Jon Graeme and Harry Sale are unlikely friends. Harry is a world-class programmer, but his abrasive personality alienates co-workers. In contrast, Jon is a handsome and easy-going technical writer, the low man on the IT totem pole. Sharing a love of nature, the men set out together, planning to go their separate ways--Jon on a hike and Harry, fly fishing. Three days later, Jon arrives at the rendezvous point, but his friend is nowhere in sight. When Jon finds Harry unconscious on the floor of a cave, Harry claims to have been lying there the entire time. But he is neither cold nor hungry. What Jon doesn't know is that Harry fell into an underground cavern, where he came into contact with an alien quantum computer. Back at work, Harry jettisons his regular tasks and concentrates exclusively on inventing new operating language to access the alien system. In the process he crashes his office's Super Computer and is fired. Jon convinces the company to give Harry a second chance, arguing that the system he has invented will make them millions. Jon has no idea what havoc Harry is about to unleash.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
In “The Infinity Program” by Richard H. Hardy, Jon Graeme is the new guy at HTPS Industries working as a technical writer. Jon has an early encounter with Harry Sale near the shuttle bus saving a kitten, and takes an immediate liking to this Harry guy, who later proves to be one of the hardest people to work with and get along with at HTPS Industries. They quickly form an odd friendship and the managers at HTPS soon lean on Jon as their go-to guy when it comes to dealing with Harry. Harry is a genius programmer who finds himself in trouble and becomes suspended from his job. Harry has invented a new system that could make the company millions and Jon takes it upon himself to help Harry out, pulling their odd friendship even closer together. Ultimately Jon sticks his neck out for Harry in ways that could cost him his own job and possibly his life. This book is a high technology science fiction story and it was surprisingly easy for me to follow. I am not a high tech kind of girl, yet I was able to move right along with the story for the most part, even lacking the knowledge behind computers and programming. The main character Jon was not totally familiar with the programming lingo either, so as dialog with him progressed, I was able to learn what I needed to know and never once did I feel overwhelmed with jargon. Hardy is clearly a master of his craft and now that he is retired, putting all that talent into a novel is well, brilliant. When it comes right down to it, I was highly impressed with the storyline and the way everything played out. With ups and downs, a touch of romance, and a bunch of pig headed supporting characters, “The Infinity Program” by Richard H. Hardy is sure to please the high tech science fiction readers as well as the readers who are not so technically savvy. In general, this novel was absolutely fantastic! I am more than ready to see what Hardy comes up with next. 5 stars! Reviewed by Jennifer Hass for Reader Views (3/14)
Even aliens can't compete when it comes to drama in the workplace. Richard H. Hardy pens an exciting tale about an underground extraterrestrial computer with clairvoyant powers, but it's the humans it's manipulating who end up stealing the spotlight. Because what makes this story unique is that Hardy has inside knowledge about how technology companies operate, because he worked for one, and the office politics he infuses into the core of his novel definitely ring true to life. The long hours, the tight deadlines, the demanding clients - all combine to create an implied sense of urgency. Sure, the brain of one of the employees at HTPS Industries has been taken over by an intelligent life form, but Harry Sale's co-workers are so busy doing everything they can to climb the corporate ladder most of them don't even notice. Except for new kid on the block, Jon Graeme, the only person that temperamental Harry bothers to interact with. After the two go on a fishing trip together, Harry gets lost in a cave and doesn't come back with a mind fully in tact. Jon notices that something's up with his friend, but he decides to humor him in order to try and get to the bottom of it. But Harry starts exhibiting some qualities that just don't add up. He starts writing code for hours on end. He doesn't go home to sleep. He only eats what he can forage out of the office vending machine. If only he were suffering from a broken heart, Jon might be able to understand his behavior and help him, but he's not. Lettie is. She's been hung up on Harry for a very long time, but he barely acknowledges her existence. As a manager at HTPS Industries, she tries to protect Harry from the higher ups, but she can only do so much, until Jon comes along. The two of them form a common bond in their concern over Harry. They don't want to see him get fired, but he's not making it easy for them as he starts letting his professional life fall to pieces while succumbing to the demands of the alien entity that's slowly taking control of him. The power struggle between Jon and Lettie is just as intriguing as the game Harry's playing with management. In both instances, they're each trying to one up the other, sometimes involuntarily. Jon is a good guy, but he allows those making the behind-the-scenes deals to manipulate him, throwing his burgeoning relationship with Lettie on the skids. As a woman in authority in a male-dominated workplace, she's the target of frequent discrimination and sexual harassment by her superiors. And with or without alien intervention, she's left to fend for herself when she's demoted as Jon becomes a rising star due to his ability to pacify Harry. Their interaction as a man and woman falling in love in a corporate environment demonstrates just how tricky it is to have it all. Hardy is smart to use a sci-fi hook in order to discuss these crucial cultural issues. He draws readers in with an otherworldly premise that promises to entertain, while enlightening them about the challenges that people face in everyday life that are no less extraordinary or important than a super intelligent species looking to take over the earth. He mixes the mundane with the fantastical to maximum effect, causing readers to think with their minds and their hearts. Framed in this context, prejudice and intolerance are just as frightening as getting encapsulated in gelatinous slime or being resurrected by nanobots.
Jon is a technical writer, who works with Harry, a stellar programmer at the same company. The two become fast friends, even though they are a most unlikely pair. While on a trip together, Harry discovers a super computer in a cave he happens to go into. The computer starts to overtake his mind and unleashes a series of catastrophic events throughout the world. I found this story to be a real eventful read that peaked my interest from beginning to end, even though science fiction isn't my favorite genre. I liked Harry's determination and how it brought him to his end result. Truly, a captivating page turner.