Used for questions on the science fiction genre itself, including its tropes and conventions. Should **not** be used to categorize questions about specific works of science fiction.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

1
vote
1answer
134 views

What are the largest characters by volume ever depicted in science fiction? [closed]

I'm talking about characters planet/star-system/galaxy-sized. Characters like Unicron, the 2001: A Space Odyssey baby, and even meta-characters, like Tenga Toppa Gurren Lagann (a ship powered by all ...
2
votes
1answer
273 views

Novella Identification: Dark scifi featuring AI, “heaven”, and an Egyptian god emulation

I remember reading a novella-length science fiction work for free on the internet within the last 5 years, but now I cannot find it after hours of searching despite remembering much of the plot, with ...
14
votes
3answers
338 views

What is the earliest reference to a poisoned lipstick in a work of Science Fiction?

In the Firefly episode "Our Mrs. Reynolds", Saffron is able to temporarily knock out Mal by getting him to kiss her after treating her lips with some kind of knock-out agent (Inara later gets some of ...
1
vote
2answers
133 views

Looking for a book I read from mid to late 90's about humans as aliens

There were humans on Earth but these two specific humans were from another planet. They were lovers from a long time ago, possibly thousands of years ago. They would lose each other periodically and ...
2
votes
1answer
128 views

Story set on ocean planet, featuring floating islands

I remember they imported dolphins but not sharks for some reason I don't remember. The story involved a spaceship crewman, I think he was in trouble for some reason. I think there were some planet ...
6
votes
1answer
147 views

Help me find a book - Telepathic Twins communicate across the stars

Sci-fi Book Identification The story starts with a space agency on earth looking for and testing twins. It seems that some are gifted in a way that allows them to communicate with each other even if ...
1
vote
0answers
74 views

Help me find a book - Minimalistic and Nomadic culture containing only children

Sci-fi/Fantasy Story identification: This book starts out with a young boy ~10-15 years old and the world is explained that there are these warring factions in this general location of the world. ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

Book about Miniaturized Robots that you could control similar to matrix port

The book was about miniaturization of robots. The story follows two friends who, through the use of something quite similar to the matrix movies "neck port", could port into small (~1" tall) robots. ...
3
votes
1answer
135 views

Short story ships use ice shields to prevent damage from interstellar dust

I'm looking for a collection of short stories, one of which featured interstellar ships that needed huge shaped chunks of ice to protect from interstellar dust while travelling at near light speed. ...
2
votes
1answer
124 views

Trying to recall a virtual reality MMO book with a cross genre chase

About 15 years ago or so (so, no, not Halting State) I read a science fiction book about a virtual reality MMO. The protagonist in the story was female. There's a bit in there also where she was ...
5
votes
1answer
99 views

Short story in anthology: “detunes” engines on ships to match a third, bombard uninhabited area of planet, releasing impossible number of bombs

I am seeking the title/author of two short stories; the first was about an engineer in a remote outpost near a rebelling or alien occupied planet. He orders the engineers of two ships to reduce the ...
3
votes
1answer
68 views

help identify a scifi trilogy about a planet ruled by women called “Bahronas”, another planet where catlike creatures listened to singing scarves

I read this set of stories in the 80's. What I recall is this: A planet where the ruling caste was made up of humanoid women. These women would, as almost pubescent girls, go out into the ...
4
votes
1answer
136 views

Identify 1950's scifi story - man left on empty planet and slowly becomes native [duplicate]

This is one of the 2 stories I read as a kid in the 1950's, early 60's which forever locked me into scifi. Spoiler alert! Short story about a spaceman who ended up marooned alone on an empty planet of ...
3
votes
1answer
120 views

Series Identification - YA Sci-Fi, spaceship

I remember reading in the late 80's / early 90's a trilogy (I think) about some teens in a spaceship that was sentient / had AI, and they weren't allowed in one section of the spaceship because it was ...
0
votes
0answers
64 views

Looking for patronage era European scifi scientist/inventor male author?

I'm looking for the author of a science fiction series(may just be a loose collection of his works), written by a patronage era European male scientist/inventor. I remember seeing his name in a ...
-3
votes
2answers
116 views

Dreams in Sci Fi movies — Matrix and Inception [closed]

Now according to Matrix if we die in a dream we die in real too But if we go by Inception if we die in a dream we wake up or go into a limbo . What sounds more correct and logical according to Sci ...
4
votes
1answer
140 views

ID short Sci Fi story on a scientist that creates a potion that slows down his perception of time and dies of old age at sunset

I seek help identifying a short story I read more than 20 years ago (maybe the story itself was written before the 80's even). This short story (to the best of my recollection) involves a scientist ...
10
votes
1answer
393 views

Help identifying story with a future society with life span depending upon achievements

I seek some help identifying a short book I read in my childbook. It was a science fiction book about a society where due to scarcitiy of ressources you got a certain amount of life span alloted to ...
7
votes
2answers
193 views

Book about extremely overpopulated world where caring was a liability

I am looking for a book about an extremely overpopulated world where caring was a liability. It's a love story of how these two people manage to care for each other in that world. It's also about ...
3
votes
0answers
77 views

Could American Dad be considered a Sci-Fi series? [closed]

American dad is a Fox Television animated series that is full of satirical humor on pop culture made by the same animators as Family guy. It has the makings of a Sci-Fi: A CIA agent with access to ...
9
votes
3answers
310 views

first use of a quantum computer in science fiction genre

Nobel-prize winning physicist Richard Feynman is given credit as inventing the concept of quantum computers in about 1982 in the paper "Simulating physics with computers." Also, recently the company ...
3
votes
2answers
120 views

Hermann Hesse Das Glasperlenspiel

Can somebody help me. I have only read the book in Serbo/Croatian language(a long time ago). I'm looking for the original word(s) in the book of the "feljton" or "feljtonistic'ko" (It describes an ...
0
votes
2answers
212 views

Is there an encyclopedic book of fantastic materials?

I do not believe this to be a list-type question, surely only one or at most two such books have ever been written. I am searching for a book somewhat in the vein of Barlowe's Guide to ...
4
votes
3answers
204 views

What is the earliest novel/story to deal with cosmically vast expanses of time?

Can anyone tell me the name (and date) of the earliest story that deals with these kinds of journeys through cosmic time? I love stories that include journeys across incredible gulfs of time. I am ...
3
votes
1answer
208 views

Is it possible to call every mobile phone in a particular area at a time? [closed]

I've seen this phenomenon in the movie Eagle Eye, Sherlock Holmes television episodes, and The Lawnmower Man. Every mobile gets a call at a same time from the same guy in a particular area. Is this ...
6
votes
1answer
105 views

Seeking title of a book about a one-armed cowboy who travels across time using a torus (sp?)

The elements of the plot that I remember are: 1) One-Armed cowboy spots something weird while out riding (torus, torroid, ?) 2) He breaks a Yale lock using his one hand 3) He travels through time and ...
4
votes
1answer
264 views

Why does River Song save the Doctor in Let's Kill Hitler?

Could any one tell me why River Song saves the Doctor after kissing him with the poisoned lipstick? She was programmed to kill him, so why did she save him ?
1
vote
1answer
308 views

Worst Sci Fi / Future Fantasy Cliches [closed]

I am creating a futuristic fantasy setting for my latest novel. In your opinion what are the most over used cliches that I should avoid when creating the setting? Many thanks.
0
votes
1answer
92 views

How did the SciFi TV series originate as a genre? [closed]

What was the story behind the origination of SciFi TV series as a genre? More specifically, was it more of a drive to take SciFi ideas and material and bring it to the TV screen? Or vice versa, was ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Why don't lightsaber duellists ever use the technique of turning off their lightsaber during a fight?

Since my early childhood I've been wondering about the answer to one question about Star Wars. Why, when fighting with lightsabers, do they use them to parry attacks rather than turning the lightsaber ...
1
vote
0answers
57 views

Cat Vindaloo - Bollywood on The Moon

I'm pretty sure this isn't false memory syndrome, but as a kid I frequently read scifi anthologies from my local library in the late 60's & amongst many others, one story has always stuck with me ...
4
votes
1answer
146 views

Are there specific tropes/details/etc… that characterized Golden Age of Science Fiction?

Wiki article on the Golden Age of Science Fiction mentions a couple of major developments associated with it, but is pretty thin on comprehensive analysis: Space opera came to prominence ...
5
votes
3answers
275 views

What was the first SciFi work that referred to Pluto as NOT a planet?

In 2006, IAU changed its rules on what constitutes a planet. The most famous downstream impact of the new rules was that Pluto is now classified as Dwarf Planet (Plutoid) among Trans-Neptunial ...
5
votes
1answer
273 views

Identify a short YA Science Fiction Novel from pre-1980 set on the moon in which a boy is rescued by space gypsies?

This was the first science fiction novel I completed reading on my own some 36 years ago. Unfortunately the details are very sketchy indeed, but here's what I think I remember: It was a hard back ...
8
votes
1answer
250 views

A novel about a man left behind by his family's spaceship who helps discover a warp drive

This is a book I read 40 years ago I remember the plot but haven't a clue as to the title. A young man misses the takeoff of his trader families spaceship and is marooned on a planet. He has no real ...
7
votes
1answer
212 views

Can anyone remember a story about a builder of metal birds & people scavenging for old technology

I remember reading a SF story back in the 1970s about a post apocalyptic world where people scavenged for technology amongst mounds of rusting ancient artifacts. There was a builder of metal birds who ...
6
votes
0answers
216 views

Help identify short story about senile astronaut runaway from nursing home

Scott Carpenter's recent death has me wanting to re-read a short story I read sometime in the last 10 to 15 years about an astronaut who is trying to get to the launch site on the big day, but it ...
10
votes
1answer
324 views

Why are there so many spiders in space?

In science fiction there are a lot of spiders or spider-like creatures depicted in space. In real life there have also been a lot of studies done on spiders in space. Has science fiction been ...
2
votes
1answer
197 views

What is the tallest terrestrial building/arcology that is not also a space elevator? [closed]

In one of the prequels to Dune books, I forget which, they describe a 900+ story building that is in ruins. In The Night Land, the Last Redoubt is a pyramid seven miles tall. I haven't seen the new ...
4
votes
1answer
320 views

What book had a prison planet with people able to communicate with living rock?

A friend of mine as a child lent me a sci-fi book that I enjoyed at the time but lost track of. I've tried searching for it over the years, but having only a few scant details of the story (and no ...
2
votes
1answer
181 views

“The Rat Race” Young Adult, 1970's really smart mice and rats

The title I remember is "The Rat Race" but Google has not been helpful in finding it so that may be wrong. I recall reading it in the 1970's, probably a novel. Setting begins in or around a research ...
1
vote
1answer
161 views

Title of novelete where human race divided into those with skin symbiote and those without

Looking for title of sci-fi novelette about where a symbiote has infected a lot of people on planet and the infected are persecuted. Turns out the symbiote is beneficial. Stories main character ...
11
votes
6answers
1k views

Do authors ever create conflicting canon to irk fussy fans? [closed]

I know that this site is the haven for anyone who loves to dig deep into their favorite Sci-Fi and Fantasy. Even for a new visitor, from scrolling through this site shows that there's an awful lot ...
1
vote
0answers
270 views

Early 90's scifi cartoon - Boy under a purple dome with a 'mic' and an animal [duplicate]

It was a bit weird as I remember it - a boy was lost on a planet, was with a pet, looked a bit like a llama, went under a dome shaped thing that looked like purple trees entwined. He had this egg ...
1
vote
1answer
185 views

earth people tested on other planet

I read this book some time ago. The Story is about 2 man and 2 woman who are abducted by aliens. They meet each other on a space ship. Later on they are release on a planet where they have to ...
3
votes
0answers
119 views

A science fiction article heavily featuring Virgin

So, I came across this article written as (I think) a winning entry for a contest. As far as I remember, the contest was about how Orwell got the surveillance facts wrong as a prediction for the year ...
1
vote
1answer
167 views

1950's Sci-Fi involving a strange box that transports a boy to a different world

I'm looking for the name of a black and white 1950's science fiction movie... it starts out with a man that finds a small black box with a little cone on one side at a construction dig site. A little ...
6
votes
2answers
273 views

1980's book about a man who glows green and can use magic based upon how long his mom was in labor?

I used to be part of a sci/fantasy book club and I remember getting a compilation of the years best sci/fi-fantasy. One of the stories revolved around a young man who worked in a toy shop? and he ...
1
vote
1answer
892 views

Is it possible to journey to the center of the Earth as described by Jules Verne? [closed]

Are there volcanic tubes that could possibly lead an exploration to the center of the Earth as stated by Jules Verne in the movie "Journey to the Center of the Earth?
7
votes
2answers
690 views

Did Any Of The Aliens In The Independence Day Movie Survive Well Enough To Continue To Invade?

Here are things to consider: There were 36 "City Destroyers" and each of these have smaller interceptors, the thing our heroes fly into the Mother Ship to upload the virus and set off the Big Boy, ...