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Suggest new track category or other idea / Speed paneling
« on: May 10, 2014, 10:13:51 PM »
By analogy to speed dating. For a 50-minute slot, pick 9 topics. Each gets 5 minutes. (Five minutes to explain the concept, etc.) Each panel is 4 people. Each gets 30 seconds to talk about the topic. After this first 2 minutes, the panel talks about it for 2:30. The moderator (not on the panel) limits everyone to no more than 15 seconds per comment. At 4:30, panel is over and 4 new people swap in. The first panel is Program Participants only--after that, people from the audience can line up to tag in, but only in the order they line up in--they can't pick a topic. If 36 people don't want to participate, people from previous panels can line up at the end.

Topics should be a mix, say, "Science Fiction is a type of Fantasy," and "The SCA has nothing to do with real history." That is, controversial topics that fans have opinions about.

If this seems too frenetic, have 6 topics in 48 minutes or 5 topics in 45 minutes or whatever and adjust.

What do you think?

Science and Technology Panels / Telling Science from Nons(ci)ense
« on: May 10, 2014, 10:07:22 PM »
You hear on the interwebs that a new vaccine can prevent cancer. You also hear that vaccines cause cancer. If you aren't an expert in medicine, how can you tell which one is the real science?

Literary Panels / Re: Tobin's Technology Guide
« on: May 10, 2014, 10:05:13 PM »
You aren't perchance thinking of Anderson's High Crusade?

One reason I've come to like Brandon Sanderson. His fantasy stories are fantasy stories. They may have elements of romance or steampunk, but they're fantasy stories.

Game shows have been very successful at other cons I have attended/worked.

There's nothing stopping you from having "workshops" or "seminars" in addition to panels.

Science and Technology Panels / Biology is weird
« on: May 05, 2014, 10:34:49 PM »
Animals you can freeze in liquid nitrogen and store in vacuum, and then revive by just adding water. Underground orchids, which only break the surface of the dirt to flower. Parasites that mind-control animals (including humans). Bacteria that chase down and devour their prey. The living world has some very, very odd stuff in it, and here's where you can hear about a small fraction of that.

I'd be glad to sit on this one. I did a similar panel at Arisia.

Gaming and LARPing Panels and Events / Games for the Grognard
« on: May 05, 2014, 10:30:26 PM »
Grognards are old gamers with lots of stories. This is the place to talk about the great games you don't see or hear about any more: The Fantasy Trip. Dune, the board game. The original Squad Leader. Which ones do we think deserve a second (third, fourth) chance?

I've never even played the game, I've just chaired a con where it was insanely popular.

Fandom Panels / Who _isn't_ a fan?
« on: May 05, 2014, 10:26:54 PM »
The definition has expanded a lot since First Fandom, when it was written SF/Fantasy fandom. Gamers, costumers, medievalists, media fans ... does fandom now include basically anyone with a hobby that isn't sports?

Comics and Graphic Novels panels / Boundaries? What boundaries?
« on: May 05, 2014, 10:24:44 PM »
Resolved: that all distinctions between types of comic are now invalid. Examples: comic strips and comic books are now the same--people read them either in bound collections or on the web, neither in newspapers nor pamphlets. Manga is now identical to US comics and to band desinee--all of them have influenced each other so much there is no longer a real demarcation. Webcomics no longer separate from paper comics: the same material can mostly be found in both forms.

Science and Technology Panels / How to think good
« on: April 24, 2014, 10:35:25 PM »
Science isn't a set of facts, it's a way to separate ideas that work from ideas that do not. How can you apply the philosophy and methods of science to practical, everyday problems. For instance, can a lay person use science to decide what food to buy, what medicine to take, what neighborhood to live in?

Science and Technology Panels / Re: Your monkey's an uncle
« on: April 24, 2014, 10:33:19 PM »
I'm not sure what the title means, but otherwise I'd be glad to be on this one. I'm a longtime Skeptics Society and Randi Foundation member, and have a couple of bio degrees.

Literary Panels / Clear-cut Categories, or Stop Blurring the Lines!
« on: April 24, 2014, 10:32:02 PM »
Enough with "Urban Fantasy" or "SF Mysteries" or "Erotic Horror". What's wrong with fantasy, SF, mystery, and horror (or for that matter erotica) without mixing them up? What are some great recent stories that sit comfortably in one genre?

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