Written By: Isaac Asimov

Narrated By: Blue Tyson

Date: January 2011

Duration: 0 hours 51 minutes

Summary:

First published in November 1956 issue of Science Fiction Quarterly. Asimov thought that The Last Question was his best short story ever. The story deals with the development of computers called Multivacs and their relationships with humanity through the courses of seven historic settings, beginning in 2061. In each of the first six scenes a different character presents the computer with the same question; namely, how the threat to human existence posed by the heat death of the universe can be averted. The question was: "How can the net amount of entropy of the universe be massively decreased?" This is equivalent to asking: "Can the workings of the second law of thermodynamics (used in the story as the increase of the entropy of the universe), be reversed?" Multivac's only response after much "thinking" is: "THERE IS AS YET INSUFFICIENT DATA FOR A MEANINGFUL ANSWER."

Genres:

  • Ivana C.

    For me this is also the best short story Asimov wrote. I love it and read it countless times. Don't miss it!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    Nice short story with good ending. Mind boggling to think it was written in the '50s. Would have given it a 5 for narration if there was less fluff at the beginning before the story started.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Rod M.

    Asimov is a Genius.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    Asimov was way ahead of his time. One of the best science fiction writers of all time. I recommend all of his novels and short stories. The Last Question is my favorite of his short stories.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • adam croce

    Well... this is one of the best short stories of modern time. Taking a deep, thoughtful look at the most integral question of existence. However, if you want the story almost completely ruined by a terrible intro, and the worst intro of all time, then this is the place to do it. The reading is okay. Lots of other weird BS to sit thru.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful.

  • Billy R.

    Loved it. Rediscovering Asimov again.

  • Stephanie Striefel

    After you skip the 15 minutes of intro from whatever podcast this recording is from, everything is amazing. The story culminates in a totally unexpected ending, and I loved it.

  • Michael G.

    Wonderful SciFi

  • Anonymous

    Confirms my believe in all - (all = What humans referred to as God or Allah and/or many other names). (Thank about it)

  • Frances L.

    Asimov can do no wrong! I really enjoyed this novella. Classic Asimov. The narrator was excellent and brought the story alive. An excellent introductory story for someone unfamiliar with Asimov. I highly recommend this novella.

Last Question

by Isaac Asimov

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Last Question, Isaac Asimov
Last Question, Isaac Asimov
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