I'll be attending this Boston convention again this year, Feb. 15-17, and reading from my new novel, Stealing Worlds
Boskone is held at the Boston Weston Waterfront, close to all the best action in downtown Boston. I'm flying in Thursday night so I'll be available to chat, sign and read from Friday afternoon onwards.
Here's my final schedule. What's on here matches closes my current obsessions, and a lot of these topics are front and center in Stealing Worlds. So expect me to be vocal, opinionated, and engaged!
The Most Alien Aliens
15 Feb 2019, Friday 16:00 - 16:50, Burroughs (Westin)
How can you design a really GOOD alien? How can writers/artists imbue their creations with a genuine sense of otherness? What do our depictions of aliens tell us about ourselves?
James Cambias, Dr. Stephen P. Kelner Jr. (Ascent Leadership Networks) (M), Jeffrey A. Carver, Laurence Raphael Brothers (Freelance), Karl Schroeder
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 12:00 - 12:50, Harbor II (Westin)
1984 was published in 1949. 2001: A Space Odyssey was published in 1968. Neither was predictive ... at least for the year they were putatively about. Should science fiction set in the near future try to be prophetic? Can it avoid becoming dated? Does it always have to be dystopic? There’s a lot of it out there these days, but what makes a near-future story successful?
Fran Wilde, Michael Swanwick, Karl Schroeder, Paul Di Filippo (M), Brett James
Economics in SF/F Worlds
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 14:00 - 14:50, Burroughs (Westin)
Whether you deal in coin, platinum, electronic credits, or chickens, all societies rest upon an agreed-upon economic foundation. However, fantastic fiction rarely features a reference to any body that establishes and monitors a financial system. How important is it to see a working (or failing) economy in an SF/F world? Can you realistically have a cashless society (Star Trek) or a civilization run by orcs (LOTR)? What are the economic drivers that keep these worlds turning? Fellowships that cross multiple borders to throw away precious metal objects so rarely pay well. How do our heroes and villains survive without visible incomes of any kind?
MR Richardson (Room 10 Publishing) (M), Fonda Lee, Karl Schroeder , Steve Miller (Liaden Universe), Mr. Walter H. Hunt (Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts)
Reading by Karl Schroeder
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 15:00 - 15:25, Griffin (Westin)
Autographing: James Cambias, Daniel M. Kimmel, Bracken MacLeod, Karl Schroeder
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 16:00 - 16:50, Galleria - Autographing (Westin)
Kaffeeklatsch: Karl Schroeder
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 17:00 - 17:50, Galleria - Kaffeeklatsch 1 (Westin)
If Only It Were Real
16 Feb 2019, Saturday 20:00 - 20:50, Griffin (Westin)
What science fiction concept, other than space travel, would you most like to see realized? Flying cars? Matter replicators? Time travel? Why? What would be the impact on civilization of this wish fulfillment? Flying cars crashing into buildings, replicators putting manufacturers out of business, time travelers running wild, oh my!
Alan Brown (M), Suzanne Reynolds-Alpert, Marshall Ryan Maresca, Mary Anne Mohanraj (Speculative Literature Foundation), Karl Schroeder
The Limits of Automation
17 Feb 2019, Sunday 10:00 - 10:50, Burroughs (Westin)
When, how, why, what? Following up on last year's "The Future of Work" ... How far can we reasonably project that automation of jobs will advance in the real world in the next 10 years? Why? What limits to automation are presently visible? What plausible limits have we not yet encountered? What about the longer term? What jobs can we reasonably expect will be completely automatable in years to come? We'll focus on technical aspects, not so much on societal acceptance, and not at all on societal impact.
Mark Olson (M), Jeff Hecht, Karl Schroeder, Laurence Raphael Brothers (Freelance), Brianna Wu
When Robots Take Over (Our Jobs)
17 Feb 2019, Sunday 11:00 - 11:50, Burroughs (Westin)
Twentieth-century history shows that automation can increase productivity and stimulate new employment. More recent developments, however, haven't always been so productive or stimulating (e.g., grocery store self-checkouts). Are we nearing a point of no return — when technological advances chiefly function to replace human labor? What happens to society once work gets scarce, and stays that way? And what might the transition to that brave new (jobless) world entail?
Mark Olson (M), Karl Schroeder, B. Diane Martin, John P. Murphy, Brianna Wu