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Welcome to the VCON 41 Online Schedule!

VCON is the oldest general-interest science fiction, fantasy, and games convention in Canada and the Pacific Northwest. This 100% volunteer fan-organized convention has promoted the interests of science fiction and fantasy culture in Vancouver BC and its environs since 1971, offering events and exhibits focused on a variety of Science Fiction and Fantasy fandom interest areas such as literature, art, media, music, costumes, comics, tabletop games, electronic games, etc. For more detailed information visit our website: www.vcon.ca.

VCON 41 will be held Sep 30 - Oct 2, 2016, at the Sheraton Vancouver Guildford hotel. The convention’s main theme is "Muppets, Puppets & Marionettes" with a secondary theme of "The Small Press Cabal".

Please take a moment to check out the "Sponsor" tab to see who has helped support this year’s event.
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SESSIONS ARE ALWAYS SUBJECT TO CHANGE 

SEPTEMBER 17, 2016: The schedule is now as "final" as it ever gets! Which means that, yes, there will probably still be changes here and there, but generally only to resolve when we’ve accidentally placed one panelist on two panels at the same time, or if a panelist has to cancel.)

-Jenni Merrifield, VCON 41 Programming Coordinator
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Science & Skepticism [clear filter]
Saturday, October 1
 

10:00

Creating Critters and Aliens
What makes a really great critter or alien to people your worlds with? We'll discuss the ecological and biological issues to consider and give examples of the most successful critters and aliens in SF&F.

Moderators
avatar for Wolf Read

Wolf Read

Dr. Wolf Read is currently working as a Postdoctoral Teaching and Research Fellow in forest science at the University of British Columbia. He has many interests but is often found studying wind-tree interactions, storms and associated power outages. Lately he has been delving into... Read More →

Panelists
avatar for BJ Allan

BJ Allan

Bored with circus life BJ (adopted as a nom de lab) ran away with a group of itinerant biologists, lured by the smell of phenol and the roar of the centrifuge. Today he seeks to share the wonder and weirdness of the natural world with ladies, gentlemen, and children of all ages.
RB

Rob Boffard

Rob Boffard is a South African author, journalist and rapper. His Outer Earth scifi trilogy is published worldwide by Orbit Books, and he writes about music and tech for The Guardian, Wired Magazine and more.
avatar for Eric Chu

Eric Chu

VCON 41 Film Design Guest of HonorBorn in Hong Kong at a very early age, Eric quickly exhibited an interest in design and film. Even as a young child, directing seemed to be in his blood, but an uncooperative cast of plastic farm animals would prove to be an endless source of frustration... Read More →
avatar for Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews is a UBC astrophysics professor who searches for planets beyond the Solar System and probes the hidden interiors of distant stars, using space telescopes as large as minivans and as small as car batteries. Jaymie is heavily involved in astronomy education and outreach... Read More →
avatar for Claire McCague

Claire McCague

Simon Fraser University
Claire McCague is a research scientist, musician and writer. She performs regularly with the Sybaritic String Band and her other worldly plays have been featured in festivals across Canada. Her humorous first contact novel, The Rosetta Man, published by EDGE, is her first novel.


Saturday October 1, 2016 10:00 - 10:50
01 - Large Programming 1 (with AV) Tynehead 3 (2nd Floor)

14:00

Justify the Science Flaw
The panelists and audience note science or technical flaws from stories, film and games, and the panelists try to get others to accept their plausible-sounding justifications for the flaws.

Moderators
avatar for Karl Johanson

Karl Johanson

Editor, Neo-opsis Science Fiction Magazine
VCON 41 Editor Guest of HonourKarl Johanson is not just an exceptional editor of a marvelous magazine, he is—behind his unassuming exterior—a mad genius whose team is, against all logic, constantly pulling off these completely astounding projects.During the 1990s, Karl co-edited... Read More →

Panelists
avatar for BJ Allan

BJ Allan

Bored with circus life BJ (adopted as a nom de lab) ran away with a group of itinerant biologists, lured by the smell of phenol and the roar of the centrifuge. Today he seeks to share the wonder and weirdness of the natural world with ladies, gentlemen, and children of all ages.
avatar for Joe Fulgham

Joe Fulgham

Host/Producer, Mote of Dust / The Dreaming / Caustic Soda
Joe makes podcasts about things he loves. For six years he hosted, produced, and edited "Caustic Soda", the podcast of the weird, gross, and disturbing. His latest project is "The Dreaming", a Read-Along podcast for Neil Gaiman's comic book treasure "The Sandman", hosted by the Mote... Read More →
avatar for Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews

Jaymie Matthews is a UBC astrophysics professor who searches for planets beyond the Solar System and probes the hidden interiors of distant stars, using space telescopes as large as minivans and as small as car batteries. Jaymie is heavily involved in astronomy education and outreach... Read More →
avatar for Judy McCrosky

Judy McCrosky

I'm the author of several books, with two new ones due out this year. I'm an experienced speaker and teacher of writing in a variety of genres. I love to talk to people about any and all aspects of writing and the writing life.
avatar for Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer

VCON 41 Author Guest of HonorBorn in Ottawa in 1960, in his youth Robert dreamed of becoming a paleontologist specializing in dinosaurs, but upon discovering only about a dozen people worldwide made a living doing that, he decided to become one of the several hundred people making... Read More →
avatar for Lynda Williams

Lynda Williams

Publisher, Reality Skimming Press
Lynda Williams is the author of the Okal Rel ten-novel saga and the owner of Reality Skimming Press. Lynda works within the realms of optimistic sci-fi and new era publishing for her own works and the press. The press is releasing reboots of the saga and original anthologies. Lynda... Read More →


Saturday October 1, 2016 14:00 - 14:50
02 - Large Programming 2 Tynehead 2 (2nd Floor)
 
Sunday, October 2
 

11:00

The Author GoH: Consciousness and Science Fiction
The science of consciousness is highly interdisciplinary -- combining neurosciences, AI, evolution, quantum physics, and philosophy. Robert J. Sawyer uses the debates in this field as fodder for much of his science fiction. Join him for a thought-provoking discussion of the science of mind.

Panelists
avatar for Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer

VCON 41 Author Guest of HonorBorn in Ottawa in 1960, in his youth Robert dreamed of becoming a paleontologist specializing in dinosaurs, but upon discovering only about a dozen people worldwide made a living doing that, he decided to become one of the several hundred people making... Read More →


Sunday October 2, 2016 11:00 - 11:50
01 - Large Programming 1 (with AV) Tynehead 3 (2nd Floor)

11:00

That Old-Timey Science
Phrenology, spiritualism, mesmerism, eugenics. These were once cutting edge scientific ideas of the 19th century. I discuss some of the most outrageous and popular scientific notions of the era which may be useful if you are crafting steampunk, historical or alternative history fiction and art.

Panelists
avatar for Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Silvia Moreno-Garcia's debut novel, Signal to Noise, was a British Fantasy, Locus, Sunburst and Aurora Award finalist. She has been nominated for the World Fantasy Award for her work as an editor. Her novel about Mexican vampires, Certain Dark Things, is out this October. http... Read More →


Sunday October 2, 2016 11:00 - 11:50
06 - Medium Programming 2 (Readings) Green Timber 3 (2nd Floor)

12:00

Building Monsters
Mary Shelley utilized the novel concept of "galvanism" to infuse her creature with life. What recent scientific findings could be used to craft modern monsters?

Panelists
RB

Rob Boffard

Rob Boffard is a South African author, journalist and rapper. His Outer Earth scifi trilogy is published worldwide by Orbit Books, and he writes about music and tech for The Guardian, Wired Magazine and more.
PD

Peter Darbyshire

Peter Darbyshire is the author of five novels, including the Cross series of supernatural thrillers written under the pen name Peter Roman. He also writes for the Vancouver Sun and Province newspapers.
avatar for Joe Fulgham

Joe Fulgham

Host/Producer, Mote of Dust / The Dreaming / Caustic Soda
Joe makes podcasts about things he loves. For six years he hosted, produced, and edited "Caustic Soda", the podcast of the weird, gross, and disturbing. His latest project is "The Dreaming", a Read-Along podcast for Neil Gaiman's comic book treasure "The Sandman", hosted by the Mote... Read More →
avatar for Catherine Girczyc

Catherine Girczyc

writer
Catherine is a television writer with 15 credited scripts, plus published short stories + poems. Upcoming: two poems in Tesseracts 20 plus a story in Polar Borealis. Awards: 3 WOTF Honorable Mentions, 2 Auroras (fan) for Ether Patrol + Neology.
avatar for Kevin Harkness

Kevin Harkness

Kevin Harkness is a writer of YA Fantasy novels and short stories in a number of genres. His City of Demons series is published by Tyche Books.
avatar for Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Silvia Moreno-Garcia's debut novel, Signal to Noise, was a British Fantasy, Locus, Sunburst and Aurora Award finalist. She has been nominated for the World Fantasy Award for her work as an editor. Her novel about Mexican vampires, Certain Dark Things, is out this October. http... Read More →


Sunday October 2, 2016 12:00 - 12:50
06 - Medium Programming 2 (Readings) Green Timber 3 (2nd Floor)

14:00

Extreme Weather
Every year lately, there are record-breaking weather events. This talk will look at if there really are 'extreme' weather events or if it is merely observer bias, and also look at the physics behind normal and extreme weather events and discuss what changes we can expect in the future.

Richard Smith has given numerous science talks at previous VCON's and at the Mars Society Conventions.  His other talks include future warfare, molten salt thorium reactions, radioactive wolves, colonizing mars, peak oil, and low-cost methods to reach space.

Panelists
RS

Richard Smith

Richard Smith has been a teacher, professional game designer and programmer. He is a serious science geek and facinated by terraforming Mars. He has given numerous talks at V-Con on subjects of science and the future.


Sunday October 2, 2016 14:00 - 14:50
05 - Medium Programming 1 (with AV) Green Timber 2 (2nd Floor)