The City and the Stars

  • William Sims Bainbridge
Part of the Springer Series in Immersive Environments book series (SSIE)


Exploring a wild terrain, a team of friends braves grave dangers. Then, the saga dissolves, revealing that they have been playing a virtual reality game. So begins The City and the Stars, a 1953 science fiction novel by Arthur C. Clarke [1]. This story presages today’s virtual worlds or massively multiplayer online role-playing games, and it raises the fundamental question about them. We should not merely ask whether they are a kind of reality, perhaps more pale than the material world, but real nonetheless. Rather, we should ask whether they give us important insights about the primary reality we will inhabit in the future. Will humans voyage across immensity to the stars, colonizing world after world, or remain imprisoned on a single planet?


Virtual World Science Fiction Strategy Game Star Trek Empire State Building 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • William Sims Bainbridge
    • 1
  1. 1.VirginiaUSA

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