It’s imperative we do justice to the Sci-Fi genre and we make an effort to distance ourselves from the Hollywood video-flick phenomena. It is very sad to see how Sci-Fi has become another form of modern day fast entertainment administered to the masses. In fact most current sci-fi are little more than action video games adapted to the big screen. No wonder how few people do justice taking Sci-Fi seriously.
I am fully aware of the difference between books and films. I have been told ‘Are you serious about Sci-Fi? How many books have you read?’ My answer is that in today’s wired and frantic world, most folks see the films or plays videos rather than reading Sci-Fi the books. Our shrinking schedules combined with our sensory addiction prevent most of us from reading.
I place significant importance on Sci-Fi as I see it as the most fertile ground for ideas destined to materialize human knowledge and science. Let me go even further and assert that Sci-Fi allows us to reflect upon the world we, humans live in, our past and future. By simulating the future we are studying the effects of our current (industrial) paradigm. This action indirectly forces us to evaluate, judge and question our present state of affairs, while at the same time, it permits us to prepare and eventually shape the future as we conceive different scenarios for it. Sci-Fi becomes a great modeling tool, very similar to the computer-based tools used by engineers to predict product life and failure modes.
Another important mission of Science Fiction is its very artistic function displaying the dreams and fears held in our collective subconscious and the fears within it. Such fears are bottled inside every one of us and locked deep in our psyches. As much as we may want to hide it, all of us are concerned about the uncertainty behind peak oil, global warming, environmental degradation and all the other perils industrial age science and technology may create. Knowing the existence of such fears may play a paramount role in either manipulating or empowering humans in our shared voyage into of the future.
I say let’s leave the comfort of our cozy harbor paradigm, open the sails of our minds wide open and ride the vast ocean of the future with Confidence and Freedom!