From: Jacob Glicklich
Location: Central United States
It is a pleasure to be conversing with you.
I found your Infinite Hexamon polity from the Way series one of the most interesting political systems in science fiction. Dealing off this and its technological/social assumptions:
1) How likely do you think it is that an analogous system could actually develop in human society?
2) How laudatory or close to the ideal do you think such a system would be? There seem certain flaws articulated in the novels, to what extent would you view these as detrimental?
3) What sort of tensions, issues and conflicts would be likely to occupy such a group, if it were 'dealing on its own devices', away from all the Jarts and the Way, and all that glorious craziness?
In a somewhat related question, do you have thoughts/intentions on expanding the Way series? I've read Eon, Eternity, Legacy and the Way of All Ghosts, and find the whole setting one of the more intrinsically fascinating ones in science fiction, with a wide variety of possible stories. Do you have any idea of building on it in the future?
From: Greg Bear
It would be nice to write more in the EON universe--but no plans at the moment. As for the ideal nature of the Hexamon--I don't think we'll ever create the perfect system. As long as we're human (and biological!) we'll probably use conflict and opposition to improve decisions--which means some people will be unhappy. The trick is, that EVERYBODY gets to feel unhappy at some time or another--and happy at other times. That might be as close to ideal as we can ever get.
From: Jimmy Kinchloe
I know this is months late but really enjoyed reading your questions on the Infinate Hexamon.
It is my opinion that - aside from being a fascinating book in it's own right - Eon was and is so very popular because it (and Eternity) hit so close to home with humans at this place in time. Will it take The Death to pull us all together? Will that be what it takes to unite us under one central government with goals common to all of humanity and the other lifeforms that own this planet as much as we do? And don't forget that even within the Hexamon and that society there was a rift between Conservatives and Liberals (both corporeal and stored). Will "it" ever work out?
I really hate to admit it, but I am slowly becoming a bit doubtful as events on this planet progress. Are you a Vonnegut fan? (God rest his soul.) If you are then you will know what I mean.
From: Greg Bear
I do enjoy Vonnegut--SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE is one of my favorite novels. But I'm not quite so pessimistic as he was.