Category: Science Fiction

New BBC shortform doc about the Great Green Wall

Watch it here.

The most sci-fi moonshot project going on right now isn’t the hyperloop—it’s the Great Green Wall. They are literally fighting a battle to hold back the desert with a gigantic created forest that cuts all the way across Africa. It’s like the Wall in Game of Thrones, but with heat and not cold. The African Union has been building it since 2005 (I don’t know how to get across how huge it is) and I love it and will always post news stories about it. Hats off to Senegal particularly.


Vengeance Demon at Heart

A pretty common narrative in stories of male misbehavior is that the woman is told to keep it quiet because “do you want to ruin his career? do you want to break up his family?” This is apparently a very effective (and very messed up) way to take some of the best parts of socialized femininity (empathy, concern for community) and warp them into something harmful, which is my least favorite kind of con.

But also it draws my attention to how much of a vengeance demon I am at heart, because yes absolutely I want to ruin his career and break up his family. That’s exactly what I want—it sounds great. I’ve never been sexually assaulted and I’ve never met this guy, but I am basically a tornado in human form. If you’re reading this, I have probably considered breaking up your family and ruining your career at least once and probably right now. I think about doing it to my own self, even. I might actually be one of the Furies.

Money Origami Flower

The short film I’m working on (“Tick Tock Toe”) involves a magic trick in which a flower turns into money, so I’ve been prototyping the stunt 5-euro note. This is what I’ve got at the moment.

Under slightly different lighting conditions:

Strange but true: one of my overarching strengths as a filmmaker is having done a lot of origami as a kid.

To answer the obvious question: no, unfortunately I can’t give you instructions. I’m not sure I myself could make this exact fold again. I just kept sculpting the bill until it looked ok.

James Comey’s Firing and the Obstruction of Justice

I think we can all agree that when your boss tells you he wants you to do [x], after which you don’t do [x], and then your boss fires you and says it was because you didn’t do [x], it’s pretty clear the boss felt he had ordered you to do [x]. We don’t have to imaginary time travel back to the initial conversation to parse words and wonder what they might have meant back then. We know! We know because we are in now time.

Also, if we have time machines I’d like to use them for something else. PM me if you’ve got one.

Would also accept a magic rainbow we could gallop a unicorn across while dropping colored stars off the side.

Matt says: I have several time machines—some even conveniently fit on my wrist—but they all appear to be stuck in “move forward as usual” mode, despite my best efforts at getting them to do something else. Also, they frequently lose power and have to be reminded when they are, but their failsafe mechanism seems to keep them safely where they were at when they lost power. (Granted, they are not space machines—not moving through the manifold on their own, but they enjoy it when I take them on trips with me)

Some are getting a little old and forget a few seconds every day, but they don’t seem to be any less happy than the others.