Is it theoretically possible to design a computer program that can take an organism's DNA and produce a model of that organism, without being given any other information? (It does not need to be possible with current tech, just theoretically possible.) This is, of course, for a story. [more inside]
No, seriously. I keep on rereading the first two-thirds of Neal Stephenson's Seveneves, and I gotta get out of this place. Please make me aware of other things I should read. [more inside]
I want to separate the wheat from the chaff. [more inside]
Looking for specific examples of extremely creative, well-drawn chase sequences (through outer space, preferably involving spaceships) that you have seen depicted in a comic book or graphic novel. Please be as specific as possible so I can go buy the issue online. Bonus points for double-page spreads!
My wife and I do a radio show on a community station in Canada, usually roughly theming the show around something in the community (or going on with us) every week. A comic-book/SF convention is rolling through town next weekend. We try to have a lot of Canadian content on the show. What Canadian musicians have performed songs about SF/fantasy/comic-book themes? [more inside]
I've been watching the 1978-1979 Hanna-Barbera Godzilla series with my son. There's one episode where the characters encounter the lost city of Atlantis, which turns out to be an alien spaceship. The depiction is similar to the Atlantis city/ship from the Stargate TV series. I'm wondering when the earliest depiction of Atlantis as spaceship occurred. [more inside]
Following a recent conversation about the increasingly sophisticated ecosystem of outsourcing papers and homework assignments, I was reminded that sometime in the Spring or Summer of 2015 I read a science fiction story that now seems eerily prescient. Help me find it? [more inside]
Hi guys, does anyone have recommendations for titles or authors to discover Indian "sci-fi" books or authors? [more inside]
I'm trying to find stories and/or novels which are mostly about something else but also include a bit of time travel, with that aspect of the story only made clear toward the end. [more inside]
I'm looking for suggestions for potential nominations for the upcoming Hugos and Retro-Hugos. Difficulty level: NOT the categories for fiction, film, or television. [more inside]
I'd like to read some fantasy or science fiction that has the same flavor and feel as Steven Universe. Any recommendations? [more inside]
I'm looking for plastic, "realistic" plants that nonetheless look like they came from the jungles of Venus. Not the boring, toxic, crushing atmosphere Venus of pedestrian reality — I'm talking Edgar Rice Burroughs/SM Stirling "Old Venus" stuff, the lush, tropical, alien world filled with exotic life-forms & swashbuckling adventure for intrepid rocket-troopers to explore, raygun and boarding cutlass in hand. [more inside]
What are some works of science fiction that feature 3D printing or similar technologies? [more inside]
My 17yo son just finished the last available book in the Game is Life series by Terry Schott and is looking for other books he might enjoy. What he likes: YA science fiction, light fantasy, in-depth character development. Other books he has enjoyed: His Majesty's Dragon, The Martian, and Ender's Game. Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks!
I want to send some science fiction and/or fantasy books to someone. These are practically the only genres I DON'T read, and for various reasons I can't ask the recipient for a wish list. Please recommend some science fiction and fantasy books that would be good choices and that are available in paperback. Stand-alone titles are strongly preferred, but series are OK too. I'd also consider some good anthologies if they're available in paperback. Thanks!
I'm kicking around some ideas for a sci-fi story about trash. For inspiration, I'm looking for trash-related passages from sci-fi works (e.g. there have to be some in Neuromancer), fiction or non-fiction about electronic waste, articles about trash from different eras, and articles tracing the provenance of trash, analogous to the links within. [more inside]
A friend's birthday is coming up. He likes to play darts (plays in a league) and he likes to read. I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions for gifts that might combine both. [more inside]
I'm looking for more science fiction to read, along the lines of The Martian or Seveneves, where solving engineering challenges is a major part of the story. Lots of technical detail is good.
I really enjoy posts that solve bookmysteries with links to free, old science fiction. Where's the great and secret library of it? [more inside]
If I greatly enjoyed Ted Chiang's "Understand", Lucy, Flowers for Algernon and Limitless, what other works along the same "superintelligence", "hyperbrain" or "gifted with superhuman intelligence amongst a world of normal people" theme would I enjoy? [more inside]
Where do you read novellas, novelettes and short stories in science fiction? Whom do you suggest? During the golden age of sf I relied on Analog/Astounding, but after all the recent Hugo drama I have realized that I barely keep up with the new novels. Looking back at the titles that won Hugos and Nebulas, I realized how many of the shorter pieces I truly loved and I feel the need to get to know the youngish writers. Tell me whom I should read and where I'll find that author.
AskMe is so good at this kind of thing! I read a science fiction novel when I was young, in the early 80s, although it may have been written earlier. The protagonist was a teenage girl who had been kidnapped because of her rare ability to see and travel through interdimensional portals. [more inside]
Short story I read as a kid, so published before 1990. Beetles meet in (?Central) Park to discuss, or succeed, in stealing a scarab from a major museum. The cockroaches have a chant - 'Blatt Blatt Blatt go the Blattodea!'
Specifically, how likely is something like the "jackpot" in Gibson's new book to happen? Spoilers below the fold. [more inside]
I only remember a few details, but it left an impression. Protagonist a very stable, socially responsible woman. The Powers That Be for reasons I can't remember offered her rejuvenation therapy... [more inside]
I'm looking for a good anthology of time travel stories to give to someone. [more inside]
There are numerous shorthand descriptions of various phenomena, like Rule 34 and Godwin's law and Sturgeon's law. Is there a shorthand term for the tendency of science fiction writers to ramp up sexual content over time? I know Heinlein did it over time. Niven did it in the Ringworld series. Simmons apparently did it. Now I find out that Herbert did it in the later Dune books. It seems to be a common phenomenon, but is there a specific name for it?
Who was the anthropologist who suggested that multinational corporations are the highest life forms on Earth? Author William Gibson has recounted going to a lecture by a female anthropologist at the University of British Columbia in the late 70s. The anthropologist posited the idea that multinational corporations were the highest life form on Earth, which had a profound influence on Gibson's world view, and therefore on literature influenced by Gibson. Who was this anthropologist? I haven't been able to find out who she was.
I think a lot of (speculative fiction author) Robert Sheckley's work is brilliant and masterful. Especially the stuff he published in the 1950s and 1960s. But I've wondered for years why there was such a sharp decline in quality in it around the 1970s and thereafter. Does anybody know? [more inside]
Inspired by this thread about unintentional historical double entendres, I'm looking for a science fiction short story that was published twenty or so years ago. [more inside]
Could anyone help me identify science fiction novels whose central theme is society forgetting science? I was listening to the radio a few weeks ago and I heard a description of a novel about society moving back to pre-enlightenment levels of knowledge and I thought it sounded interesting. I don't remember any details about the book mentioned but I'm open to reading any good books about losing knowledge.
I remember reading a SciFi story when I was a kid about a man who was revered because he could heal any disease. His body would go through a strange biological cycle allowing these healing powers only for a short time. The problem was that later in that cycle, he harbored infectious diseases that caused harm to anyone close to him until the cycle completed and he became "pure" once again. The name escapes me and all searches for the title have failed. Can you help me? Thanks!
I'm interested in good science fiction in any format (book, film, comics, etc.) that explores that idea that we are not alone in the universe, but wildly mismatched with everybody or nearly every else in terms of civilization stages, kinds of technology, perception, etc. [more inside]
I can't find any sources that really explain how they'd work to a science illiterate like me. Can anyone point me in the right direction? Even fiction will help, seeing as it's for a story of my own. [more inside]
What are some works of SFF that showcase beautiful language on a par with All The King's Men, Gilead, and Raymond Chandler's detective novels? I've read plenty of SFF that has transported me, but little that's struck me as gorgeously written. Thanks!
The story followed an alcoholic ex military leader as he tried to reach the control room (head) of a giant humanoid robot so large that it housed an entire civilization. That's about all I remember. I believe it was written by an author generally known for more literary fiction rather than SF.
I am looking for post-apocalyptic sci fi books for my husband. He is currently convalescing from a back injury, and when Husband is bored, Wife suffers. [more inside]
What are the best scifi and/or fantasy book series that are consistently great from novel to novel? For my purposes this would be a series of at least three books, and probably no more than... six? ish? (I might be cutting it short; this is a general estimate of about how long my interest tends to remain keen. Not a dealbreaker if a bit more). I'm looking for the sorts of books that really draw you into the fictional world and have a lot of character building, with few or no "weak links" from book to book. [more inside]
I'm desperately searching for a new series. I'm in the mood for an academic leaning fantasy romance, which is almost too specific. Help me not go crazy in my search? [more inside]
Are there any "civilization is ruined, zombies/marauders/robots are killing the survivors, we must rebuild/get to the final refuge" stories in any medium where the main characters are not mainly caucasian people?
Lots of genre TV stars have written memoirs, but do any of them go into detail about life on the convention circuit? [more inside]
Please help me figure out what science fiction story this is. Here's what I believe I remember correctly (but we all know how fallible/inaccurate memory is): [more inside]
Help me find a book where the characters switch between boy and girl each year and must decide as an adult which sex/gender they'll remain for the rest of their lives. [more inside]
I'm trying to identify/find this pre-1980 story set in America, about an epidemic (highly contagious, spread skin-to-skin) where everyone's turns grey and the victims have hallucinations. The protagonist is on the run (along with a woman?), trying to escape roaming victims (who have a craving to touch his uninfected skin). In that last aspect, it has a zombie apocalypse feel to it. I believe it was a little-known work by a big-name author. Can anyone tell me what it is? SPOILERS BELOW [more inside]
I've gotten out of the loop on recent Science Fiction writing. What are the best science fiction short stories and novels published within the last year?
He's remembering a story about a couple who lives their whole relationship in a virtual world. His memories inside. [more inside]
Please help me find good quotes about how and why sci-fi is inspired by science, or how science is inspired by sci-fi.
A Facebook discussion about good books by well-known authors passing into undeserved obscurity had me looking up reviews of Arthur C. Clarke's Imperial Earth. In the comments on Jo Walton's review there's a discussion about the ending, specifically whether he wrote two distinct endings, replacing the an earlier one in later editions. Did Clarke rewrite the ending? Spoilers below the cut. [more inside]
I'm looking for a solid science fiction novel to enjoy and then send along to a friend whom I owe a book. Recommendations will be much appreciated; a few details are provided below the fold. [more inside]