It’s been 10 years since the space shuttle Columbia was lost during re-entry at the end of mission STS-107. Here’s a look back at a short video that Fast Forward created in February, 2003 to remember the astronauts who lost their lives.
Episode 261 of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction features an interview with science fiction and fantasy author and editor Phyllis Irene Radford. Ms.Radford discusses her use of pseudonyms for her different “writing personalities,” with books as Irene Radford, P. R. Frost, and C. F. Bentley (as well as future work to be published under the name Phyllis Ames). Ms. Radford also talks about her involvement with the author cooperative Book View Café and her fondness for Oregon, where she lives. This interview was conducted on September 10, 2012.
Also in this episode: Colleen Cahill reviews Dinosaur vs. Santa, a picture book for your youngest readers. Marianne Petrino gives 3 chans to the anime series Kaze No Stigma.
This episode (#261) of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction was first shown in December 2012.
Episode 260 of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction features an interview with author Edward M. Lerner. Mr. Lerner is a “hard” science fiction writer, with more than a dozen published novels and many works of short fiction. In the interview, he talks about his recent novel, Energized, his collaboration with Larry Niven on the Fleet of Worlds series, and about the day-to-day work of being a full-time writer.
Also in this episode:
Guest reviewer Steve Cordle recommends the book Bitterblue, by Kristin Cashore.
Anime reviewer Marianne Petrino gives 4 chans to the movie Origin: Spirits of the Past.
This episode of Fast Forward was first shown in October, 2012.
Episode #259 of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction features an interview with Hugo Award winning author Joe Haldeman. Mr. Haldeman talks about his writing and Joe’s Place, his long running blog. He also discusses painting, insights gained as a writing teacher, and the political complexities of having a manned space program in contemporary America.
Also in episode #259: Colleen Cahill reviews Alien on a Rampage, a children’s book that’s fun for all ages. Marianne Petrino gives her highest rating, 5 chans, to the anime series Romeo x Juliet.
The Joe Haldeman interview was originally recorded on May 20, 2011.
Episode 259 was first cablecast in September, 2012.
In episode #258 of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction we interview the (now former) editor of Analog Science Fiction and Fact magazine, Stanley Schmidt. Analog is best known as the major periodical for English language “hard” science fiction. Mr. Schmidt was the editor of Analog for over thirty years, and in this interview he describes his early relationship with the magazine. Schmidt also talks about his personal definition of science fiction, and what he looks for in a story.
The interview was conducted on May 20, 2011.
Also in this episode:
A “special report” – highlights from the Nebula Awards ceremony held in Arlington, VA on May 19, 2012. Marianne Petrino give 3 chans to the anime series Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple.
This episode of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction was first shown in August, 2012.
In episode #257 of Fast Forward: Contemporary Science Fiction we interview scientist and author Geoffrey A. Landis. Mr. Landis talks about his (mostly) short fiction work and his prize winning genre poetry. He also discusses his “day job” with NASA, and how interwoven his love of science and science fiction is.
Also in this episode:
Colleen Cahill reviews The Celestial Globe, a novel by Marie Rutkoski. Marianne Petrino gives 3 chans to Planet of the Beast King, an anime television series. John Pomeranz reminds us of the wonderful life and work of Ray Bradbury, one of the preeminent authors of the genre, who passed away on June 5, 2012.
This episode of Fast Forward was first shown in June, 2012.
It’s almost the end of the year (not to mention the end of a long count of the Mayan calendar) so we thought we should try to catch up on some of the Fast Forward episodes that were released in the past few months but never got formally announced on the blog! We’ll be reminding you about these episodes over the next few days. If you haven’t watched the interviews yet, here’s your chance.
In the spirit of Halloween, author Neil Gaiman has recorded a reading of a short story which you can download for free at audible.com. It’s called “Click-Clack the Rattle Bag”, and you can only download it until October 31st. For each download from the site, audible.com will make a donation to donorschoose.org or booktrust.
Congratulations to all the 2012 Hugo Award winners! You can find a complete list of the winners at the Hugo Awards website – http://www.thehugoawards.org/
The venue at Chicon 7 was completely packed, with people standing all along the sides and rear of the ballroom for the entire two & a quarter hour ceremony. Those of us in the room enjoyed a (mostly) entertaining and glitch-free evening. Unfortunately, this was not true for people watching the live video stream of the event – including those folks watching at Dragoncon. The very technology that allowed for worldwide streaming of the ceremony went wrong part-way through. During Neil Gaiman’s acceptance speech for the Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form, Ustream cut off the web feed for “copyright violations”. This was apparently caused by ‘bots noticing the video clips of the Best Dramatic Presentation nominees. Though these clips pretty clearly fit a fair use description, the Ustream channel was terminated and not reestablished.
It’s a sad commentary on the state of copyright and intellectual property when an organization trying to recognize media programs for excellence is shut down by overzealous technology claiming to “protect” copyright owners.
Several times at this convention I have been involved in discussions addressing the issue of technology outstripping our ability as a society to manage it. In the midst of the greatest Information Age humanity has ever known, information is in danger of actually becoming more constrained – simply for the sake of commerce. Despite the technological “democratization” of information, small numbers of powerful gatekeepers continue to dictate what we see and how we see it (don’t even get me started on HDCP).
I’m sure the Hugo streaming shutdown scenario can be avoided in the future by choosing a different (and probably more expensive) streaming provider. And I doubt that anyone suffered life-threatening injury because he or she was unable to watch the Hugo awards ceremony live. But this serves as one more example of how we raise barriers of cost and/or extra negotiation to engage in perfectly legal dissemination of information.
Saying “no” is easy. Letting powerful gatekeepers dictate terms to society is easy. Ceding control of policing the internet to draconian “zero tolerance” ‘bots is easy. I hope that someday society will recognize that easy is not always the right way to go. Surely there must be a few SF stories lurking somewhere in this mess?
I’m at the live Squeecast event at Chicon. Highly entertaining. Cat Valente has given an enthusiastic plug for the classic John Crowley book, Engine Summer. Jay Lake has told the audience about Rubber, the most bizarre film he’s seen (and that’s saying something).