Contracting Iris

Category: fiblet

Her eyes stare back from the bathroom mirror. Her pupils seem just the slightest bit cloudy. Or maybe it’s her imagination; maybe all these insights and wild guesses have primed her to see things that aren’t there. She reaches for the wall, never taking her eyes from her reflection. Flips off the light switch. Two […]

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215 Little Indians: Or, How is Chevron like the Vatican?

Category: ass-hamsters, rant

“an act … committed for a political, religious, or ideological purpose that is intended to intimidate the public, or a subset of the public … or to compel a person, government or organization (whether inside or outside Canada) from doing or refraining from doing any act, and that intentionally causes one of a number of […]

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Russian Liaisons, Polish Hellicorns, Alien Kickstarters, and Contraband Readings.

Category: ink on art, interviews, public interface

But before we get to any of that: The Revenge of the Attack Helicopters. The 2020 Hugo finalists have been announced. If you scroll down the to the “Best Novelette” category, you’ll see an entry that you may find both familiar and not: “Helicopter Story”, by Isabel Fall. Familiar because Fall and her story were […]

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Strategic Retreat

Category: fiblet, Sunflowers

Solway’s holding the torch when Heinwald emerges into the corridor. She points it at the breach like a flamethrower. Heinwald ducks out of the way as the three tracks of breathing filling his helmet drop to two, to one; the others have killed their radios. Heinwald does the same, joins his fellows, leans in until […]

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What Dreams May Come.

Category: biology, neuro, sentience/cognition

Interrogating the Dream Anyone who caught my talk at Ratio back in 2017 might vaguely recall a curious claim: that the Human corpus callosum—that bundle of neurons connecting our cerebral hemispheres—has a bandwidth in the same ballpark as that of a modern cell phone, once you take noise correction and synaptic redundancy into account. I […]

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Valentines from the Oort

Category: Uncategorized

For me, Valentine’s Day doesn’t suck nearly as much as it used to. It greatly improved the moment I ditched the braindead corporate florists who would (for example) print onto the card not the poem I’d slaved over for days, but the fucking instructions to the florist on where to insert line breaks. It got […]

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Batman.

Category: biology, biotech, scilitics

“What’s the point in even having money if you can’t use it to buy better health care?” —Jonathan, my (late) brother, explaining whyhe renounced his Canadian citizenship I’ve been reading a lot about bats recently, in particular this review article from Nature. You can guess why, even if you haven’t hopped on the Batwagon yourself: […]

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The Viral Vasectomy: Covid’s Silver Lining.

Category: biology, In praise of biocide

“May we live long and die out.”—Motto of the Voluntary Extinction Movement We begin the new year with a glimmer of hope: Covid remains ascendant, and it might have ecological impacts far beyond what we first thought. I’m not talking about the obvious drop in carbon emissions. That was nothing, a mere blip: it didn’t […]

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The 2020 Back-End Escapist Fan Art Festival.

Category: art on ink

Looks like WordPress changed the rules: you can’t embiggen by clicking any more. You have to right-click and select “View Image” instead. Stupid WordPress. Time for the semiannual Gallery Update—that moment when, coddled by a comfy world devoid of trouble, you can dip into newly-uploaded visions of Wattsian dystopia for a bit of cold water […]

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Frozen 3

Category: fiblet, Omniscience

For three hours Moore had barely moved a muscle. He’d sat petrified as they stepped over Sengupta’s body and left him behind—the vampire in the lead, the biologist bumbling haplessly in her wake. He’d sat as the deck tilted a little, and a little more, some small abstract part of him marveling that his chair […]

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