Here’s some thrilling news! My poem “Uncanny Valley Trail” has been included in the Spring 2015 issue of Star*Line, the official magazine of the Science Fiction Poetry Association. This is a major honor and I can’t believe I’m in such great company.
When I first read about the uncanny valley phenomenon in robotics, it practically broke my brain. The concept is all-at-once freaky, simple, complex and mind-blowing. It comes from a 1970 paper by Japanese professor Masahiro Mori. I urge you to go and read the new translation published at IEEE Spectrum (which is by the way one of my favorite websites for robotics and artificial intelligence).
Mori’s paper is lively and fascinating as he diagrams his interpretation of the way humans react toward robots. Specifically, robots designed to appear as lifelike as possible. Mori’s metaphors and diagrams of hills and valleys helped me to visualize the various aspects of the uncanny valley, and because I am an avid hiker, my poem takes shape around a ’trail’ where one can experience this phenomenon as a journey. My poem is both exploration and education for myself. Hopefully entertaining too – for you!
Up until recently, my poems have been published and made available for free by online magazines, blogs and journals. Print is not dead! Star*Line is a quarterly print journal of poetry, and you can purchase your own Spring 2015 copy (or more issues!) HERE. The cover art by Aunia Kahn is stunning, as you’ll see. You can also buy a pdf for $2.50 via Paypal or credit card if you would like!
Heartfelt thanks to everyone for supporting poetry and the arts.