You invest so much in it, don't you? It's what elevates you above the beasts of the field, it's what makes you special. Homo sapiens, you call yourself. Wise Man. Do you even know what it is, this consciousness you cite in your own exaltation? Do you even know what it's for?
Dr. Peter Watts
is no stranger to MetaFilter. But look past his sardonic nuptials
, heartbreaking eulogies
, and agonizing run-ins with fascists
) and you'll find one of the most brilliant, compelling, and disquieting
science fiction authors at work today. A marine biologist skilled at deep background research, his acclaimed
2006 novel Blindsight [full text]
-- a cerebral "first contact" tale led by a diverse crew of bleeding-edge post-humans -- is diamond-hard and deeply horrifying, wringing profound existential dread from such abstruse concepts as the Chinese Room
, the Philosophical Zombie
, Chernoff faces
, and the myriad quirks and blind spots
that haunt the human mind.
's last, shattering insight is not the end of the story -- along with crew
, a blackly funny in-universe lecture on resurrecting sociopathic vampirism
), and a rigorously-cited (and spoiler-laden) reference section
, tomorrow will see the release of
Dumbspeech State of Grace Echopraxia [website]
, the long-delayed
"sidequel" depicting parallel events on Earth. Want more? Look inside for a guide to the rest of Watts' award-winning (and provocative) body of work. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Aug 25, 2014 -
is an annual, one-night tournament of monsters competing in various categories -- Best Kill, Most Unnecessary Collateral Damage, Sexiest Victim -- with the top prize being the coveted Killer Cup. The objective of the tournament is killing humans.
posted by Faint of Butt
on Aug 21, 2013 -
Articles at ABC
, The Atlantic Wire
, The New Inquiry
all claim that mermaids are the next big thing in popular culture. Among other signs, some authors point to the fact that Netflix's has acquired first-run rights to show the Australian show Mako Mermaids in several markets.
, however, Forrest Wickman disagrees stating, "I can give you one simple reason that mermaids aren’t the new vampires, and never will be: genitals. If you want people to fantasize about you, or about being you, genitals are pretty much a requirement."
posted by Area Man
on Aug 3, 2013 -
"It was John Polidori's misfortune
to be comic without having a sense of humor, to wish to be a great writer but to be a terrible one, to be unusually bright but surrounded for one summer by people who were titanically brighter, and to have just enough of an awareness of all of this to make him perpetually uneasy. Also, he couldn't jump."
posted by Iridic
on Mar 18, 2013 -
Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff
, a podcast in which writer and game designer Robin D. Laws
, The GUMSHOE system
) and game designer and writer Kenneth Hite
(Tour De Lovecraft
, GURPS Horror
) talk about stuff. Stuffs include: Why vampires are assholes and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
, stopping WWI and Beasts of the Southern Wild
, Margaret Atwood and the difference between a mystic and an occultist
, why no invented setting is as interesting as the real world and Woodrow Wilson
, Gencon and sundry RPGs
, Neil Armstrong, HP Blavatsky and theosophy
, the ebook prcing settlement, what big publishing could learn from RPG publishers, and the many crazy fictional possibilities of Charles Lindbergh and his UFO investigating chums
, and Dungeons and Dragons edition wars and Aliester Crowley
posted by Artw
on Sep 30, 2012 -
Vampires in Havana
(YT, 1:09:58, Spanish with English subtitles, also available on Netflix streaming) is an animated film
by Cuban director Juan Padron
about the battle between European and American vampires for control of Vampisol, a formula which allows vampires to go out in the sun.
posted by Daily Alice
on Dec 20, 2011 -
Simulated U.S. Government Agency Responses to Vampire-Americans
"Every spring, [the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce] runs a policy simulation designed to illustrate the difficulty of operating an organization in the context of asymmetric and limited information. Every fall, I run a two hour mini-simulation designed to give students a sense of how the larger simulation will play out. ... Since vampires seem to be in the news lately, this year I chose a vampire oriented scenario."
posted by amber_dale
on Jan 12, 2010 -
Peter Watts on Vampire Domestication (embedded Flash video, must click to start).
The mythical corporation FizerPharm ("Trust. Profit. Deniability.") share their detailed research into the evolution and possible commercial applications of Homo sapiens whedonum.
You will learn: How and why the "crucifix glitch" came about. Why you should run from a blushing vampire. How many kilograms of human are needed to make one kilogram of vampire. How vampires resemble two year old humans, domestic shorthaired cats, and lungfish. And why "survival of the fittest" should be reconceptualized as "survival of the least inadequate". [more inside]
posted by maudlin
on Dec 24, 2006 -
is hot. I'd do her. The thing is she holds the world record (according to GWR
) for being the most prolific serial killer in history. Supposedly, she may have tortured and killed
as many as 2000 young girls, which probably makes her bi or lesbian (not that there's anything wrong with that). Some say she is the real inspiration
for Bram Stoker's Dracula
posted by sluglicker
on Mar 18, 2006 -
may not be able to do her job anymore. You remember Jonathon "The Impaler" Sharkey
, the undead, bloodsucking candidate for Minnesota governor, don't you? Julie Carpenter's association with her husband/friend and Wicca affiliation makes her unsuited to drive the school bus, according to the Princeton Schools Superintendent. [by
posted by Captaintripps
on Jan 16, 2006 -