ChiCon 8 Day 2

Coffee for the second morning in a row. I think I may be pushing my caffeine limit. First panel was Technological Solutions to Environmental Problems (Claire McCague, Jill Engel-Cox, Karl Schroeder, Leadie Jo Flowers, Leon Perniciaro) I think the thing to avoid is screwing up the world worse than it is now by trying to fix it, al la The Colony or Snow Piercer (what does it say about us that we worry more about freezing to death than we do about frying? See Ministry for the Future for that scenario. My earliest memory of climate catastrophe scenarios was Silent Running. Not quite the same thing) A sun shade at Lagrange 1? In the scheme of things, that’s not as far fetched an idea as you might think. At the very least we’re going to need taller sea walls. Nine feet of ocean rise is already in the cards. We’re just waiting for the warming to catch up to the CO2 levels now.

BBC EarthThe Future Of The Oceans | Blue Planet II – Dec 10, 2017 (a suggestion from a fellow attendee)

The real thinker on the panel was Leadie Jo Flowers, in my opinion. Her idea is to get the next generation thinking in terms of doable scenarios, not overwhelming them with the hopelessness of an unavoidable dystopian future. Her education coordination website isn’t online yet, but it would be a worthy effort that I would devote some of my time to if it ever comes to fruition. (I think she said it would be called what if) Recommended reading from the panel:

A Field Guide to Climate Anxiety: How to Keep Your Cool on a Warming Planet by Sarah Jaquette Ray

Waiting for collective efforts to manifest is probably a fruitless endeavor. It will take individual effort combined with government subsidy when they finally come online to get the majority of people to move in the right direction. In the end, the electric car will sell itself because it’s just a better car. I’ve owned one for nearly ten years already and I want a second one.

The next panel in the room I was already in at that time was for:

Inventor of the Future: The Visionary Life of Buckminster Fuller by Alec Nevala-Lee 

Cult leader, conman, self promoter. He even designed a car, the Dymaxion. When it crashed and killed someone, he invented a story for why that happened that didn’t include the top-heavy design of the vehicle itself. He is the influence behind innumerable tech personalities whether they know this fact about themselves or not. Norman Foster was the architect who worked with Fuller, who had no formal education or licensure in architecture. Fullerene, the carbon Bucky ball, is probably one of the main reasons that people still encounter the name Buckminster Fuller.

I had an idea for standing seam triangular dome panels to prefabricate the geodesic domes with while I was listening to this talk. Not sure if that would help with the drainage problems, though. You still have corners all over the place that will trap and probably wick water into the structure. I’ve always been fascinated with Buckminster Fuller, like most people who stumble across the man’s legacy. It’s hard not to be, and that was by his design.

Then it was off to Yoga and Juicing Isn’t Fixing This (A. L. Kaplan, Amy Henrie Gillett, D. H. Timpko) a panel about coping with chronic illness. I write about the subject so often here that I felt I ought to at least pop my head in the room and see what was happening. People writing about their disabilities on their own websites is apparently a rare thing. Not a single person in the disability panel did what I do with this blog. I always knew I was weird. Giving yourself room to be sick in, while also striving to at least get out of bed and do something each day. Lessons I had already learned in the years I’ve been fighting chronic illness. The fact that I’m here at all is a testament to that.

I shook Stonekettle’s hand in the dealer’s room today. That would be my trip to Worldcon completed now. There were more panels to attend anyway after I had ravaged a few more portals in Ingress Prime. The Resistance rules the Worldcon portals. I missed the meetup for Ingress players today, but I did complete the mission for the convention on Tuesday, two days before the convention started. Yay me.

I had heard part of the discussion held for Science in Science Fiction Shows: The Good, The Bad, and the Amusing (Catherine Asaro) and the moderator didn’t venture into Discovery’s magic mushroom land so I had very little to say on the subject. I did manage not to get drunk at the bid parties tonight. That would be a first for me at a Worldcon. Goodnight all.

Author: RAnthony

I'm a freethinking, unapologetic liberal. I'm a former CAD guru with an architectural fetish. I'm a happily married father. I'm also a disabled Meniere's sufferer.

Attacks on arguments offered are appreciated and awaited. Attacks on the author will be deleted.

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