ICYMI we have covered comics, tv/movie media, and now books at WonderCon 2019. WonderCon is the sister convention of San Diego Comic Con, hosted by the same people and held in Anaheim, California. While nowhere near as massive as SDCC, WonderCon was worth the three adventure and I will be back! Throughout the weekend, there were several author panels and signings that I added. This wrap-up focuses on one plus I get to share photos with authors :). Check it out below!
Technology is Cold; People are Warm Panel
A variety of sci-fi writers gathered early Sunday morning to talk about the benefits and drawbacks of humanizing technology. Every Sunday should start with a discussion about the misogyny of the week. This week’s incident happens to go perfectly with the panel perfectly – Making space(suits) for everyone (or the lack thereof). Maura Milan, author of Ignite the Stars, opens the discussion by discussing her use of black for costumes because that’s how she dresses (but watch out for red in Eclipse the Skies). Diane wants style and function but thinks about accessibility first. Space outfits should reflect abilities, culture, and we should have suits that fit everyone on the ISS. Damn straight. S.B. Divya explores how economically disadvantaged populations would use available technologies in her books, resulting in interesting adaptations. Cory Doctorow (who writes sometimes terrifying books about the very near future) brings in real life discussion, starting by exploring who is in the development room versus the people who have to use it.
One way that we embrace technology is to assign an emotional component. This is why we apologize to Siri when we accidentally call on it and name our Roombas. Maura adds emotional depth to her technology by adding the necessity to negotiate with AI rather than boss it around.
It’s impossible to talk about technology without discussing privacy. It’s a constant balance of what we gain (ease in daily life, connectedness) versus what we give up. Can we machine learn the psychology of people?
Final Thoughts & Photos from the Weekend
When we weren’t in panels or meeting authors or creators, we walked the floor and checked out vendors and cosplayers. Some of the things we did while there:
- Saw Stacee and Michelle, fellow bloggers!
- Bought fun athletic wear from Crowned Athletics – they make Disney princess-inspired athletic gear!
- Got an Anaheim library card. They have their own digital library.
- Visited other non-profit tables and donated to Extra Life and Anime for Humanity – both orgs are doing amazing work in the mental health space.
- Visited the Puglie house. My husband is obsessed with Puglie Pug – photo below!
- Met Maura Milan (AHHH), Ann Aguirre, Rachel Caine, and Livia Blackburne!
Chris and I decided against cosplay this year but that doesn’t mean we strayed from being nerdy!