SF

Category archives for SF

Arrival Thoughts

People have been raving about the new movie Arrival, which is an adaptation of Ted Chiang’s “Story of Your Life,” which I did a guest lecture on for a colleague’s class on science fiction some year ago. It’s unusual enough to see a science fiction movie hailed for being smart that Kate and I actually…

As you probably already know, last year we ran a workshop at the Joint Quantum Institute for science-fiction writers who would like to learn more about quantum physics. The workshop was a lot of fun from the speaker/oragnizer side, and very well received by last year’s writers, so we’re doing it again: The Schrödinger Sessions…

Quantum Short Fiction, Voting Open Now

The Center for Quantum Technologies is running a “Quantum Shorts” contest, where they solicited short stories exploring some aspect of quantum physics. They cut their large number of applicants down to two short-lists of ten, one for the “Open” category, and one for the “Youth” category. They’ll be giving out a “People’s Choice Award” based…

Wizard Trouble: Full Story

So, a funny story about this. I posted a snippet of a fantasy story back in August, and enough people said nice things about it that I actually got off my ass and did some playing around to format the full story as an epub. This was, of course, complicated by the fact that computers…

Ancillary Trilogy [Library of Babel]

The hot SF release of the fall is Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Mercy, concluding the Imperial Radch trilogy. The first of these, Ancillary Justice won a Hugo two years ago, and the second, Ancillary Sword should’ve won this past year, because I really didn’t like the Three-Body Problem. The release of Ancillary Mercy generated a ton…

On the Need for “Short Story Club”

So, the Hugo awards were handed out a little while ago, with half of the prose fiction categories going to “No Award” and the other half to works I voted below “No Award.” Whee. I’m not really interested in rehashing the controversy, though I will note that Abigail Nussbaum’s take is probably the one I…

Wizard Trouble

I was staring out the diner window, watching it rain, when Jimmy the werewolf slid into the booth behind me. “We got trouble, boss,” he said, and I spilled coffee over the back of my hand. “Asshole,” I said, not turning around. “How about a little warning next time?” “Don’t want to let on I…

Another week, another set of posts at Forbes to link here: — Why Do Solids Have Energy Bands? A conceptual explanation of why putting together lots of atoms with electrons in well-defined energy levels leads to a solid with electrons filling broad energy bands. — This Is The Key Distinction Between Magic And Advanced Technology:…

Seveneves is the latest from Neal Stephenson, and true to form is a whopping huge book– 700-something “pages” in electronic form– and contains yet another bid for “best first paragraph ever”: The moon blew up without warning and for no apparent reason. It was waxing, only one day short of full. The time was 05:03:12…

Hugo Reading: Not-Novels

As much for my own future reference as anything else, some thoughts on the bits of the Hugo ballot that aren’t Best Novel (which I’ve already talked about). At this point, I’ve probably read as much of the voter packet as I’m going to (though if I’ve left out something actually good, I could go…