Too Like the Lightning: intricate worldbuilding, brilliant speculation, gripping storytelling

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Ada Palmer -- historian, musician, librettist -- debuts as a novelist today with a book called Too Like the Lightning, a book more intricate, more plausible, more significant than any debut I can recall.

Weird porn author who was dragged into Hugo Awards mess pulls off epic troll

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For the second year in a row, a bunch of disgruntled "conservative" sf readers and writers are attempting to destroy science fiction's Hugo Awards by nominating slates of works that are, variously: rabid racist tracts; works by their ideological opponents; tepid military sf; works by bystanders; and weird porn by Chuck Tingle, a master of the form, who has nothing to do with any of this. Read the rest

Can a sexbot be a murderer?

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Paolo Bacigalupi's new short story "Mika Model" is a detective tale about a murdering sexbot. Read the rest

Merriam-Webster adds "genderqueer" to dictionary

A gender-neutral bathroom is seen at the University of California, Irvine, 2014 [Reuters]

Merriam-Webster is to add "genderqueer" to its unabridged English dictionary; also "cisgender".

Cisgender: of, relating to, or being a person whose gender identity corresponds with the sex the person had or was identified as having at birth.

Genderqueer: of, relating to, or being a person whose gender identity cannot be categorized as solely male or female.

Which pronoun? TIP: Whichever they want. Read the rest

The only man to never have seen a woman

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In 1938, Mihailo Tolotos died at age 82. He's considered to have been the only man to have lived such a long life "without ever seeing a woman." Tolotos, whose mother died at childbirth, lived all his years as a monk in one of Greece's Mt. Ethos monasteries where only men are permitted. Of course, Tolotos's claim to fame doesn't account for people who are blind since birth, but it's still a rather curious story anyway.

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New rideshare service bets women are ready to leave Uber's sleazy, rape-friendly service

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Chariot for Women is a new woman-only rideshare service launched by a former Uber driver who had a bad run-in with a hulking drunk dude that made him realize how scary things must be for woman riders and drivers both. Read the rest

"The difference between girls and boys"

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As a wise man once said, "It's funny cause it's true."

Cop to it yourself at /r/funny/.

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How to write about scientists who are women

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The "Finkbeiner Test," created in 2013 by science writers Ann Finkbeiner and Christie Aschwanden, challenges science writers who are profiling scientists who happen to be women to write about them without mentioning their gender, childcare arrangements, husband's occupation, etc. Read the rest

Indiana women phone the governor's office to tell him about their periods

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Now that Indiana Governor Mike Pence has signed one of the most extreme anti-abortion laws in the country -- which includes a ban on abortions based on race, sex and disability, requiring abortion doctors to ask invasive personal questions of women seeking to terminate their pregnancies -- women in his state have decided that they will give him the intimate information about their reproductive health that he so obviously craves. Read the rest

Kickstarting a history of women and free speech in comics from CBLDF

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Charles from the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund sez, "CBLDF is kickstarting She Changed Comics, a history of how women changed free expression in comics!" Read the rest

US Embassy staffer ran a sextortion racket from work computer for 2 years

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Michael C Ford has been sentenced to four years and nine months in prison, having pleaded guilty to running a sextortion/phishing operation from his work computer at the US embassy in London for two years. Read the rest

Sheriff says rape kits are irrelevant because most rape accusations are false

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Bingham County, Idaho Sheriff Craig Rowland told a TV interviewer that he opposes a bill to centrally collect and track rape kits because "the majority of our rapes that are called in are actually consensual sex." Read the rest

More high-profile resignations at Breitbart, after abused reporter thrown under Trump's bus

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After Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields was beaten up by one of Donald Trump's aides while covering a Florida campaign event, the company's senior management sided with Trump, ordering staff to cease communicating about their colleague's treatment. Read the rest

Canada's next bank notes will feature portraits of women

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...instead of Spock's great-great-great-grandfather. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made the announcement on Twitter on International Women's Day, and invited the public to nominate women to appear on the new notes. Read the rest

The biggest abortion lie of all: "They do it for the money"

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The anti-choice movement likes to claim that abortion is a big business, that the doctors who risk their lives to help women are in it for the money. Read the rest

Archbishop of St Louis says Girl Scout Cookies encourage sin

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Robert Carlson, the archbishop of St Louis, MO, has circulated a two-page letter to his flock in which he raises the question, "Can I still buy Girl Scout cookies?" Read the rest

Sarah Jeong's Harvard lecture: "The Internet of Garbage"

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Lawyer and journalist Sarah Jeong is one of the net's best writers, and her new ebook, The Internet Of Garbage, grapples with misogynist harassment and threats online. Read the rest

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