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Science fiction, science fact, and all that's in between ...



Last Build Date: Sun, 08 Oct 2017 16:24:17 +0000

 



Bolshie centennial

Sun, 08 Oct 2017 16:24:17 +0000

In Europe, we knew that the Nazis never really went away.  But we never used to put them on mainstream fucking television.  We never used to stick them on cable news and ask them for their fucking opinions.  When you can open the Overton Window and march a few thousand fascists through it, then it’s … Continue reading Bolshie centennial



The ecstasy of submission

Tue, 26 Sep 2017 16:20:10 +0000

It’s done. Still gotta defend it at the viva, but it’s done. So, who fancies giving me a job, eh?



This metaphor has unexamined implications.

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 07:17:36 +0000

Computer scientists have an aphorism that describes how algorithms relentlessly hunt for patterns: they talk about torturing the data until it confesses. Yet this metaphor contains unexamined implications. Data, like victims of torture, tells its interrogator what it wants to hear. Franklin Foer. Pattern recognition has become pattern imposition.



Hype cycles, heroic journeys and the wizards of innovation

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 10:45:39 +0000

I think of the Gartner Hype Cycle as a Hero’s Journey for technologies. And just like the hero’s journey, the Hype Cycle is a compelling narrative structure. When we consider many of the technologies in use today, we tend to recall that they were overhyped when they first arrived, but eventually found their way to … Continue reading Hype cycles, heroic journeys and the wizards of innovation



On the Obsolescence of the Bourgeois Novel in the Anthropocene

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 10:31:24 +0000

If sci-fi convincingly simulates another world, it gives the reader ways of imagining our world otherwise. Science fiction is more, not less, “realist” than literary fiction. It does not produce the fiction of a severed part of a world, as if the rest was predictable from the part. It produces a fiction of a whole … Continue reading On the Obsolescence of the Bourgeois Novel in the Anthropocene