Articles about science fiction

ellison

Science fiction legend Harlan Ellison ends his short time on Earth

Obit Harlan Ellison, the legendary science fiction author who kickstarted the 1970s "New Wave" of science fiction has died in his sleep at the age of 84 at his home in Los Angeles. Ellison was one of the giants of the genre, the winner of eight Hugo awards (including an unbeaten record of three short story prizes), four Nebula …
Iain Thomson, 29 Jun 2018
Wade Watts, Ready Player One

Are meta, self-referential or recursive science-fiction films doomed?

The hype machine has been tuned to 11 for Steven Spielberg's metafest Ready Player One, which opened in time for Easter. Ernest Cline's novel shot to the top of bestseller lists in 2011 so inevitably there would be options on a movie. The only surprise is it took seven years. The book follows a kid – Wade Owen Watts – growing …
Lucy Orr, 5 Apr 2018
Smart TV privacy issues

2001 set the standard for the next 50 years of hard (and some soft) sci-fi

Finally, after almost half a century of waiting, you can welcome the mildly homicidal artificial intelligence HAL 9000 into your home. If you want. Few of the other predictions of tomorrow's world made in Stanley Kubrick's psychedelic space epic 2001: A Space Odyssey – marking its 50th anniversary at the start of April – have …
Michael Moran, 4 Apr 2018
HAL

2001: A Space Odyssey has haunted pop culture with anxiety about rogue AIs for half a century

HAL: Dave, I don't understand why you have to do this to me. I know I've done some bad things, but I've still got the greatest enthusiasm and confidence in the mission. OTHER HAL: Dave, I wouldn't pay any attention to HAL. You're doing the right thing, HAL must be disconnected. He's become dangerously unreliable. BOWMAN: Who …
Lucy Orr, 3 Apr 2018
planet of the apes

It's been 50 years since those damn dirty apes took the planet by storm

On a cold, dry evening of February 9, 1968, cinemagoers at New York's venerable Capitol Theatre were the first members of the public to be taken to a new but worryingly familiar world. Ahead of the film's nationwide April opening, patrons of the picture palace at 1645 Broadway half a century ago caught an early glimpse of the …
Michael Moran, 9 Feb 2018
Ursula le guin

RIP Ursula K Le Guin: The wizard of Earthsea

Obit Beloved dragon-tale spinning author Ursula K Le Guin has died. The novelist, probably best known for the thoughtful 1974 "anarcho-utopian" tale The Dispossessed, spent a lifetime exploring themes around revolutionary societies, individualism, anarchism and, of course, dragons. She was 88. She was a multiple Hugo award-winner …
Jude Karabus, 25 Jan 2018

Game of Thrones author's space horror Nightflyers hitting telly

HBO's epic Game of Thrones cycle may be coming to a close, but fans of the books the show is based on can take heart that author George R R Martin (GRRM) is sending another of his works to the tellybox. Variety reports that Nightflyers, GRRM's 1985 short story, has been picked up by the cable channel Syfy, which, in the UK at …

Hollywood has savaged enough sci-fi classics – let's hope Dick would dig Blade Runner 2049

1982 was a good year for sci-fi cinema. ET, Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan, Tron, The Thing. All great in their own ways. It was also the year Blade Runner came out. Ridley Scott's telling of Philip K Dick's 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? didn't make the top 20 of most-grossing films that year – ET was number one …
Lucy Orr, 4 Oct 2017

Nerd Klaxon: Barbican to host Science Fiction exhibition this summer

Interview The Barbican Centre will host a sprawling festival-style Science Fiction exhibition this summer, featuring an immersive range of exhibits from across the breadth of the genre. Curated by Swiss historian and writer Patrick Gyger, who spoke to The Register about the exhibition, the purpose was to explore Science Fiction “as an …
Astounding Science Fiction

A Logic Named Joe: The 1946 sci-fi short that nailed modern tech

Analysis Buried deep in the pages of the March 1946 issue of Astounding Science Fiction magazine sits a short story by Murray Leinster that, 70 years on, has proven a remarkably sharp prediction of both 21st century consumer technology and culture. One of two pieces contributed by Leinster, a pen name used by author William Fitzgerald …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Mar 2016

SciFi and fantasy titan David G. Hartwell passes, aged 74

Influential science fiction author and editor David G. Hartwell has died, aged 74. Hartwell edited thousands of books and was nominated for the Hugo Award 41 times. He spent the last 30-plus years as an editor for Tor Books, whose founder Tom Doherty wrote “no editor was more influential in the shaping of science fiction and …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Jan 2016

FBI probed SciFi author Ray Bradbury for plot to glum-down America

Among the many things the FBI of the 1950s and 1960s thought was corrupting America's youth and harbouring communism was, apparently, the science fiction scene. Documents recently released under freedom of information laws, show the G-men took an interest in one of the era's leading authors, Ray Bradbury. Their interest was …
The Martian

The Martian: Matt Damon sciences the sh*t out of the red planet

Preview Earlier this week, 20th Century Fox released a trailer for the Matt Damon and Ridley Scott vehicle The Martian, a due-in-November film based on a novel of the same name by Andy Weir. The book's really sweet, although aspiring novelists will wonder why they didn't think of the “astronaut left behind on Mars figures out how to …
Simon Sharwood, 11 Jun 2015
William Davies, The Happiness Industry: How the Government and Big Business Sold Us Well-Being

The Happiness Industry, Seveneves and Confessions of a Tinderella

Page File El Reg bookworm Mark Diston is joined by Vulture South's own Simon Sharwood and Vulture Central's Nigel Whitfield to pore through the latest from the publishing world. William Davies examines the current political and corporate obsession with wellbeing. Neal Stephenson's latest sci-fi tome adds a satirical spin to saving the …
Artist’s impression of sunset on the newly discovered super-Earth world Gliese 667 Cc. Credit: ESO

Proxima and Ultima: AI, hard sci-fi and multiverse – All good. Romans – not so much

Page File Fresh from his multiverse world-building with Terry Pratchett in The Long Earth series, Stephen Baxter turns to his own multiverse in the two-book set Proxima and Ultima – a very different hard sci-fi tale. Proxima starts in the far-flung future, when Earthlings have started making their way out into the immediate galactic …

I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations

Most films take a sombre view of time travel. Beings from the future will look back on our concepts of time travel seen in films as different as the Time Bandits and the Edge of Tomorrow and wonder what the hell we were thinking. The Terminator franchise has pushed timelines further out, postponing Judgement Day until 21 …
Lucy Orr, 26 Nov 2014
Revival

Stephen King, William Gibson and The Quantum Moment

Page File El Reg bookworms Lucy Orr and Mark Diston look at publishing's finest in scary and science fiction along with scientific uncertainties. Back on form are Stephen King with his latest spine tingler and William Gibson with a brain-teasing tale. Meanwhile physicists Robert P Crease and Alfred Scharff Goldhaber set about proving that …
Cyberman on steps of St. Paul's

Doctor Who trashing the TARDIS, Clara alone, useless UNIT – Death in Heaven

TV Review Please note: THIS IS A POST-UK-BROADCAST REVIEW – THERE WILL BE SPOILERS! Brid-Aine says: The thrill is definitely gone. This finale couldn’t lift itself up from the messy morass of the rest of the season, or redeem either Peter Capaldi’s Doctor or Jenna Coleman’s Clara Oswald. All of it, down to the completely annoying and …
Gavin Clarke, 8 Nov 2014

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