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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

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Grey Goo

Popular term (also spelt "gray goo" in the USA) for the nightmare scenario of uncontrolled Nanotechnology in which the hypothetical tiny self-replicators reproduce without limit, converting all available organic matter – or in some cases inorganic matter, or both – into more and yet more devouring grey goo. Such a Disaster is threatened but averted in Assemblers of Infinity (September-December 1992 Analog; exp 1993) by Kevin J Anderson and Doug Beason. Earth has been destroyed by ...

Mason, Anne

(1941-    ) US author of a Young Adult sequence of sf novels, the Dancing Meteorite sequence comprising The Dancing Meteorite (1984) and The Stolen Law (1988), featuring a young Communications specialist whose easy rapport with Aliens is challenged by the lifeforms contained in the eponymous meteorite; the second volume carries the protagonist into space, where she continues to learn more about the complexity of sentient beings. [JC]

Chu, Wesley

(?   -    ) Taiwan-born actor and author, in US from an early age, whose Tao sequence, comprising The Lives of Tao (2013), The Deaths of Tao (2014) and The Rebirths of Tao (2015), combines Technothriller riffs with a knowledgeable rendering of a traditional sf topos: Forerunner Alien beings called the Quasing who crashland on Earth and Uplift the human race until our science and Technology are sophisticated enough to repair their ship. The protagonist, who ...

Whedon, Joss

(1964-    ) US filmmaker, who has also worked to particular impact in television and comics. His father and grandfather had both worked as screenwriters and lyricists, and two brothers and a sister-in-law followed him into the business, often as his co-writers. His first writing jobs were in television, where he wrote episodes for the third season of Roseanne (1989-90) and for the short-lived television version of Parenthood (1990). His first filmed screenplay was Buffy the ...

Whiting, Sydney

(1820/1821-1875) UK barrister, poet and author whose Memoirs of a Stomach: Written by Himself, That All Who Eat May Read (1853; rev 1853; further rev 1855) as by "The Minister of the Interior", though seemingly spoofish, articulates issues of the relationship between imperial mind and digestive body in mid-nineteenth-century terms. Of more sf interest is Heliondé; Or, Adventures in the Sun (1854; rev 1855), whose protagonist, conveniently vaporized by in the summer heat, ventures on a ...

Robinson, Roger

(1943-    ) UK computer programmer, bibliographer and publisher, active in UK Fandom for many years. The Writings of Henry Kenneth Bulmer (1983 chap; rev 1984 chap) is an exhaustive Bibliography of one of the most prolific sf writers, and Who's Hugh?: An SF Reader's Guide to Pseudonyms (1987) is similarly exhaustive in its listing of Pseudonyms. Criticized at first for its failure to annotate its findings – so that, for instance, pseudonyms used for sf could not be ...



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