A book I once owned and read back in late-80's or early-90's that I have not been able to identify title & author for: It was a SF story concerning tiny native lifeforms, living on either a planetoid or possibly a dead/neutron star, that evolve at a seemingly accelerated time rate. Most of their story is told in the few days of observation (from orbit) by a human expedition to the planet, during which time-frame the race below progresses from stone-age tech level to being more advanced than the human observers, and eventually flying up to meet the humans in small advanced craft powered by micro-singularities... one of which accidentally 'disintegrates' the tip of a human scientist's nose in the process.


1 Answer 1


Possibly Dragon's Egg by Robert L. Forward. To quote Wikipedia:

In the story, Dragon's Egg is a neutron star with a surface gravity 67 billion times that of Earth, and inhabited by cheela, intelligent creatures the size of a sesame seed who live, think and develop a million times faster than humans. Most of the novel, from May to June 2050, chronicles the cheela civilization beginning with its discovery of agriculture to advanced technology and its first face-to-face contact with humans, who are observing the hyper-rapid evolution of the cheela civilization from orbit around Dragon's Egg.

I haven't found any references to disintegrating the nose, but when the two cultures meet, the Cheela gravitic craft technology does result in a bloody nose for one of the human ambassadors due to the nose being accelerated to 3Gs versus 1G for the body.

  • 1
  • After reading your response, I almost didn't need to check the Wiki ref, but in doing so believe that you pegged the identification spot-on. I searched first here on SE, but guess I didn't use just the right terms. I don't know how to identify the orig. posting date for a wiki article, but I never found it a few years back when I last checked the web. I also never knew there was a sequel written. Thanks.
    – user43431
    Mar 23, 2015 at 17:00

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.