Friday, August 19, 2011

Announcement: Singular Source Short Story Contest

I have exciting news to share.

I am running a short story contest, called Singular Source. I am looking for hard science fiction stories about future programming in the presence of large source code archives. The winner will be published as the last chapter of our edited volume Finding Source Code on the Web for Remix and Reuse to be published by Springer Verlag in 2012.

We are funding the contest through an IndieGoGo campaign. Please consider contributing. Even a small amount will help.

It's common to end academic books with a speculative chapter, and what would be more speculative than a science fiction short story? I invited Vernor Vinge to submit a story, because I think the future might be the programmer archeologists that appeared in his novels, Fire Upon the Deep and Deepness in the Sky. Rather than writing software from scratch, people are taking pieces from existing systems and combining them. In this style of programming, knowing the archives is as important as the ability to put the pieces together.

Unfortunately, Vinge declined. However, he did give his blessing for a short story contest. So, here we are.

While this isn't my first literary competition, it has been a long time. I was once the Secretary of the Library Committee at Hart House, University of Toronto, which runs an annual short story contest.  Bear with me as I try to avoid making novice mistakes. Feedback is of course welcome. Chris  Szego of Bakka Phoenix Books has already set me straight on a number of aspects of the contest. Librarians, Annette and Kim, from the Merril Collection, have also provided helpful advice.

No comments: