the media worlds of DAVID BRIN
The massive growth of the Internet has brought an unexpected bonus: the release of my videos, downloads, podcasts, interviews, talks, speeches, discussions, reality tv appearances, and interactive games, which I've posted here.
the HOLLYWOOD CONNECTION
See my Cinema, etcetera page for general "Hollywood" news, contact info for my agent, some rants on popular science fiction and fantasy films, and my own film recommendations.
the IDIOT plot
Here's a cliché I'm asked about more and more: the idiot plot — the tendency for most authors and/or film-makers to disdain the intelligence and wisdom of society as a whole, portraying a majority of their fellow citizens as sheep or fools. This "rule" of contemporary storytelling is so nearly universal because you don't notice propaganda that you already agree with.
ECCOS of ADVENTURES PAST
I wrote the storyline, scenario and opening sequence to the famous Dreamcast game (now ported to Playstation 2!)... ECCO THE DOLPHIN: DEFENDER OF THE FUTURE. The scenario is special for its emphasis on an interesting science fictional back story. But the real excitement lies in Appaloosa Inc.'s vivid new 3-D worlds and rendering-on-the-fly technology. The underwater worlds of Ecco are truly wonderful to behold, and the game playing is outtasight. The wonderful old Dreamcast game has been re-issued as a downloadable for the Nintendo Wii. For a great (and impartial) review of Ecco the Dolphin, see the GameSpot review.
Announcing a realistic role-playing game, designed by Steve Jackson and David Brin, called Tribes! Long a legend among gamers (and formerly called "Darwinopoly"), this game has until now only been play-tested at select conventions. Tribes! delivers loads of fun for six to eight players, who follow simple rules to simulate life as it must have been for our ancestors, 50,000 years ago -- hunting, foraging, mating, and occasionally fighting.
Can you figure out how to survive... and have successful offspring... in a world where only your own wits stand between you and harshness of nature? Tribes! has been created with the advice of several prominent anthropologists, as well as one of the most experienced game designers on the planet. For more information see the web site for Steve Jackson Games.
Steve Jackson Games re-issued the GURPS Uplift role-playing game, updated and expanded by the original author-designer, the incredible Stefan Jones! This long sought-after game (high bids on eBay!) will be a perfect match for Contacting Aliens: The Illustrated Guide To Aliens In David Brin's Uplift Universe. To purchase the original game, contact Steve Jackson Games.
For more information, Steve Jackson Games has posted a page for GURPS Uplift.
There are always options and negotiations going on, so check in occasionally. I will let you all know what's cooking... when I am allowed!
HEROES or TREKKIES?
Will the future live long and prosper? See my New York Daily News article where I tackle the question. What always entranced me about Star Trek, helping turn this physicist into a science fiction author was the vision it offered, exploring human destiny, confronting big issues and pondering a unique notion, seldom expressed anywhere else: that our descendants might somehow be admirable.
our IDEAL PROTAGONIST
For your commute, one of the more interesting and well-done interview shows is the Roundtable Podcast. Catch this episode in which a number of top sci-fi authors were asked a particular question at the recent World Science Fiction Convention (Chicago 2012): "Describe your ideal protagonist." Providing short, pithy and fascinating answers were Elizabeth Bear, Alan Dean Foster, Howard Tayler -- and yours truly -- along with many more. Good stuff.
SnapChat and FORGET it
On KCRW's "To The Point" I joined a panel of experts to discuss SnapChat and the art of "forgetting" on the internet... serving as the dissenting alternative contrarian, after everyone else had their turn.
Mythbehaving is a way-fun site filled with interesting podcast interviews and other goodies. I gave them an hour recently and it went pretty well, with only one or two foot-in-mouths mixed in with lots of ideas -- about science fiction, dystopias, augmented humans, science, movies, propaganda and so much more! Good for your daily commute.
Subscribe to David Brin's YouTube Channel to watch 10-minute gems about Space, Science, Politics, Philosophy... plus advice to students heading off to college... plus wisdom from a 30 year career for new or would-be writers.
are we a world FULL of IDIOTS?
"The Idiot Plot" shows why civilization is treated with contempt by almost all novels and films. You have to keep your heroes in jeopardy! But that need has evolved into a wretched cheat... the blanket assumption that society is wholly corrupt and all your fellow citizens are sheep.
can we CREATE a NEO-ENLIGHTENMENT?
In September 2012, I helped dedicate a new Engineering Building at UCSD, along with luminaries from as far away as Bauhaus University. I focused on the building's deliberate collaboration between science and art, a melding predicted 50 years ago by CP Snow and essential to our Enlightenment. Have a look... or read.
See MTV's interview of David Brin during the 2012 WorldCon, where he talks about why more earth species haven't uplifted naturally. Is there a sentience "glass ceiling"?
David Brin discusses inventors, inventiveness, transparency - and EXISTENCE.
a 40-year FORECAST
Two renowned futurists, David Brin and John Smart, discuss what inventions and adventures await us in the next 40 years.
Here's a talk I gave at a recent Singularity Summit addressing the question: How can an optimistic futurist reassure those alarmed by talk of transcendence and life extension?
At this Google Talk (with Sheldon Brown), titled 'Third Milennium Problem Solving,' I go on (at flamboyant length!) about how much better we might be doing at communicating online if actual human discourse ever got anywhere near the priority given to sexy bod-mods!
Video BRINterviews are available on topics that include:
- Threats to our existence and how to prevail
- How libertarianism might grow up & thrive
- Aliens! On Larry King! With Dan Aykroyd!
- A design challenge: fighting wild fires
- Grand-scale reasons to explore space
- The Hundred Year Starship Program
- Conspiracy Theories... oh my! Part 1 & Part 2
- An Age of Amateurs in citizenship, defense & science
Looking for more BRINterviews? Here's a (nearly) complete listing of recent, online interviews. Some are print, others podcast, video, or television.
at the POINT of INQUIRY
On the Point of Inquiry pod-show, just before the "Mayan Solstice," I get to be infuriating while poking and posing new ideas. Fascinating fun.
it's a NEW MILLENIUM
What's new? I discuss starships, asteroid mining, and what it might take to bring boldness back to our civilization, on David Livingston's syndicated radio SPACE SHOW, broadcast September 2013.
the POSTMAN flick
People offer me condolences but hey, I should complain that "I hadda movie?" Indeed, the experience of having one of my novels transformed into a major Kevin Costner film was a mix of major highs and lows. Including Costner's choice to bring it out the very same weekend as Titanic! His film is easily one of the dozen or so most visually and musically beautiful works of cinema... and kind of incoherent in places. The kicker has to do with whether he was faithful to the HEART of my book...
Watch a vivid History Channel show "Star Trek: Secrets of the Universe." I was one of the main blather-pundit fellows illuminating both scientific and dramatic themes of the wonderful Star Trek cosmos.
"The Architechs" was a boldly innovative show that challenged "five geniuses" to solve an impossible design problem in 48 hours. In the first pilot, a four-star general challenged our design team to come up with a 21st Century replacement for the Humvee. (A design far better than the awful MRAP.)
The second pilot -- which aired October 2006 -- saw former FDNY Commissioner Thomas Von Essen, one of the heroes of 9/11, call upon the group to innovate more than a dozen new fire rescue and evacuation tools for skyscraper disasters. Copies of both pilots can be ordered from the HC web site.
I was also top pundit on Life After People (most popular show ever on The History Channel) and have appeared on about thirty different nature, science and popular culture shows, giving pithy answers and insights. Yeth, pithy.
KICKSTARTING our FUTURE
Here's a new audio podcast interview of David Brin one on the subject of "Kickstarter and other open-source methods for dream-funding." Interesting sub-topics around the notion that creativity will open all sorts of new opportunities for all of us.
Audio versions (and ebook and print versions) of my novels are available for purchase here, including a lavish production that Audible created for EXISTENCE. Curious to learn more? Each book image goes to a page containing free chapter samples, reviews, and "bonus" information and trivia.
I also made available ebook versions of some of my shorter fiction for sale or free, and several audio versions of stories appear on Starship Sofa:
Interzone Online has republished a reading-podcast audiobook of my Hugo-nominated story "The Giving Plague." Clear and dramatic and fun. You'll like it. It's all about disease!
It seems I'm a go-to guy on the topic of Extraterrestrial life. Here's a podcast and interview I gave to Tom Fudge of KPBS radio.
The fun fellows at "GeeksOn" interviewed me for more than an hour (if anyone can take that much Brin!) about everything from the future to politics to SETI to all the myriad ways that science fiction has either gone astray or else propelled our thoughts into new frontiers.
For a garrulous ramble that will take you from Pericles to Popper to Pluto, mostly focusing on transparency and accountability and re-learning the art of pragmatism, here's a recent (July 2011) podcast interview I gave about the future of freedom. (A couple of times I even pause to take a breath!)
music inspired by BRIN's SF
- Elaine Walker (lovely voice!) wrote and performed two songs based on my novels, Sundiver and Earth. This was 1992... but they still sound amazing. Elaine's songs are linked from here.
- Gravity +: The Eric Thompson Project have posted cool, experimental music, good guitar work. And free.
- Composer Brian Carroll has created a very beautiful symphonic overture inspired by my novel Glory Season.
- "Tytlal Wave" is an instrumental composition inspired by the personality of that enigmatic Uplift Universe species. (An MP3 version is now available.)
- The Ominous Shoreline, written, performed and recorded by Richard Stoops under the name of Sidereus.
- Matucana, a electronic music group led by German composer Helmuth Schomberg, based half an hour of highly evocative music in their album To Beat The Feeling on the dolphin rhythms, melodics and story lines that Schomberg found in Startide Rising.
- A Canadian rock n' roll band, Treebeard, produced a more hard-biting song with lyrics based on the lament of the wounded dolphin captain, Creideiki.
- Inspired by an urrish ballad that she found in Brightness Reef, Baltimore composer Katherine Gilliam created yet another work in a completely different musical form -- a haunting a capella choral work called "Starships."
- Those of you who like independent music might drop by Indiespace.com, an excellent site where many independent artists and musicians offer samples and sell works directly to the public, bypassing the infamous "labels."
I'm a COMIC STRIP!
Seems I'm making appearances in a number of surprising pop-cult venues. See a recent spread that features a novel by yours truly, in a popular literary comic strip... the "Unshelved Book Club." I've also been interviewed for several episodes of a podcast "The Future And You."
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Contact David Brin by email.