Isaac Asimov was an author of science fiction and popular science. His robot stories introduced the Three Laws of Robotics; he also wrote the Foundation series.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

5
votes
0answers
135 views

Source of tale/story referenced in “The Last Question” by Asimov

In Isaac Asimov's "The Last Question", there is a passage which reads: "Sure you are. You're weak on logic, that's the trouble with you. You're like the guy in the story who was caught in a ...
22
votes
5answers
3k views

Can a robot programed with 3 laws operating system harm a human who is harming another human?

We see that a robot can attack another robot in defense of a human, but can the robot defend one human from another human?
0
votes
1answer
165 views

Virus replicating through signals to civilizations

I've read a story once. So, people have received a signal from space and it turned out that the signal was some kind of scheme or something, and when they built that thing, it captured the Earth and ...
4
votes
2answers
112 views

In the Foundation universe, what is the longest distance mentalists can touch minds?

What is the highest range for mental abilities of mentalists and of Gaia in the Foundation universe? I'd like an order of magnitude, because for all I know it could be anything from a few ten meters ...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

Any Recent News on a Foundation (Asimov) Series of Movies? [duplicate]

Haven't heard anything recently and wanted to know if anyone had any idea whats going on with this film.
-3
votes
1answer
162 views

How much is a signed first edition copy of Isaac Asimov's Foundation Trilogy worth? [closed]

It's a blue leather hard-cover copy. I've seen some listings on ebay, but they don't seem to have any bids whatsoever. If it's a legitimate signature, how much is the book worth, if it's not, what is ...
29
votes
1answer
2k views

Let There Be Light Story Identification

I am looking to identify a story that I read around 2001 (it is probably much older). Someone showed me the story on pages printed from the internet, and it was attributed to Issac Asimov (although I ...
10
votes
3answers
244 views

Why do some people include Nemesis and End of Eternity in the Foundation Universe?

I've been reading Isaac Asimov's Robot/Empire/Foundation series recently as I hadn't read all of the books Asimov wrote within the series (I've been reading them chronologically starting with The ...
11
votes
1answer
382 views

Title of short story: God granting immortality to others to find a way to kill himself

I am looking for a short story I read a long time ago. In it, a man dies and finds himself in a dark and featureless afterlife with a disembodied voice that calls itself god. That god reveals that ...
3
votes
1answer
135 views

Was the Teramin Relationship created by Isaac Asimov?

In Isaac Asimov's novel "The Naked Sun" and Rob Chilson's book "Isaac Asimov's Robot City: Refuge", references to the "Teramin Relationship" are made. It's stated as a sociological theorem that ...
3
votes
1answer
128 views

Short story about a robot who wants to become a writer

I don't remember much about it, but I remember reading it about 5-8 years while on an Asimov kick. It may be one of his stories, but I cant remember names/places. All I can remember is that the main ...
7
votes
1answer
110 views

Where were the occupants of the Hidden Centuries in The End of Eternity?

In the End of Eternity by Asimov, the centuries above 70,000 do not appear occupied by humanity but are instead filled with duplicated infrastructure from previous centuries. However it is later ...
2
votes
1answer
163 views

Why didn't Hari Seldon consider if Laskin Joranum had radiation therapy?

In the Isaac Asimov novel Forward the Foundation, the hero Hari Seldon notices that the politician Laskin Joranum is wearing a wig and appears to have no facial hair at all, not even eyebrows. Hari ...
50
votes
10answers
5k views

Can you tell my robot to kill itself? (Three Laws)

In the worlds of Asimov's robots, what's to stop a bunch of vandal humans from going around telling robots to destroy themselves? According to the Second Law, they would have to obey. Here's a ...
15
votes
3answers
369 views

Story where a 0 - law of robotics is introduced (the good of humanity)

I read a story which should should have been published at least 40 years ago, which was probably (though I'm not absolutely sure) Asimov's. The book tells the story of - beware, spoilers ahead - I ...
13
votes
1answer
845 views

What did the “Big Three” think of each other's work?

Do we know what the Big Three (Asimov, Clarke, and Heinlein) thought of each other's writing? Did they have any favorite works of each other?
5
votes
4answers
3k views

What is the correct order for reading material of Isaac Asimov?

This question has been asked for the Foundation and the Robot series.. but I wanted to know if there are other works of Asimov that should be read in a particular order, so that I don't read the ...
-1
votes
1answer
172 views

The Empire novels of Isaac Asimov [duplicate]

Which is the first Empire novel of I Asimov, "The stars like dust" or "the currents of space"?
12
votes
2answers
248 views

What Happened to US Robots?

In Asimov's chronologically earlier stories, like the ones in "I, Robot", the corporation US Robots and Mechanical Men was featured prominently. Yet in his chronologically later stories, there's no ...
14
votes
5answers
2k views

Is Trantor Earth?

After reading the first Foundation book in the series, I asked myself if Trantor was Earth at one point. I don't think Asimov ever mentions Earth in the Foundation series.
3
votes
1answer
163 views

Understanding the limericks in Asimov's mystery story, “Out of Sight”

It is about the well-known "Black Widowers" series of Asimov's stories. I'm currently having difficulties in understanding some passages in the "Out of Sight" story (the last one) from the 1-st book. ...
3
votes
2answers
231 views

Book about playing “death games” with computers obeying the 3 laws?

Anyone know what book/story this refers to? "Remember the scifi book you had us read about the omnipotent / omniscient computer that obeys Asimov's 3 rules? People got into 'death games' where ...
3
votes
1answer
241 views

Why was “Forward the Foundation” unpublished?

I am looking at this Wikipedia article and wondering about Forward the Foundation ... why was it unpublished?
3
votes
1answer
188 views

Solving a mystery in Asimov's mystery story

I've read Asimov's "Go, Little Book" story from Black Widowers series. All seems clear (and the story itself is good) except for one place, where I can't follow the author. Here is the excerpt: ...
1
vote
2answers
490 views

Is the Encyclopaedia Galactica in the Hitchhiker's Guide a reference to Asimov's Foundation Trilogy Encyclopædia Galactica or a tribute to Carl Sagan?

While reading the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, I was thinking if the Encyclopaedia Galactica mentioned in the book is the same as Asimov's Foundation Trilogy's Encyclopædia Galactica? Could it be ...
15
votes
1answer
341 views

Why did Asimov feature fear of contact so often in his work?

There is an very common occurring theme in Asimov's work: an obsessive need not to touch people considered unclean, sometimes justified sometimes not. Examples: 1) The Caves of Steel (Robots ...
5
votes
1answer
315 views

Isaac Asimov references Clarke's Third Law?

I read Foundation (by Isaac Asimov) a while ago, just after I finished the Prelude to Foundation (of the same author). Today I have come about the notion that he, in either of the books, made a ...
8
votes
3answers
275 views

The Gods Themselves: role of the second part?

I recently finished "The Gods Themselves" by Isaac Asimov. While I enjoyed the whole book I was thinking about role of the second part in the book. It doesn't actually provide any details for the ...
4
votes
3answers
806 views

Asimov's Foundation Comic/Manga

Is there any Comic/Manga or animation adaptation of the Asimov foundation trilogy ?
4
votes
3answers
156 views

Why did Lieutenant Dirige let Arcadia go?

In the third book of the original Foundation series, Second Foundation, Arcadia Darrell tries to escape from Kalgan and get to Trantor. In the spaceport, she is confronted by Police Lieutenant Orum ...
7
votes
1answer
384 views

What was the “obvious solution” to the first crisis in foundation?

The Anacreonians were landing their first spaceships tomorrow, but that was all right, too. In six months, they would be giving orders no longer. In fact, as Hari Seldon had said, and as ...
5
votes
2answers
184 views

What's a merc-pool in Asimov's The Caves of Steel?

As depicted in the title, page 1 chapter 1, Conversation with a Commissioner, what is a merc-pool in the context of this passage: A closely coded tape reeled out of the merc-pool's vitals as the ...
6
votes
1answer
301 views

Story id: Asimov end of the world short story

I looking for the name of one of Asimov's short stories, where the world ends and all dead people start coming out of their graves and start talking to their relatives. I know some kind of celestial ...
4
votes
1answer
176 views

Are Isaac Asimov's views borne out through Dr Calvin?

Susan Calvin is the effective narrator of the I, Robot short story compilation. Towards the end we see her view that humanity is best ruled by robots, as we have no idea what is best for ourselves, ...
6
votes
1answer
116 views

Do Powell and Donovan experience relativistic time dilation, in 'Escape!' ?

Powell and Donovan are set by US Robotics to test a spaceship with a hyperspatial drive. They, at one point claim they have been on the ship for 5 days, whereas I believe Dr Calvin requests 48 hrs to ...
2
votes
2answers
402 views

I read Asimov's Foundation trilogy. Which Foundation novel should I tackle next? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What order should Asimov’s Foundation series be read in? I recently read Asimov's Foundation Trilogy (i. e. Foundation, Foundation and Empire and Second Foundation. I ...
4
votes
0answers
206 views

Does “Isaac Asimov's Robots in Time” series violate the grandfather paradox?

As anyone who is familiar with the Isaac Asimov's Robots in Time series by William F. Wu is already aware, the Mojave Center Governor does not realize that sending his component parts backwards ...
16
votes
1answer
1k views

Are the 4th and 5th extensions to the 3 Laws of Robotics validated by Asimov?

Wikipedia cites extensions by other authors to the canonical "Three laws" as follows There are two Fourth Laws written by authors other than Asimov. The 1974 Lyuben Dilov novel Icarus's Way ...
6
votes
2answers
358 views

Do the 3 laws protect animals?

Major Stackings made a comment in chat about how the demolition bot seen in the movie hates cats. Do the 3 laws also protect animals from the deadly whims of robots?
12
votes
2answers
455 views

What was Isaac Asimov's first work?

I am wondering if Isaac Asimov's first work was published. Is it a short story or novel? Why he want to wrote scifi. Is it published in a book or in a magazine or elsewhere? When did he write it? If ...
6
votes
2answers
329 views

Are robots required to propagate Asimov's three laws?

When reading through the answers to this question, I began to wonder how those laws applied to machines that were designed, built, and programmed by other machines. We know that any machine that is ...
26
votes
1answer
1k views

Classified project during WWII involving Asimov and Heinlein

During WWII, a group of science fiction writers, Robert Heinlein & Isaac Asimov prominent among them, were involved in a classified project for the US government. Isaac Asimov mentioned this ...
12
votes
1answer
486 views

One person election gets to vote for the president, by Isaac Asimov

I read a short story, by Isaac Asimov, I believe, in which the presidential election process is so far calculated that it only takes one person to vote. I would LOVE to know the name of this short ...
4
votes
1answer
515 views

About origins of Dors Venabili

This question itself contains spoilers which may, well spoil, your reading experience of books Prelude to Foundation and Forward the Foundation. Proceed with caution!
14
votes
4answers
405 views

What was the most important thing of all that Hari Seldon wished to tell Daneel?

In Asimov's Forward the Foundation Hari Seldon's last encounter with the robot Daneel Olivaw is below: Seldon stood there for a few minutes after Daneel had gone, lost in thought. Suddenly he ...
18
votes
6answers
1k views

Asimov's laws in pseudocode or applying the 3 laws today

I first asked this at Writers.SE but was advised I might do better here... I am working on a science fiction novel that will involve a large quantity and variety of synthetic life forms. I have been ...
4
votes
3answers
550 views

Are the Second Foundation trilogy and the Caliban trilogy considered Foundation canon?

So, as far as I know, there are several series approved by Asimov or his estate for the Foundation series, including the Second Foundation Trilogy and the Caliban Trilogy. Of the ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

What are the major themes in Foundation?

I'm not very good at discerning themes from books, but one of the ones that I picked up from Foundation went something like this: "a culture that stops learning is doomed to fail." What major themes ...
10
votes
1answer
230 views

In the Robot and Empire universes - when/why did the Earth turn radioactive?

Having read the Robot, Empire, and Foundation novels in a haphazard order, I was wondering when the Earth was turned radioactive and was it ever explained why?
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it worth reading “I Robot” after seeing the film [closed]

Having seen the film I know how it ends. Does the book have so much more than the film that it is worth reading?