The Last Empty

Decent Essays
The Last Empty, Inessential Question
This is my least favorite story of all those I have read. After all, I undertook (against my own will) to read “several trillion years of human history in the space of a short story” and boy, it was far from successful (Asimov 1). I also “undertook another task” (1): making sure no one else endures the suffering I went through. “It is a curious fact” that Isaac Asimov wrote this story in the first place (1). Thanks to the monotonous and repetitive nature of the writing, no one will ever “remember the title of the story or (for sure) the author” (1). Throughout “The Last Question,” Asimov crafts a dreadful, boring tale through the lack of relatable characters, use of outdated technology, absence of action
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. . interesting (to say the least) ideas about technology. He comes up with some half-baked ideas about speech-to-text technology and artificial intelligence, and he understands that as time progresses, computers shrink in size and their “self-adjusting and self-correcting” nature allows them to become more portable while exponentially increasing in power (1). While he advances toward the right direction, the majority of instances of Multivac either exhibit antiquity or rely on indefinite concepts out of reach. Considering the fact that he published this short story in 1956, much of the technology already went archaic. Not to mention “[t]he cold, clicking, flashing face—miles and miles of face—of that giant computer” clearly before our time (1). Heavy reliance on inapplicable perceptions and theories undermines Asimov’s credibility and increases the growing distance between his writing and the reader. On the other hand, the Universal AC “in hyperspace” in some unimaginable form or entities like “Man fused with AC” just seem so far-fetched (7, 9). It impossible for present-day readers to relate to clunky electronics or some “higher digital being,” and failing to grasp these unconvincing abstractions, readers give up altogether. Overall, the lack of relevance of these bizarre absurdities make the story as a whole
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