Quotable (#194)

Ben Narasin cites an (unnamed) Chinese Communist Party official on the techno-economic function of science fiction:

For years we’ve been making wonderful things. We make your iPods. We make phones. We make them better than anybody else, but we don’t come up with any of these ideas. So we went on a tour of America talking to people at Microsoft, at Google, at Apple, and we asked them a lot of questions about themselves, just the people working there. And we discovered they all read science fiction … so we think maybe it’s a good thing.

2 thoughts on “Quotable (#194)

  1. Reminds me of the old Three Days of the Condor, where Redford is reading all those spy novels and clipping scenarios for the data boys… the Chinese think they can bottle creativity from reading SF… problem is after years of working with Software guys from India, China, and other places they had us hands down with mathematics, logic, etc., but creativity isn’t something you can teach someone… it’s a whole culture of cunning, a sort of Ulysses in a bottle innovator who can think it up on the fly, the spur of the moment hand to eye… thing… whether we will or no… the Anglo-Saxon heritage has that quizzical ability to puzzle out the threads from a thousand and one angles and shoot the gap between ideas and things that those who are bound to logic and algorithmic prisons will never ever master… but heh, who am I, but a guy who lived the crap for most of my adult life and always saw how obviously more intelligent these Chinese and India guys were, but how stymied they were when guys like myself came up with solutions they just could not think … Somewhere along the way we ‘think’ things differently… they’ll need to look there, not SF to figure that one out.

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