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Upcoming appearance: FutureFest in London

This weekend I'll be appearing at Shoreditch Town Hall in London at FutureFest, a two-day event backed by NESTA (formerly the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts, before it was spun off as an independent charity last year). FutureFest is a two-day event which "will be exploring four big themes, ranging from future humans to future tech and creativity" — and on Sunday morning I'll be part of the SF Writers' parliament:

Science Fiction writers often give themselves the license to imagine whole new societies, their rules and norms, and test them to destruction (or raise them to a heavenly perfection). Imagine if you actually gave them real power? Robin will be hovering above a team of some of the best SF writers on this planet or any other as they argue their cases for what the future will hold - and put their futures to a public vote.
So if you're in London this weekend, why not book a ticket and come along to watch me, Ken Macleod, Cory Doctorow, Pat Cadigan, and a bunch of other writers arguing on stage?

11 Comments

1:

Charlie, I cant make this because I'll be running a stall at BiFest in Brixton until five. Then I'm off to a pub meet for players of EVE Online at a Wetherspoons near Aldgate called the Goodmans Field.

Seeing as Shoreditch isn't too far off, if you want me to buy you a drink then drop by. Most of the people there will know me by my character's name, Arnulf Ogunkoya.

On Sunday morning I'll be boarding a coach for a day trip up to Manchester and the NHS cuts demonstration there.

2:

We're going to gigs in Cambridge on Friday and Saturday evenings, so hauling down to Shoreditch for Sunday morning is probably not going to happen.

3:

The future based on "Wisdom of the Crowds" using data from a sub population that has a very poor track record of getting any future predictions right. Awesome!

Imagine if you actually gave them real power?

A variant on Alan Kay's "The best way to predict the future is to invent it."?

Please, please don't anyone talk about an apocalypse.

4:

Oh BUM
On the Sunday .... I have to go to Tenterden to dance at ( & on ) the Kent & East Sussex Light Railway ... includes really good pub by Hever Castle ....

5:

Yes in principle, but I'm taking a week off alcohol. Starting today. The liver isn't that evil and has been punished sufficiently of late ...

6:

And lo: I have just discovered I'm going to be in Frankfurt the week after next, from the 8th to the 12th -- doing an event at the Frankfurt Book Fair.

7:

Charlie,

I was a little surprised that neither Steve Furber nor I received an invite for this event, still say "Hi" to Anders Sandberg for me, will you. Tell him to get across to Lausanne in two weeks time for the grand opening of Human Brain Project.

Cheers (make mine an orange juice),

Dave.

8:

I thought about going to this, then I found out it costs £36 per session (not per day - per session, e.g. half day, with no discount if you want more sessions), so I've decided to pass.

Do they anticipate a big audience? At that price I really can't see it somehow, unless there will be a lot of corporate attendees.

9:

ffutures writes:

"Do they anticipate a big audience? At that price I really can't see it somehow, unless there will be a lot of corporate attendees."

NESTA is an attempt to join the worlds of arts and science together, a worthy aim indeed. In practice it appears to be a training ground for SPADs and MPs, which means its focus often lies with the entrepreneurs. (My source for this is the guy who set up IBM Manchester, who had a fair amount to do with them a few years ago). So, pretty corporate, I'd guess.

Another data point is Anders Sandberg's attendence; he's had the foresight to set up a political think tank and to do a stint with one of our MPs. So, he's surprisingly well connected politically for a Swedish Computational Neuroscientist.

If you want something less corporate, why not do a pub-science lecture series? I've got two filed away: one -- for school kids -- "How can you justify spending €1 billion on your latest research project?" and another given to the Portuguese Science Academy at "The Centre for the Unknown" on "How to build an Exaflop supercomputer in the UK".

10:

I take it the session is 'Science Fiction Writer's Parliament' on Sunday? It is very tempting, but 36£ for one session does put it right up there

11:

Well, I didn't specify an alcoholic drink.

Looks like it might be a moot point anyway as I've just checked the state of my bank balance and it looks like I'll be lucky to afford food until I next get paid, never mind about booze.

:-(

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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on September 25, 2013 12:14 PM.

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