Tuesday, 3 September 2013

When everyone's different, we're all the same

A really interesting article in the Guardian today about the rise of geek culture. This is one of the other many things I hate about the modern world - I feel appropriated! Definitely worth a read.

This nugget in particular is worth mentioning, as it touches on Our Topic:

In turn, as cheap technology advances it has colonised what used to be the mental playground of the geek world, science fiction itself. What used to take place in a Gollancz paperback now happens in the real world. "A lot of people are arguing that the science fiction novel is dying," [Warren] Ellis explains, "but it's thriving everywhere else, in television, fashion, pop culture, everywhere."

The most interesting contemporary science fiction, he thinks, is being created in "design fiction". Here, otherwise staid design firms and architectural practices visualise future trends much as The Usborne Book Of the Future [large PDF] did for 70s kids – but with added plausibility underpinned by hard design and science. Design fiction is where the geeks roll up their sleeves and it can be dazzling.
I used to own that book too - it's on the kids bookshelves now, I think. What we see here is a culture so deeply steeped in science fiction imagery that science fiction itself is no longer necessary.

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