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09 NOVEMBER 2013

Design Fiction, Science Fiction and Literary Criticism

"Design Fiction is a recent spin–off of Science Fiction, directly inspired by many of the imagined worlds of writers like Bruce Sterling, William Gibson, J.G. Ballard and others. It sets out to do many of the same things as Sci–Fi does, but in a more concrete way, by introducing real physical objects or real sets of rules and scenarios which require the participation (direct or indirect, voluntary or involuntary) of users, beyond just their emotional and intellectual engagement. In this way Design Fiction can 'test' objects or tools or storylines that Science Fiction, until recently, has not been able to. A literary work, has (in general) been a fixed text until very recently, and so even though readers have enjoyed many different readings and interpretations, the author has not been able to adapt or react to their responses. Design Fiction allows the inventor or storytellers to adapt their scenario as it evolves and as the users or participants give their reactions."

(Charles Beckett, How to Think About The Future)

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TAGS

alternative possible futures • Bruce Sterling • conscious metaphor • design fictiondigital technologyfictional setting • future speculation • future technologiesfuturologyInanimate AliceJ G Ballard • Jake Dugarden • Julian Bleeckerliterary criticismMichio Kaku • nascent practice • Near Future Laboratory • PerplexCity (project) • Philip K. Dickphilosophical questionsPhysics of the Impossible (2008)prototypingSascha Pohfleppsci-fi • sci-fi science • science fictionspeculative designspeculative physicsspeculative prototypesStar TrekStar Warstest concepts • test out • test your ideas • what-if scenarios • William Gibson • World Without Oil (project)

CONTRIBUTOR

Liam Birtles
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