Illustration of a woman with long hair, pronounced eyebrows, and full lips, against a red background.

Future Tense Fiction

In April 2016 CSI launched a new experiment with the Future Tense Channel at Slate: a regular writing series featuring original science fiction stories by well-known authors. We launched Future Tense Fiction with a story by climate fiction author Paolo Bacigalupi, whose tightly scripted story “Mika Model” imagines the moral and legal consequences of autonomous, intelligent robots run amok. Each Future Tense Fiction story will be paired with a response essay from a researcher or technical expert, and Bacigalupi’s story was published alongside a short essay by robotics law scholar Ryan Calo. Calo’s response essay beautifully (and without our prompting) described how “Mika Model” achieved one of science fiction’s powerful roles: giving him an insight into his own professional field that he might not otherwise have discovered. Future Tense Fiction stories will appear roughly once a quarter going forward.
More in Future Tense Fiction:
Mr. Thursday,” by Emily St. John Mandel
The Minnesota Diet,” by Charlie Jane Anders