Tuesday, July 30, 2019

More on "Portle"

I have a guest blog post about the origins of "Portle" out at the Analog website. You can read it here.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Guest Commentary on "Portle"

My short story, "Portle", has just appeared in the July/August issue of AnalogI'll have a blog post about the story at the Analog website soon, but in the meantime I have this comment about the story from Adrian Melott, a fellow cosmologist (and collaborator) at the University of Kansas, to share:


In the spirit of literary criticism, this is the meaning of your story, which is a parable about physicists. It is true because I say it is, whether you intended it or not. By writing about it, I will make sure that everyone thinks of it this way.

Physicists couldn't tolerate the grandiose vision implied by the many-worlds understanding of quantum mechanics. Retreating from this, they narrowed their consciousness. This is called "collapse of the wave function". What happened to the little girl is a metaphor for the Copenhagen Interpretation.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Does Science Fiction Predict the Future?

Well, does it? I address this question in a brief article over at the online Observations section of Scientific American.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

The Most Famous Person You Would Never Recognize in a Photo

Think of the most famous people of the past 100 years:  Einstein, Churchill, Gandhi.  All of them, and hundreds more, are instantly recognizable from their photos:






So here is a question to ponder: who is the most famous person of the past century whom most people would never recognize from a photo? I have a nominee -- it's this guy:


Do you recognize him? Who is it? I'm being a little unfair here, as he became famous at a much younger age. Try this photo instead:


Time to guess: who are we talking about?

Friday, February 1, 2019

New Things in Analog

I've just had a couple of items accepted by AnalogThe first is a nonfiction article that discusses the similarities and differences between "doing" theoretical physics and coming up with new ideas for science fiction. (I need to specify here that my cosmology research does not fall under the category of "science fiction"). And the second is the short story to which I alluded here. I can't tell you what it's about -- you'll just have to wait and see.