My Preliminary Loscon 2013 Schedule

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As you know, Bob, I’ll soon be heading west to southern California to spend Thanksgivikkah with my family there. It’s a crazy time to travel, particularly in or out of LAX, and rather than hop on a plane on Black Friday (possibly the only worse place to be than a shopping mall) I decided to swoop in and participate in Loscon.

My initial programming assignment arrived in the wee hours of this morning (which would have been a much more reasonable late yesterday evening in California) and since I seem to be reprising my role as the dashing insomniac I figured I’d write it and share it with you now. While my schedule’s a bit sparse, I’m hoping that’s just because they haven’t figured out things like Reading and Signing slots yet. Either that, or I’m just out of luck. In any case, here’s what I know right now:

Saturday, November 30th

11:30 – 12:30 p.m. | Chicago | The Soul of the New Machine: Software Complexity
and the birth of Artificial Intelligence?

Artificial Intelligence is a goal of a great amount of research and development. It promises to either make our lives easier or enslave us all, or perhaps a bit of both. At some point, some endeavor to create Artificial Intelligence will succeed, and the machine will “wake-up” and become self-aware. Is this just a matter of a few more million or billions lines of code, sophisticated neural nets, or advanced hardware / software simulations of the human brain? Or is it something more emergent, out of the sheer complexity and resultant chaos of the ever growing Internet, Big Data analytics, and massive server farms, that AI will come to be? Is it possible that it has already happened, and we just don’t know it yet?
Michael Siladi (m), Timothy Cassidy-Curtis, Amy Sterling Casil, and me.

Sunday, December 1st

10:00 – 11:00 a.m. | Marquis 3 | – Delphic Oracle
Authors answer audience questions one word at a time. Hilarity usually ensues.
Genny Dazzo, S. P. Hendrick, Todd McCaffrey (m), Martin Young, and me.

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. | Atlanta | – Avoiding the Dreaded Info-dump
Sure, you’ve spent years coming up with the history and backstory of your universe; but how do you get that information across to the reader without sounding like, well, a narrator? Creative and immersive ways to give the reader information without a wall of exposition.
Buzz Dixon, Larry Niven, Laurie Tom, Harry Turtledove, and me.

My fierce and fearsome plush buffalito, Barry, will be with me and tweeting during the convention. Follow him at @PlushBarry and you could win valuable prizes!

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