a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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The Accidental Time Machine (2007)
Joe Haldeman
(click on names to see more mathematical fiction by the same author)

A few mathematical ideas are tossed around casually in this light and entertaining science fiction story about a lab assistant who realizes before his boss that the device they are working on can be used as a time machine. In his adventures, he travels farther and farther into the future. In fact, one slightly mathematical aspect of the story is the fact that the times by which the machine travels into the future form a geometric series -- increasing each time by a factor of 12. But, the main reason I am listing this SF novel here is the occasional vague reference to abstract algebra and topology and the discovery of a ``mathematical Rosetta Stone''.

More information about this work can be found at
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Works Similar to The Accidental Time Machine
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. The Time Machine by Herbert George Wells
  2. Stamping Butterflies by Jon Courtenay Grimwood
  3. The Holmes-Ginsbook Device by Isaac Asimov
  4. The Unteleported Man (aka Lies Inc.) by Philip K. Dick
  5. To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis
  6. I of Newton by Joe Haldeman
  7. The Time Ships by Stephen Baxter
  8. Beyond the Hallowed Sky: Book One of the Lightspeed Trilogy by Ken MacLeod
  9. The Arrows of Time [Orthogonal Book Three] by Greg Egan
  10. All the Universe in a Mason Jar by Joe Haldeman
Ratings for The Accidental Time Machine:
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:
1/5 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
3/5 (1 votes)

GenreScience Fiction,
MotifTime Travel,

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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)