A young science fiction writer from the 1950s has the misfortune to live into the 21st century, and see how the future really turned out. He reflects on how the future has gotten out of our control.
I think this might work better as a movie, but you never know. A group of researchers are attempting to send objects back into the past to look for changes in the timeline. As the readers/audience we are able to see the world change around the researchers. But they are completely oblivious to the changes. They finally conclude time travel doesn’t work. As a question, is this a new twist on a time-travel story? Do you need to be an oberserver outside of the internal timeline of the story to observe changes within a timeline?
If the red giant star Betelgeuse replaced our sun, it’s edge would extend out near Jupiter. The gas surface is nearly vacuum, but the temperature is nearly as hot as the filament of an old style light bulb. Not too bad for the surface of a star. Your spacesuit, more an ultra hardened, body-shaped spacecraft, keeps out the heat. And you get cool oxygen through the umbilicus provided by the mothership. Somewhere, just under the surface of the star, something is generating a regular signal. As you’re lowered down, something, possibly a meteor, snaps the line and you fall deeper into the sun. The supply line seals off and you drift downwards into the star. You fall for two days, your supplies running out, when you suddenly slow, and touch, feather-light, on a metal surface that extends for kilometers in every direction.
All four of her Grandparents had Alzheimers, and she had the genes as well. As a child, watching the lose their minds terrified her. When her parents started becoming forgetful she set about computer mapping every neuron in her head, partially as a hail-mary backup, partially as a record for future generations. The mapping went so well she could watch “her” mind become sentient. Finally she could talk to “herself.” The biggest problem: her model, while self aware, had no memories.
The Jump Cut Follow up: Devil at the Crossroads
If you haven’t had a chance, check out our latest film, Jump Cut at KingfisherTalkingPictures.com. Then pop on over to Kickstarter to help with our next film, Devil at the Crossroads.
Inspired by a 1970s short story about fog and multiple dimensions, the story has been expanded outwards. Cliff Nash, our protagonist, is stuck between two imperfect choices. But what does choice mean in a universe of multiple dimensions? We are making this 25-minute Science Fiction film in Oakland and San Francisco, and we need your help. The film is about the choices we make, the choices we neglect to make and the effect they have on those we love and leave behind. Make the choice to help make this film
If you’ve loved anything I’ve written at The Ideabird, you’ll love this film. But we really, truly need your help to get it off the ground. And every bit helps! Thank you!
By 2032 every child in the first world has received at least one drone helicopter for their birthday, Christmas, or Bar Mitzvah. Kids in the third world build their own out of scrap plastic and old iphones. Nintendo comes out with a headset that tracks the user’s eye movements, and the video screen and headsets provide an immersive experience. And tied in with a microphone for livechat, they teleconference after school to go immersively swooping and gliding around town. Each drone can carry a couple of pounds payload. A detective has to go into the world of drone hackers when someone starts hijacking drones to deliver bombs to unsuspecting people. To complicate matters he must fight off journalists and pundits who discover the “evils” of drones in kids’ lives.
Along with our alien allies, we have studied the universe to a great depth. There is definitely a multiverse, that we cannot penetrate, and there appears to be signs of intelligence within those other ‘verses. One of the most ready signs is “The Prime Signature.” This is an incredibly large prime number that starts with pi (to the 42 millionth place), followed by the number “e,” followed by “phi,” and the square root of 2. There is growing evidence that our particular universe was not an accidental cosmic creation, but that our physical laws were written from scratch so that our universe is providing energy to another ‘verse. They are sucking power & matter from our universe through the laws of gravity. Black holes are seen as evidence of their need for material from us. There is talk of sending through something destructive as a way to indicate our existence.
With the rise of a maker culture and random brilliant people creating things in their garage, a government organization comes up with a plan to tap into those independent thinkers. They notice how items from Star Trek: communicators, PADDs, even quantum teleportation, have come about driven by fan love. There are thousands of fans trying to create light sabers, even though they are ridiculous & impractical.They start salting science fiction films with devices they want to see built. They provide the imagination (and some production money for the films) in a long term goal of prodding brilliant fans to create impossibly difficult objects.
Similar to Ideabird 10/5, the Oort Cloud presents a difficult wall for those who want to use Warp Drive. A warlord of Eris decides to use fusion generation bombs to blow a big enough hole in the cloud to allow easy exit. The bombs throw Oort bodies out of orbit, raining comets upon the solar system.
In 2016, trying to avoid a repeat of Obama’s first debate performance, the exhausted candidate took a caplet of Focisin, a newest legal ADHD drug. She did great. Another caplet before the second debate, another before the first meeting with Congress, and she had a pattern in place. Before the news leaked of her habit, half the house members had quietly started taking it, and a mental arms race was on. There was no advantage to be won in negotiations with the Chinese, since they used it as well. When it was discovered to shorten life span, everyone turned to younger politicians. The big question was how to go back to becoming merely normal.
For the first time physicists are coming up with realistic equations saying warp drive might be possible. It turns out we’ll need to get away from massive objects. The problem is the Oort cloud is thicker than we thought. And at a distance of one light year out, it takes a three-generation ship to travel that far enough to clear the cloud. One woman has survived from launch to warp ignition, and seen civilization on the ship change drastically.
The Mercury colony was going well, with two rings of population living underground near the poles. There was enough oxygen in the rock, and they collected hydrogen from the solar wind. And with the solar collector doing double duty as a solar shield, they were gradually expanding the population. The biggest problem was a religious group The Children of Helios who had been making illegal colonies at the equator, and believed that the shield was a heresy. The two groups had been silently infiltrating each other for years. Wo would lash out first?
Sequencing the first genome took years and billions of dollars. Within two decades it was done on a desktop in minutes. The first clones grown from a genome came soon after. By that time recording memory engrams that begun, and within two decades it was possible to grow a person, complete with memories. But it was still took thousands of years to reach the nearest habitable planets. The ark contained information and cloning machines. The people who were chosen to colonize the planet trained like mad, put the recording helmets on their heads, gave a drop of blood, and went home for the day. At the other end, however, they remember putting the helmets on their heads, and then waking up orbiting the planet. Along the way the ship had received records of how the original people, long dead, had lived the rest of their lives.
The Kepler mission, looking for extra-solar planets is keeping a special watch out for planets in a star’s “Goldilocks” zone (gLz). In that zone, liquid water can exist. Too close to the star, and water boils away, too far and it freezes. We look for the gLz where our form of life can exist. for the Krzzzr the are looking for planets where there is enough hard ultraviolet radiation to hatch their crystal eggs, and the planet has hot enough magma to swim in. (They call it the “Shnrzz” zone, after one of their children’s stories.) They think our planet is almost right, when they show up, but are unprepared for our magnetic field, shunting aside UV. They have a great idea to stop the planet’s core, and remove our ozone layer, along with our oxygen. Can we work out an accomodation?
English science and philosophy was a small world in the early 1800s, and there was no clear demarcation of the disciplines. The philosopher William Godwin most likely knew of the works of Ersamus Darwin and his works on galvanic response—the twitching of dead muscles in response to electircal shocks. It may be that one stormy night William’s young daughter, Mary, half-awake from the noise of the storm, might have stumbled upon a late-night meeting of her father and friends. Lit by flashes of lightning, she may have watched them trying to infuse dead animals with the force of life. It would be the hard-to-fathom sort of memory she might have half-carried into adulthood, when she wrote the novel Frankenstein.