Randomize by Andy Weir: Narrated by Janina Gavankar

Andy Weir’s Randomize is a fascinating exploration of the superficial topics regarding advancements in and increasing availability of quantum computing devices as well as the impact those things could have on a world not yet prepared for those things. More than that–and the saving grace of the story–it’s a layered story about predictability vs. unpredictability and human nature. That human element is the important thing to focus on.
There’s a lot to unpack in this short story about the capacity to apply pattern recognition to things with seemingly no patterns.
The science behind the technology in this story is lacking in several ways, but that’s often going to be the case in fiction. I’ve grown accustomed to overlooking those elements to enjoy the stories I read regularly. It does sort of invalidate the premise underpinning the whole narrative if you pick away at it too much.
I rather like the final message I took away from the story, in that it wasn’t the highly advanced computational device that got the protagonists/antagonists what they wanted, but the computational abilities of a brilliant human mind. There’s a moral to this morally questionable tale, in that a great piece of advanced technology will never be half as useful without a similarly great mind behind the operation.
Janina Gavankar’s narration is effective, especially in her portrayal of Sumi Singh.


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