Tag Archives: science fiction

Can fiction shape our future?

I was a guest on The Artist Unleashed blog recently where I posed the question: ‘How good do you think fiction is as a bridge between the experts and the public when it comes to creating debate on ethical issues?’

When I published my three recent stories, Human Enhancement: Sex, Drugs and Marriage, it was partly my intention to prompt debate, and partly to have a bit of fun. They’re free, for now, and you can download them as an eBook or a PDF. I’d love to hear what thoughts they spark in you.

And, if you think fiction can create debate then you might also want to read and comment on The Driverless Car’s Dilemma. It’s a piece of flash fiction about the ethical choices manufacturers of driverless cars will have to make in the future. For example, if an accident is about to happen and the car has to choose between its passengers and nearby pedestrians, who should it choose?

Over to you…


Can fiction prompt ethical debate and shape our future? #SciFi #Ethics Click To Tweet

Sign up to Stephen Oram’s Readers’ Group and receive a free stand-alone short story set in the speculative near-future of Fluence.


photo credit: 1111_Thinking Blue_019 via photopin (license)

The driverless car’s dilemma

‘Mummy!’ screamed her five-year old daughter.

She looked up from her iPad. ‘What now?’

‘Look!’

Through the windscreen she saw a group of children crossing the road slowly, sliding around on the ice.

The driverless car wasn’t braking.

She’d forgotten to ask the hire company if this model was programmed to prioritise pedestrians or passengers. It would make a choice – her daughter or the kids playing in the road – but she didn’t know which one.

She could override it by taking control of the steering. But, her driving ability was far inferior to the car’s algorithm. She glanced at the rock face on one side and the cliff edge on the other.

He daughter screamed again, ‘Mummy!’

She grabbed the wheel.


A driverless car has to choose between passengers and pedestrians. Which will it be? #SciFi Click To Tweet

If you liked this you might also like S{t}imulation, Foodflix and Joined At The Chip. The three free stories in the collection, Human Enhancement: Sex, Drugs and Marriage.


photo credit: Highway 101 via photopin (license)