a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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The Infinite Assassin (1991)
Greg Egan
(click on names to see more mathematical fiction by the same author)
Highly Rated!
Note: This work of mathematical fiction is recommended by Alex for hardcore fans of science fiction.

Contributed by Arturo Magidin

Originally published in `Interzone #48', June 1991. There are multiple realities. As the narrator puts it, `the number of parallel worlds is uncountably infinite - infinite like the real numbers, not merely like the integers.' The narrator has to kill a man across the realities to prevent him from tearing the universe apart. He is `stable' meaning there is little to no variation between all copies of him across the realities. However, he is eventually put out of action by being blown into `Cantor dust' (his selves are put, so to speak, in the cantor set instead of the entire interval) making him ineffective, since his copies are nowhere dense in the realities, so cannot really affect them enough.

This story can be most easily found today in the collection "Axiomatic" (see link).

BTW: Check out Egan's Home Page for more information about his fiction, his programming and the mathematics underlying them.

More information about this work can be found at
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Works Similar to The Infinite Assassin
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. White Light, or What is Cantor's Continuum Problem? by Rudy Rucker
  2. Jack and the Aktuals, or, Physical Applications of Transfinite Set Theory by Rudy Rucker
  3. The Extraordinary Hotel or the Thousand and First Journey of Ion the Quiet by Naum Ya. Vilenkin
  4. Cantor's War by Christopher Anvil
  5. The Infinitive of Go by John Brunner
  6. The Countable by Ken Liu
  7. Aleph Sub One by Margaret St. Clair
  8. 3-adica by Greg Egan
  9. Distress by Greg Egan
  10. Luminous by Greg Egan
Ratings for The Infinite Assassin:
RatingsHave you seen/read this work of mathematical fiction? Then click here to enter your own votes on its mathematical content and literary quality or send me comments to post on this Webpage.
Mathematical Content:
4/5 (6 votes)
Literary Quality:
3.17/5 (6 votes)

GenreScience Fiction,
MediumShort Stories,

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Exciting News: The 1,600th entry was recently added to this database of mathematical fiction! Also, for those of you interested in non-fictional math books let me (shamelessly) plug the recent release of the second edition of my soliton theory textbook.

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)