I read this book about 14-Jun-2011. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 2010. This note was last modified Sunday, 14-Aug-2011 23:01:34 PDT.
This note contains spoilers for the book.
Starts near-future, jumps a couple of decades, so still not too far. Kind of based on the Arab Spring revolts.
Once again, I find it rather disappointing. The world-building is pretty interesting, the characters more than adequate, but the plot seems to me to end up circling around to just being against enslaving conscious entities even if they're software simulations, without having any idea what consciousness is or how it works, and wanting to play super-safe and stay well away from the borders. Which would guarantee never finding out and never getting past that point. Doesn't make me happy; I can't say I'm in favor of enslaving conscious entities, but this ends up reading as effectively forbidding research in that whole area, not just exploitation. Kind of like the prohibitions in Dune against sentient software, but not against making people into Mentats or all sorts of other extreme and sometimes abusive processes. Hell, gladiators. Why did the prohibitions against sentient software stand up but no standards for treating real humans were recognized?