What is Design Fiction?
"the deliberate use of diegetic prototypes to suspend disbelief about change. That’s the best definition we’ve come up with. The important word there is diegetic. It means you’re thinking very seriously about potential objects and services and trying to get people to concentrate on those rather than entire worlds or political trends or geopolitical strategies. It’s not a kind of fiction. It’s a kind of design. It tells worlds rather than stories." — Bruce SterlingExamples of Diegetic Prototypes in Design Fiction. [more inside]
"The CIA would have [given] Iran the actual [nuclear bomb] already constructed for them, but didn't because it wouldn't have been credible for their Russian to have it." [more inside]
When I knew the Clippers were drafting me, the first thing I did was type Donald Sterling’s name into Google. The first hit that came up was “Donald Sterling is a racist.” I read an article on how he didn’t want minorities to live in his apartment buildings. My first thought was, Wow this guy is really, really a racist … how is he an owner of an NBA team? My second thought was, Wow, these articles are from 2003 and 2008. I guess everybody already knows about this stuff and just doesn’t care. As players, we’re not supposed to really care about anything but basketball. We’re just supposed to perform. To be honest, I didn’t ever really think about bringing up Sterling’s past. What was I supposed to do? Just picture me at the press conference my rookie year. “Uh … hey, guys, before we talk about today’s game, did you happen to see that investigative report on my owner?” -- The Boss. An Essay about working for the NBA, by Blake Griffin. [more inside]
Rare footage of the Velvet Underground playing live in Boston (1967, sound, color, 33 mins. Dir: Andy Warhol) has recently been discovered. [more inside]
The State of the World 2014 Bruce Sterling and Jon Lebkowsky have started this year's WELL-based review.
SF author and Mefi's Own Charles Stross talks about the future of "big idea" Science Fiction: If SF's core message (to the extent that it ever had one) is obsolete, what do we do next?
Jaguar's real ad agency punks Don Draper. It's a (spoiler alert) sticky situation that Carrot Creative takes advantage of. This harkens back to other displays of advertising infighting that Mad Men portrays.
“No, no. Academia is now part of the real world. Everything goes.” Just before dawn, on August 24, 1970, Dwight and Karl Armstrong, Leo Burt, and David Fine parked a van outside Sterling Hall at the University of Wisconsin. The van was filled with ammonium nitrate and fuel oil, and when it blew, it killed Robert Fassnacht, a young physicist working through the night. The Army Mathematics Research Center, the bombing's target, was untouched. The bombers, known as the "New Year's Gang," went underground, and enthusiasm for the radical movement in Madison was permanently dampened. The University of Wisconsin collection of transcribed interviews about the Sterling Hall Bombing. [more inside]
If only the Japanese could build a car like Jaguar. If only the English could build a car like Honda.
From 1987 until 1992 Britain's Austin-Rover Group exported the Rover 800 to America and called it the Sterling. Jointly developed with Honda, the Sterling was a bit of a flop in contrast to Honda's Acura Legend. Of course, every car has its fans. One more thing, if you need a part for your Sterling, you better call this guy.
We See Things Differently - a 1989 story from the perspective of an Arab visitor to a future, run-down America. By Bruce Sterling, science fiction writer and one of the founders of cyberpunk. Besides his science fiction, Sterling is also known for his 1992 book The Hacker Crackdown, available free on-line, and the Viridian Design Project. He's also an entertaining science writer; here's a column he wrote on bacterial resistance.