Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sci-fi Writers Join War on Terror




Here's an excerpt of the article from US Today:

Looking to prevent the next terrorist attack, the Homeland Security Department is tapping into the wild imaginations of a group of self-described "deviant" thinkers: science-fiction writers.

"We spend our entire careers living in the future," says author Arlan Andrews, one of a handful of writers the government brought to Washington this month to attend a Homeland Security conference on science and technology. Those responsible for keeping the nation safe from devastating attacks realize that in addition to border agents, police and airport screeners, they "need people to think of crazy ideas," Andrews says.

The writers make up a group called Sigma, which Andrews put together 15 years ago to advise government officials. The last time the group gathered was in the late 1990s, when members met with government scientists to discuss what a post-nuclear age might look like, says group member Greg Bear. He has written 30 sci-fi books, including the best seller "Darwin's Radio".


Now, the Homeland Security Department is calling on the group to help with the government's latest top mission of combating terrorism.

9 comments:

Spacerguy said...

If only Homeland Security had a remarkable starship Like Captain Jean Luc Picard's Galaxy Class U.S.S. Enterprise NCC 1701-D. The 24th century Flagship of the United Federation of Planets is loaded with technology!Including Transporters!!! With one flick of a switch the Picardites could start beaming up all the bad dudes on planet Earth and transport them to penal asteroids. Now there's a crazy idea!

sfgirl said...

LOL!!! Now that's rocking!

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Does the Enterprise want to be a taxi service for all the bad guys?

What if they took over the starship?

Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...

I think that's a great idea.

And you know if they took over the ship there would be some good drama and some tense moments, but in the end everything'll be OK.

sfgirl said...

Because the show must go on...with all the Picardites, of course...Picardites...hmmm...Is that like "stalagmite" and "stalagtite"? Or does a Picardite refer to something else? Like a bunch of Picard-clones all saying "Make it so" in unison? Of course, knowing Jean-Luc you know they'd be in three-part harmony :)

Stewart Sternberg said...

I wish homeland security would contact me to come up with bizarre stuff.

I recently had a dialogue with an author who has written a poor novel about a group of right wingers seceding from the union. What astonished me about his book was how unimaginative it was. Given that the writer had at one time worked for a well known senator as well as for the department of the defense, I would have thought he would have either gone hyper-realistic or let himself go. He chose the most banal and mundane route.

Lynda said...

I would feel a lot more secure, I confess, with Jean Luc in charge than the Homeland Security folks. I appreciate the need for safety in the short term. Just wish there was more interest in long term, non-technical solutions. Even better than living in an armed fort is figuring out why you have to and fixing that.

sfgirl said...

Oh, so well said, Lynda! Why is it always the short-term knee-jerk reaction that we get? I suppose, because it's the easiest to do and to fund (short term). What you're talking about involves a long-term commitment, which isn't in the cards for most organizations who are funded and manned on a short-term basis.

sfgirl said...

p.s. I'd vote for Picard any day!