|photo from Wikipedia
Blindsight is a 2006 science fiction novel by Peter Watts. You can read it online here. From Wikipedia:
The novel follows a crew of astronauts sent out as the third wave, following two series of probes, to investigate a trans-Neptunian Kuiper belt comet dubbed 'Burns-Caulfield' that has been found to be transmitting an unidentified radio signal to an as-yet unknown destination elsewhere in the solar system, followed by their subsequent first contact. The novel explores questions of identity, consciousness, free will, artificial intelligence, neurology, game theory as well as evolution and biology.favorite quote:
There's no such thing as survival of the fittest. Survival of the most adequate, maybe. It doesn't matter whether a solution's optimal. All that matters is whether it beats the alternatives.
Elizabeth Bear has an appreciation at Tor that begins, "It’s my opinion that Peter Watts’s Blindsight is the best hard science fiction novel of the first decade of this millennium". Kirkus Reviews calls it "a searching, disconcerting, challenging, sometimes piercing inquisition". SF Site says it's "a brilliant book".
Eyrie says, "This is solid speculative fiction with high stakes, an unflinching look at possibly very different forms of life, and a thought-provoking contribution to an ongoing discussion in SF about the nature of intelligent life."