Hannu Rajaniemi is a Ph. D. in string theory and fellow SU alumni best known for his popular science fiction trilogy The Quantum Thief [Jean Le Flambeur]. His work has risen to prominence both because of its own merits but also because of the legend surrounding his signing up with a major book publisher. Rajaniemi has been suggested numerous times as a strong guest-candidate for my Singularity 1 on 1 podcast and I am extremely happy to have had the opportunity to finally fulfill those requests.
I have to admit that I enjoyed immensely reading Hannu’s Jean Le Flambeur trilogy and took that as an excuse to interview him on a variety of topics for over 90 min. During our conversation with Rajaniemi we cover: his math background, writing passion and entrepreneurial ventures; ethics, science and science fiction; the Higgs Boson, the multiverse and other cosmological models; the definition of science fiction and the distinction between sci fi and fantasy; the importance of “constraints and suffering” for creativity; how he sold the Quantum Thief trilogy to a major publisher; tips and tools for novice sci fi writers; determinism, free will and the quest for self-knowledge; his take on transhumanism and the technological singularity…
As always you can listen to or download the audio file above or scroll down and watch the video interview in full.
The Quantum Thief Book Trailer:
Who is Hannu Rajaniemi?
Hannu Rajaniemi is the author of science fiction novels The Quantum Thief (Jean Le Flambeur), The Fractal Prince and The Causal Angel, as well as several short stories. He holds a Ph.D. in string theory from the University of Edinburgh and co-founded a mathematics company whose clients included the UK Ministry of Defence and the European Space Agency. Currently, he divides his time between writing fiction and working as a co-founder at Helix Nanotechnologies, a biotechnology startup.
Other 1 on 1 interviews with Sci Fi Authors
- Charlie Stross on Singularity 1 on 1: The World is Complicated. Elegant Narratives Explaining Everything Are Wrong!
- Cory Doctorow on Singularity 1 on 1: The Singularity Is A Progressive Apocalypse
- Vernor Vinge on Singularity 1 on 1: We Can Surpass the Wildest Dreams of Optimism
- Karl Schroeder: The Singularity is an Old Idea. Keep Moving Forward!
- Ramez Naam on Singularity 1 on 1: The Future Isn’t Set In Stone!
- William Hertling on Singularity 1 on 1: The Singularity is closer than it appears!