Ten centuries across the void, then ping, the check engine light blinks on. The very bearings of the universe, creak as great cold intelligences consider the passing flash of light. The flare briefly outshone its neighboring starfield. The probe detonated its reserves of antimatter in a highly characteristic blinding flash. Tens of thousands of years of travel, untold ergs of harvested sunlight. All probes which failed needed replacement, and possibly reinforcement. Great wheels of creation spun starships from great rings of stockpiled matter. Dyson swarms knit together two dozen spindly probes each a kilometer long and set them out. An endless box checked in the universal spreadsheet.