Stephen Gaskell is an author, games designer, and champion of science. In his recent novella, Strata, co-written with Bradley P. Beaulieu, he envisions Earth's voracious appetite for energy being sated by vast solar-mining platforms circling the sun's chromosphere. He runs the "science-behind-the-story" website Creepy Treehouse, and is currently finishing the first draft of a weird, ecological apocalypse thriller set in Lagos, Nigeria. He lives on England's south coast with his partner, Eloise.
Virtual worlds. Terraforming complexes. Star-spanning generation ships. Science fiction is chock-full of massive technological artifacts born of humankind’s desire to create, to explore. What do they all have in common? They all consume energy like black holes swallow stars. Computation, mechanization, acceleration. If the future’s getting faster, it’s certainly getting more energy intensive. Even when […]
Even though you would’ve despised the weapon, Papa, you would’ve appreciated the beauty of its creation. First, beyond Mercury, a mote of starlight is ensnared. An archipelago of steel-blue optical cavities, strung out like a chain of sapphires around the wildfire neck of the sun, pumps the trapped light much like the way you used […]