Category Archives: Fiction

Confessions of a Librarian’s Daughter

I can’t stand when people watch a movie before they read the book. There. I said it. Even back in fourth grade when a film adaptation of Jeff Kinney’s renowned Diary of a Wimpy Kid hit theaters, I was appalled by my young cohort watching in awe from front row seats, so mindless of the […] Continue reading

Posted in art, Atwood, dystopia, Fiction, Films, hulu, Margaret Atwood, Science Fiction, SF, sf movies, The Handmaid's Tale | Comments Off on Confessions of a Librarian’s Daughter

Clockwork Humanity

Music has a certain peculiar, universal appeal which sets it apart from other forms of media. Most of us consume things like TV, video or movies on a daily basis. Hopefully most of us read a book for fun now and again – but we all have that one friend who hasn’t voluntarily picked up […] Continue reading

Posted in Anderson, Authors, clockwork angels, Fiction, music, rush, SF, Shelley, Steampunk | Comments Off on Clockwork Humanity

Science Fiction Themes Through the Decades

Taking this course was my very first introduction to science fiction. If I had to name one takeaway from what I’ve learned, it’s that science fiction is not about humans, but rather human nature. It’s about what issues us humans are facing in our current moment, and how those issues can be exploited through developments […] Continue reading

Posted in Aliens, Anderson, Artificial Intelligence, Asimov, Authors, books, civilization, ethics, evolution, Ex Machina, Fiction, gender, Heinlein, humanities, robots, Science Fiction, SF, society, technology, Van Vogt | Comments Off on Science Fiction Themes Through the Decades

Ted Chiang AI Talk Highlights: Singularity?

In his talk last Monday here at Vanderbilt, Ted Chiang joined a panel to talk about the future of Artificial Intelligence. He spoke about what A.I. means for humanity, and contested the possibility of the singularity (a.k.a. the technology explosion that occurs when computers begin programming smarter computers, with those smarter computers programming even smarter […] Continue reading

Posted in AI, Chiang, Fiction, humanities, Procreation, robots, SF, Singularity, Turing Test | Comments Off on Ted Chiang AI Talk Highlights: Singularity?

The Fiction of Jurassic Park’s “Science”

Extracting DNA from amber-preserved mosquitos- mosquitos from before “the meteor” 66 million years ago- and filling in the missing parts with frog DNA is the premise of Jurassic Park’s successful dinosaur resurrection. So… can we do this and bring Busch Gardens to another level? Sorry, but no. Not really. And this is why: So, although […] Continue reading

Posted in Biology, clones, Dinosaurs, Fiction, genomes, Jurassic World, Science Fiction, SF | Comments Off on The Fiction of Jurassic Park’s “Science”

Foreshadowing in “Ex Machina”

“Ex Machina” is a 2014 film in which programmer Caleb Smith, who works at a Google-like company, is not-so-randomly chosen for a private retreat at the CEO’s compound. The CEO—Nathan Bateman—lives alone, with the exception of a servant named Kyoko that doesn’t speak English and a humanoid robot named Ava. Caleb is brought to the […] Continue reading

Posted in AI, Artificial Intelligence, Ex Machina, Fiction, Films, gender, privacy, robot, robots, SF, Turing Test | Comments Off on Foreshadowing in “Ex Machina”

Winners Wednesday: The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles (Erin E. Stead)

Rather than discuss one of this year’s award winners, I thought it’d be interesting to highlight to literary work of a previous Caldecott winning illustrator whom I admire. Erin E. Stead has a unique illustrative style that is delicate and whimsical, detailed yet simple, and filled with lovely muted colors. Her work in The Uncorker […] Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Marvelous Picture Books | Comments Off on Winners Wednesday: The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles (Erin E. Stead)

Health care in the future?

Health care is a human right. We all have the right to the highest quality of physical and mental health care, which includes access to medical services, healthy working conditions, sanitation, and a clean environment. Since health care is so essential to human life, why have we rarely read about creative medical advancements in science […] Continue reading

Posted in Authors, Baxter, Biology, Eugenics, Fiction, Films, Gattaca, genetic engineering, health, SF | Comments Off on Health care in the future?

A New Age of Eugenics?

Within the genre of science fiction, the issue of eugenics and the evolution of mankind through selective reproduction and genetic manipulation has played a prominent role works such as Frank Herbert’s Dune, Robert Heinlein’s Methuselah’s Children, and Octavia E. Butler’s Lilith’s Brood trilogy to name only a few. While commonly dismissed in the present-day as […] Continue reading

Posted in Biology, Butler, Octavia, CRISPR, Eugenics, evolution, Fiction, genetic engineering, genetic ethics, genetic manipulation, genetics, Heinlein, humanities, medical ethics | Comments Off on A New Age of Eugenics?

Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?

While I was home over winter break, I found myself in the mood to read something new.  A few years ago my family moved houses, and since I was leaving for college soon after I only kept books that I really loved—but thus had already read. So, the pickings on my bookshelf were pretty slim. […] Continue reading

Posted in Archetypes, Authors, Card, children, Ender's Game, Fiction, Films, Intelligence, interstellar, Lois Lowry, Nancy Kress, On Writing, Orson Scott Card, Science Fiction, SF, SF love, Stephen King, The Giver, The Mysterious Benedict Society, Trenton Lee Stewart, Under the Dome, Writer's craft, writing, writing sci-fi | Comments Off on Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?