2013: The Year in Review

2013 was a chain of islands in a rough and inky sea. A gathering together of network-enabled weirdos: in a listed former town hall, an empty office block in Manchester, a Brighton coffee shop, a Dutch art gallery, on an East German fishing boat, at a synthetic biology conference at a London university. A four-thousand word essay on

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Speculative techno-geographies: Hussites & Heliographs

Hory Kutné, Commonwealth of God, 1519 Messianic Christianity, mine-ready steam pumps, and an early modern internet-of-lighthouses. In 1270, a Bohemian merchant travelling in the Mongol Ilkhanate secures access to a collection of works by Al-Razi, a 10th-century Persian physician. Alongside treatises on medical ethics, pharmacy, and metaphysics, the documents include a method for creating mirrored

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2010: Epilogue

So, that was 2010? Let’s see what we’ve got here. The feverish activity of the blue hours of deadline day. Adrenaline and nausea. Pillow-over-head; attempting to sleep through the hour of strained mechanical whirring as my ageing printer struggled with 50-odd pages of Masters thesis. Listening through the warm haze of Sunday night pintage, as

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F3: ‘The Crone Tree’

THE CRONE TREE She wanted answers. A swab of saliva in a crystal vial, a pre-paid envelope, and thirty-five days. She scanned the small print, expertly woven by chitinous, scurrying lawyers; signed the forms. With that, the trap was sprung, ensnaring her in a gossamer web of sub-clauses and stipulations. But this trap hadn’t been

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F3: ‘Celerity’

CELERITY The air hums with a warm static. Quinn can feel the insistent tug of the kite, swooping lazily overhead. The copper flames of Saint Elmo lick at its treated fibres; a chaotic pattern born of the breeze. Tightening the harness, our man permits himself a brief glance behind. The bulge is fast approaching; racing

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F3: ‘Fatima’s Funeral’

FATIMA’S FUNERAL Nights are the worst. At some base level, the shock threw her fight-or-flight response, flooding her system with wave after wave of adrenaline. Hours spent staring at the apartment ceiling, Etienne snoring contently beside her. She waits for the wide-eyed exhaustion to retreat. And, when she does finally drop off, the occasional burst

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F3: ‘Paper Boats in the Blue Hour’

PAPER BOATS IN THE BLUE HOUR The room is cramped, but curiously endearing. Sprawled on the bed, Anna flicks idly through one of those vapid, content-free magazines – glossy, with improbably posed fashion models, and pseudo-articles claiming some special insight about lifestyle perfume. Too tired to read, but not yet buzzing enough to bother moving

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F3: ‘Patterns in Traffic’

PATTERNS IN TRAFFIC Hair swept back in a tight bun, Gutchluk was polyester and permafrost. Her devotees claimed she could restore life to the recently dead, saw the future in the city’s traffic patterns, and used her cell to speak to the mountains. When asked, she avoided eye contact, taking a lengthy swig of her

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