„My science fiction has different ancestors — African ones,“ says writer Nnedi Okorafor. In between excerpts from her „Binti“ series and her novel „Lagoon,“ Okorafor discusses the inspiration and roots of her work — and how she opens strange doors through her Afrofuturist writing.
This video is an explanation of how time travel functions in different popular movies, books, & shows – not how it works “under the hood“, but how it causally affects the perspective of characters’ timelines (who has free will? can you change things by going back to the past or forwards into the future?). In particular, I explain Ender’s Game, Planet of the Apes, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Primer, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Back to the Future, Groundhog Day, Looper, the video game “Braid”, and Lifeline.
I propose that worldbuilding is the primary distinguishing characteristic of SF and fantasy (at least at a superficial level). Get the worldbuilding wrong, and your readers won’t be able to get a grip on the story line or the motivation of your characters. Or worse — they’ll get a grip, and realize that your story is, at best, a western or an age-of-sail yarn with the serial numbers filed off: that the trappings of the fantastic are only there to add a spurious sense of exoticism to an everyday tale.
Charlie Stross via World building 101 – Charlie’s Diary.
Romania has had a long history of science fiction from the end of the 19th century. This article summarises the highlights up to 1990
Sunday links for 2009-06-28:
- Too complex to exist: Why complex systems collapse
- Dymaxion Designs from the Buckminster Fuller Institute
- How Highway Adoption Signs are Repurposed for Political Goals
- Four crowdsourcing lessons from the Guardian’s expenses-scandal experiment
- A Guide to International Science Fiction & Fantasy
- Recent scenes from the ISS
- A great magazine on particle physics: symmetry Magazine
- The World Simulation Project at Kansas State University
Yesterday I posted a link related to the death of JG Ballard. I think this Guardian article sums up why Ballard was more than a mere science fiction writer, and it elegantly condenses my fascination with Ballard in a sole paragraph:
The young science fiction author „wasn’t interested in the far future, spaceships and all that“, he explained; rather he was interested in „the evolving world, the world of hidden persuaders, of the communications landscape developing, of mass tourism, of the vast conformist suburbs dominated by television – that was a form of science fiction, and it was already here“.