Generally speaking, there are three criteria that X projects share. All must address a problem that affects millions–or better yet, billions–of people. All must utilize a radical solution that has at least a component that resembles science fiction. And all must tap technologies that are now (or very nearly) obtainable.

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Person Of Interest turns conspiracy theory into art · The A.V. Club

The machine feeding Finch numbers could have been a rarely discussed MacGuffin; instead, it’s become the fulcrum of the entire series, a mysterious intelligence with plans uncomfortably beyond the understanding of its creator. Between the slow reformation of Root from murderous evil genius to badass acolyte, and the computer’s own understanding of its core mission, the concurrent themes of protection, identity, and heroism underlay every scene. Each week, Mr. Finch explains to the viewer: “You are being watched.” And each week, Finch and the others do their best to earn the privilege of their perspective, while others seek to exploit it. A smart show that keeps getting smarter, Person Of Interest evolved from a procedural with a twist into something entirely itself: a well-paced, tightly constructed sci-fi thriller that continually questions its assumptions.

Person Of Interest turns conspiracy theory into art · The A.V. Club

Read more "Person Of Interest turns conspiracy theory into art · The A.V. Club"

Well, for starters, Communism went away, and we’ve got a conspicuous lack of imminent nuclear armageddon. Now we’ve got a terrifying, major-league climate crisis that nobody talks about much, because oil companies and banks took over the world for a while.

The twenty-teens are about as different from the 1980s as the 1980s were from the 1950s. It’s still the same civilization, just a different point in time.

Well, look at it this way. The year 2014 is the centenary of World War One. When you hang out in Europe like I do, you stumble over the rubble of World War One, quite a lot. Humanity was in a truly dreadful place, one hundred years ago. The world situation of humanity was truly bitter and hateful and and deadly, and, well, here we are anyway. That’s the big picture.

There are a lot of times and places where “humanity” is headed in no place in particular. Those scenes interest me. Like, little European cultures with weird minority languages, who are just hanging around in obscure mountain valleys, making clay pots and singing, and knifing each other on Tuesdays. You might think that a chrome-and-matte-black science fiction writer would lack a cordial interest in penny-ante cultural scenes like that, but they have their merits. It’s not like we all line up and dash like mad for some end-goal called “The Future.” There’s no victory-condition for being human. The future is just a kind of history that hasn’t happened yet.

I recommend this high-tech dystopian flick called “Aelita, Queen of Mars.” “Aelita” was made by a crew of Soviet Communist-Futurists, and practically everybody involved in it was either rounded up by the secret police or forced into exile. Also, they had to stick a crap ending onto their sci-fi Mars movie, so that the Communist censor approved. Now that’s a really “dystopian” movie, you know? The kind where the guys *making* the movie are in a dystopia. The rest of it is kid stuff!

As for the “cyberpunk” part, forget about “the movies.” Abstract motion-graphics coded in Processing and posted on Vimeo, that’s “cyberpunk.” You don’t wanna make movies that are about guys with computers. You want to use digital composition to seize control of the means of producing cinema. And then do it all yourself! That’s “punk.” Hollywood product is commerce, it’s about fanboy culture.

Search engines are a major research aid for writers, but in the past few years, they’ve all been turning into surveillance-marketing engines. Now it’s like trying to get some fiction done, while Google is all like, “So! Finish that Coke yet? Hey, how about a six-pack?” It’s like Larry and Sergei are right in the room now, staring with Google Glass, and holding their breath.

We’ve gone away from science because our whole society’s gone away from science. We’re in a science-hostile society now, it’s politically dominated by Creationists and climate denialists.

Highlights from Chairman Bruce qna on /. –

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