The term "Hard Sci-fi" is formed by analogy to the popular distinction between the "hard" (natural) and "soft" (social) sciences. Neither term is part of a rigorous taxonomy—instead they are approximate ways of characterizing stories that reviewers and commentators have found useful. The ...

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3
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1answer
94 views

What examples are there of suits blurring the lines between powered armor and mecha in hard sci-fi? [closed]

TVTropes has two different entries on Mini-Mecha and Powered Armor, where the former is "something that is piloted" and the latter is "something that is worn". Now, listed in both pages are examples ...
1
vote
1answer
89 views

Fiction about the first matter transmitter

Im looking for the title of a science fiction book I read in the 1980s. Basically, the plot is that someone had created a matter transmitter. The inventor hid his plans in a locked box, which only ...
5
votes
1answer
150 views

What sci-fi short story has parasites infect humans through the soles of their shoes on an alien planet?

This was a short story where a ship was answering a distress call, and landed on an alien planet. I believe the crew who initially made the call were all dead when they arrived, but then people ...
6
votes
1answer
129 views

What's that hard scifi novel I read about exploiting the discovery of a wormhole?

The book details the history of a man who discovers a pinpoint wormhole in space, and slowly he learns to harness its power to succeed in life. To jog your memory: It starts with a guy at an ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Story Ident : Space General incites a revolution

This book is about a man who was once a powerful general in a space fleet. When he disobeys his President (who is female) she has him assigned to a planetary constellation that has no apparent value. ...
5
votes
1answer
139 views

Short story with mercenaries trying to board a mothballed starship

This is a short story I read about 20-25 years ago. The plot had three mercenaries, hired to deactivate the defenses on an ancient warship found mothballed in space. The captain of the merceneries ...
6
votes
1answer
349 views

What is this movie?

The story: six or seven astronauts find a planet where they meet their dead relatives, but everything is too perfect and strange. The next that I remember is that an alien hand touches the shoulder of ...
4
votes
1answer
418 views

Sci fi movie where time freezes

I am trying to find an old movie I saw in the 70's, and it is probably from the 60´s. Some sort of accident causes time to revert a few hours and then move very slowly again. The main character is a ...
5
votes
1answer
170 views

looking for early 2000's sci fi youth fiction set in future, kids have mental powers that let them simulate war

I just got a vague memory of a book I read when I was in middle school, and I'd love to find it again but I only have a basic grasp of the plot and some tiny details. Set sometime in the future or ...
1
vote
2answers
153 views

Sci-fi book: spaceman on mission to asteroid belt - 70s? 80s?

I'm trying to remember the name of a book I read a couple of years ago, it was about a spaceman sent on a mission to the asteroid belt as something had been detected from Earth there. I think it turns ...
17
votes
2answers
685 views

Out-of-control starship results in some crew members landing in a rebirthed universe?

I think this was a classic "golden oldie" hard sci-fi novel or novella published at least several decades ago. I recollect: An accident or crew mutiny causes the ship's ramjet or similar engine to ...
6
votes
1answer
331 views

A book from the 60s or 70s about a crashed spaceship and their colony

I read these books in the late 60s or 70s. There were two books in the series. I don't remember the author or titles. There is a war between humans and aliens. A human ship crashes on a unexplored ...
1
vote
1answer
166 views

How does the robot Adam match Max's movements when they first find him?

In the movie Real Steel, Charlie Kenton (Hugh Jackman) finds a robot which is badly damaged. Max (Dakota Goya) had a word with the machine and the machine responded. Later on the Charlie says that it ...
1
vote
1answer
225 views

Are there any more Mech Warrior dark age novels?

I have read the 30 novels set in the DarkAge era. Im just wondering if the stories have continued with another Publisher that I'm not aware of! To ride a chimera was the last one i read. The writers ...
9
votes
1answer
210 views

New Israel Space station in Lagrangian point

Back around 1986 I read a Sci Fi book that opens with a nuclear war in the middle east that destroyed Israel and surrounding countries. The main part of the book dealt with life on a space station ...
5
votes
2answers
209 views

TV Episode with Frankenstein-like creature

I remember watching a TV show when I was younger -- I was born in '77, so I am guessing it was in the mid-80's -- where a scientist/doctor put together a small creature using spare body parts. The ...
5
votes
4answers
518 views

Is there a “mathematics fiction” genre? [closed]

The science fiction genre has been and is still an area in which visionary authors can express their ideas about new sciences. Many successful academic research were influenced by works of science ...
19
votes
2answers
352 views

Artificial lifeform trying to establish contact through compiler bugs

I am looking for a short story I read online a few years ago, about artificial lifeform, with a hard sci-fi taste. A couple of software engineers were trying to identify a strange program behaviour ...
7
votes
2answers
715 views

Science fiction novel about benevolent aliens landing on Earth

I read this when I was a child (late 90's to early 00's - your cue to feel old) so my memory of the details is a bit hazy, but the story concerned an alien race making contact with humans. The main ...
2
votes
1answer
226 views

Can someone help me find an early 1980 SciFi Cat space adventure story I read in the mid '80's?

I'm having a heck of a time researching a science fiction, humanoid cats book(s). I'd like to find again that I beleive was published in the mid to early 1980's. I read this book when I was in junior ...
8
votes
1answer
223 views

Trying to find a book about rediscovered space travel after interstellar war isolates planets

The book is written in the 1980s. The storyline is about an early 20th century level technology planet getting visited by a spaceship which causes quite a stir. The visitors start helping to ...
3
votes
2answers
388 views

A series of books involving reptilian-alien protagonists

I'm trying to track down these books I read when I was younger. I've done some fruitless searching online and am stumped. Any help would be greatly appreciated! The series of books involves ...
4
votes
3answers
780 views

How does a Dyson Sphere's inhabitants deal without gravity?

It's well known that because the gravitational attaction at one point on the inside of a hollow shell is zero, because it is cancelled by the attraction from all the other points on the interior. ...
-1
votes
1answer
225 views

How would a stationary object be perceived if travelled towards at the speed of light? [closed]

I'm writing a sci-fi novel but wondering visible objects in space would appear during voyage at the speed of light? For instance when we see a star 10 light years away we are seeing it as it was ten ...
6
votes
2answers
284 views

Looking for the name and author of a vaguely remembered sci-fi/cyberpunk-ish book from the 80's

I'm trying to find an old sci-fi book. The trouble is, I read it a long time ago, and read many books in the mean time, so my recollection is a little hazy, but here goes… It's sci-fi, set in the ...
7
votes
4answers
586 views

Does Douglas Adams use of 'Infinite Improbability' allude to P=NP?

Having just re-awakened the old P=NP post, I started to think: Is Douglas Adams's description of the discovery of the Infinite Improbability drive via use of the Finite Improbability device a ...
15
votes
2answers
782 views

What would the sky look like standing inside a Dyson Sphere?

I am working on a roleplaying campaign guide set inside a Dyson Sphere. It's a solid shell around a star like our own and is 300 million kilometers across centered on the star. The atmosphere hugs ...
18
votes
6answers
1k views

Asimov's laws in pseudocode or applying the 3 laws today

I first asked this at Writers.SE but was advised I might do better here... I am working on a science fiction novel that will involve a large quantity and variety of synthetic life forms. I have been ...
5
votes
1answer
151 views

What are the practical boundaries in the regeneration of the “Visitors” on Solaris?

Would Harey (or an other Visitor) 1. regenerate her hair if cut? 2. Grow her hair or fingernails? I assume the answer to question 2 is no, because it is stated in the novel, that she will not age, but ...
10
votes
1answer
601 views

Can someone help me figure out the name of a sci-fi book about space travel at the speed of light?

I read this book when I was much younger and can't remember the name of it but I remember it's one of the best books I've ever read. It starts with this young girl that bumps into an older lady, the ...
6
votes
1answer
396 views

1980s/1990s SF novel about space marines from a heavy gravity planet?

I'm trying to remember the title of a hard SF novel I read in the early 1990s. The story featured space marines from a heavy gravity planet. Because of the environment they grew up and trained in, ...
7
votes
2answers
318 views

Story with a miniature solar system

This was in a sample/preview chapter from another book that the publisher included at the end of something else, so I don't have much to go on, but here are the elements I recall - the characters ...
11
votes
2answers
366 views

In Singularity Sky, why did Eschaton kidnap majority of the Earth's population?

Was a simple warning not enough? Or was it a demonstration of power?
8
votes
1answer
288 views

Identify story wherein special glass slows time

Sorry I don't recall much about this at all. A friend, who had recommended many other books/authors I ended up liking, told me about a story in which a scientist develops some kind of special glass, ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Is the computer security scenario in the movie “Die Hard 4” realistic? [closed]

I watched the movie Die Hard 4, in which they show how someone hacked the complete system of US. They were able to get inside every traffic camera and even cameras in lifts. I want to know if this ...
10
votes
3answers
406 views

Is exponential population growth in The Amalgam addressed in Greg Egan's books?

The Amalgam is a galaxy-wide conglomerate of intelligent species that have the technology to scan their brains; it turns up in several of Greg Egan's short stories ("Glory" and "Riding the ...
18
votes
1answer
696 views

Name of a sci-fi story about time travel

There was a short novel I found in my library few years ago, whose title nor author I don't remember. It was in a hard sci-fi setting: there was a pair of characters (man and women) which traveled ...
4
votes
1answer
531 views

Plans / timescales for the final novel in Roger MacBride Allen's Hunted Earth trilogy?

I've read The Ring of Charon and The Shattered Sphere by Roger MacBride Allen, as part of the Hunted Earth trilogy. I've really enjoyed them and am saddened to see that the concluding book has not ...
11
votes
2answers
506 views

What SF novel or short story features characters that can only communicate with musical instruments?

I would like to find out the title of the book or short story that meets this criteria. Science Fiction novel that the characters use only musical instruments (eg. saxophone, guitar, violin, piano, ...
12
votes
1answer
212 views

I am trying to find a story that I read online some time ago. (uploading, similar to “Accelerando”, “natural reserve” for humans)

This is what I remember: I think the author was not a professional writer but the story was cited in other webs. A main theme was "uploading". The pace remembered me to "Accelerando" by Charles ...
59
votes
5answers
2k views

Invisibility should cause blindness: how does hard sf cope?

One problem I've always thought of with science fiction characters becoming invisible is that they should go blind, because their retina does not catch any light. Obviously a lot of soft SF or ...
12
votes
5answers
308 views

What is a good example of a progression from the current state of Cryogenic freezing, to a working system used for interstellar travel? [closed]

In all of the books that I read, the intermediate steps in turning cryonics into a useful technology seem to be glossed over, and the actual implementation is not described in great detail. Is there ...
13
votes
3answers
739 views

How “hard” is the science behind the genetics mentioned in Blade Runner?

How accurately does the science in Blade Runner reflect the current understanding of genetics?
12
votes
1answer
207 views

In “Spin” by Robert Charles Wilson, why was it called “the spin?”

I just finished this book, and I never understood why the phenomena/event was called "the spin."
35
votes
6answers
1k views

What are the criteria for defining “hard” science fiction?

The term "hard" science fiction is used for sf that corresponds to our currently understood science models of the universe. The exact definition of what counts as hard science fiction is too ...
60
votes
8answers
4k views

Which was the first novel set in universes where P=NP? [closed]

I wonder whether anyone has written a novel set in a universe where P=NP, in the event that there is more than one, which was the first? In this universe all problems that could be verified in ...