Saturday, December 8, 2012

Five Sentence Fiction Challenge - Time



This week's writing challenge from Five Sentence Fiction ( Lillie McFerrin Writes ) is based upon the prompt "Time."

My entry is of the science fiction genre, and is a bit on the weird side. It took me a while to come up with this. I almost ran out of time.

Sorry, I couldn't resist...




Strange Loop



Image "Binary Code" by David Castillo Dominici - www.freedigitalphotos.net


Wendell's experiment in time travel had worked, at least to a degree, but something was amiss. The program he had written to control the equipment was designed to guide him through a loop, much like tracing the path along a Mobius strip, returning him safely to the point where he began. He hadn't allowed for his own presence, his own observation of events and their effect, no matter how trivial, upon the calculations. Somewhere within the billions of bytes of code, this additional parameter had altered the program, forming a self-modifying quine, spiraling him into both the future and the past, and most certainly into oblivion. Curiously, he found himself intrigued by the possibility that he might have forever to solve the problem, or not enough time to press the next keystroke.




Image "Binary Code" courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


© 2012 K. R. Smith All rights reserved

15 comments:

  1. KR, not on the weird side at all - actually wonderfully unique! I think this is your best 5sf so far. Really well written :)))

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    1. Thanks! I did have to make a small change in it after you read the post. I had an extra "a" in there. To borrow a phrase: Curiously, I found myself intrigued by the fact that the error hadn't been picked up by either of the spelling / grammar checkers I used.

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  2. Now I'm wondering if the wrinkle in my time travel story could be wrinkled out. It also depends on things changing, but in a very different way.

    Cheers!
    JzB

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    1. Well, I sure hope so! Anything that changes in one place effects everything else, so there are lots of choices in a time travel scenario! Good luck - hope to read it someday!

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  3. Replies
    1. I'm not sure, but the answer may show up in another Five Sentence Fiction - assuming I get a suitable prompt...

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  4. What an incredible last line. Loved it.

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    1. Thanks! This is my first sci-fi entry for FSF. Haven't played around too much with that genre lately.

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  5. Replies
    1. Thanks for taking the time to check it out (no pun intended)!

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  6. Loved that!And you leave us hanging...

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    1. Well, you never know - Wendell might show up again sometime to let us know how he made out.

      And again, and again, and again...

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  7. I liked this, clever premise - the scientist's easy error of failing to account for themselves having terrible consequences. I shall now go back to the future to read part two :)

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    1. Thanks! And thanks for reading both parts!

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    2. And the second part is at http://www.theworldofkrsmith.com/2014/11/fsf-challenge-irritation.html (for those who stumble upon this part first).

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