Look at that: the Mary Sue talks about Convergence Improving Diversity and Creating Safe Spaces for Geeks. It really is a delightful conference that way — 7,000 Social Justice Warriors all wanting to talk about science and books and movies and games, with a simple set of humane rules to help everyone get along.
We’ll be there again next year, and you should make plans to come out to Bloomington, MN, 30 June-3 July for Convergence. The theme for 2016 is …
…And, How do we get there? celebrates methods of travel in science fiction and fantasy. It is all about getting there in style! It could be a souped up muscle car lovingly dubbed “Black Beauty” used to race across town and fight crime. Or maybe it is a 1960’s police call box that is bigger on the inside used to race across space and time to fix problems. Or maybe even a white telepathic horse that is an avatar to dispense justice. The methods of travel can make or break a story.
As Dr Emmett Brown said, “The way I see it, if you’re gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?” The vehicles used can be subtle, flashy, outrageous, or seemingly impossible. One thing is certain, the method of travel is just as much an integral part of the story as the characters themselves.
So bring forth the flying carpets, light-cycles, hovercraft, magical animals, incredible spaceships, crime fighting helicopters, supernatural shoes, teleportation devices, and suspended animation pods! When we stand and say, “Let’s go!” it is time to ask, “… And, how do we get there?”
Uh-oh. I’m going to need some help here. We put together a great big block of panel ideas that we submit in the Fall — and this theme is more technology oriented than a lowly biologist is used to thinking about. Give me ideas. I’ve got a few: I might propose a “Great Voyages of Discovery” panel to talk about things like the voyage of the Beagle and the H.M.S. Challenger; maybe a second one to discuss space probes. I’d also like do a science panel on organismal locomotion. Make suggestions! Come out and sit on a panel you propose!