Extropia friend Robert J. Sawyer returns to Sophrosyne’s Saturday Salon on Sunday, May 24, noon PDT, to discuss his new novel, Wake. The first in a new trilogy, Wake tells the story of the unfolding consciousness of the World Wide Web:
Caitlin Decter is young, pretty, feisty, a genius at math — and blind. Still, she can surf the net with the best of them, following its complex paths clearly in her mind. When a Japanese researcher develops a new signal-processing implant that might give her sight, she jumps at the chance, flying to Tokyo for the operation.
But Caitlin’s brain long ago co-opted her primary visual cortex to help her navigate online. Once the implant is activated, instead of seeing reality, the landscape of the World Wide Web explodes into her consciousness, spreading out all around her in a riot of colors and shapes. While exploring this amazing realm, she discovers something — some other — lurking in the background. And it’s getting smarter …
Caitlin’s on Facebook: Friend her here!
The opening chapters of Wake are available free here, from Rob’s amazing website.
Rob’s a prolific blogger: follow him here.
Sophrosyne’s Salon (usually Sophrosyne’s Saturday Salon) brings stellar authors, scientists, and artists to Extropia, Second Life’s future-friendly Resident-built community. In addition to Rob, previous guest include Kim Stanley Robinson, David Brin, Charles Stross, Catherine Asaro and many more. Extropia management works with special Salon guests to design avatars for them on request (Rob designed his own), and to provide orientation services. The Salon is a text-only, open conversation with the community, hosted by Extropia Director Sophrosyne Stenvaag. Teleport to the Salon Room, Extropia Core: SLURL.
Rob at Sophrosyne’s Special Salon, April 6, 2008
CALL FOR ARTWORK: MAY ART EXHIBITION
The city-state of Extropia is pleased to announce an Art exhibition, May 24th through June 7th, to be displayed in and around our public plazas. We invite all artists who’d like to show their works to our residents, and to the rest of the Second Life community.
We’re looking for works of art which would fit in with Extropia’s future-positive outlook. They can be representational or abstract, have a theme or not, as long as they would not look amiss in our public spaces.
Information on Extropia may be found here.
A Flickr Gallery about Extropia can be seen here.
Extropia’s SLURL is here.
Artists who are selected to display works may, if they wish, offer them for sale, in any format which pleases them (single work, limited run of copies, sell as many as the traffic will bear). We ask that the work(s) be left in our plazas until the end of the exhibition. If an artist wishes to sell a singular work by auction, we will act as the auctioneer on their behalf.
Please contact me for further details.
We look forward to your submissions!
for the Board of Directors for Extropia,
Next Saturday, April 18 at noon SLT, Sophrosyne’s Saturday Salon hosts Extropia’s own Truthseeker Young!
We’ve turned our resident mad artist loose, and he’s created something truly extraordinary in Extropia Core for the upcoming Salon. He’s described it modestly as “a tree,” but guests at Extropia’s Yuri’s Night party suspected it’s the love child of the Flying Spaghetti Monster andthe entire Hindu pantheon. Either way, it’s the creative centerpiece of next Saturday’s discussion, which promises to be wild!
Truthy, as kind and wise as he is brilliantly talented, will lead us through his creative visions, design process and more.
If you’re at all a fan of virtual worlds art, architecture and design, this is a can’t-miss event!
We rocked the solar system again!
Special thanks to DJs Nicki Petrichor, GoSpeed Racer and Seven Shikami, for their hard work in custom Yuri’s Night dance sets! Our four hour party was still going strong nine hours later, in true Extropia style!
We’ve got party photos up at Yuri’s Night 2009 in Extropia on Flickr, and crossposted to the Flickr group Events in Extropia: if you’ve got party photos, please add them! Of course, photos are also up on our Facebook Page.
Next year, in Low Earth Orbit!
Yuri’s Night, the World Space Party, celebrates the anniversary of the first human spaceflight, by Yuri Gagarin on Apri 12, 1961. Extropia is proud to host one of 141 parties in 41 countries and two words this year!
Join us for a DJ dance extravaganza in Extropia’s Technohenge this Saturday, April 11, from 4pm SLT onwards. We’ll have a terrific lineup of techno, ebm, nerdcore and classic rock DJs and the usual Extropia out of this world style!
Spacewalk on down to Technohenge this Saturday!
RU Sirius will not be appearing on February 7 as previously advertised.
This is not any of RU’s doing, but due to the Extropia staff being unavailable for a while.
Science fiction great Kim Stanley Robinson was the Spotlight Guest at Sophrosyne’s Saturday Salon in Extropia, Second Life, on January 17, 2009. Appearing as his avatar, Stan Shackleton, a coyote, Stan chatted with more than 64 Salon guests for over two hours.
The chatlog is available here. It has been edited at Stan’s request to remove spoilers for his new novel, which he shared with the audience. This article excerpts highlights from the Salon, edited for clarity. All photos are courtesy of Boc Cryotank (Stephen Euin Cobb), who introduced the author to Extropia’s events organizer. Boc’s full collection of Salon photos is available on his Flickr site and on Extropia’s Facebook Page.
Upcoming Novel: Galileo’s Dream
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: So, I’ve been dying to ask this since we started corresponding – you just delivered a new novel – what can you tell us about it?
Stan Shackleton: Galileo’s Dream is about Galileo and how under the life we know was a strange set of incidents which explain many mysteries in his life. Galileo gets taken to a future where they all look like you…
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: ok, when’s the release date?
Vidal Tripsa has a Shelfari wishlist begging. 😉
Stan Shackleton: August 2009 in UK, Jan. 2010 in US
Vidal Tripsa: Then I’d ask – why the UK first? That’s.. extraordinarily rare in my experience? Do you know?
Stan Shackleton: My UK publisher is faster
“We are in the great age of Science Versus Capitalism. We have to hope science wins.”
Stan Shackleton: It has the method that actually works. This should help but is no guarantee. Think of government as the virtual commons, the company of us, of the people by the people for the people. We have been making government more scientifice for a long time. That’s the long revolution.
Tortov Ordinary: stan, what means a government get more “scientific”?
Stan Shackleton: more responsive to empirical data, less nepotisitc, more medicine.
Serendipity Seraph: global warming is not as clear as many think
Stan Shackleton: please go look at a glacier. Climate change is real. It could be very bad if we don’t act now. The generations to come need us acting now, also the biosphere. And it’s not too late to act, something always follows. Saying it’s too late means you don’t have to do anything. Saying it’s not too late means you don’t have to do anything. It’s a bad concept, “too late.”
Science As Religion
Stan Shackleton: Arne Naess died this week, philosopher and founder of Deep Ecology, which is important and everyone should study even though it’s a religion and an ideology, but so is science. This view of the biosphere is important for our survival. I say this as a shallow ecologist.
Serendipity Seraph: do not agree science is a religion. define and defend please.
Stan Shackleton: science is an ideology, an imaginary relationship to a real situation. We imagine our relationships to the real situation. Just that we create the mental structures that allow us to process the real. We also think of the word ideology as if it refers to other people, while we are right and have clear vision.
“Sax Russell Is My Wife”
Kim Anubis: Stan, what do you think we can learn from your Mars Trilogy character Saxifrage Russel?
Stan Shackleton: Thanks Kim, Sax is somewhat modeled on my wife. It’s true. I love Sax
IYan Writer: I like the Sax character, too – but is she the Red Mars Sax or the Blue Mars Sax? 🙂
Kim Anubis: Sax made me look at lichen in a new way 🙂
Stan Shackleton: She is the Blue Mars Sax I think. Lichen are great!
Science Fiction and the Future
Stan Shackleton: Science fiction created an image of the future. Parts of it came true in some places. Other parts never came true. Some may later. And of course there were lots of futures described. Science fiction is great for commenting about now. It’s also good for escapist adventure and power fantasies.
Rocket Sellers: what about techonology prediction?
Stan Shackleton: It’s very broadband, yes tech prediction for sure. It’s been good at that, with famous exceptions.
What One SF Novel Would You Recommend?
Extropia DaSilva: Stan, as well as your own books, if you had to name one science fiction novel everyone should read before they die, what would it be?
Stan Shackleton: Starmaker by Olaf Stapledon. Then a list of about a hundred novels. All very good. It’s so big. Every paragraph is a full novel condensed.
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: yes! a tesseract-novel – and more a future history than any sort of novel
Stan Shackleton: Let’s say the novel can also be a future history in summary too. Novel is a big form, lots of variety. I don’t like all these reviews and comments that seem to suggest there is such a thing as the novel. That puts limits on form or method. I like thinking of it as being really big and flexible.
Is Your Storytelling Changing?
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: Is storytelling changing? And, is *your* storytelling changing?
Stan Shackleton: Thanks, I think my story-telling is always reacting to the story I’m tryng to tell. But I notice the solutions begin to resemeble each other in certain ways, which must be my style or method. I don’t like novels to have all scenes at the same pace. That’s like music all at the same tempo for an hour. So, I like varying tempo.
Tortov Ordinary: stan, do you plans to “go back” to mars someday?
Stan Shackleton: No—See “I Say Good-bye to Mars” in The Martians. I’m done. There are other stories to tell.
What Would You Like to Ask *Us*?
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: Stan, is there anything you’d like to ask *us*?
Stan Shackleton: Does everyone know their carbon burn? Not asking for purity. I burn lots of carbon and use my computer. Just knowing and shifting behaviors. Also enjoying the high res of the outdoors.
Tortov Ordinary: stan, how do you think the internet can help change things?
Stan Shackleton: Maybe the internet can be the true global village idea. In which case we see we’re all in it together. So it’s really a good thing. But like everything, moderation in all things.Too much internet for any one person is bad. I see that around me.
Tortov Ordinary: one of the things i really liked in the mars trilogy is that there we see some new kind kind of plausibe social order, or many of them<
Stan Shackleton: Thanks Tortov, that was hard to suggest… I needed the blank slate of Mars and then just postulated thta many alternatives now discussed.
Sophrosyne Stenvaag: Stan, do we need that kind of blank slate?
Stan Shackleton: No, we need the long revolution. We have to do it here and out of the current conditions. This is what we are transferring now in our ideas of Obama. We are in this situation, can’t get out of it, have to start in it; but want great things.
Galena Qi: We’ll drag our “monkey mind” along with us everywhere we go. Societies are mutable but human nature doesn’t change.
Stan Shackleton: Yes Galena, but the monkey mind is very utopian! Ideas of justice, adequacy, all there before us in primates. oooooooooop! I’m going to jump now!
Kim Stanley Robinson in Second Life
Kim Stanley Robinson, Hugo- and Nebula-award winning author of The Mars Trilogy and the Science in The Capital Trilogy, will be the featured guest at an open talk show in Second Life next week .
At noon Pacific Time on Saturday, January 17, Robinson will be featured at Sophrosyne’s Saturday Salon in the futuristic community of Extropia (http://extropiacore.net/) as part of an ongoing discussion series bringing authors including Charles Stross, Robert J. Sawyer, David Brin, and Catherine Asaro into Second Life.
Robinson will appear as his avatar, Stan Shackleton, a coyote, in honor of the role played by the figure from Native American legend in his Mars novels.
Robinson will discuss his just-completed new novel, the transformative politics of science and technology, and more, in response to audience questions. Discussion will take place in text chat.
The Salon is open to anyone with a Second Life avatar, and can be reached by teleporting to The Nexus in Extropia Core within Second Life: (http://slurl.com/secondlife/Extropia%20Core/126/127/22/?title=Central%20Nexus%20at%20Extropia%20Core).
Contact Sophrosyne Stenvaag, Director, Events and Marketing, Extropia for further information:
Science fiction legend Kim Stanely Robinson will be our guest for a special Saturday Salon on January 17.
Please join us in the Salon Room, Extropia Core at noon Second Life Time (PST) for Stan’s first visit to Second Life, and an hour and a half of discussion.
Stan is the Hugo- and Nebula-award winning author of the Mars Trilogy (Red Mars, Green Mars, Blue Mars), the “Science in the Capital” trilogy, and many more landmark novels.
Stan will be present as his avatar, Stan Shackleton, a coyote, in honor of the Native American legend which plays a prominent role in his Mars novels.
In addition to discussing his past and future work, we’ll also venture into the politics of science and techology, social justice and the environment, and many more fascinating and controversial issues.
(Please also join us for our first Salon of the year- Thor Olof, of Avatars United, Saturday January 3 at noon!)
Extropia Citizens and friends, old and new, rocked Technohenge for more than twelve hours on the Solstice, for our second annual solstice party.
Thanks to our terrific DJ lineup for some of the best sets they’ve ever done: GoSpeed Racer, Nicki Petrichor, Vannesh Cannoli, Seven Shikami – and a very special thanks to Alex Burgess, DJ keTchUp, for covering a no-show with a double length set to end one of our best nights ever.
Thanks to our Citizens, who’ve built the very best community on the grid, and thanks to our new friends who came, liked what they saw, and will come again!
We’ve got a full lineup of events for the next few months, including some amazing celebrity Salon guests, so watch this space for details!