James Tiptree, Jr Alice Sheldon

The Woman Behind James Tiptree, Jr.

James Tiptree, Jr., was a beloved sci-fi writer known for masculine prose and universal themes. Then her real identity was revealed: Alice Bradley Sheldon.
laser gun

The Truth about Laser Guns

The U.S. and most other large militaries have been trying to develop laser weapons for decades. Has China created the first portable laser gun?
Stephen Hawking RIP

Remembering Stephen Hawking and Future Science

An original essay about the science of the future by the late theoretical physicist.
Ursula Le Guin

RIP Ursula K. Le Guin

"Isn't the 'subjection of women' in science fiction merely a symptom of a whole which is authoritarian, power-worshipping, and intensely parochial?"
BLADE RUNNER 2049

Do We Have Moral Obligations to Robots?

The recent film Blade Runner 2049 engages with questions raised by Karel Čapek and Isaac Asimov: What do we owe our creations (and what do they owe us)?
Star Trek: Discovery

What Star Trek: Discovery Can Tell Us About Tech and Social Progress

What makes Star Trek essential for any contemporary tech user is its role in helping us understand our relationship to technology.
Octavia Butler the Golden Chain

When Science Fiction Becomes Real: Octavia E. Butler’s Legacy

Ten years after her death, the writing of Octavia E. Butler has a persistent influence—one that spans well outside of the science fiction genre.
Spock and Kirk

Star Trek’s 50th Star Date Anniversary

September 8 marks the 50th anniversary of the first season of Star Trek, the NBC science-fiction series produced by Gene Roddenberry.
Tesla

Nikola Tesla and the Death Ray Craze

Nikola Tesla, the audacious futurist and groundbreaking inventor, once claimed to have invented a death ray that would end all war.
From left: Star Wars movie poster 1977, Star Wars: Phantom Menace movie poster 1999, Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie poster 2015

The War On Star Wars

The force isn't for everyone.