Author Topic: EP155: Tideline  (Read 37356 times)

JoeFitz

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2008, 10:17:02 PM »
This one left me cold, utterly. The robot's care and attention for memory seemed completely misplaced, the "archives" in its memory banks too convenient and cliche. To me, the AI, seemed demented. Why kill several people for no other reason than because Belvedere (who was obviously a thief) was being attacked. I wondered whether the machine had, in fact, killed its platoon. More than anything made me want to _read_ Iron Giant (not see the movie) - or maybe Bell Jar.

On the production side, the AI's voice was nearly inaudible.


cuddlebug

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #21 on: April 26, 2008, 07:48:19 AM »
I really loved this story, especially the way the relationship between the robot and Belvedere was developed so gently and how “she” took on so many roles at the same time. She almost acted like a mother, teacher, friend and protector, depending on what was needed. So I have to agree with birdless, the story was pretty touching, in a metallic, rusty sort of way. (Would be interesting to look a bit closer at how exactly the robot would be capable of performing such at times almost emotional involvement with a human ….)

SO, yeah, I loved the story, but the stoy also left me slightly unsatisfied. Normally, I like stories that make me fill in the holes myself and develop the backstory in my head, but with this one it seemed like some information was missing, that I wanted to be provided rather than having to imagine everything. Like ‘how exactly did the city get destroyed’, ‘what was that war about’, ‘how do humans live in a post-war society’ and ‘what about Belvedere, what is his story’ ???. Maybe I missed that when listening, but it was frustrating to only get such a tiny insight into that world. (This is my first Elizabeth Bear story, BTW, not sure if I need to read certain other stories to get the missing links.)

Actually, I just listened to Elizabeth Bear and The Deep Blue Sea and really enjoyed that one as well but not half as much as Tideline. Would love to hear more from her on EP.
Certainly deserves the Hugo nomination.

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #22 on: April 26, 2008, 08:55:17 AM »
Actually, I just listened to Elizabeth Bear and The Deep Blue Sea ...


I just read that as "Edward Bear and the Deep Blue Sea"  :D
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deflective

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #23 on: April 26, 2008, 11:15:16 AM »
To me, the AI, seemed demented. Why kill several people for no other reason than because Belvedere (who was obviously a thief) was being attacked. I wondered whether the machine had, in fact, killed its platoon.
I just read that as "Edward Bear and the Deep Blue Sea"  :D

i wonder if there's some crossover in people's opinion between this and Edward Bear. the complaint that a battlebot's mind is cold or that a child's toy is simplistic seems to be rather the point; ai struggling with parameters to exceed their programming.

Belvedere was defined as ally when he was attacked. as a tool of war, the battlebot would react with extreme prejudice to eliminate anything that's defined as an enemy combatant. the interesting bits is when the ai has to handle unexpected circumstances.

Yossarian's grandson

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #24 on: April 26, 2008, 01:29:28 PM »
This week I will be wearing mostly.....yoghurt!

Sorry, needed to get that of my chest. Now to the story. I found it quite compelling. In way it reminded me of Adam and Eve. Only Eve is a robot and they are the progenitors not of a race, but of a myth. And they don't have sex. Ehm...on second thought, maybe not (damn you, stream-of-conciousness-writing...).

Did anyone else feel that Belvedere sure grew up fast? At the beginning of the story he's just a little boy. But by the end of the story (which I took to last just one summer), he's described as having the beginnings of a beard and the build of a soldier.

Darn, puberty is hard enough without having to go through it so fast (and with only a robot and a dog to guide you). He's gonna have some real relationship issues later on in life. I can see it now: "Honey, how ' bout tonight you wrap yourself in tin foil and speak only in a monotone voice?"

One thing I did think was missing: a backstory for the boy. I can buy leaving it vague for the robot. But wouldn't a little boy at least mention what happened to his parents, for instance? To me, this felt like a rather forced way to disconnect all the characters from what went before, just for the sake of atmosphere.

But then, I wear yoghurt (mostly), so what do I know....
« Last Edit: April 26, 2008, 01:32:26 PM by Yossarian's grandson »

wintermute

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #25 on: April 26, 2008, 06:12:38 PM »
Did anyone else feel that Belvedere sure grew up fast? At the beginning of the story he's just a little boy. But by the end of the story (which I took to last just one summer), he's described as having the beginnings of a beard and the build of a soldier.
I figured that was him getting over the effects of malnutrition, with Chalcedony's nutritional advice.
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williamjamesw

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #26 on: April 26, 2008, 06:31:34 PM »
The kid didn't need to be all that old to start growing a beard.  Mine started coming in when I was about 12.
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mt house

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #27 on: April 26, 2008, 08:00:46 PM »
It's Charlotte's Web in another form! I loved it, and I'm not the biggest fan of robot stories. I think the fact that the robot was a "she" helped the story a LOT. I got a LITTLE choked up at the end, but nothing like when Charlotte died. (OOPS, spoiler alert for anyone who hasn't read Charlotte's Web, ha ha)

mt house

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #28 on: April 26, 2008, 08:07:11 PM »
oh, and on a completely separate subject, did any one else's universes collide a few weeks ago when they heard Liane Hansen interview Scott Sigler on NPR's weekend morning edition Sunday? WOW, before discovering podcasts, NPR was my audio crack of choice, so hearing those two talking was just bizarre. And Mr. Eley on the drabblecast was a great treat, too. It's like seeing your teacher at the grocery store!

banana989

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #29 on: April 26, 2008, 10:15:08 PM »
So um... back to the podcast. Mr Eley mentioned that escape pod didn't win the best science fiction podcast, who did?

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #30 on: April 27, 2008, 05:05:26 AM »
So um... back to the podcast. Mr Eley mentioned that escape pod didn't win the best science fiction podcast, who did?

Good one, I'd forgotten all about that. Indeed, Steve, who could've possibly beaten EP??

Void Munashii

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #31 on: April 27, 2008, 10:39:17 AM »
It's Charlotte's Web in another form! I loved it, and I'm not the biggest fan of robot stories. I think the fact that the robot was a "she" helped the story a LOT. I got a LITTLE choked up at the end, but nothing like when Charlotte died. (OOPS, spoiler alert for anyone who hasn't read Charlotte's Web, ha ha)

  I had thought "Charlotte's Web" as well, but I figured it was to do with the voice more than the content. It's interesting to see someone else come up with that as well.
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CGFxColONeill

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #32 on: April 27, 2008, 05:46:55 PM »
I liked the story pretty well but I think I would like back story of the robot better than the story itself lol

on a random note did anyone else notice that she was the 42nd member of her platoon?
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sayeth

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #33 on: April 27, 2008, 10:01:19 PM »
Great story. I think I freaked out my fellow subway-travelers when I started tearing up at the end.

During the story, my mind's eye kept bringing up beautiful oil paintings of a shore landscape with a boy and his damaged battle-robot walking through the sand.
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SFEley

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #34 on: April 28, 2008, 01:36:11 AM »
So um... back to the podcast. Mr Eley mentioned that escape pod didn't win the best science fiction podcast, who did?

Good one, I'd forgotten all about that. Indeed, Steve, who could've possibly beaten EP??

Variant Frequencies.  Took the Parsec Award in the short fiction category in both 2006 and 2007.  No complaints from me: it's a fabulous podcast deserving of honors.  Rick Stringer puts much, much more work into rich sound production than I do, and the stories are top notch.

(Besides.  Given my dates at the award ceremony, I was perfectly happy not getting out of my chair.)  >8->


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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #35 on: April 28, 2008, 11:05:54 AM »
It's Charlotte's Web in another form! I loved it, and I'm not the biggest fan of robot stories. I think the fact that the robot was a "she" helped the story a LOT. I got a LITTLE choked up at the end, but nothing like when Charlotte died. (OOPS, spoiler alert for anyone who hasn't read Charlotte's Web, ha ha)

Not to get too far off topic, but you really should have a link to throw us when you post something like that  ;)

This story...I don't have much to say.  I've listened to it twice now and really loved it.  I loved how the robot (NO idea how to spell her name) was doing what she could to remember the dead, even the ones who could've respected her a bit more.  I really liked her relationship with Belvedere and the way it developed, with her telling him stories.  And although I kind of knew how it was all going to end, it was a very good listen.

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #36 on: April 28, 2008, 01:01:16 PM »
Fantastic.

Anarkey

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #37 on: April 28, 2008, 06:21:44 PM »
Fantastic.

Yes.  I agree.  Loved this as much as I expected to.  Worked well in audio.  Love the idea that EP runs all the nominees it can get its hands on, even when I don't love the stories. 
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DaveUnique

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #38 on: April 29, 2008, 02:32:08 PM »
I liked the story pretty well but I think I would like back story of the robot better than the story itself lol

I believe you can find the back story here: http://escapepod.org/2007/10/04/ep126-the-sweet-sad-love-song-of-fred-and-wilma/

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Re: EP155: Tideline
« Reply #39 on: April 29, 2008, 04:51:42 PM »
I liked this story.  I didn't reduce me to tears like some of escape pod has... but I enjoyed it greatly and will be keeping it to listen to it again.

It was the classic end of the world story where a teacher meets someone who is only just surviving and tells them how to live, not just survive.  And I like to think that through this machine the human race carried on.  Not just biologically; our humanity itself survived due to this machine we created to kill.  Though what was potentially one of the causes of our own destruction, we are given a second chance.

I'd like to see what happened in 50 years in this universe.  Though I know that would spoil the story... as then we know what happened next... but I can dream.


In a personal note, I'd like to say how much I appreciate what escape pod does every week ( and with the Hugos and such yearly).  This week there was a deathin the family, and living on my own and other factors (people worrying about me in general and such), I didn't find out for 4 days.  I was hit pretty hard by it as I felt blindsided by it; the funeral is tomorrow.  When something like this happens you feel like there is nothing else out there, and that this is it.  It makes us think life could end anytime, and there may not be a tomorrow. 
Then at work yesterday, while on my lunch break,  my playlist moves on, advert and I hear the intro music play.  I smile a little thinking that I don't know if I'm in the mood for a sci fi story fight now, but I'd give it a chance.  Then you said it was a Hugo, and I realised things go on. I enjoyed the story, and the escapeism is gave me.  For a while I'm taken to the end of the world with a robot teaching a human, and I enjoyed it.  For a while I smiled.  Thank you.
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