This is a short story I recall reading somewhere about an unmanned ship's computer.

The story begins with a computer's component receiving an unusual signal, but the computer doesn't understand why it is unusual. By attempting to understand the reason for its confusion, gradually it realizes that its core is badly damaged. It attempts to send a drone to install the only remaining replacement core, but the drone and the core hurtles through a hole in the side of the ship, which the computer failed to notice as well (due to the damage). The computer is now stranded drifting through space, with the realization that it is irrevocably damaged and cannot repair itself.


That is very likely The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy series.

This particular story about the Grebulons is from the fifth book: Mostly Harmless.

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  • I don't recall reading "The Restaurant at the End of the Universe". Let me just confirm this quickly... – Vladimir Panteleev Jun 29 '12 at 0:49
  • @CyberShadow: I'm sorry, I was mistaken, it is actually Mostly Harmless. See update. – bitmask Jun 29 '12 at 0:53
  • That doesn't stir my memory. Perhaps I've read this story outside context. – Vladimir Panteleev Jun 29 '12 at 0:53
  • @CyberShadow: Well if it wasn't from Mostly Harmless, the idea was stolen from that book, because it's pretty much how I recall it happening (I just confused two species so I thought it was in the second, not the fifth book). – bitmask Jun 29 '12 at 0:57
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    As Douglas Adams stated it a "trilogy" of five books. – ewanm89 Jun 29 '12 at 13:38

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