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Encyclopedia > Ken MacLeod
Ken MacLeod
Born August 2, 1954
Stornoway, Isle of Lewis, Scotland
Occupation Writer.

Ken MacLeod (born August 2, 1954), an award-winning Scottish science fiction writer, lives near Edinburgh. He graduated from Glasgow University with a degree in zoology and has worked as a computer programmer and written a masters thesis on biomechanics. [1] His novels often explore socialist, communist and anarchist political ideas, most particularly the variants of Trotskyism and "anarcho-capitalism" or extreme economic libertarianism. Technical themes encompass singularities, divergent human cultural evolution and post-human cyborg-resurrection. MacLeod's general outlook can be best described as techno-progressive[2] [3], though unlike a majority of tech-progressives, he has expressed great scepticism over the possibility and especially over the desirability of Strong AI. Image File history File links en: Ken McLeod at Worldcon 2005 in Glasgow, August 2005. ... The Clyde Auditorium with the main SECC building behind it The 63rd World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon) was Interaction, which was held in Glasgow, Scotland 4-8 August, 2005. ... For other uses, see Glasgow (disambiguation). ... 2005 : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December- → Deaths in August August 31: Michael Sheard August 26: Lord Fitt August 24: Jack Slipper August 24: Maurice Cowling August 24: Dr. Tom Pashby August 23: Brock Peters August 22: Lord Lane August 21: Robert Moog August... August 2 is the 214th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (215th in leap years), with 151 days remaining. ... 1954 (MCMLIV) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Stornoway may refer to: Stornoway, the major town and administrative centre of the Outer Hebrides in Scotland; Stornoway, the official residence of the Leader of the Opposition in Canada; Stornoway, a television broadcasting and production company. ... Visit and Contribute to the Scottish Gaelic Wikipedia. ... Motto: , traditionally rendered in Scots as Wha daur meddle wi me?[1] and in English as No one provokes me with impunity. ... The term writer can apply to anyone who creates a written work, but the word more usually designates those who write creatively or professionally, or those who have written in many different forms. ... August 2 is the 214th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (215th in leap years), with 151 days remaining. ... 1954 (MCMLIV) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Motto: , traditionally rendered in Scots as Wha daur meddle wi me?[1] and in English as No one provokes me with impunity. ... Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... Edinburgh (pronounced ; Dùn Èideann () in Scottish Gaelic) is the capital of Scotland and its second-largest city. ... The University of Glasgow is the largest of the three universities in Glasgow, Scotland. ... Zoology is the biological discipline which involves the study of animals. ... In computing, a programmer is someone who does computer programming and develops computer software. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... A novel (from French nouvelle Italian novella, new) is an extended, generally fictional narrative in prose. ... Socialism refers to a broad array of doctrines or political movements that envisage a socio-economic system in which property and the distribution of wealth are subject to social control. ... This article is about communism as a political movement. ... Anarchism is the name of a political philosophy or a group of doctrines and attitudes that are centered on rejection of any form of compulsory government (such as the state)[1] and support its elimination. ... Trotskyism is the theory of Marxism as advocated by Leon Trotsky. ... When plotted on a logarithmic graph, 15 separate lists of paradigm shifts for key events in human history show an exponential trend. ... Cultural evolution is the structural change of a society and its values over time. ... Natasha Vita-Mores Primo is an artistic depiction of a hypothetical posthuman of transhumanist speculation. ... Seven of Nine, a Borg in Star Trek: Voyager The term cyborg, a portmanteau of cybernetic organism, is used to designate an organism which is a mixture of organic and mechanical (synthetic) parts. ... Resurrection of the Flesh (1499-1502) Fresco by Luca Signorelli Chapel of San Brizio, Duomo, Orvieto The term resurrection is used in the literal sense to mean either the religious concept of the reunion of the spirit and the body of a dead person, or the return to life of... Techno-progressivism, technoprogressivism, or tech-progressivism, is a stance of active support for technological development in general and for human practices of genetic, prosthetic, and cognitive modification in particular. ... In the philosophy of artificial intelligence, strong AI is the supposition that some forms of artificial intelligence can truly reason and solve problems; strong AI supposes that it is possible for machines to become sapient, or self-aware, but may or may not exhibit human-like thought processes. ...


He is known for his constant in-joking and punning on the intersection between socialist ideologies and computer programming. For example, his chapter titles such as "Trusted Third Parties" or "Revolutionary Platform" usually have double (or multiple) meanings. A future programmers union is called "International Workers of the World Wide Web", or the Webblies, a reference to the Industrial Workers of the World, who are nicknamed the Wobblies. The Industrial Workers of the World (IWW or the Wobblies) is an international union currently headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. At its peak in 1923 the organization claimed some 100,000 members in good standing, and could marshal the support of perhaps 300,000 workers. ...


He is part of a new generation of British science fiction writers, who specialise in hard science fiction and space opera. His contemporaries include Iain Banks, Alastair Reynolds, Charles Stross and Liz Williams. Iain M. Banks at 63rd World Science Fiction Convention in Glasgow, August 2005 Iain Menzies Banks (born on February 16, 1954 in Dunfermline, Fife) is a Scottish writer. ... Alastair Reynolds is a Welsh science fiction author. ... Charles Stross at Worldcon 2005 in Glasgow Charles David George Stross (born Leeds, October 18, 1964) is a writer based in Edinburgh, Scotland. ... Liz Williams is a British science fiction writer. ...

Contents

Bibliography

Fall Revolution series

  • The Star Fraction (1995; US paperback ISBN 0-7653-0156-3, winner 1996 Prometheus Award)
  • The Stone Canal (1996; US paperback ISBN 0-8125-6864-8, winner 1998 Prometheus Award)
  • The Cassini Division (1998; US paperback ISBN 0-312-87044-2)
  • The Sky Road (1999; US paperback ISBN 0-8125-7759-0) (Winner of the 1999 BSFA Best Novel Award)
    • The Sky Road represents an 'alternate future' to the other books, as its events diverge sharply from those in the other books after 2059, due to a choice made differently by one of the protagonists in The Star Fraction.

The Star Fraction is Ken MacLeods first novel. ... The Prometheus Award is an award for libertarian science fiction novels given out annually by the Libertarian Futurist Society (which also publishes a quarterly journal, Prometheus). ... The Prometheus Award is an award for libertarian science fiction novels given out annually by the Libertarian Futurist Society (which also publishes a quarterly journal, Prometheus). ... The British Science Fiction Association (BSFA) annually presents four awards (though numbers have differed in previous years) based on a vote of BSFA members and recently also members of the Eastercon. ... (Redirected from 2059) (20th century - 21st century - 22nd century - other centuries) Definition In calendars based on the Christian Era or Common Era, such as the Gregorian calendar, the 21st century is the current century, as of this writing, lasting from 2000-2099. ...

Engines of Light trilogy

A first contact alternate history series set in the early 21st century where the Russia and the former USSR have once again formed a socialist bloc, along with the European Union. First contact is a common science-fictional theme about the first meeting between humans and aliens. ... Alternative history or alternate history can be: A History told from an alternative viewpoint, rather than from the view of imperialist, conqueror, or explorer. ... The 21st century is the present century of the Gregorian calendar. ...

  • Cosmonaut Keep (2000; US paperback ISBN 0-7653-4073-9)
  • Dark Light (2001; US paperback ISBN 0-7653-4496-3)
  • Engine City (2002; US paperback ISBN 0-7653-4421-1)

Other work

  • The Web Cydonia (1998; UK paperback edition ISBN 1-85881-640-8)
  • The Human Front (2002) (Winner of Short-form Sidewise Award 2002)
  • Newton's Wake: A Space Opera (2004; US paperback edition ISBN 0-7653-4422-X)
  • Learning the World: A Novel of First Contact (2005; UK hardback edition ISBN 1-84149-343-0, winner 2006 Prometheus Award)
  • Giant Lizards From Another Star (2006; US trade hardcover ISBN 1-886778-62-0) Collected fiction and nonfiction, including Cydonia and The Human Front.
  • The Highway Men (2006; UK edition ISBN 1-905207-06-9)
  • The Execution Channel (2007)

The Sidewise Award for Alternate history was established in 1995 to recognize the best alternate history stories and novels of the year. ... Learning the World is a science fiction novel by Ken MacLeod published in 2005. ... The Prometheus Award is an award for libertarian science fiction novels given out annually by the Libertarian Futurist Society (which also publishes a quarterly journal, Prometheus). ... The Highway Men The Highway Men is a 2006 science fiction novella by Ken MacLeod. ...

Analysis

The SF Foundation have published an analysis of MacLeod's work called The True Knowledge Of Ken MacLeod (2003; ISBN 0-903007-02-9) edited by Andrew M. Butler and Farah Mendlesohn. As well as critical essays it contains material by MacLeod himself, including his introduction to the German edition of Banks' Consider Phlebas. The Science Fiction Foundation was founded in the United Kingdom 1970 by the writer/social activist George Hay and others as a semi-autonomous association of writers, academics, critics and others with an active interest in science fiction, with Arthur C. Clarke and Ursula K. Le Guin as patrons. ... Andrew M. Butler is a British academic who teaches film, media and cultural studies at Canterbury Christ Church University. ... Consider Phlebas (ISBN 1857231384) is a novel by Iain M. Banks first published in 1987. ...


Quotes

  • (On technological singularity): "...the rapture for nerds..." -- The Cassini Division
  • "The uploads replicate and develop relationships. Most of them go very bad. You sometimes get an entire virtual planet of four billion people devoted to building prayer wheels in an attempt at a denial of service attack on God." -- Newton's Wake
  • (On Strong AI): "...he (Kevin Warwick) writes cheerful little books about how the machines are going to take over.... Well, it's possible, but I still tend to think of that as the lights going out. I don't like Hans Moravec's vision of the future at all. I don't see why we should stand for it actually.... I greatly admired Greg Egan's book Diaspora but I hated that world. It's not a world I want to see, or to live in for that matter." -- Sci-Fi Zone interview
  • "... a faded black T-shirt with a soaring penguin and the slogan 'Where do you want to come from today?'" -- Newton's Wake
  • (On the loss of the Space Shuttle Columbia):

"Husband, McCool, Anderson, Brown, Chawla, Clark, Ramon. When plotted on a logarithmic graph, 15 separate lists of paradigm shifts for key events in human history show an exponential trend. ... It has been suggested that Post Tribulation Rapture be merged into this article or section. ... In transhumanism and science fiction, mind transfer (also referred to as mind uploading or mind downloading, depending on ones point of reference), whole body emulation, or electronic transcendence refers to the hypothetical transfer of a human mind to an artificial substrate. ... A denial-of-service attack (also, DoS attack) is an attack on a computer system or network that causes a loss of service to users, typically the loss of network connectivity and services by consuming the bandwidth of the victim network or overloading the computational resources of the victim system. ... This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... In the philosophy of artificial intelligence, strong AI is the supposition that some forms of artificial intelligence can truly reason and solve problems; strong AI supposes that it is possible for machines to become sapient, or self-aware, but may or may not exhibit human-like thought processes. ... Kevin Warwick is a cybernetics professor at the University of Reading, England. ... Hans Moravec is a permanent resident research professor at the Robotics Institute (Carnegie Mellon) of Carnegie Mellon University known for his work on robotics, artificial intelligence, and writings on the impact of technology. ... Greg Egan (August 20, 1961, Perth, Western Australia) is an Australian computer programmer and science fiction author. ... Diaspora is a 1997 science fiction novel by Australian writer Greg Egan. ... Space Shuttle Columbia (NASA Orbiter Vehicle Designation: OV-102) was the first space shuttle in NASAs orbital fleet. ...


Komarov, Grissom, White, Chaffee, Dobrovolsky, Volkov, Patsayev,


Resnick, Scobee, Smith, McNair, McAuliffe, Jarvis, Onizuka.


These names will be written under other skies." USENET posting to rec.sf.arts.fandom February 1, 2003 4:21 pm February 1 is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

  • "Hey, this is Europe. We took it from nobody; we won it from the bare soil that the ice left. The bones of our ancestors, and the stones of their works, are everywhere. Our liberties were won in wars and revolutions so terrible that we do not fear our governors: they fear us. Our children giggle and eat ice-cream in the palaces of past rulers. We snap our fingers at kings. We laugh at popes. When we have built up tyrants, we have brought them down. And we have nuclear *fucking* weapons. " -- USENET posting to rec.sf.arts.fandom 28 September 2000

September 28 is the 271st day of the year (272nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about the year 2000. ...

References

  1. ^ Ken's offical page at Orbit Books
  2. ^ SF Zone interview with MacLeod
  3. ^ Butler, Andrew M., Mendlesohn, Farah (2003). (eds.) The True Knowledge Of Ken MacLeod. SF Foundation.

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
The Books Of Ken Macleod (3294 words)
MacLeod drops the reader into the middle of the story and uses only a minimal amount of exposition which means that some thought is required to understand what is going on.
MacLeod has an in-depth knowledge of some of the more unusual political ideologies (eg, libertarianism or communism) and several of them appear here, with either the societies or the character's motivations often being based on one of the political movements.
MacLeod refuses to endorse or condemn any of the viewpoints, instead the reader is presumably being left to draw their own conclusions.
Ken MacLeod Book Reviews (841 words)
MacLeod's often dense and obtuse near-future political wrangling is intriguingly juxtaposed with some of the best technological extrapolation in the genre; MacLeod uses science fiction conventions (i.e., robots, androids and extraplanetary colonies) to deconstruct the machinations of allegiance and the role of personal volition in society.
MacLeod's novel is consistently bold, laced with eye-popping scenery, moments of utter alien spookiness, and a delicious sense of humor.
MacLeod is as good as they come: a techno-mongering satirist with an imagination as vast as the universe he depicts.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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