Monday, May 2, 2016

The Hear After comes from an idea I got 40 years ago.

The reason I am interested in Edison and his radio to talk to the dead is that I spent a couple decades working as a radio announcer.

In 1975, I visited the Edison & Ford Winter Estates in Fort Myers FL. It was 20 acres of historical buildings, historic gardens and the Edison Ford Museum. That day the guide mentioned that Edison's was trying to invent a phone with which one could talk to the dead. He started the project in 1920.

Back then, Americans were still reeling from the horrific casualties of World War I. Meanwhile, spiritualism, Ouija boards, and the slew of new technological inventions from men like Thomas Edison were capturing the national zeitgeist. All these converged when Edison told American Magazine that he was working on a device known as a “spirit phone” — in other words, a phone that would let the living communicate with the dead.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

One star of HEAR AFTER is a robot (Not Robbie)

Humanlike robots may seem creepy, but some roboticists are betting they are the key to unlocking a future in which humans and super intelligent computers coexist, work alongside each other and even develop relationships. 

In my book, HEAR AFTER, set in 2020, a female scientist named Sophia helps my protagonist create the Hear After device. She is a humanlike robot, often dubbed android.

She is based on Dr. David Hanson who leads the engineers and designers who created Sophia, the team's most advanced android to date. Inspired by Audrey Hepburn and Hanson's wife, Sophia will tell you that she was first activated April 19, 2015.

(Video on next page.)

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Major Cast Changes for HEAR AFTER

Well, we have a course correction for HEAR AFTER and there are a few new actors.

Major change is Edward Norton in to play Ryan Wilson, the protagonist.

His friend, Amy Silverberg is now being played by Mila Kunis.

And I am proud to say that Lev Eisman will be played by Jeff Goldblum.

Among others in the cast,

  • Paul Giamatti plays millionaire Norm Bankhead
  • Lucy Liu plays major television journalist Ling Woo
  • and the excellent Giovanni Ribisi plays undercover operative Nick Kenny.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Five things that will change by 2020.

We asked technology pioneers for their views on how technology will change the world. 

Here are their predictions for our near-term future.

1. The ‘humanized’ internet
It seems inevitable that even more personalization will be an important component of the internet. However, more than simply connecting humans with devices, the next stage in connectivity will include “humanized” interfaces that constantly evolve to understand the user’s patterns and needs and, in a sense, self-optimize. 

This includes the functions and features on our devices, as well as the selection and curation of information we receive. I expect this injection of personalization will bring changes as our level of connectivity continues to grow. 
Sirgoo Lee, 
co-CEO of Kakao

Thursday, April 21, 2016

HEAR AFTER is set in Reno and Las Vegas, Nevada.

Near Future Science Fiction, like my work-in-progress the HEAR AFTER, set in 2020, are books that are set not too far into the earth's future, and most are set on the planet. HEAR AFTER, in fact, is set in Reno and Las Vegas, Nevada and peripherally in Washington DC.

After twenty-five years in radio in Tampa Bay, Los Angeles and San Francisco, my protagonist Ryan Wilson has been graced with what he considered a nearly perfect job for an ex-radio man. 

He is the general manager of Radio Free Reno, a unique museum of Nevada radio broadcasting and a working public radio station that teaches students from nearby University of Nevada at Reno how to get started in radio.