May 17, 2015

Current and Upcoming Television

I hesitate to say we're living in a golden age of television, but from where I'm sitting, it certainly feels like it. I've just completed a four-year academic course, which has been absorbing what would otherwise be spare time, and...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 3:45 PM

September 15, 2009

Casual Games

Spinks hates Facebook games. I have to admit, I've blocked nearly all of them myself by now, although Farmville seems to have supplementary applications - a sort of parasitic mini-eco-system around it - that get around the 'hide' command. However,...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 9:20 AM | Comments (0)

September 1, 2009

Time Pressure & Information Density

I don't have enough time. I know nobody has, but I don't even seem to have enough time to watch TV or films. I don't watch much TV, so this isn't normally an issue, but last week, I sat down...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 12:27 PM | Comments (0)

February 2, 2009


Last year, at Eastercon, I picked up an armful of vintage zines. They were literally being given away for nothing, some dating back to the 60s, but most of them from the 70s and 80s. I had a vague resolution...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 4:36 PM | Comments (0)

April 19, 2006

Mah Guildies

There are language changes happening around me again. This happens every time my friends pick up a new hobby, and it happens differently in text and in speech. Because a lot of us are interested in language and in communications,...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 1:13 PM

April 1, 2006

Self Publishing

Self publishing has long been more popular in the areas of science fiction and fantasy than in other genres - except possibly poetry (of course, there's self-published scifi poetry too). On any convention visit, you'll see books in odd formats...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 7:34 PM | Comments (1)

March 31, 2006

Tools of The Future

I realised today that I'm working in the future when I'm working on Starbound. Not so much in the subject matter - because at my current stage of research I'm looking into the past as much as the future -...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 12:02 PM

March 30, 2006

Virtual Credit

According to an article on Makezine (a very cool site in its own right), the future of credit cards lies in virtual rewards. "... credit card companies and game makers will reward their customers who spend money in the real...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 4:55 PM

March 13, 2006


Having spent the weekend at P-Con III, I have returned loaded down with new recommendations (although I did keep my book-buying within reasonable limits). First up is Kicking The Sacred Cow, by James P. Hogan. I'm only getting started on...
Posted by Drew Shiel at 8:45 AM

February 6, 2006


I know, I know. If you can't say anything good, say nothing. So I'll say nothing....
Posted by Drew Shiel at 10:55 PM | Comments (2)

January 25, 2006


Scifi author Bruce Sterling has an ongoing project/movement called Viridian. It's an environmental, political and scientific endeavour, and it ties fairly directly into some of the ecological and bioscience fiction I've been coming across a lot of lately....
Posted by Drew Shiel at 2:30 PM

June 28, 2005

Distribution & Niches

There's an article on Wired about a concept called The Long Tail. The notion is that there are now and will be many more sales of obscure material than "hit" material in any genre, due to the taste matching capabilities of sites like, and recommendations coming from things like and blogs.
Posted by Drew Shiel at 12:05 PM

December 9, 2004

Kids' Stuff

This morning, drifting in and out of sleep just before the alarm went off, I remembered a conversation I had when I was about fourteen. A neighbour - same age as myself, perhaps a little younger - was over, and I was trying to persuade him to play D&D with me and my brother. It was becoming apparent that there was a fundamental disconnect here; he didn't recognise the word "fantasy". He didn't know what Lord of the Rings was, and when we got down, in mild desperation, to "swords, knights, wizards, magic, goblins", he said scornfully "That's kids' stuff!".
Posted by Drew Shiel at 6:56 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack