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The Future in Film and Literature

Book Cover of ''Metaplanetary'' by Tony Daniel

Futuristic films and literature of the 20th century imagined everything from space aliens to homicidal computers affecting - and sometimes eradicating - the human race. Although the reality of scientific and technological advancements is perhaps stranger than fiction, we can learn a lot about modern society by looking at how writers of the past viewed the future. Host Frank Stasio talks about conceptions of the future in literature and film, and our current understanding of science and space exploration with Devin Orgeron, associate professor in North Carolina State University’s film studies department; Tony Daniel, a science fiction writer and editor at Baen Books; Andre P. Mazzoleni, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at North Carolina State University; Warren Jasper, professor in the college of textiles at North Carolina State University; and Brent Carter, a student in the College of Textiles at North Carolina State University.

Alex Granados joined The State of Things in July 2010. He got his start in radio as an intern for the show in 2005 and loved it so much that after trying his hand as a government reporter, reader liaison, features, copy and editorial page editor at a small newspaper in Manassas, Virginia, he returned to WUNC. Born in Baltimore but raised in Morgantown, West Virginia, Alex moved to Raleigh in time to do third grade twice and adjust to public school after having spent years in the sheltered confines of a Christian elementary education. Alex received a degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also has a minor in philosophy, which basically means that he used to think he was really smart but realized he wasn’t in time to switch majors. Fishing, reading science fiction, watching crazy movies, writing bad short stories, and shooting pool are some of his favorite things to do. Alex still doesn’t know what he wants to be when he grows up, but he is holding out for astronaut.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.