What's your favorite massive object in space?

The "Big Dumb Object," as christened by Roz Kaveney, has been a staple of science fiction for decades. But what's your favorite massive freakin space object? Share your most beloved Dyson Sphere, ringworld or mega-space station below! » 5/17/13 3:36pm 5/17/13 3:36pm

21 Pictures that Sum Up the Whole History of Science Fiction

Science fiction is the genre of ideas — but it's also given us some unforgettable pictures along the way. Every era in science fiction's history has shown us a new vision of the strange and futuristic, and one image can spawn a million reflections in your mind's eye. » 11/20/12 10:29am 11/20/12 10:29am

All The Science Fiction and Fantasy Books You Can't Afford to Miss in…

Emily Dickinson had it wrong: There is no star cruiser like a book. When you want to journey past the furthermost limits of your own imagination, you turn to books. And August's new book releases are just packed with brilliant new ideas and thrilling stories, from some of the world's best writers. » 8/03/12 4:29pm 8/03/12 4:29pm

10 Futuristic Technologies That Will Never Exist

Part of the joy of science fiction is seeing all the awesome toys, and imagining how they could exist in the real world. And so many of science fiction's coolest gadgets have come true, including Star Trek's PADDs and communicators. » 8/02/12 10:24am 8/02/12 10:24am

Breathtaking video of what a ringworld would really look like

Imagine a vast, geoengineered ring around a star, its inner surface entirely devoted to human habitation. Larry Niven used this idea for his Ringworld books. And now VFX artist Simon Terrey flies us through Niven's creation in this video. Gorgeous. » 9/14/10 2:19pm 9/14/10 2:19pm

Black Holes! Glamour! Ultra-Violent Reality TV! August Books Have It All

August brings some exciting new speculative fiction releases. We've got conclusions for the Hunger Games and Void trilogies, plus Regency magic and a sentient MMORPG. Here are the books you can't miss out on this month. » 8/04/10 10:39am 8/04/10 10:39am

Ringworld is a lot like Lost, but there's a crucial difference

Larry Niven's Hugo-winning novel from 1971 has a surprising amount in common with network television's biggest sci-fi hit. But what's really interesting is how Ringworld differs from Lost. » 6/19/10 1:00pm 6/19/10 1:00pm

Interactive guide to Larry Niven's Ringworld is the next best thing to…

Dennis Antinori's guide to Larry Niven's Ringworld teems with information about its specs, but that's not all. There's also the equivalent of Google maps for Ringworld — it even lets you zoom in on key locations. Awesome. [Ringworld, via Metafilter] » 6/11/10 2:31pm 6/11/10 2:31pm

Which Science-Fiction Book Series Do You Secretly Wish You Could Take…

We all complain every time Brian Herbert or Eoin Colfer takes over a beloved book saga. Why can't they just leave it alone? But which book series do you secretly fantasize about taking over and totally rocking out with? » 1/15/10 12:01pm 1/15/10 12:01pm

Greatest Swashbuckling Heroes From 100+ Years Of SF Books

They swagger, they fight, they laugh in the face of danger. Science-fiction books have given us some of the greatest swashbuckling heroes, cutting a swathe through space and countless alternate timelines. Here are some of our favorite book heroes. » 11/19/09 4:39pm 11/19/09 4:39pm

Larry Niven Helped Usher In Our Weird World

Ringworld author Larry Niven didn't just pioneer the "cool massive object in space" genre — he also helped predict today's world, including flashmobs, cochlear implants and planets orbiting Epsilon Eridani. NASA even found a possible ringworld, in 2004. [USA Today] » 6/22/09 3:30pm 6/22/09 3:30pm

Our Alien Origins: 21 Panspermia Tales

Planet Earth might be home sweet home, but is it really humanity's birthplace? We explore science fiction stories where humans come from everywhere but Earth, be it by colonization, alien experiments, or good old-fashioned panspermia. » 2/01/09 2:00pm 2/01/09 2:00pm

Top Ten Most Realistic Planets in Science Fiction

One of the worst examples of unrealistic science in movies is the overly simple alien planet. Oftentimes, our heroes will visit the desert planet, or the Irish planet. But the best extraterrestrial worlds in science fiction are the ones with variety and a realistic ecosystem. They have cities as well as countryside,… » 6/11/08 1:55pm 6/11/08 1:55pm


Ringworld's habitable surface would be an amazing thing to see. The setting for Larry Niven's Ringworld novels has thousands of miles of tall mountains at the rim, so you won't fall off the edge (and they also help contain the atmosphere.) More importantly, conditions on Ringworld vary depending on where the sun hits… » 6/11/08 1:19pm 6/11/08 1:19pm

Who Has The Biggest Power Generator In Space?

It takes a lot of energy to zip around the stars standing akimbo in your rolled-down boots. So the best battlecruisers and starships have really powerful energy sources. But what's the most powerful spaceship or station, in terms of energy output? This isn't just an idle question, because we'll need to know which… » 2/28/08 10:00am 2/28/08 10:00am

Dream-Eaters and Three-Sexed Aliens in the Five Greatest World-Building…

What would weather be like if you lived in a planet-sized bag of oxygen? What would reproduction be like if there were a third sex who combined the genetic material of two other sexes by linking them at the neurological level and giving them braingasms? What would scientific progress be like in an anarchist-feminist… » 11/13/07 9:00am 11/13/07 9:00am