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For a digital media class, I have chosen to report on the ansible "internet," the existence of Jane, and other technological communication devices and their psychological influence on the characters in the Ender quartet. I was wondering if your representations of computers, technology, and public reaction are in anyway based upon real life opinions of you or anyone else. Are things symbolic, or only as symbolic as the reader makes them?

-- Submitted anonymously

OSC REPLIES: - January 11, 2000

I rarely have either a symbolic interpretation consciously in mind when writing my stories; nor do I seriously try to predict the future in my fiction. I used computers and technology in order to set up the events I wanted to have in the story and/or to create a plausible and consistent milieu in which to have the story take place. The responses of the public to computers and technology were decided by what seemed plausible to me in the particular situation and what was necessary to the story. But there was no attempt on my part to show what I think will or should happen. I generally regard technological change as only marginally interesting in my stories -- human nature is my subject matter, and the tools and toys of humans are interesting to me only insofar as they affect or shape the particular story.

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