“We come from the Future”, boasts the masthead of this minimalist, cleanly-designed website. iO9 is a daily publication, dedicated to the coverage of science, science fiction and anything related to the future. Although this might sound like something that Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory might dream of, and therefore seem like it is out of your league, worry not. This writer usually runs in the opposite direction if someone so much as mentions ‘string theory’ or ‘Schrodinger’s cat’, but did stay on this webpage long enough to grasp that the future may not be as mechanical, steel-ensconced and unpalatable as is generally imagined in Hollywood.
Divided neatly into sections titled ‘Debunkery’, ‘Morning Spoilers’, ‘Daily Explainer’ and ‘Open Channel’, the e-mag deals with more than just science — it actually delves into the interface that science has with the social world. A lot of popular culture is chronicled and studied — for instance, the article ‘Why do so many villains get caught on purpose?’ looks at some of Hollywood’s greatest hits and upcoming wonders. Another article looks at the possibility of looking longer if one is overweight, and yet another muses on whether zombies have the capacity to get drunk.
Flippant, serious and funny in equal parts, the website makes science much more accessible to the layman. One also gets the sense that science, like almost everything else man-made, is in a constant state of flux, implying that notions of truth and certainty constantly change. Of course, at the ideational level, this has to be one of the quirkiest websites around, given to the conviction that anything is possible if reasoned properly. So it is reasonable to expect that their analysis of ‘What kind of mom Kim Kardashian might be to the human smushed inside her?’ or why the ‘fake geek girl’ is a bigger threat than is usually understood, will be ribald at the most and eerily close to the truth, at the very least.