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Could a Black Hole Swallow the Moon?

This post is written by guest blogger Savannah Cordova, a writer with Reedsy. In her spare time, Savannah enjoys reading contemporary fiction and writing short stories. She’s a big fan of plot twists and surprise endings (when they’re done right). With the excitement surrounding the first photograph of a black hole being released, I thought it’d...

Asteroids!

This post is written by guest blogger Jake Kaplow, an “engineer in training” at Boston University. That crush you’ve had since eighth grade? It’s time to say how you feel. An asteroid the size of Manhattan’s headed straight toward Earth. In a few weeks, it’ll all be over. “Baby, you’re my everything, you’re—” Wait! Save it! NASA’s going to nuke...

A Social Ranking System Straight Out of Black Mirror

Gif created by Jim Miller / Splatterplop In “Nosedive,” the first episode of Black Mirror’s third season, people rate each interaction they have. A lovely conversation would net both participants a 5, while a fight would result in 1s. A person’s societal status, as well as related benefits like premium airline bookings and access to certain events...

Mutant Ants are Here

The development of nuclear weapons gave rise to fears across the globe, some more fantastical than others. People imagined all kinds of gruesome ends, including mutant, irradiated organisms. Perhaps the most famous representation of the effects of atomic meddling is Godzilla, which aired in Japan in 1954, nine years after the U.S. dropped atomic bombs...

Once More With Feeling–Or Maybe Twice More

How many times have you wished you could replay a scene from your life? Maybe your happiest memory, or a moment you don’t remember clearly enough, or perhaps a conversation with a crush, which almost certainly contained clues if only you could watch more closely, more slowly. A variation of that last scenario is depicted in a Black Mirror episode called...

Pokémon Came, Saw, and Conquered

Last night as I walked home from the subway, I felt like I was in Vernor Vinge’s Hugo Award-winning novel Rainbows End. Vinge’s works predict a mind-boggling number of technological advancements that have and will come to pass (he’s known in particular for the concept of the technological singularity—the point at which machines are vastly more intelligent...

Perhaps We Shouldn’t Teach Robots After All

We all know the story: humans create robots, robots overthrow humans. It’s a trope almost as old as science fiction itself, first appearing in Karel Capek’s 1920 play R.U.R. (the first work to use the word “robot”), and then in countless works such as Terminator and Battlestar Galactica, with variations including killer computers such as HAL. In these...

The Tricorder Will See You Now

If you feel faint on the Starship Enterprise or your head starts spinning around, Bones McCoy would crinkle his brow in concern, take a step back, and scan you with the medical tricorder, a handheld device with a detachable scanner, kind of like a stethoscope without the ear pieces. The device would allow McCoy to collect your real-time bodily information,...

The Odds of Successfully Mining Asteroids

The Hoth asteroid field, which Han Solo improbably and awesomely navigates, is chock full of asteroids that contain valuable minerals and materials, including platinum. While I doubt there are any exogorths (space slugs) or mynocks (the winged parasites that live on the slugs–but you all knew that, right?) on these asteroids, the centrality and value...

Wired for Bliss

In Larry Niven’s Known Space stories, humanity has advanced to the point of producing pleasure by tinkering with the brain, rendering other vices obsolete. “Wireheads” have electronic brain implants, “drouds,” that tickle their brains’ pleasure centers. Not surprisingly, people become addicted to wireheading. Niven was spot on. Wireheading exists almost...

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