Black Rectangular Slab

from 2010: Odyssey Two (1982) by Arthur C. ClarkeRating: 3.8     (22 ratings)

The black rectangular slab that suddenly appeared before him was like an old friend.
He had seen it on the Moon; he had encountered it in orbit around Jupiter; and he knew, somehow, that his ancestors had met it long ago. Though it held still unfathomed secrets, it was no longer a total mystery; some of its powers he now understood.
He realized that it was not one, but multitudes; and that whatever measuring instruments might say, it was always the same size -- as large as necessary.
How obvious, now, was that mathematical ratio of its sides, the quadratic sequence 1:4:9! And how naive to have imagined that the series ended there, in only three dimensions!

- David Bowman

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2010: Odyssey Two