cling to an illusion of anonymity - a historical anomaly, given our origins in close-knit villages - we should focus on guarding the most important forms of privacy and preserving mutual accountability. The biggest threat to our freedom, Brin warns, is that surveillance technology will be used by too few people, now by too many.
A society of glass houses may seem too fragile. Fearing technology-aided crime, governments seek to restrict online anonymity; fearing technology-aided tyranny, citizens call for encrypting all data. Brins shows how, contrary to both approaches, windows offer us much better protection than walls; after all, the strongest deterrent against snooping has always been the fear of being spotted. Furthermore, Brin argues, Western culture now encourages eccentricity - we’re programmed to rebel! That gives our society a natural protection against error and wrong-doing, like a body’s immune system. But “social T-cells” need openness to spot trouble and get the word out.
The Transparent Society is full of such provocative and far-reaching analysis. The inescapable rush of technology is forcing us to make new choices about how we want to live. This daring book reminds us that an open society is more robust and flexible than one where secrecy reigns. In an era of gnat-sized cameras, universal databases, and clothes-penetrating radar, it will be more vital than ever for us to be able to watch the watchers. With reciprocal transparency we can detect dangers early and expose wrong-doers. We can gauge the credibility of pundits and politicians. We can share technological advances and news. But all of these benefits depend on the free, two-way flow of information.
What may we become? How will we endure? The future is a daunting realm, filled with real and imagined perils. So enter it prepared! Here are vivid tales about possible tomorrows, from the keen eye and colorful pen of David Brin, a modern master of speculative fiction. Visit a chillingly plausible tomorrow, when prisoners may be sent to asteroidal gulags. Or might prisons vanish and felons roam, seeing only what society allows? Suppose, amid lavish success, we gain the superpower to fly! Will we even appreciate it or will we find new reasons to complain? In "Mars Opposition," you'll experience an alien invasion like no other, confronting humanity with a stark and terrible choice followed by several more tales of conquest from beyond, each of them wildly different. On the other hand, might fantastically potent new beings emerge out of ourselves, as revealed in "Chrysalis ? Featuring guest appearances by Gregory Benford, Jules Verne, and Galileo, this adventure takes you beyond the very singularity in Stones of Significance, pondering what could happen after humans are like gods. And Reality Check asks one of you readers just one of you to wake up! Tomorrow awaits. We can face it and prevail. So long as our stance is brave INSISTENCE OF VISION."
Bestselling, award-winning futurist David Brin returns to globe-spanning, high concept SF with Existence.
Gerald Livingston is an orbital garbage collector. For a hundred years, people have been abandoning things in space, and someone has to clean it up. But there’s something spinning a little bit higher than he expects, something that isn’t on the decades’ old orbital maps. An hour after he grabs it and brings it in, rumors fill Earth’s infomesh about an “alien artifact.”
Thrown into the maelstrom of worldwide shared experience, the Artifact is a game-changer. A message in a bottle; an alien capsule that wants to communicate. The world reacts as humans always do: with fear and hope and selfishness and love and violence. And insatiable curiosity.
For the fugitive settlers of Jijo, it is truly the beginning of the end. As starships fill the skies, the threat of genocide hangs over the planet that once peacefully sheltered six bands of sapient beings. Now the human settlers of Jijo and their alien neighbors must make heroic—and terrifying—choices. A scientist must turn against the benefactors she's been trained to love. A heretic must rally believers for a cause he never shared. And four youngsters find that what started as a simple adventure—imitating exploits in Earthling books by Verne and Twain—leads them to the dark abyss of mystery. Meanwhile, the Streaker, with her fugitive dolphin crew, arrives at last on Jijo in a desperate search for refuge. Yet what the crew finds instead is a secret hidden since the galaxies first spawned intelligence—a secret that could mean salvation for the planet and its inhabitants … or their ultimate annihilation.
David Brin's Uplift novels are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction ever written. Sundiver, Startide Rising, and The Uplift War--a New York Times bestseller--together make up one of the most beloved sagas of all time. Brin's tales are set in a future universe in which no species can reach sentience without being "uplifted" by a patron race. But the greatest mystery of all remains unsolved: who uplifted humankind?
As galactic armadas clash in quest of the ancient fleet of the Progenitors, a brutal alien race seizes the dying planet of Garth. The various uplifted inhabitants of Garth must battle their overlords or face ultimate extinction. At stake is the existence of Terran society and Earth, and the fate of the entire Five Galaxies. Sweeping, brilliantly crafted, inventive and dramatic, The Uplift War is an unforgettable story of adventure and wonder from one of today's science fiction greats.
From the Paperback edition.
Hugo and Nebula award-winning author David Brin is one of the most eloquent, imaginative voices in science fiction. Now he returns with a new novel rich in texture, universal in theme, monumental in scope--pushing the genre to new heights.
Young Maia is fast approaching a turning point in her life. As a half-caste var, she must leave the clan home of her privileged half sisters and seek her fortune in the world. With her twin sister, Leie, she searches the docks of Port Sanger for an apprenticeship aboard the vessels that sail the trade routes of the Stratoin oceans.
On her far-reaching, perilous journey of discovery, Maia will endure hardship and hunger, imprisonment and loneliness, bloody battles with pirates and separation from her twin. And along the way, she will meet a traveler who has come an unimaginable distance--and who threatens the delicate balance of the Stratoins' carefully maintained, perfect society....
Both exciting and insightful, Glory Season is a major novel, a transcendent saga of the human spirit.
From the Paperback edition.
This is the story of a lie that became the most powerful kind of truth. A timeless novel as urgently compelling as War Day or Alas, Babylon, David Brin's The Postman is the dramatically moving saga of a man who rekindled the spirit of America through the power of a dream, from a modern master of science fiction.
He was a survivor--a wanderer who traded tales for food and shelter in the dark and savage aftermath of a devastating war. Fate touches him one chill winter's day when he borrows the jacket of a long-dead postal worker to protect himself from the cold. The old, worn uniform still has power as a symbol of hope, and with it he begins to weave his greatest tale, of a nation on the road to recovery.
Who guides our fate? And can we ever hope to wrest control for ourselves? In this novella, "The Loom of Thessaly" , classical mythology merges with impudent modern spirit into a science fiction legend that speculates upon the nature of reality.
From multiple award-winning author David Brin comes this extraordinary collection of tales and essays of the near and distant future, as humans and aliens encounter the secrets of the cosmos--and of their own existence. In "Dr. Pak's Preschool" a woman discovers that her baby has been called upon to work while still in the womb. In "NatuLife" a married couple finds their relationship threatened by the wonders of sex by simulation. In "Sshhh . . . " the arrival of benevolent aliens on Earth leads to frenzy, madness . . . and unimaginable joy. In "Bubbles" a sentient starcraft reaches the limits of the universe--and dares to go beyond. These are but a few of the challenging speculations in Otherness, from the pen of an author whose urgent and compelling imaginative fiction challenges us to wonder at the shape and the nature of the universe--as well as at its future.
Winner of the Nebula and Hugo Awards, David Brin brings his bestselling Uplift series to a magnificent conclusion with his most imaginative and powerful novel to date--the shattering epic of a universe poised on the brink of revelation...or annihilation.
The brutal enemy that has relentlessly pursued them for centuries has arrived. Now the fugitive settlers of Jijo--both human and alien--brace for a final confrontation. The Jijoans' only hope is the Earthship Streaker, crewed by uplifted dolphins and commanded by an untested human.
Yet more than just the fate of Jijo hangs in the balance. For Streaker carries a cargo of ancient artifacts that may unlock the secret of those who first brought intelligent life to the Galaxies. Many believe a dire prophecy has come to pass: an age of terrifying changes that could end Galactic civilization.
As dozens of white dwarf stars stand ready to explode, the survival of sentient life in the universe rests on the most improbable dream of all--that age-old antagonists of different races can at last recognize the unity of all consciousness.
David Brin's Uplift novels are among the most thrilling and extraordinary science fiction ever written. Sundiver, Startide Rising, * and The Uplift War--a New York Times* bestseller--together make up one of the most beloved sagas of all time. Brin's tales are set in a future universe in which no species can reach sentience without being "uplifted" by a patron race. But the greatest mystery of all remains unsolved: who uplifted humankind?
The Terran exploration vessel Streaker has crashed in the uncharted water world of Kithrup, bearing one of the most important discoveries in galactic history. Below, a handful of her human and dolphin crew battles armed rebellion and a hostile planet to safeguard her secret--the fate of the Progenitors, the fabled First Race who seeded wisdom throughout the stars.