Murray Leinster (16 June 1896 – June 8, 1975) was the pseudonym of William Fitzgerald Jenkins, a writer American science fiction and alternate history.
Born in Norfolk, Virginia). During the First world war, was a member of the Committee on public information and the United States Army (1917 – 1918). After the war, Leinster became a freelance writer. In 1921, he married Mary Ginley. They had four daughters. During the Second World War, was a member of the Office of war information. Won the Liberty Prize in 1937 for “A Very Nice Family,” the Hugo Award in 1956 for the best short novel by “Exploration Team,” a retro-Hugo in 1996 for the best short novel by “First Contact”. Leinster was the guest of honor at the 21st Worldcon in 1963. Established in 1995, the Sidewise award, named in honor of the Leinster story “Sidewise in time”.
Leinster wrote and published over 1,500 stories and artícles during the course of his career. Wrote 14 scripts for movies and hundreds of scripts for radio and television, theatrical works inspired several series including “Land of the Giants” and “the tunnel of time”.
Leinster began to appear at the end of the 1910s pulp magazines as Argosy and then Astounding Stories in the 1930s with regularity. Aftermath of World War II, when both his name and pulp magazines had a wider acceptance, use both “William Fitzgerald” or “Will f. Jenkins” as names in stories when “Leinster” had already sold a work to a number of publications in particular. It was very prolific and successful in fields of western, mystery, horror, and especially science fiction. His novel Miners in the Sky moves the atmosphere without the California gold rush, a common theme of the Westerns, laws to an environment of an asteroid.
It is credited with the invention of tales of parallel universes. Four years before they leave The Legion of Time Jack Williamson, Leinster wrote his story “Sidewise in time”, which was first published in Astounding in June 1934. This was probably the first time the strange concept of alternative worlds appeared in modern fiction. On a path of oblique time some cities were never built. The vision of Leinster that extraordinary fluctuations of time in nature had a long-term effect on other authors, e.g. “Living Space”, “The Red Queen’s Race”, or the famous The End of Eternity of Isaac Asimov.
The tale of 1946 “A Logic Named Joe” Murray Leinster describes Joe, a “logical”, i.e. a computer. This is one of the first descriptions of a computer in fiction. Leinster was decades ahead of its time in imagine Internet in this story. He imagined logic in each household, bound to provide communications, access to data, and trade. In fact, a character said that “logic is civilization.”
In 2000, the heirs of Leinster sued Paramount Pictures film Star Trek: First Contact, claiming that you as owners of the rights of the short story “First Contact” Leinster, it infringed its trade mark in the term. The District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia admitted the Paramount motion for summary judgment and dismissed the trial (see Estate of William f. Jenkins v. Paramount Pictures Corp., 90 f. Supp.. 2d 706 (E.D. Va. 2000) for the full text of the judgment of the Court). The Court found that while the tale of Leinster coined the term “first contact” for the first time, it since then had become a term generic (and therefore not protectable) describing the genre of science fiction in general where humans are first with alien species.
William f. Jenkins was also an inventor, better known by the process of front projection used for special effects in film and television instead of the older rear projection process and as an alternative to the blue screen.