JOURNAL

Writing adventures and related musings.

The Technology of the Commonwealth Empires

One of the key challenges of designing the alternate-reality world of the Commonwealth Empires  is getting the technologies of the world right. When I started writing, I knew a few things about this alternate British Empire. One, they  never went through the first world war as we know it.

Artificial Intelligence then, now, tomorrow

(A speech given at the Arthur C Clarke Centennial on the 16th of December, 2017, Colombo) BOWMAN Hal, give me manual hibernation control. HAL Have you decided to revive the rest of the crew, Dave? PAUSE. BOWMAN Yes, I have. HAL I suppose it’s because you’ve been under a lot of stress, but have you forgotten that they’re not supposed to be revived for another three months. BOWMAN The antenna… Read More »Artificial Intelligence then, now, tomorrow

Big Data + Big Brother: when China moves to rate its citizens

Hi. My apologies for the long spell of incommunicado. My day job is as a Big Data researcher, and I’ve been working on a new novel; between the two, I haven’t really had much time to do any of the other things that I’m supposed to do, like writing emails and blogposts. My boss from work recently shared an email titled ‘Numbercaste in the real world’, pointing to a new… Read More »Big Data + Big Brother: when China moves to rate its citizens

On the rising tide of scifi on our screens

My first introduction to science fiction was an old Nickelodeon show called Space Cases. It wasn’t a great show by any standard. It was a bunch of kids on a space ship, with a whole lot of recycled props from other shows, and they canceled the thing after the second season. But no words can express how ardently I glued myself to the screen for those adventures and aliens and… Read More »On the rising tide of scifi on our screens

Comparing V and the Watchmen movies with Moore’s originals

I’ll not lie: my appreciation of Alan Moore’s work is recent. Say, circa 2010 – that was the year I moved from a 350 MB-per-month 3G connection to something that could actually let me search for things other than study notes and bitmaps of WWE Divas. That was the year I purchased a DVD drive and turned my creaking computer into the family TV. One of the first films I… Read More »Comparing V and the Watchmen movies with Moore’s originals