It's fairly common in science fiction these days to see sentient beings in electronic form--whether artificial intelligences or uploaded human minds.
But it's pretty rare, in my experience, for an author to show what seems to me to be the inevitable consequence of that technology: the making of exact copies of the electronic sentients.
If it turns out that it really is all ones and zeroes, that there's no soul or other non-physical thing required for sentience, then once you've got one electronic sentient, what's to stop you from making an exact copy? Lack of disk space? (But there are usually other different electronic sentients, just none that are exactly the same.) A representational form that's hard to copy (mumble quantum handwaving mumble)? (But if you can upload a nondestructive copy of the human brain, then you can do it again.) Copy protection? (But the geeks take it as a matter of faith that copy protection can always be broken.) Societal/legal pressure? (That's the most likely reason for copying to not be widespread, imo, but it wouldn't stop it entirely.)
It seems to me that the main reasons this isn't done often are meta reasons, such as: it might make a less interesting story (especially because it messes with the individualist focus of so much western fiction); it might derail the story the author wants to tell; it's hard to write about two, or a dozen, or ten thousand, copies of the same person.
And, sure, those meta reasons are valid. But still, I'd like to see more work that directly addresses this question. What would it be like to know that you can make as many copies of yourself as the available computing resources allow? What would it be like to live in a world in which there were lots of copies of everyone?
Stross does some of this in Accelerando (I still haven't bought the novel version; must remember to do that), but iIrc, most of the copies are considered (by themselves and others) to be secondary in importance to the original version, though there are some exceptions to that. I wouldn't be surprised if Cory D. and Greg Egan have dealt with this, though I can't remember any examples offhand. There was a story in Gardner's Year's Best SF a few years back that dealt with the question, but I don't remember the title or author. And there've been similar issues raised in multiverse stories--I vaguely recall that The Hemingway Hoax and "The Coming of the Quantum Cats" did that. And, of course, there are plenty of stories in which there are groups of clones of a single person, which gets at some of the same ideas.
But I'd like to see more of this in the context of electronic sentients.