History Legend Rewind

2 Jan : The Power of Science fiction 

Today we are talking about ‘Science fiction’ because the day is celebrated as The National Science Fiction Day. It reminds us of the great Science Fiction Writer Isaac Asimov.

“:Today’s Science Fiction is tomorrow Science Fact” – Isaac Asimov 

Science learning can be fun. There are several ways that science concepts can be explained. One of them is Science Fiction or Sci-fi.  This is the easiest way to explain difficult science concepts to layman. But, science fiction has a completely different genre to cater, and they are the science fiction readers who prefer to read and watch the future of science and technology today. This group is catered by renowned science fiction writers and film makers. 

Science fiction is a genre of fiction in which the stories often tell about science and technology of the future. It is important to note that science fiction has a relationship with the principles of science—these stories involve partially true- partially fictitious laws or theories of science. 

Science fiction stories have common themes, such as space travel, scientific progress, catastrophic events, supernatural powers, alien invaders, robots and the dangers of machines. We all must have heard about sci-fi films like Avatar, Star wars, Star Trek, Matrix, Planet of the apes, etc. There are many sci-fi series on various platforms. This takes us to an unknown world and makes it a part of our life. There are so many sci-fi films that we have seen in the past, only to realise today that they were so much near to reality. 

National Science Fiction Day 

Today we are talking about ‘Science fiction’ because the day is celebrated as The National Science Fiction Day. It reminds us of the great Science Fiction Writer Isaac Asimov. He was a professor of biochemistry at Boston University. Hewas considered one of the “Big Three” science fiction writers, along with Robert A. Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke. A prolific writer, he wrote or edited more than 500 books. He also wrote an estimated 90,000 letters and postcards.Best known for his hard science fiction, Asimov also wrote mysteries and fantasy, as well as much nonfiction. On this day, people celebrate all forms of Sci-Fi including literature, art, television shows and films of this genre. It is also a good day to recognize some of the writers that have contributed to this genre. 

His most loved and talked about series is the ‘Foundation’.  Isaac Asimov started writing his Foundation series in 1942, which chronicles the rise and fall of galactic empires and introduced psychohistory. The series was later awarded a one-time Hugo Award for “Best All-Time Series. 

Some scholars assert that science fiction had its beginnings in ancient times, when the line between myth and fact was blurred. Written in the 2nd century CE by the satirist Lucian, A True Story contains many themes and tropes characteristic of modern science fiction, including travel to other worlds, extraterrestrial lifeforms, interplanetary warfare, and artificial life. Some consider it the first science-fiction novel.Some of the stories from The Arabian Nights, also contain elements of science fiction. 

Power of Science fiction 

  • The phrase ‘science-fiction’ is first found in print in 1851 and the abbreviation “sci-fi” was introduced in 1954, by analogy with “hi-fi” 
  • The first known use of the word ‘prequel’ was in 1958 in reference to a novel by science-fiction author James Blish. 
  • The word ‘spaceship’ dates back to 1880. 
  • The word ‘robot’ was invented by the brother of a Czech playwright in 1920. 
  • The phrase ‘parallel universe’ was first used in H. G. Wells’ 1923 novel Men like Gods.
  • In the first chapter of his 1948 novel Space Cadet, Robert Heinlein predicted mobile phone technology. 
  • The term ‘genetic engineering’ was invented by science-fiction author Jack Williamson in his 1951 novel, Dragon’s Island.  
  • William Gibson popularised the term ‘cyberspace’ in a short story of 1982 
  • In 1974, Arthur C. Clarke predicted the internet of the year 2001. 
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