Tag Archives | Science Fiction

The Culture Wars Invade Science Fiction

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Hugo Award. Photo by Shsilver (CC)

Sci Fi fans, are you pro or anti Puppies? Or if you’ve no idea what I’m talking about, the Wall Street Journal reports on the internecine war amongst science fiction aficionados over the Hugo Awards:

Theodore Beale had a big day when the nominations for science fiction’s annual Hugo Awards were announced last month: He received two nominations for his editing work, and nine stories and books from Castalia House, the tiny publisher where he is lead editor, won nominations.

Quite a feat, since Mr. Beale—better known in the science-fiction world by his pen name, Vox Day—is probably now the most despised man in science fiction. In 2013, he was expelled from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America after he used the group’s Twitter feed to link to his criticisms of a black female writer as an “ignorant half-savage.” He has called women’s rights “a disease” and homosexuality a “birth defect.”

So why are he and the Castalia House authors being honored?

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Dark Star: H. R. Giger’s World

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Giger holding his first human skull. It was a gift from his father when Giger was only six. In the film, Giger explains that he would drag the skull down the street by a string.

One year ago this month, the iconic sci-fi artist, H.R. Giger, passed away. Undoubtedly his legacy will live on, not only as the creator of the Alien, but also as the preeminent producer of biomechanical art. Filmmaker Belinda Sallin’s Dark Star: H.R. Giger’s World is a stunning tribute to the man and his work. Premiering only months after Giger passed away, the film explores the totality of Giger’s life and work in a way few documentaries are able to do. Unlike posthumous documentaries, Dark Star exists in a definitive and finite atmosphere starring the subject himself.

The film expertly encapsulates and immerses itself within the same, dark world that Giger and his work inhabited. Dark Star opens with a winding shot from high to low angles of Giger’s eccentric house.… Read the rest

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1906 Illustrations of H. G. Wells’ ‘The War of the Worlds’

Henrique Alvim Corrêa, a Brazilian artist who worked primarily in Belgium, specialized in military and science fiction illustration. In 1906, he illustrated a French translation of H. G. Wells’s The War of the Worlds. Corrêa’s illustrations were definitely ahead of their time. Their atmosphere and texture echo modern science fiction art. Unfortunately only 500 copies of this edition were ever produced, but Corrêa’s artworks are currently up for auction.

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War of the Worlds. Translated from English by Henry D. Davray. Illustrated by Alvim Corrêa.

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“How to Build a Universe That Doesn’t Fall Apart Two Days Later” by Philip K. Dick, 1978

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Philip k dick drawing” by Pete Welsch from Washington, DC, USA – Philip K Dick. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

 

Via Deoxy.org

by Philip K. Dick 1978

First, before I begin to bore you with the usual sort of things science fiction writers say in speeches, let me bring you official greetings from Disneyland. I consider myself a spokesperson for Disneyland because I live just a few miles from it—and, as if that were not enough, I once had the honor of being interviewed there by Paris TV.

For several weeks after the interview, I was really ill and confined to bed. I think it was the whirling teacups that did it. Elizabeth Antebi, who was the producer of the film, wanted to have me whirling around in one of the giant teacups while discussing the rise of fascism with Norman Spinrad… an old friend of mine who writes excellent science fiction.… Read the rest

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Astronomers spot clouds on Mars: Is the U.S. Government terraforming the red planet?

Via Shepard Ambellas at Intellihub:

Cloud-like formations were originally spotted within the atmosphere of Mars by astronomers in 2012, leading some to believe the planet may be habitable or is being transformed in some way to make it so.

In fact images show the vapor formation to be over 621 miles across, which is larger than any other formation previously spotted within the red planet’s atmosphere to date.

A planetary scientist with the European Space Agency says this “raises more questions than answers”.

Damien Peach, an astronomer said, “I noticed this projection sticking out of the side of the planet. To begin with, I thought there was a problem with the telescope or camera. But as I checked more of the images, I realized it was a real feature – and it was quite a surprise.”

According to reports the haze lasted about 10-days before reemerging about 30-days later as it appears these new clouds are beginning to form in a more consistent manner than ever before, bringing only one thing to mind — the 1990 science fiction film Total Recall starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

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Ridley Scott Will Produce Arthur C. Clarke’s ‘3001: The Final Odyssey’ TV Miniseries

Fans of Stanley Kubrick’s classic movie adaption of Arthur C. Clarke’s 2001: A Space Odyssey may – or may not – be thrilled that a sequel is coming courtesy of Syfy and Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions. From Deadline.com:

Forty six years after the release of Stanley Kubrick’s groundbreaking 2001: A Space Odyssey, the final book in Arthur C. Clarke’s Odyssey series is getting a screen adaptation. Syfy has put in development 3001: The Final Odyssey, a miniseries based on the fourth and final Odyssey book. The deal comes on the heels of Syfy recently greenlighting a miniseries adaptation of another Clarke classic, Childhood’s End.

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3001, from Scott Free Prods. and Warner Horizon TV, is described as an epic story of a man lost in time and dark thematic meditations on the final fate of all Humankind, It begins with the discovery of Frank Poole’s frozen body, floating in space, and resolves the tale that started in 2001: A Space Odyssey

[continues at Deadline.com]

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William Gibson interview: time travel, virtual reality, and his new book

William Gibson (CC by-sa 2.0)

William Gibson (CC by-sa 2.0)

via The Verge:

Our geography is dissolving into the digital.

Science fiction author William Gibson’s work, from cyberpunk classic Neuromancer to his more recent, less overtly futuristic novels, is usually more concerned with smart cultural analysis than plotting the mechanics of new technology. Gibson has given us a lens to see everything from high fashion to virtual reality, coining the term “cyberspace” to refer to what would soon become a ubiquitous computer network in the real world (“And they won’t let me forget it,” he quipped after being introduced with that factoid in the TV show Wild Palms.)

But time travel is one of the most mechanical genres around — not necessarily in scientific rationale, but in the rigorous attempt to fit together pieces of the past, present, and future without leaving loose ends or, at worst, unresolved paradoxes. And Gibson’s latest novel, The Peripheral, fits at least a few of its tropes.

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[Rap News] The Singularity – feat. Ray Kurzweil & Alex Jones

“Today we travel into the pure world of sci-fi to investigate the much vaunted, mysterious potential future event known as ‘The Singularity’. What will a machine consciousness mean for humanity? What are the ethical, political, military and philosophical implications of strong A.I.? And what would an AI sound like when spitting rhymes over a dope beat? All this and more shall be revealed in Rap News 28: The Singularity – featuring a special appearance from famed technocrat, futurist and inventor, Ray Kurzweil, in full TED talk mode; everyone’s favourite warmonger, General Baxter; and we welcome back the dauntless info warrior Alex Jones, who last made an appearance in RN6. Join Robert Foster on this epic Sci-Fi quest into the future/past of humanity.”

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