What is Scifi: Definition and 63 Discussions

Science fiction (sometimes shortened to sci-fi or SF) is a genre of speculative fiction that typically deals with imaginative and futuristic concepts such as advanced science and technology, space exploration, time travel, parallel universes, and extraterrestrial life. It has been called the "literature of ideas", and often explores the potential consequences of scientific, social, and technological innovations.Science fiction, whose roots go back to ancient times, is related to fantasy, horror, and superhero fiction, and contains many subgenres. Its exact definition has long been disputed among authors, critics, scholars, and readers.
Science fiction literature, film, television, and other media have become popular and influential over much of the world. Besides providing entertainment, it can also criticize present-day society, and is often said to inspire a "sense of wonder".

View More On Wikipedia.org
  1. K

    Ideas for novel I'm writing I would love some insight on a concept

    Summary:: Ideas for a novel I want to begin writing. Brainstorming ideas and need help with a certain concept. Any help is appreciated! Hello to you all, this is my first post, and I Google searched this astrophysics forum because I thought it might be a good place to begin asking for advice...
  2. B

    Question About "Engineered Criticality Devices" In A SciFi Scenario

    As a way of explanation I have to say I've been reffing RPG's since the mid seventies, some four months after D&D first came out, as it took that long back then for game ideas to move from the Great Lakes region to the West Coast. (I was Class of '78) So in the upcoming post vaccine era I'm...
  3. Eumeme

    B Gravitational Wave System and Locations

    My hypothesis: A sequence with the gravitational waves detected, sent by modulating radio waves, could be received and used by other intelligent beings to find the corresponding sequence within their records and then compare it to calculate our spacetime position in relation to theirs. As...
  4. Lucasterre

    Weak Force Weapon Effects on Wall Elements

    Hello, I am a creative scifi writer and i only have basic quantum physics knowledge, if someone could answer my question please. I was wondering some type of weapon that uses weak force, therefore it would promote distorcions at weaf force field causing interaction with atoms My question is, if...
  5. S

    D&D scifi, thoughts on the evolution of tech & animals

    So I am writing a campaign for dungeons and dragons, and I have just started putting together a part of the setting in which a kingdom was shrunk about 2000 years prior, and stored in a small container. The upshot of this (by my own authority as the author) is that time travels about 10 times as...
  6. B

    Exploring the Potential of Space as Propulsion in SciFi

    Space is space with the virtual absence of mass, with the presence of radiation and whatever stray particles that pass over it. From a scifi perspective space can be used for a type or even types of scifi propulsion.Since space is volume and the virtual absence of mass, any scifi drive that was...
  7. B

    Scifi Starship Energy Harnessed Seems Massive

    FTL and warp are energy intensive in fiction, and even real scientists calculated at first that warping space would take a planet Jupiter mass converted into energy amount. Later it was revised to only about 800 kilograms, about the weight the voyager 1 probe. Even so, that is still a massive...
  8. B

    How Long Would Scifi Space Travel Really Take?

    The interesting thing about scifi space travel is that it remains hard even with scifi tech, so long you allow propellant and gravity limits to still exist. In a way it is kind of a good thing, only in that it prevents widespread easy RKV starship use. My question is how long would travel take...
  9. B

    I Think High Casualty Scifi Battles Are Unrealistic

    In scifi, space war often features high casualties, and I tend to think that is unrealistic. Here is why: Space war favors machines and robots over crews... any day of the week. Why? They weigh less overall and can pack far more weaponry and better engines. If you take for example a battle...
  10. B

    Best Raw Propellant Sources For A Scifi Spaceship

    Rocketry is not good enough for the standard scifi spaceship that can take off and land like it pleases with high payloads. Yet I still like rocketry because I like the fiery exhaust plumes. So I am considering linking the spaceship's rocket engine to a portal linked to to a planetary...
  11. B

    Which Scifi Alien Would You Rather Work With If You Had a Choice?

    This is purely for fun, as it won't affect my plot direction whatsoever. Which of my scifi created humanoid races would you prefer to work with and why? Which would you not want to and why? Based on their behavior only? Race 1: Take a positive view most all the time of situations, but can...
  12. Jarvis323

    SciFi Idea: What do you think about very long lifespans?

    Assume you have effectively cracked immortality (or very long lifespans), have already solved all of the feasible interesting problems, and are now living million+ year lives. With nothing to challenge you, boredom and sense of purpose, should be the last unsolved problems right? So how do...
  13. J

    Writing: Input Wanted SciFi story about making all encryptions obsolete and other dilemmas

    I want to write a sci fi story to let me think clearer. I'd start it with Jimmy Carter direct experience witnessing this: "The woman went into a trance and gave some latitude and longitude figures. We focused our satellite cameras on that point and the plane was there.". The sci fi story would...
  14. W

    Writing Accurate SciFi: Balancing Imagination and Scientific Validity

    Hey, folks. I'm a college grad, but that was many years ago (1984, and yes, I still feel like the novel "1984" is discussing a year in the "future"). I'm now working in the tech industry, but am trying to write SciFi. Unlike some SciFi, though, I want it to be relatively accurate. Oh, sure...
  15. A

    I Manned mission to Europa: science or still scifi?

    I ask because I feel a mission to Europa as something much more interesting than landing on Mars because of its obvious potential astrobiological implications. And I suspect that drilling through Europa's ice is never going to happen just by sending some sort of robotic drilling rig alone and...
  16. scottdave

    Ursula K. LeGuin has passed away

    Ursula K. LeGuin, SciFi/Fantasy author, has passed away Jan. 22. I read only one of her novels: The Left Hand of Darkness, which I enjoyed. Here is her obituary. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/23/obituaries/ursula-k-le-guin-acclaimed-for-her-fantasy-fiction-is-dead-at-88.html Here is an...
  17. K

    Is There a Need for a Hard Sci-Fi Magazine Focused on Real Ideas?

    Hi all. I've lurked around PF for awhile enough to realize real physics discussions go on here. Love it. I myself am an informed layman at best, who loves physics and math, but that love isn't returned - I was just never smart enough to do the real work beyond ideas. I publish a couple...
  18. E

    B Exploring the Possibility of a Warp Jet: A Theoretical Approach

    I was looking at videos on how a warp drive theoretically could work: by compressing space in front and expanding space in the back. This reminded me of a jet engine compressing air and blasting it out of a nozzle. My question is, could you build a sort of warp jet that would compress space...
  19. Y

    Could Microbial Life Survive in the Harsh Conditions of Space?

    They don't breathe. Their internal pressure greater than space. Radiation. Temperature. Micrometeorites. No picnic? Any recommended reading? Thanks.
  20. jackwhirl

    News SciFi Inspired Technologies Becoming Real; Turbolift

    In tech news, ThyssenKrupp has invented the turbolift. I'm excited to see it implemented. Hopefully it won't take too long to catch on. Unfortunately, I'm not often in buildings tall enough to benefit from this technology.
  21. Noisy Rhysling

    SciFi movie(s) body count, who's the biggest killer(s)?

    Star Wars has destroyed six planets full of people, and the city of Jedah. Anyone with a higher body count?
  22. Noisy Rhysling

    Getting back into SciFi after a few decades....

    ...and need help. I like Heinlein, Niven, Pournelle, Zelazney, John Varley, folks of that ilk. I don't care for thud and blunder books that much. Suggest new writers for me, please! I've got a good long string of down time coming up and I'd like to have something to read.
  23. farolero

    Writing: Input Wanted A small SciFi comic loosely based on the sixth day movie

    I hope you like it: http://s40.photobucket.com/user/raaaid/media/comic2/1_zps1rp0ynb2.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0
  24. Greg Bernhardt

    A PF SciFi story One sentence at a time....

    RULES Each post must add on to the previous post to continue the story. It must be one sentence long (no long wandering sentences). Contributions must be reasonable (no hijacks, trolling or humor designed to ruin story) Wait to contribute again after 1 other reply PG rated No commentary I...
  25. VNV

    Writing: Input Wanted Extraorbital Atmospheric Re-Entry: Terminal Velocity?

    Extra Orbital Atmospheric Re-Entry, or the Art of Leaping From Orbiting Starships onto Planets. Ignoring that my TITANs are donned in A.T.L.A.S. PCA and thereby protected by force-evaporating malarkey nodes, I want to know how they'd be in the middle of these jumps. In my book, a TITAN Super...
  26. Noisy Rhysling

    SciFi utilization of mini-black holes?

    Okay, I have to admit that this was my first encounter with the term "black hole", c. 1964. In the story I read a mini black hole (MBH) somehow made it to Earth was was devouring ... Montana? ... and there were fears that it would eventually swallow the whole (not "hole") world. There were...
  27. Noisy Rhysling

    Best Mash-up, "hard" SciFi and Fantasy?

    Suggestions, please. The subject may be broad, so don't be afraid to put something out for us to consider. (I'm asking because I haven't really been in the genre in the past few decades.)
  28. Grarr McGrarr

    Sweet Spots in Gravity Wells for the purposes of fiction

    I'm a writer and I like to play in the science fiction sandbox but keep a firm grasp on what is possible. I recently started working on some notes for a setting in which we have begun to colonise the solar system. To the question at hand. The further you fall into a gravity well, the more you...
  29. E

    What Are the Odds of a Perfect Machine? Perpetual Motion Possibilities

    What are the odds that humans will come up with a 100% (or extremely close to) efficient machine within the next couple centuries. If so, what principle do you think it would work on? How about a perpetual motion machine? Share your thoughts.
  30. H

    Weapon that produces the same effect as a taser?

    I was thinking of a pistol that shoots out a pellet with two needles that pierce the body to produce the same effect as a taser. Would it be possible and must there be two needles to make a circuit?
  31. Greg Bernhardt

    What SciFi ladies wear to the club

    Ladies, tell me you don't want these :D
  32. TrueGormagon

    Discussing Matter in the Universe: R.E.E's, Island of Stability & Exotic Matter

    Greetings, I am interested in creating a thread dedicated to the discussion of the uses of currently discovered and used and theorized/dreamed of types of matter in our universe. This includes R.E.E's (Rare Earth elements, like Neodymium or Yttrium...
  33. Greg Bernhardt

    Who is your favorite SciFi character?

    Who is your favorite SciFi character? Personally I can't pick one! I have to pick three! :D Spock (Star Trek) WALL-E (WALL-E) Nightcrawler (X-Men)
  34. S

    2 best scifi books I've read in 10 years

    Greg Bears Book one: Anvil of Stars Book two: Forge of God Anyone else a fan of these books? I guess I am just a hard scifi addict.
  35. S

    Is Moon the Best Low-Budget Sci-Fi Movie of Recent Years?

    Anyone else seen this somewhat low budget Scifi movie? Its not that old, say maybe 3-5 years. Called "Moon" Very cool with a lot of atmosphere. If you haven't seen it yet, do yourselves a favor and do so. Anyone else a fan?
  36. J

    SciFi writer needs space colony help

    Hello all, I've gotten some great help here before: https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?p=4051091#post4051091 and I come back to you again with another question. So suppose there's a space colony, similar to Gerard O'Neill's ideas back in the 70's of ring-like tubes that...
  37. D

    Looking For Help With A SciFi Movie For Accurate Physics

    Hi there, I'm new here. My favorite fields of science are physics, theoretical physics, and fringe science. Fringe was my all time favorite show next to Star Trek. I'm a total nerd. However, I'm no scientist. In fact, I'm a music and video producer, photographer, and graphic artist. Last time...
  38. Greg Bernhardt

    What SciFi universe would you live in?

    I asked this question to Doc Al in his interview, but I think it would be fun to hear from everyone. You can pick any well known SciFi universe to live in. Which would it be? I would say Star Trek just for the holodeck and the device where food is instantly made. Seems fairly stable too.
  39. A

    What should I name my teenage sci-fi heroine?

    Hello all, I am a first-time writer. I'm writing science fiction, and I'm trying to name my protagonist. She is a 14 yo girl, and I'm trying to come up with a name that could connote both vulnerable and strong. Any name ideas, or name resource ideas (in addition to the OSC one I found in...
  40. K

    Scifi Author Needs Answer to Question

    !Hi. I am currently writing a short story and need a few questions answered. 1. How could a spacecraft traveling at 10% the speed of light be slowed down? 2. Is such a high velocity practical for a spacecraft staying within the same solar system? My story is set within a colonized...
  41. T

    How Does Physics Apply to Superhuman Scenarios in Sci-Fi Writing?

    I'm writing something, and I need some assistance. Namely, I want it to be at least moderatly accurate to real life physics, so I would appreciate it if someone could give me an insight on how real-world physics would work in the following situations. First - what would happen if a human...
  42. 256bits

    Community SciFi writing project #1

    At least a go at it... Arch was in his study room contemplating the contents of the last message from Central. The message was brief, only a few words with no outllining explanation - URGENT. RETURN TO BASE. END - and no signature as to whom had sent it. Verification of the encryption code...
  43. N

    Community SciFi writing project proposal

    Since there has been little activity on this part of the forum the past week I have a few questions to pose to those who visit First a definition. A Community Writing project, is what it sounds like. Its a Story written by the community. normally the setting is based on the board it is posted...
  44. J

    SciFi writer needs space travel help

    My novel is coming together rather rapidly, but I've left some pretty big holes in my descriptions of the setting. It takes place on a generational ship traveling from Earth to a New hypothetically hospitable planet. Essentially I would like to know the amount of time that has passed on both...
  45. S

    Help: Sound created over/in subspace? (SciFi)

    Help: Sound created over/in subspace? (SciFi) I know nothing, called basic high school physics and chemistry. However, do not hold back in your answers I do find ways to comprehend what people tell me. This might be a silly question but since audible "sounds" can't travel over empty...
  46. M

    Has Ghost Hunters Found Real Paranormal Evidence?

    Has the show Ghost Hunters ever found anything credible? I can't bring myself to watch for more than a few seconds. Where did they get the idea that this stuff would cause measurable electromagnetic effects, Ghost Busters? Psychic investigators have been trying for at least the last hundred...
  47. P

    Incredible SciFi Claims by Falun Gong

    If you have heard of Falun Gong at all, you probably know it as some religion oppressed by the Chinese Communist Party, but don't know what's fascinating about its teachings. I'll quote a few excerpts from its official bible, http://www.falundafa.org/book/eng/pdf/zfl_new.pdf" . On the...
  48. M

    I am Writing a scifi story. Is my hypothetical neuron at least plausible?

    I'm writing a scifi story about a human undergoing rapid evolution due to his being repeatedly "connected" to an alien biological machine,that would be controlling the evolution through some kind of program. one of the changes would be a "master" cell that was able to regulate clusters of...
  49. W

    Why aren't there more thought-provoking SciFi movies like 2001 Space Odyssey?

    Ever since 2001 Space Odyssey was considered one of the ultimate Scifi movies of all time, it's been 40 years and nobody shot anything close it. The movie is very complex, it projects the significance of humanity, space exploration, and mysteries of advanced technologies while posing much...
  50. N

    Are theoretical scientists blinded by scifi?

    I didn't know where to post, but it's kind of a "Hmmm" question so I took a chance of posting this in the philosophy section, if a better section for this question exist on this forum I hope admins move it there. My question is: you feel theorethical scientists might be blinded by their...