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The Rapture of the Nerds (2004)
Cory Doctorow / Charles Stross
(click on names to see more mathematical fiction by the same author)

Contributed by "William E. Emba"

This story is set in Stross's "Accelerando" series, due for publication in novel form in 2005, offering a worm's eye view of the "Vinge singularity", the supposed moment in the coming decades beyond which machine intelligence gets so stupendous that any extrapolation ahead of the event is impossible.

In "The Rapture of the Nerds", a Klein bottle makes a significant appearance, and there are brief (but relevant) mentions of game, complexity, and chaos theory.

[It was published in] ARGOSY #2 March/April 2004. Note that ARGOSY issues are published as two parts for mail orders and as one part for bookstore magazine racks. This novella is essentially the entire second part. See This issue is still in bookstores as of August 2004. Furthermore, the first half was originally published on-line at

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Works Similar to The Rapture of the Nerds
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. WWW: Wake by Robert J. Sawyer
  2. Antibodies by Charles Stross
  3. Unstable Orbits in the Space of Lies by Greg Egan
  4. The Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross
  5. The Grass and Tree by Eliot Fintushel
  6. Pop Quiz by Alex Kasman
  7. Diamond Dogs by Alistair Reynolds
  8. The Nature of Smoke by Anne Harris
  9. Border Guards by Greg Egan
  10. The Monopole Affair by Ken Wharton
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GenreScience Fiction,
TopicGeometry/Topology/Trigonometry, Chaos/Fractals,
MediumShort Stories, Available Free Online,

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May 2016: I am experimenting with a new feature which will print a picture of the cover and a link to the page for a work of mathematical fiction when it is available. I hope you find this useful and convenient. In any case, please write to let me know if it is because I would be happy to either get rid of it or improve it if that would be better for you. Thanks! -Alex

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)