Guide The Business of Science Fiction: Two Insiders Discuss Writing and Publishing

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While cloaking and deflecting technologies exist in real life, at least in rudimentary forms, other inventions are much less feasible. He added that warp interstellar drives violate known properties of physics because they "involve huge discharges of energy and subspace fields that aren't understood in today's science. While some elements of the seminal British sci-fi show contain hints of reality, like sonic screwdrivers and cracks in the universe , it's clearly not possible to change the past at will.

With his theory of special relativity , which dictates that the laws of physics are invariant for all nonaccelerating observers and that the speed of light in a vacuum is identical for all observers, no matter the motion of the light source, Albert Einstein examined the feasibility of time travel. However, quantum physics and philosophy both deem it impossible to alter the past when and how we feel like it.

Blending sci-fi and comedy, the British series "Red Dwarf" first aired from to and returned in It tells the story of a technician traveling on a mining ship in suspended animation who wakes up 3 million years in the future to find out he's the last human in the universe. Gene editing is a real technique that scientists employ, but it can't do that.

Similarly, escort boots, which guide the wearer to a pre-programmed destination, don't exist yet, but aren't so far-fetched. Innovators are developing digitally connected footwear , minus the autopilot function. Artificial intelligence is central to HBO's " Westworld ," a sci-fi Western set in a futuristic amusement park where guests interact with android "hosts.

According to Victor Adamchik, a professor of engineering practice at University of Southern California, the robots on the show are simply too advanced to be within the realm of possibility. The show is unrealistic. On CW's "The Flash," the titular hero is known for his super-speed. But without additional powers to safeguard his body, Barry Allen would be ripped apart. James Kakalios, a physics professor at the University of Minnesota and the author of " The Physics of Superheroes ," told Business Insider that Allen's arsenal of powers would need to include abilities such as super-healing and superhuman reflexes in order to survive the amped-up acceleration.

The mind-bending " Maniac ," a Netflix original series starring Emma Stone and Jonah Hill as participants in an experimental drug trial, incorporates real psychological concepts such as cognitive behavioral therapy and defense-mechanism testing like Rorschach tests and picture-word association.

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However, real psychiatric-pharmaceutical trials operate differently than how they're depicted on the show. The drug sequence being tested in "Maniac" is said to be the 73rd iteration.

But in reality, a trial that failed so many times would likely lack approval from the Food and Drug Administration, which requires clinicians to submit safety and progress reports as tests progress. The issue with "Timeless," the canceled NBC sci-fi drama about a soldier, a professor, and an engineer who team up to recover a stolen time machine, is that time travel takes too long.

Physicists estimate that it would happen faster in reality — at the speed of light, rather than in a number of seconds.

Science fiction

On Fox's sci-fi thriller "Fringe," science is made up or exaggerated. Children who take a certain drug can see into other dimensions, and thoughts are transferred from one person's mind to another. That being said, many concepts explored on the show have been adapted from scientific advances. Facebook Icon The letter F. Link icon An image of a chain link. It symobilizes a website link url. Email icon An envelope. It indicates the ability to send an email.

Sci-fi shows that got science wrong - INSIDER

Fliboard icon A stylized letter F. Malzberg Barry N. He began publishing short fiction in and novels in Pehaps he is best known for his books Beyond Apollo which won the first John W. He lives with his wife in Teaneck, New Jersey. One feature of the Bulletin , which has run since the 90s, is a series of dialogues between Mike Resnick and Barry N. Malzberg on the business of writing. The Business of Science Fiction collects twenty-six of these discussions for a wider audience. Over the ten plus years they have been writing, they have covered a wide range of topics, from small presses to self-promotion.


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In some cases, such as e-publishing, they have reconsidered their initial stance. Each essay is chatty as the two authors go back and forth in an informal and uncoordinated manner, although they have been clearly polished. One interesting omission is that Resnick and Malzberg have not included the original publication data on the articles they chose to include. While some, such as "