Superiority (short story)
|Author||Arthur C. Clarke|
|Published in||The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction|
|Publication date||August 1951|
"Superiority" is a science fiction short story by British writer Arthur C. Clarke, first published in 1951. It depicts an arms race during an interstellar war. It shows the side which is more technologically advanced being defeated, despite its apparent superiority, because of its willingness to discard old technology without having fully perfected the new. Meanwhile, the enemy steadily built up a far larger arsenal of weapons that while more primitive were also more reliable. The story was at one point required reading for an industrial design course at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
"Superiority" was included in Clarke's 1953 anthology Expedition to Earth, the 1981 anthology The 7 Cardinal Virtues of Science Fiction (where it represented temperance), and the 2001 anthology The Best Military Science Fiction of the 20th Century.
- The Collected Stories of Arthur C. Clarke
- Illusory superiority
- Opportunity cost
- Unintended consequence
- Wonder weapons
- Current Biography Yearbook, Volume 27. H.W. Wilson Company. 1966. p. 51.