"peter watts"

Podcast: The Engagement-Maximization Presidency

In my latest podcast (MP3), I read my May, 2018 Locus column, "The Engagement-Maximization Presidency," where I propose a theory to explain the political phenomenon of Donald Trump: we live in a world in which communications platforms amplify anything that gets "engagement" and provides feedback on just how much your message has been amplified so […]

The 2019 Locus Award nominees: your guide to the best sf/f of 2018

Locus Magazine has published its annual Locus Award finalists, a shortlist of the best science fiction and fantasy of the past calendar year. I rely on this list to find the books I've overlooked (so. many. books.). This year's looks like a bumper crop.

Toronto 2033: science fiction writers imagine the city of the future

Toronto 2033 is a shared-world science fiction anthology edited by the incomparable and multi-talented Jim Munroe (previously), where authors like Zainab Amadahy, Madeline Ashby, Al Donato, Kristyn Dunnion, Elyse Friedman, Paul Hong, Elan Mastai, Mari Ramsawakh, Karl Schroeder and Peter Watts were challenged to imagine a future for the city.

The Freeze-Frame Revolution: mutineers unstuck in time, strung out across an aeon

Peter Watts (previously) is a brilliant bastard of a science fiction writer, whose grim scenarios are matched by their scientific speculation; in his latest, a novella called The Freeze-Frame Revolution, Watts imagines a mutiny that stretches out across aeons, fought against a seemingly omnipotent AI.

Donald Trump is a pathogen evolved to thrive in an attention-maximization ecosystem

My latest Locus column is The Engagement-Maximization Presidency, and it proposes a theory to explain the political phenomenon of Donald Trump: we live in a world in which communications platforms amplify anything that gets "engagement" and provides feedback on just how much your message has been amplified so you can tune and re-tune for maximum […]

Humble Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Bundle: more than 20 DRM-free ebooks, Vandermeer, Bruce Sterling, Peter Beagle, Joe Lansdale, Alistair Reynolds, Nancy Kress and more!

The latest Humble Bundle features the books of the most excellent Tachyon Press, with a who's who of my favorite SF writers and collections, from Ellen Klages and Jeff Vandermeer, to Bruce Sterling and Peter Watts, to Patricia McKillip and Brandon Sanderson, and even me!

Global trumpism: how India's brutal leader manufactures reality with trumped-up "polls"

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is an authoritarian war criminal who is part of the worldwide surge of trumpist leaders and hopefuls, including Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte; Hungary's Viktor Orbán; Russia's Vladimir Putin; South Korea's Park Geun-hye; France's Marine Le Pen; the UK's Nigel Farage, Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and others — bound together by […]

Trump called climate change a Chinese hoax but he wants a massive seawall around his resort

Trump is a climate denier and he's packing his administration with climate deniers; as Peter Watts pointed out, Trump "seems to think that the laws of politics and of physics somehow carry equal weight, that he can negotiate with the heat capacity of the world's oceans ('Okay, we'll cut our bitumen production by 15%, but […]

SF writer Peter Watts needs help diagnosing mysterious, debilitating illness

Blue writes, "Peter Watts has be stricken with debilitating pain, loss of range of motion and motor control. Watts' doctors remain baffled despite a battery of tests, and Watts has reached out to his fans to ask for their theories and ideas as to what might be causing his illness."

Very sad news about science fiction titan David G Hartwell

David Hartwell, a senior editor at Tor Books, cofounder of the New York Review of Science Fiction, legendary collector, raconteur, critic, anthologist, and fixture in so many fo science fiction's scenes and fandom, is in the hospital with a "massive brain bleed" and is not expected to live.

Bankers' "Vulnerability Index": scoring employees' desperation

Back in 2009, SF author Peter Watts had dinner with a retired investment banker from TD who described the bank's "vulnerability index" — a numeric score that expresses how desperate you are for your paycheck and thus the extent to which you can be reliably expected to forego your dignity and principles to keep your […]

Man born with "virtually no brain" has advanced math degree

The subject of this paper grew up with a normal cognitive and social life, and didn't discover his hydrocephalus — which had all but obliterated his brain — until he went to the doctor for an unrelated complaint.

What happens when mind melds are real?

From rats whose brains have been hardwired together to technology for reading your visual cortex, the possibility of brain-to-brain communication may not be so far-fetched. At Aeon, Peter Watts surveys the latest research, ties it to conjoined twins, and wraps it all up with questions of consciousness.

What it's like to share consciousness with an octopus

Marine biologist/US police brutality survivor/science fiction writer Peter Watts, in a brilliant vignette that, I hope, will be part of a novel someday:

Eutopia: horror novel about Lovecraftian racism

David Nickle's horror novel Eutopia confronts the racial overtones of Lovecraftian fiction head on, revealing a terrifying story of the American eugenics movement and the brutality underbelly of utopianism.

If privacy was really dead, would everyone be trying so hard to kill it?

A reader writes, "SF author Peter Watts writes about the ever-encroaching assault on our privacy and how relocating their arguments from the Internet to meatspace illustrates how ridiculous they are, and reasons to be cheerful because of the governments of the 'free world"s determination to eliminate the last shreds of our privacy."

Linkdump: Robotic newspaper archive, NY cop vs teen snowball fight; Dune coloring book; LOVEINT; Canada's PATRIOT Act & more more more

This is the stuff that I woke up to today. Can you believe it?

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