"Purposeful objects that solve their own problems"

Dan Grayber's Cavity Mechanism series of sculptures are a hymn to "purposeful objects that solve their own problems," in which gravity acts upon systems of pulleys and scaffolds and wires to suspend weighty rocks in motionless perfection under glass domes. Read the rest

How to get a signed, personalized copy of Walkaway sent to your door!

The main body of the tour for my novel Walkaway is done (though there are still upcoming stops at Denver Comic-Con, San Diego Comic-Con, the Burbank Public Library and Defcon in Las Vegas), but you can still get signed, personalized copies of Walkaway! Read the rest

What colors do you get when you spell words in hex?

The hexidecimal color #C0FFEE (192 Red, 255 Green, 238 Blue, on a scale of 0-255) is a pleasing greenish color, while #BEADED is a kind of mauve. Read the rest

Steven Boyett on Fata Morgana, his new WWII/alt-history mashup novel

Today on John Scalzi's Whatever blog, Steven R Boyett (author of the classic fantasy novel Ariel) writes about Fata Morgana, the new alternate history/WWII novel he's just published with Ken Mitchroney. Read the rest

Journalism After Snowden: essays about a free press in a surveillance state

Journalism After Snowden: The Future of the Free Press in the Surveillance State is a new essay collection from Columbia Journalism Review Books with contributions from Ed Snowden, Alan Rusbridger (former editor-in-chief of The Guardian); Jill Abramson (former New York Times executive editor; Glenn Greenwald, Steve Coll (Dean of Columbia Graduate School of Journalism), Clay Shirky, Cass Sunstein, and Julia Angwin. Read the rest

Binky: a fully automated social network that doesn't require you to be sociable

Have you ever wished you had a social media feed you could like, fave, signal boost and comment on without having to actually interact with people in any way? Binky has you covered. Read the rest

Automattic's teleworking program is so successful they're closing their San Francisco office

Automattic -- the company behind WordPress -- has a fantastic teleworking policy that lets workers chose whether to come into offices in Portland, MN, Capetown, South Africa, and San Francisco, or to spend up to $250/month on a co-working space near them, or to work at any coffee shop with a stipend to pay for the coffee. Read the rest

Coup! Serial satire uses imaginary Mike Pence coup to lampoon Trump's "presidency"

Gersh Kuntzman's serialized novel "Coup!" is notionally the memoir of a retired CIA operative ("Deep State") who, having discovered he had terminal cancer, decided to help Mike Pence invoke the 25th Amendment and stage a coup deposing Donald Trump and installing himself as President Handmaid's Tale, with a coterie of morally flexible billionaires who'd been bought off of Trump's cabinet with promises of special favors and steady leadership. Read the rest

How science fiction writers' "design fiction" is playing a greater role in policy debates

Science fiction writers have a long history of intervening/meddling in policy, but historically this has been in the form of right-wing science fiction writers spinning fanciful superweapon ideas like Ronald Reagan's Star Wars system, or the writers who pitched in with the GW Bush team after 9/11 to design the brutal, endless "War on Terror" we're currently mired in. Read the rest

A comic that profiles Columbia University's first-ever comics curator

Nick Sousanis is the comics creator who broke ground in 2015 by being the first doctoral candidate to submit a dissertation in comics form and ever since, he's been doing wonderful nonfiction work in the form, on subjects ranging from entropy to climate change to elections. Read the rest

Chicago! I'll see you tomorrow at Printers Row!

I'm on stage tomorrow at 11:30 with Mary Robinette Kowal (free tickets here) -- we'll be talking about my new novel, Walkaway. Can't wait to see you! Read the rest

How EFF cracked printers' "hidden dots" code in 2005

NSA whistleblower Reality Winner may have been caught thanks to a hidden pattern of dots that color printers bury in every page they print, as an assistance to law enforcement agencies. Read the rest

To do in San Francisco this Sunday: Steven Boyett and Ken Mitchroney at SF in SF

The SF in SF reading series is back this Sunday at the American Bookbinders Museum, with Steven "Ariel" Boyett and Ken Mitchroney, authors of the outstanding new WWII/alternate history novel Fata Morgana. Read the rest

Newspeak House: East London's den of civic hackers

Newspeak House (AKA NWSPK) is a co-working space (with a few bedrooms!) in East London that houses an eclectic mix of civic hackers: people working to make British (and global) democracy more responsive, more representative, and more transparent. Read the rest

Anthony Burgess's lost, incomplete slang dictionary re-discovered

Burgess's fascination with slang extended well past Nadsat, the synthetic Russo-English dialect he invented for A Clockwork Orange; his autobiography mentions in passing that he'd begun work on a dictionary of slang but gave it up: "I’ve done A and B and find that a good deal of A and B is out of date or has to be added to, and I could envisage the future as being totally tied up with such a dictionary." Read the rest

Chicago! Come see me and Mary Robinette Kowal at the Printers Row Lit Fest this Sunday!

The Walkaway tour is in its literary festival phase now, and my next stop is an appearance this Sunday at the Printers Row Lit Fest in Chicago, where I'll be talking Walkaway with the incredible Mary Robinette Kowal at 11:30 (free tickets here). Read the rest

Donate to support GnuPG, the backbone of email privacy and security

It's been two years since the net came together to raise funds to support Werner Koch, who maintains the absolutely vital GnuPG email encryption system, used daily by millions to protect the privacy and integrity of their email. Read the rest

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