As an independent beltrunner mining asteroids in the frontier of space, Collier South is a dying breed. Scrounging and cutting corners to work cheap, Collier isn’t a stranger to lean times and make-do repairs; in fact his onboard computer hasn’t had outside maintenance in years and its beginning to show its personal quirks.
When Collier finds an asteroid that shows promise, he thinks he’s bought himself some time. But his claim is stolen out from under him by his vindictive ex-lover and her shiny new corporate ship. Powerless against the omnipotent mining corporations, Collier has always been too stubborn to give-up without a fight. Broke and desperate, Collier has one last chance to land a strike. If he doesn’t come back with ore, he’ll end up destitute and trading his own biologicals for his next meal.
What he discovers in the farthest reaches of the belt has the power to change his life and the fate of the entire system forever. That is, if Collier and his onboard computer can keep his discovery out of corporate hands.
Sean O’Brien is an educator and writer from Southern California. He is married and has two children along with an ever-growing number of animals. He was named Educator of the Year by the California League of High Schools and has been a head varsity football coach, television broadcaster, and Gilbert and Sullivan singer (though not a good one).
The vision behind the DARPA project was to mine the social sciences literature for alternative theories of human behavior, and then formalize, instantiate, and integrate them within the context of an agent-based modeling system. The research team developed an experimental platform to evaluate the conditions under which alternative theories and groups of theories applied. The end result was a proof of concept developed from the ground up of social knowledge that could be used as an informative guide for policy analysis. This book describes in detail the process of designing and implementing a pilot system that helped DARPA assess the feasibility of a computational social science project on a large scale.
But when Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade's going to survive, he'll have to win—and confront the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.
Which of these would you wager is pure science fiction, and which currently being developed in the lab? Such is the speed and excitement of today’s bio-medical research – sprinting from the starting gun that was the Human Genome Project – it’s sometimes hard to tell. In a unique collaboration, fourteen short story writers have been invited to explore the increasingly grey area between the fantastical and that which is already within our reach. Closely collaborating with scientists and ethicists working at the forefronts of their respective fields, each writer has been tasked with predicting some of the potential ‘ethical side-effects’ of this ground-breaking work. Not all progress, after all, is progressive. And dark forces are afoot that threaten to hi-jack what many declared would be ‘the century of biology’.
'Fascinating reading.' - Financial Times
'An exhilarating read.' - The Short Review
Toby Litt's Bio-Punk story 'Call it ''The Bug'' Because I Have No Time to Think of a Better Title' short-listed for the 2013 Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award.
Take a walk between these shelves. Crack the spine and the blow the dust off lives unlived because, so far, they’re unread. Become, if you dare, as trapped as them…
“Sean O'Brien, like Graham Greene, creates his own instantly recognisable fictional landscape, where crime, mystery and disillusion lurk by the waters of the Tyne or Humber. His stories glint with black comedy and touches of the macabre and surreal. In O'Brien country you may hear the hoot of a train pulling out of the city, but you'll never be on it, because your place is here in the kingdom of backstreet pubs, tired, desirable girls and drowned men. Nothing is ever as it seems: it is much more frightening than that… First-class stories from one of our finest writers.”
- Helen Dunmore
“Sean O'Brien does for libraries what Ursula Andress did for bikinis. Read and rejoice!”
- Val McDermid