Experts Gather To Discuss Whether We Should Send Messages To Aliens

This coming weekend at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, experts will be discussing the potential benefits and risks of a SETI scheme in which messages about Earth — including the entire contents of Wikipedia — would be transmitted to hundreds of star systems. » 2/09/15 8:40am 2/09/15 8:40am

Are We Overthinking the Dangers of Artificial Intelligence?

Futurists and science fiction authors often give us overly grim visions of the future, especially when it comes to the Singularity and the risks of artificial superintelligence. Scifi novelist David Brin talked to us about why these dire predictions are often simplistic and unreasonable. » 10/07/14 11:14am 10/07/14 11:14am

10 Great Novels That Will Make You More Passionate About Science

Many of the world's greatest scientists were inspired to go into their fields by reading science fiction books. And it's easy to see why. A lot of the best science fiction features scientists who solve problems and make breakthroughs. Here are 10 great novels that will inspire you with a new love of science. » 8/07/14 10:09am 8/07/14 10:09am

Will 2014 prove to be the official start of the 21st Century?

Scifi author and futurist David Brin has penned a fascinating piece for Bloomerg in which he argues that the previous two centuries didn't really get going until their 14th year — and that 2014 could follow a similar pattern. » 1/02/14 4:00pm 1/02/14 4:00pm

​Peter Singer and David Brin to speak at animal personhood conference

The final list of speakers has been announced for Personhood Beyond the Human, a conference devoted to the issue of granting human-like legal protections to a select group of highly sapient nonhuman animals. » 11/22/13 2:34pm 11/22/13 2:34pm

New Project to Message Aliens is Both Useless and Potentially Reckless

A group of scientists and entrepreneurs has created the world’s first continuous message beacon to communicate with extraterrestrial civilizations. And for a fee, people can use it to transmit their own messages into space. But not everyone thinks this project is a good idea. » 6/12/13 10:23am 6/12/13 10:23am

Should we upgrade the intelligence of animals?

Well, it finally happened. As we reported last week, scientists have successfully enhanced the intelligence of rhesus monkeys using a brain implant, albeit temporarily. Futurists and science fiction authors have speculated about this possibility for years — and now the reality is upon us. And it's clear that this… » 9/17/12 10:35am 9/17/12 10:35am

Would You Give Up Your Privacy to Live in Utopia?

It's easy to invent a dystopian future — just take the worst aspects of the world around you, and ugly them up. But what about dreaming of a better world, or even a perfect society? Some of the noblest science fiction writers and futurists have imagined a future utopia, in which all of our problems have been solved… » 6/29/12 1:31pm 6/29/12 1:31pm

David Brin's Existence will make you think about the future a whole new…

David Brin has created some of the greatest classics of recent science fiction, including Startide Rising, plus the short stories "The Crystal Spheres" and "Thor Meets Captain America," the latter of which was the basis of the graphic novel The Life Eaters. So Brin's first novel in a decade is cause for celebration. » 6/18/12 4:19pm 6/18/12 4:19pm

David Brin on the Need to Restore Optimism to Science Fiction

David Brin fans can rejoice: It's been nearly a decade since his last novel, Kiln People, but the critically acclaimed science fiction writer is now set to release his much anticipated book, Existence, on June 21st. » 5/01/12 4:39pm 5/01/12 4:39pm

David Brin's Startide Rising takes off, but could use more gravity

Dolphin starship pilots! Chimpanzee scientists! Hordes of vicious aliens! And a fleet of billion-year-old warships connected to a galactic conspiracy. 1984's Hugo-winning novel Startide Rising has everything — yet something important is missing. » 10/22/11 11:00am 10/22/11 11:00am

David Brin proposes using a computer model to simplify the U.S. tax code

The United States tax code is a thing of wonderment in its insane complexity. But what if we could massively simplify the code — without changing anybody's tax burden? David Brin, author of the Uplift novels, has a suggestion. » 5/17/11 1:30pm 5/17/11 1:30pm

Read science fiction to understand the things that mainstream pundits…

Why should you be reading more science fiction? Not just for the thrills or awesome science. You should read SF to explore ideas about society that academics and pundits won't talk about, writes Walter Russell Mead in The American Interest. » 9/22/10 9:00am 9/22/10 9:00am

How many definitions of science fiction are there?

Science fiction is the literature of our times, the fuel of our imaginations and the source of our favorite imaginary worlds. But what do we mean when we talk about "science fiction?" Here are some of the many definitions. » 8/27/10 7:30am 8/27/10 7:30am

Why Scientists Should Read Science Fiction

Scientists may already understand all of the scientific topics that science fiction addresses, so why should they bother reading it? Scientist Hannah Waters explains why. » 7/22/10 11:00am 7/22/10 11:00am

How To Jog Your Memory, The Science Fiction Hero Way

The busier you get, the more stuff you forget, and navigating that mental clutter can be worse than steering through an asteroid field. Luckily, lots of intrepid galactic heroes have faced faulty memories, and created some handy techniques for remembering. » 12/07/09 10:30am 12/07/09 10:30am

Why Aren't Aliens Talking to Us?

Several of the most imaginative minds in science fiction (and science) gathered at this year's Readercon to discuss a fundamental question of our existence: Why does it seem like we're alone in the universe? Writers Jeff Hecht, Steven Popkes, Robert J. Sawyer, Ian Randal Strock, and Michael A. Burstein offered their… » 7/23/08 7:00am 7/23/08 7:00am

Greet Your New Lesbian Overlords!

With Y: The Last Man wrapping up and turning into a movie, the science fiction cliche of the female-dominated planet is red-hot once again. The cosmos is safe for our red-blooded spacemen to venture to worlds where there are no men, or where men are subjugated and the women wear funny headgear. But what about the… » 3/10/08 1:30pm 3/10/08 1:30pm

5 Reasons To Stop Reading Science Fiction

Science fiction is doomed! The genre is a toothless wreck, praying to overdose on its pain meds, says a gang of critics. (Actually, they're only talking about the books, and only the books shelved under "science fiction.") The reasons why SF is obsolete or pointless or dead depend on which rant you read. But here are… » 12/11/07 1:30pm 12/11/07 1:30pm

Must See: The Postman

Must-see movies are futuristic classics that shouldn't be missed. Of course, not every must-see is perfect. That's why we've rated them 1-5 on the patented "crunchy goodness" scale.

Title: The Postman
Date: 1997

Vitals: A simplistic tale of a guy who fights evil fascists in a post-Apocalyptic United States by… » 9/30/07 10:21pm 9/30/07 10:21pm