Tag Archives | science fiction

“Discovery” Needs to Bring Balance to the Trek

Star Trek returns to television on Sunday, and to understand why this is such a big deal, you have to realize how dominant Trek used to be in this medium. For 18 years, from the franchise’s return to TV in 1987 with “Star Trek: The Next Generation” to when “Enterprise” limped off the air in […]

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Isaac Newton Says You Can’t Have a Flying Car

It has been the lifelong dream of many a young scientist, engineer, and science-fiction fan, and I myself have often used it as a gauge of whether we’re really in the “the future” or not—so it is with great personal sadness that I have to break the news to you that you can’t really have […]

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Killing Baby Hitler Is the Debate of Our Era

The New York Times Magazine caused a stir on Friday when it tweeted a question about the morality of killing baby Hitler. We asked @nytmag readers: If you could go back and kill Hitler as a baby, would you do it? (What's your response?) pic.twitter.com/daatm12NZC — NYT Magazine (@NYTmag) October 23, 2015 This kind of […]

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“No Award” Culture

A few months ago, I wrote about a notable victory in the culture wars: a group of science fiction writers had pushed back against the politicization of the Hugo awards, the most prominent literary awards in the sci-fi genre. The “Sad Puppies” campaign and its more radical offshoot, the “Rabid Puppies,” promoted their own slates […]

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The Culture War We’re Winning

This is the era in which we are all being drafted in the Culture War. It doesn’t matter if you’re secular or religious, political or apolitical, frat boys or geeks, hipsters or bros. Nobody gets to be neutral or sit on the sidelines, because we’ll all be expected to make our obeisance to the latest […]

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Leonard Nimoy, Icon

He lived long and prospered. Leonard Nimoy died today at the age of 83. In his long acting career, he played other roles and played them very well—but let’s face it: everyone remembers him as Mr. Spock, the enigmatic alien from the Star Trek franchise. It was a role he would return to again and […]

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Battlefield Earth Economics

I wrote a little while back about the rise of “Star Trek economics”—the left’s view that distributing wealth is like ordering food from a “replicator” in the Star Trek science fiction franchise. You ask for it, and it just appears. To paraphrase one of Arthur C. Clarke’s rules about science fiction, any sufficiently advanced economy […]

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Shrug Trek

A Reader’s Guide to Atlas Shrugged, Part 2 Spoiler Alert: You do not need a reader’s guide to Atlas Shrugged—at least not for your first reading. Ayn Rand’s novel is clear, compelling, eminently readable, and perfectly comprehensible on its own terms. Yet Atlas is also a rich and complex novel, with an intricate plot in […]

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We Will Meet the Cyborgs and They Will Be Us

We Are All Futurists Now, Part 3 For the previous installment of this series, about the coming revolution in robotics, I chose as my title a cheery takeoff on a show tune, “Anything You Can Do, iCan Do Better.” If I were to follow the favorite clichés of technology writers, I would have to choose […]

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