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Derek Austin Johnson
Attended University of Texas at Austin
Lives in Central Texas
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Derek Austin Johnson

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I talk about Leonard Nimoy in my latest Watching the Future column at SF Signal. 
Derek Austin Johnson remembers Leonard Nimoy in today's Watching the Future.
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Methane-based-based life on Titan. 
Scientists have come up with a cellular lifeform which could exist in the chemical conditions on Saturn's moon Titan
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Our posthuman future. 
Researchers are claiming a stem cell research breakthrough that would allow a baby to be created from the skin cells of two adults, no matter their gender. From this, scientists have produced prec...
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Seriously we don't need more humans...
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Derek Austin Johnson

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Efficiently increase your pretentiousness levels with a short James Joyce photoessay -- now animated!
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Bottom line: it won't happen. "You are much more like your house cat than you are ever going to be like Siri."
That convergence will not happen, because the ambition is basically metaphysical. It will recede over the horizon like a heat mirage. We are never going to get there. It works like this: first, far-fetched metaphysical propositions. Then an academic computer scientist will try and build one in ...
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Paul Di Filippo sets his critical eye on two exemplary new collections. 
New story collections from two modern masters suggest that we're living in a Golden Age of short “fantastika”.
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Derek Austin Johnson

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I don't agree with Peter Watts here. I find a good deal to admire in Tarkovsky's version of Solaris, and think of it as a compelling corollary to 2001: A Space Odyssey. However, I find his essay on Soderberg's version compelling enough to give it a rewatch. 
(A lightly edited reprint of a recent Nowa Fantastyka column.) My stuff has been compared, on occasion, to the work of Stanislaw Lem. I find this intimidating. It's kind of a high bar to clear; when expectations are calibrated to such altitudes, it's easy to fall short.
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One step closer to the robot uprising. 
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It's easy to laugh at Clifford Stoll's rather boneheaded prediction from 1995: "The truth in no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works."

It absolutely is worth a giggle. But consider a paragraph a little later that is somewhat more sobering:

"What the Internet hucksters won't tell you is tht the Internet is one big ocean of unedited data, without any pretense of completeness. Lacking editors, reviewers or critics, the Internet has become a wasteland of unfiltered data. You don't know what to ignore and what's worth reading. Logged onto the World Wide Web, I hunt for the date of the Battle of Trafalgar. Hundreds of files show up, and it takes 15 minutes to unravel them—one's a biography written by an eighth grader, the second is a computer game that doesn't work and the third is an image of a London monument. None answers my question, and my search is periodically interrupted by messages like, 'Too many connections, try again later.'"

Granted, the Internet has gotten better about finding data, but it also makes no bones about Stoll's basic point. An article no longer has to be true, it just has to look like it came from a reputable organization.

Worth reading, however, for how our opinions of a technology can change from a somewhat interesting distraction to a basic utility. 
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We live in an age when all manner of scientific knowledge--from climate change to vaccinations--faces furious opposition. Some even have doubts about the moon landing.
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"It may have had survival advantage in caveman days, to get more food, territory or partner with whom to reproduce, but now it threatens to destroy us all."
Technically Incorrect: Speaking at London's Science Museum, famed physicist Stephen Hawking insists that humans must change their ways and dedicate more to space travel if we want to survive.
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"Gaiman calls the stories a 'hodgepodge,' with no real interweaving theme throughout. But each of the stories and poems celebrates a different aspect of storytelling that has informed the author's life."
Trigger warnings caution readers to tread carefully and Neil Gaiman encourages those who pick up his latest collection of "short fictions and disturbances" to do the same.
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People
In his circles
582 people
Have him in circles
587 people
Jim Kelly's profile photo
Monica Meira Vaughan's profile photo
Anna Marinina's profile photo
Vera Nazarian's profile photo
Mohamad Putra's profile photo
Louis Shalako's profile photo
Smokie Black's profile photo
Elze Hamilton's profile photo
Richard Pearsey's profile photo
Education
  • University of Texas at Austin
    English, 1989 - 1993
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Birthday
January 13
Story
Tagline
I am certain of nothing but the holiness of the heart's affections and the truth of imagination. -- John Keats
Introduction
I don't believe in ghosts...I don't believe in vampires...I don't believe in demons, angels, astrology, werewolves, JFK conspiracy theories, Feng shui, utopias, God, Satan, pyramid power, Freud, Marx, Buddha, prayer, the power of positive thinking, poltergeists, reincarnation, UFO's, Bigfoot, grapho-analysis, whole grain cereals, Jesus, Patsy Ramsey's innocence, an afterlife or...fill in the blank...I may believe in the Beatles. The jury's still out on that. But I definitely do not believe in Yoko. I am, in John Keats's words, "...certain of nothing but the holiness of the Heart's affections and the truth of Imagination." -- Dan Simmons
Bragging rights
I write science fiction and sf criticism, among other things.
Work
Occupation
Writer and critic
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Central Texas
Previously
Houston, Texas - Springfield, Massachusetts - Chicago, Illinois - Austin, Texas - Houston, Texas - Arlington, Texas