My pal Karl Schroeder, a brilliant sf writer, gave an excellent interview to the Small World podcast. Karl is the best worldbuilder in the business, with novels like Ventus
(a world of nanoaware semantically tagged devices gone mad), Permanence
(an interstellar cult sets out to ensure that humans don't become nonsentient spacefarers who build space-ships like beavers build dams) and others (I've just finished reading and blurbing his incredible forthcoming novel Sun of Suns
, which has wooden spaceships fighting zero-gravity kerosene-mine wars in a giant pressurized bag of fullerene that encompasses a lost civilization that has escaped the Singularity). Karl and I even wrote a book together, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Publishing Science Fiction.
Karl has blown my mind every time we've had a conversation, ever since I first met him in a writers' workshop at 16. He was the first person to tell me about fractals, chaos, Unix, gopher, and evolutionary psychology. His interview roams over numerous themes and subjects and provides some key insights into how he accomplishes his amazing, wildly imaginative world-building. He even talks about what it was like growing up as a Mennonite tech-geek.
(Thanks, Bazooka Joe!)
It’s the end of an era, sort of: Fraunhofer IIS, the developers of the MP3 audio compression format, announced that they are ceasing their licensing program. In a blog post, spokesman Matthias Rose says that it’s had a good 20-year run and is obsolete. But it’s also true that the decoding patents expired last year, […]
Freddy deBoer writes that he’s been telling the same joke for years about Silicon Valley’s only product, which might be universalized as “At last, a way to verb with nouns on the internet!” But the social-media techopoly is stable, now, and so the venture capitalists have moved on to the three terrible trends that will […]
Alex Wood is an addict but won’t give up his smartphone. But he has five strategies for limiting its control over him: “I used to wake up tired. My body would ache and my head felt sore, like waking up with a hangover. Finally, I took control, like attending an AA class for addicts, I […]
While some people still maintain that everything in Apple’s walled garden “just works” and is immune to the rampant malware of the Windows world, the reality is different. The Mac’s growing market share has made it a much more viable target for malicious actors, and its built-in tools aren’t always enough to fix things. Drive […]
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