Friday, December 29, 2006
Hummmm seems the operative words here is as safe to eat as the food we eat every day.
But this is further evidence to support my claim that Ronald MacDonald is really a clone....yeah thats the ticket....
Short on real moondust to study, NASA scientists are planning to manufacture huge amounts of fake moon dirt.
Tons of it as it would seem! Ok, there IS a reason, I confess...but it's so weird to see FAKE MOONDUST! Ok, here is the skinny..
Apparently, samples acquired during the Apollo missions aren't nearly enough to test how machinery will act on the lunar surface. As a result, NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center has contracted with aerospace R&D firm ORBITEC to manufacture 16 tonnes of three varieties of simulated moon dirt.
Click the title link for more info!
Edward Lu, veteran shuttle and International Space Station astronaut, is a member of the JSC study team. They are looking into use of Orion technology earlier than 2020, as well as utilizing Delta or Atlas Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicles.
“There are many asteroids that have very low relative velocities with respect to Earth,” Lu observed. Identifying an “ideal” NEO is one that’s both slow moving and comes close to Earth – sort of a match made in heaven. “Those are easy targets, they wouldn’t require a lot of rocket oomph to rendezvous with," he said.
Lu also said that the question now is 'How can already existing or currently planned Constellation hardware be used or minimally changed to permit other exploration agendas?'
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Bobby Rice joins the New Voyages crew as Ensign Peter Kirk, nephew of Captain James Kirk.
Also joining the New Voyages team is Nick Cook, of Star Trek: Intrepid, a Star Trek: TNG era production due out in early 2007.
Star Trek: New Voyages (formerly known as simply New Voyages) is a fan-created science fiction series set in the Star Trek universe. The series was created by Jack Marshall and James Cawley in April of 2003. The series, released exclusively via the Internet, is designed as a continuation of the original Star Trek, beginning in the fourth year of the Starship Enterprise's "five year mission." The first episode of the series was released in January of 2004.
“Blood and Fire” was originally pitched for consideration as a Star Trek: The Next Generation script by Gerrold in the 1980’s, but was rejected for what was then considered too controversial of a storyline, because it dealt with sensitive social issues.
Written by David Gerrold, with teleplay by New Voyages team member and producer, Carlos Pedraza, “Blood and Fire” is scheduled for a June 2007 shoot.
Tuesday, December 26, 2006
Monday, December 25, 2006
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh have successfully directed adult stem cells from mice to develop into bone and muscle cells with the aid of a custom-designed ink-jet printer and the use of "bio-inks." These inks consist of anything from proteins to individual cells printed in microscopic patterns. By printing layer upon layer of cell patterns, scientists may one day be able to "print" whole tissues or organs for replacement therapies.
Monday, December 18, 2006
10. Huge red hat hides bumpy forehead.
9. Button eyes on dolls a choking hazard because "the weak have no place in 'playing house.'"
8. Inescapable playing of carols for one month actually a little-known torture technique from the Klingon Rite of Ascension.
7. Jack boots.
6. Nintendo II just a high-tech kiddie simulation of famous battles where the Empire reined triumphant.
5. Donner is a targ in drag.
4. Hey, he chooses to rough it out at the North Pole.
3. Penchant for whipping the reindeer even when they're already flying fast enough to reach every household in the world in just one night.
2. Climbing down through the chimney an infamous Klingon infiltration strategy.
1. 41,879,324 lumps of coal.
Click the title link to go to the original audio recording of the Sci-Fri podcast.
Note: there will also be an excerpt from this Sci-Fri podcast on the 12/23/06 show.
Sunday, December 17, 2006
This picture of the Carina Nebula was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1999. Its unexpected shape is now being touted as proof that God exists due to the simple message it conveys to us Earthlings.
oooooooook... click the title link to go to the pic and whole story
oh and remember...there are days when I just can't help myself... you have been warned.
here is a totally irreverent look at how a normal day at the "home" would look like if it were populated with superheroes. By way of Artist Martin Margulies (click photo or article title to enlarge picture)
Friday, December 15, 2006
From the GateWorld Blog:
- Edwin Abbott
- John Jacob Astor
- Edward Bellamy
- Jesse F. Bone (Jesse Franklin)
- Marion Zimmer Bradley
- Edgar Rice Burroughs
- John W. Campbell
- Terry Carr
- Michael D. Cooper [pseudonym]
- Ray Cummings
- Lester Del Rey
- Cory Doctorow
- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- Charles Dye
- E. Everett Evans (Edward Everett)
- Homer Eon Flint
- Harold Leland Goodwin
- Charles John Cutcliffe Wright Hyne
- Murray Leinster (William Fitzgerald Jenkins)
- David Lindsay
- A.E. Merritt
- Meyer Moldeven
- John Munro
- Andre Norton
- Alan E. Nourse
- H. Beam Piper
- Rick Raphael
- Carey Rockwell
- Garrett P. Serviss (Garrett Putman)
- Robert Sheckley
- E. E. Smith (Edward Elmer)
- George Oliver Smith
- Jules Verne
- H. G. Wells
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Prof Nigel Shadbolt, president of the British Computer Society and professor of artificial intelligence at the University of Southampton, said: "In 20 years' time it will be possible to record high quality digital video of an entire lifetime of human memories. It's not a question of whether it will happen; it's already happening."
Some fear that the advent of "human black boxes" combined with the extension of medical, financial and other digital records will lead to loss of privacy and a dramatic expansion of the nanny state.
Others highlight positive advances in medicine, education, crime prevention and the way history will be recorded.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Well score one for Google Video! Seemed one enterprising soul decided to search for episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and hit pay dirt. Google Video reports about 27 some odd full episodes of the odd, ofttimes quirky Sci-Fi channel's science fiction movie send-up. For those of you that don't recall, mst3k was comprised of two wisecracking swapshop assemblages - robots and one very reluctant human, who are all marooned on an ancient space ship, by an evil mistress, and forced to watch the most awful assembly of cinematic trash. But our terrible threesome is not completely powerless. All through the movie we are inundated with rude thoughts, insane voice overs and observations often bordering on the obscene. The movies were often beyond terrible but the outrageous comments from the front row were often side splittingly funny. Check them out before they go away....
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
Cory Doctorow writes : Peter writes the angriest, darkest sf I've ever read, heart-rending stuff that makes you glad you're alive if only because you're better off than his characters. He's also a wild talent when it comes to the intersection of biology and tech (he's got a Ph.D. in Marine Biology)
- Fox has ordered a pilot from Regency TV and Scarlet Fire Films for a show about a NYC detective who's hundreds of years old entitled New Amsterdam. Could be good, if it's not some sort of Highlander rip-off in disguise.
- Fox has also okayed a 20th Century Fox TV and Steven Spielberg's DreamWorks TV time-travel show about two '40s scientists trying to aid America's WWII war effort who end up screwing up time. No word on whether The Doctor wll show up to call them knee-biters.
From Cory Doctorow's Boing Boing Blog:
Monday, December 11, 2006
Everyone's favorite swear words get the sci-fi treatment on television so they can sidestep around the censors. On Farscape we had "frell," Battlestar Galactica has "frack," and Firefly gave us a whole slew of Chinese swear words like "tzae gao" and "ta ma de." Bilngual swearing, FTW! You know a sci-fi swearism has reached the mainstream when it's being used by a character in Scott Adams' "Dilbert" strip.
(click used to see the Dilbert strip.....pac..)
From the SF-Signals blog:
(FYI the 23rd edition of The Year's Best Science Fiction by Gardner Dozois is also available. pc)
Friday, December 08, 2006
The site is one of only six federally licensed launch centers in the nation.
The Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport has three more launches scheduled for 2007 and eventually could send supplies to the international space station or even tourists into space, said director Billie Reed.
Orbital Outfitters has the answer. The new Los Angeles-based companyy promises to dress the first space tourists and crew members in style.
"When someone puts on an IS3 (sub-orbital space suit), they will be protected by the best technology we cam muster, yet they will look like they've stepped off the set of a science fiction movie," said Orbital Outfitters president Rick Tumlinson.
"With billionaires funding the new space companies and passengers paying up to $200,000 for a ride, safety is important. We intend to also make it chic," Tumlinson said.
The short-lived but much beloved sci-fi series Firefly will soon make an unexpected return, not as a TV show, but as a massively multiplayer online game.
Now that's shiny.
- Did you know that members of the cast and crew of the Stargates got together under David Hewlett's (plays McKay on Stargate: Atlantis) direction to make a dark comedy called A Dog's Breakfast? Well, they did, and MGM has just picked up its worldwide television and home-video rights, according to Variety. Score!
Scientists say they have photographic evidence that suggests liquid water may have been on the planet as little as five years ago.
Experts say Mars now appears more active than previously thought and the latest study shows why it is vital to continue to search for life on our planetary neighbour.
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
As it was previously noted, Battlestar is moving to Sundays on January 21st. It will be joined by the highly anticipated new series The Dresden Files.
After a major brain cramp last week, I finally remembered that you can catch missing episodes of Daybreak from the website. Unfortunately ABC has gone the cryptic route so the show is a bit hard to find for the streaming content. Here is the url http://dynamic.abc.go.com/streaming/landing From there you can select the show you want to watch. As you know now, Daybreak is a mid season fill in for Lost in the Wednesday 9pm eastern time slot. After it's first episode Daybreak has continued to lose ground. I suspect that its not because Daybreak is not entertaining, but if others are anything like me, the time slot that Daybreak has been saddled with is its biggest problem. Which is odd, because I find and remember the other network sci fi offerings. I have a feeling that like a lot of other people, I am not used to tuning into ABC on Wednesdays (no I didn't mean that no one tunes in. Lost is wildly popular, but those fans are not taking to Daybreak and the show doesn't seem to be attracting any new viewers) I had a bad feeling about this weeks show. It appeared that once again we were going to be ground hogged to death. Oh don't get me wrong, Harper continues to find small clues every “day” but the bulk of the show is either running from the bad guys, getting beat up by the bad guys or shooting the bad guys. This weeks clues do seem to be leading towards some grand plan revelation. He discovers that the egg timer that he has been receiving in the mail has a fingerprint on it. And a second package sent to his sister has a picture showing an old murder. But the big surprise this week was that Harper's unchanging days...are not so unchangeable. After many repetitions of his partner calling him for help, Harper finally breaks over and spends a day trying to prevent his partners lover and one time colleague from suicide. Inexplicably, the next day, she calls him in the morning (when he never gets a call) and tells Harper that she is going to take her lover to rehab. I think we see the light at the end of one tunnel at least here. Eventually Harper will get enough clues together to start explaining things. Then his days will start slowly changing. But there are still many mysteries and many many days it would seem.
This review is for Heroes that aired 12/04/06
of January. This week's show was loaded up with weirdness. Some things just don't make sense.
The first thing that didn't make a whole lot of sense was this Sylar character. Claire's father, it would seem, has him well under wraps, in a glass and concrete bunker. It would appear escape proof. As you know, Sylar is the ultimate copy cat. Able to absorb anyones ability and make it his own. He is brought low by Eden and the brain drainer and shuffled of to his present abode. He is informed by Claire's father that “we're going to take you apart”. That was rather creepy. Shortly there after Eden shows back up at the “bunker” with a gun. Eden uses her “voice” to tell Syler that he is going to take this gun and shoot himself in the head. Where upon Syler shatters the glass or whatever it is and manages to get Eden in a strangle hold....The confusing part? Well, how did they manage to catch this guy if she had no effect on him in the first place? This Syler doesn't impress me as having any umm “long range plans” if you catch my drift. He seems more the maniacal hell bent on destruction type to me. Then we have Claire wandering through a world that doesn't seem to remember that she has the ability to heal. Seems the brain drainer has been going around making everyone forget anything they knew about Claire. But when he finally get to Claire, he seems on the verge of telling her something very important....Which again doesn't make any sense, because up to this point, he has been more of an appendage of Claire's father. More of a tool than anything....so now all of a sudden he has an agenda? Woven through all these snippets is Isaac who now with the help of Hiro can draw without umm using rocket fuel....Jessica turns herself in to the police after shooting DL, Parkman kind of fumbles around trying to figure out his own powers and unravel how Claire's father and Syler are connected, Mohinder is told by Eden that she is not all she has purported herself and he is even more determined to contact the rest of the people on the list and Peter who if we are to believe the last few minutes has a very “explosive” personality. Oh and Hiro's ending comment...”I really need to find that sword!” ok...I laughed...I admit it....
Look for Heroes to return January 22nd 2007
Monday, December 04, 2006
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Well Jericho fans, I guess you all know now that the show is going on hiatus until early next year. As you would think, popular shows like Jericho going on such a hiatus would end the season with a cliff hanger worthy of keeping your interest until new shows arrive. So what is the cliff hanger for Jericho? Oh it's got to be more info on why it would seem China is dropping food to Jericho or the bad boy militia men back for more....or....nope...literally an email from some mystery men saying “See You Soon!” Yeah it was a bit creepy but all I did was laugh. Yeah it was that lame. Roger and a group of refugees come walking back into town.....That could have been climatic, but it was like an afterthought. Hawkins still getting messages from his mystery people is strange enough but for the rest of the season ender we could have been watching an episode of Gunsmoke....Grey's wanna be mayor antics lead me to think we were going to see a lynching. And that foolishness of Bonnie seeking out the bad boy element... give me a break. The only surprise from this one hour snooze was Dale walking out of the light to shoot Mitchell for stabbing Gracie....Didn't make up for this episode being a real ho hum snoozer. I will be real surprised if Jericho gets back half of its audience in February.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
You know this episode could have been run as the”answer” episode. There were many more answers this week than last. Though if your like me, there were fleeting impressions of the first Star Trek episodes mix up with Heroes this week. Ok, before you glaze over, let me explain myself. The first “true” episode of Star Trek didn't get air time until well into mid season. Reason? It was too long and confusing or so thought the powers that be. Oh and Tab Hunter had the bad timing to kick off.....So Roddenbery recut the original into the 2 part “the Cage”. Well how does this apply to Heroes? Well just look at what we learn and tell me that this show should have been the original first episode? Am I right? So lets take a closer look. Heroes this week was a “prequel” or maybe a sideways episode. The premise is the Hiro jumps back to save the waitress but jumps too far, 6 months too far to be exact, right to when people's “powers” really began to manifest. We find Mohinder's father not only working but finding and contacting a perspective. Unfortunately he contacts the soon to be Syler (the name of a watch we find out) who it seems can do what Peter can do and that's to “copy” a person's ability but Syler takes it a gruesome step further and kills off the competition. Definitely a “there can be only one” mentality here. We see Nathan fly out of a car just before an accident. ( one it seems that paralyzed his wife) Matt, starting to hear voices in his head ( though, if you ask me those clips were the most confusing because the writers never made it clear if that was what was happening or was he having relationship angst, and and excuse me... the doughnut thing with him and Eden....excuse me?) Claire cutting her hand rather badly and discovering it healed shortly there after and in the middle of this we have hapless Hiro desperately trying to save the waitress only to accidentally jumping out at the critical moment and shows up back in present day at the chafe with the chilling realization that time isn't as easy to manage as once thought. Claire's father is still an enigma. It seems even at this early date, he was well aware of people with abilities and has openly recruited the “brain drainer” and works to have Eden come on as well. One more curious note...when Eden tries to use her “voice” on him he retorts, “ You have never come across someone that could say NO to you before Eden, now you have.” Does he have “abilities”? Can you see how this would have been a great first episode? Yeah maybe it tells too much. Oh one thing that was made eminently clear this week was the fact that next weeks episode is the last until some time in January....supposed to be a good one...but then, NBC has made that promise in the past...
Monday, November 27, 2006
Click the title for a more realistic discussion of the effects of exposure to space vacuum.
Click the title for this mind bending argument!
Friday, November 24, 2006
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Ok, I thought last week's Daybreak was confusing? Wow by comparison, last week was a Dick and Jane book. I started watching Daybreak right from the first shot and never, and I mean never got my feet under me again for the whole hour. You have to give the writers credit. That many twists and turns in a show with that few cast members. One thing that I am getting annoyed with real quick is Diggs' character always saying tomorrow. I will see your tomorrow, I will do it tomorrow. Yeah we get it, you mean today but its your tomorrow...sheeeeesh. This week we find that the IAD dirt bag is somehow involved with some of the lowlifes, but curiously when Harper confronts them on two different “days” they don't seem to be aware of the time loop. Curiously neither did the shadow man in the gravel pit. So this mystery is adding levels upon levels. There are more than just one shadowy organization bent on Harper's demise. I said last week that I didn't think that Daybreak could keep up the frenetic pace but it certainly did a good job this week. Though I am seeing a tenancy to rerun the same scene over and over with only slight changes. I KNOW! Its a show about a day in a time loop so things are happening over and over again...I know!!! But last week we knew something about what happened before and the slight changes that Harper did, drastically changed the outcome. His week its a different word or a different movement and oh horrors one time Harper's girlfriend's x doesn't stay over and the next he does. But you know, even if it was mostly chaotic and confusing the one hint that I wanted Harper to get to was the package in his mail and he did. He doesn't understand but at least we know what is in the mysterious package. Oh and I did like the way he blew off the downstairs neighbor with the leak... so, ok, they threw a lot at us this week, lets hope they can tie a few of these different “events” together so we can start making sense out of whats going on.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Captain Kirk - well uh duh but there is more....
Odo the rubbery faced shapeshifter from DS9
Quark the Ferengi bar owner on DS9
Neelix on Star Trek: Voyage the Talaxian and starship's cook
Seven of Nine On Star Trek: Voyager part-Borg crewmate
Click the title link to read more
Your Guide to Sci-Fi / Fantasy.
I know it seems like ancient history, but thank you for reading my story on your show. You did a good job. It is weird to hear it in your accents, as I only hear it in my head!
. Her website is <www.kathryngossow.net> and blog at <http://katwrites.blogspot.com>
Sunday, November 19, 2006
From this week's Entertainment Weekly: Zachary Quinto has been cast as the mysterious Sylar who will show his face and speak a line on the November 27th episode.
Sylar up until this point has been a mysterious shadowy person who is being tracked by the FBI for a string of very grisly murders. In the last Heroes episode we see that the murders are not as random as the FBI would have us think. Sylar is methodically eliminating anyone that has any special abilities in a manner that may be efficient but also extremely gruesome. Also there are subtle hints that Sylar himself may have the very same "abilities" that he is eliminating, leading one to suppose that he may not be a rogue but more an assassin.
FilmCritic lists The Top 10 Movie Spaceships
- Millennium Falcon (Star Wars series)
- U.S.S. Enterprise (various versions) (Star Trek series)
- Nostromo (Alien)
- Heart of Gold (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy)
- Apollo 13 (Apollo 13)
- Discovery One (2001: A Space Odyssey)
- Klingon Bird of Prey (Star Trek series)
- Mothership (Independence Day)
- Gunstar (The Last Starfighter)
- The Thunder Road (Explorers)
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Look for George to show in episodes in January.
Friday, November 17, 2006
They also have a reduced heart rate and energy-charged muscles, just as trained athletes do, according to an article published online in Cell by Johan Auwerx and his colleagues at the Institute of Genetics and Molecular and Cellular Biology in Illkirch, France.
He and his colleagues said the same mechanism seems likely to operate in humans, based on their analysis, in a group of Finnish subjects, of the gene that is influenced by the drug.
“Resveratrol makes you look like a trained athlete without the training,” Dr. Auwerx (pronounced OH-wer-ix”) said in an interview.
For the first time, astronomers have recorded the acceleration of cosmic ray electrons in a supernova remnant that shows that the electrons are being accelerated at close to the theoretically maximum rate. This provides compelling evidence that supernova remnants are key sites for producing cosmic ray particles.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
First off is
"There are a number of short stories and a brand-new story that I'm just developing right now featuring Nancy Callahan [Jessica Alba] and her reaction to the death of John Hartigan [played in the first film by Bruce Willis, who likely won't appear in the sequel]," Miller added. Sin City 2 is tentatively slated for production and release in 2007.
Well shut my mouth for calling
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Baen Books (www.baen.com), a publisher of science fiction, will provide its books to fans who are blind, paralysed, or dyslexic, or are amputees, in electronic form free of charge, effective immediately.
Baen Books is making this offer in recognition of Veterans Day, and all our disabled military veterans. Many Baen authors are veterans themselves, using a military setting as the setting of their tales. Right now convalescing vets might welcome an exciting, fast-action tale to pass the time.
Jim Baen, founder of Baen Books, who passed on June 28, 2006, decided to "provide each challenged reader with a permanent pass" to the regular e-publication of Baen’s new books. His successor, publisher Toni Weisskopf, is implementing his idea with this program.For more information, click the story title link.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Click the title hot-link to go to the complete story
Monday, November 13, 2006
Wow what's the deal with Claire's father? Up until now he has been some kind of black ops government scary kind of guy and then this week he is begging Isaac to help him save his daughter from being killed...(yeah I know, she is supposed to be unkillable) Well seems that there is this killer with “powers” that is killing people with abilities. We have only seen this mystery killer in shadows, but his methods sure aren't. Let me back up a bit...Remember that I have said before, I don't think the “heroes” are alone. Last week we find out that there is a “firestarter”. This week an unassuming roadside waitress has gained the ability to remember anything she sees or hears. She doesn't get to enjoy it though...Shadowman takes the back of her head off. Hiro is sure he can save her by going back a day to keep her from coming to work....He says he will be back by the count of 5 but by the end of the show he hadn't show up...well an old photo is now on the bulletin board of him and the waitress at a birthday party....so....Hiro is missing, radioactive man escapes but not before he and Matt find out that they both have had some sort of procedure done on them, Mohinder had a “special” sister years before who died mysteriously – confused? Don't feel like your all alone, Heroes writers opened the taps this week after last weeks snooze and we wound up with more plot loose strings than ever. But hey, I am jazzed again with what happened this week. Yeah, Heroes got legs again.
Friday, November 10, 2006
This Wednesday we picked up at where Jake and Eric are on their way to a nearby hospital to retrieve medicine for Jake's father. When they arrive at their destination, no one is to be found on the streets, or in the parking lot of the hospital. When all of a sudden, gunfire explodes from the building and the two men run. Jake suggests that the gunfire is from the top floor. They enter the building where they hear a man, from the top floor, asking them to put down their weapons or else. Once they gain the mans trust they meet the only doctor alive in the facility, and the shooter, who was an assassin in the war in Iraq. The shooter is protecting the building from other government troops trying to take over the building. Jake and Eric retrieve the medicine, and return to Jericho, where they administer it to mr. Green and the episode ends there.
posted by Courtney Cole
Acute Management of the Zipper-Entrapped Penis
Fragmentation of Rods by Cascading Cracks: Why Spaghetti Does Not Break in Half
Impact of Wet Underwear on Thermoregulatory Responses
Rectal Foreign Bodies
The Relationship Among Height, Penile Length, and Foot Size
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
As we all know by now, Jim Baen inovative publisher of Baen Books died June 11th of this year. Shortly before his death he spoke with author David Drake about a project that Amazon asked him to do, which was to create a list of his top 10 science fiction books. Here is Jim's list, click the title link to go to the full article:
- Foundation by Isaac Asimov
- Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein
- A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller
- 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
- Dune by Frank Herbert
- Lest Darkness Fall by L. Sprague deCamp
- Against the Fall of Night by Arthur C. Clarke
- Citizen of the Galaxy by Robert A. Heinlein
- The Time Machine by H.G. Wells
- A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain
- no airtime dates yet, but Fox has cast Lena Headey as Sarah Connor in the pilot project from Warner Bros, The Sarah Connor Chronicles. As the title suggests, it's the continuing adventures of Sarah and John in LA's present-day.
I just concluded reading “Hunters of Dune” by Brian Herbert and Kevin Anderson. This has been tooted as the final book in the series…. It is not. It ends on a cliff high up. In other words a cliff-Hanger. On the cover of the book it states “The Grand Climax to Brian Herbert’s Dune Saga begins” yes it begins but does not finish. That comes in a book, unpublished as yet, titled “Sandworms of Dune”. Another book titled, “Paul of Dune” is said to follow. I am truly looking forward to them.
Every book of this series I have read has been good reading. I have read the entire series from “House Atreide’s ” to this latest one “Hunters of Dune”. This one, “Hunters of Dune” is different than all the others I have read. The pace appears to change from place to place in the book. This is probably because Brian Herbert was working
from material his father had secreted in two bank vaults that no one had known existed. When Brian opened them he found two computer discs containing the notes and other material Frank Herbert had prepared for the writing of this book. That is perhaps the reason the pace changes in places as I find that Frank Herbert’s original books… starting with “Dune” are all slower paced than Brian’s Books. I think there is a greater depth to Frank Herbert’s books than there is to Brian Herbert’s books. Any way… I have enjoyed all…. 11 (I think… off the top of my head) of them.
“Hunter’s of Dune” starts where “Charterhouse: Dune” left off. “Hunter’s…..” does bring all the major people in the entire series together. It helps to have read the entire series to understand Who the Oracle Of Time really is…. And other comments made and other parts of the book. We have a rebirth of Paul Atreides, Jessica, Leto II, and the evil Baron Harkonnen, just to name a few. Even Serena Butler is mentioned. Other major evil beings reappear
also. But I won’t mention who in case someone intends to read the book. It is well worth reading. After reading all the books, it is like revisiting old friends. Only I wish that my favorite Vorian Atreides had been mentioned….. Perhaps he will be a future book.
Brian has stated that these three books I have mentioned are not the last of the Dune books . “Hunters…. And Sandworms “ are only the climax to the series.
It states on the books cover…..and I Quote “ ’Hunters of Dune’ and the concluding volume, ’ Sandworms of Dune”, bring together the great story lines and beloved Characters in Frank Herbert’s classic Dune universe, ranging from the time of the Butlerian Jihad to the original Dune series and beyond. Based directly on Frank Herbert’s final outline, which lay hidden in safe-deposit boxes for a decade, these two volumes will finally answer the urgent questions Dune fans’ have been debating for two decades.
Syldra M. Diehl LaPorte
Polaris by Jack McDevitt
hardcover 370 pp ACE
The Polaris, on a scientific observation mission, fails to return after informing control that it was preparing to return. Rescue vessels discover the Polaris adrift in space without a crew and no clues as to what happened. Sixty years later, the mystery is still unsolved. Artifacts recovered from the ship are starting to attract interest not only from antiquities dealers and collectors, but mysterious individuals that seem to have no past and no records. As investigators get closer, someone or something is bent on stopping them – at any cost. McDevitt packs a huge amount of plot and character development into a scant 370 pages. He gives us history of his universe, the science that drives it and does it in an interesting and personal manner. Plus characters that you soon learn to identify with even if they are flawed and human. Polaris hooks you quickly with a closed door mystery and then lights the rockets for a pell mell ride to the very last page. Jack McDevitt has given us a true science fiction version of the Flying Dutchman. A true page turner sf/mystery that even Asimov would have enjoyed. Bravo – very strong read recommendation.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
You have got to hand it to the writers of Heroes. They have played some of their plot cards very close to their chests. That’s got to be hard. The “awesome!” or “oh wow” factor is fading fast as we become more in tune with the major players in the show. However they continue to dole out enough new twists that we still have a very “neat!” thing going on. For example…Micah, Niki’s child seems to be able to control machinery. There may have been earlier instances but the first overt manifestation is when he “calls” home to his mother. Somehow he manipulated the pay phone allowing him to make calls without entering any information…Micah’s father who put the squeeze on Niki last week demonstrates his ability to put his body out of phase with the material world by reaching through a glass window to unlock a car door to rescue a crash victim.
Niki it seems has strong recuperative powers and is back but it seems that her alter is not just “dark Niki” no, much much darker indeed. Stranger still is it seems her son is fully aware that there is “mom” and someone else. The strangest line in the show this week is when Micah calls his mom and gets “dark Niki” and he says “Put Mom on the phone.” Very weird.
Matt Parkman is back to aid the FBI in capturing a “firestarter” and winds up reading the last thoughts of a dying woman. The real card played this week was the dying woman’s husband who it seems can start fires with his mind. I know, hardly original but the big hint here is that the original characters at the start of the show are not the only one with ”powers”.
Micah’s dad is not an anomaly but a hint to even something stranger going on. Instead of being a quirk in biology we seem to have an epidemic of “super powers”. Just how many of them are there out there?
Monday, November 06, 2006
The Lagrange Points mark positions where the combined gravitational pull of the two large masses provides precisely the centripetal force required to rotate with them. They are analogous to geosynchronous orbits in that they allow an object to be in a "fixed" position in space rather than an orbit in which its relative position changes continuously.
Designed to be swift on its wheels, the wheelchair is fairly compact at 1200mm long, 650mm wide, and 1000mm tall. Its tank holds about 4 litres of fuel, which gives it a 25 mile range. Should you run out of methanol while you’re out, a backup battery will give you a little extra boost until you can refuel.
The "silent jet," which from outside an airport would sound about as noisy as a washing machine or other household appliance, would carry 215 passengers and could be in the air by 2030.
Instead of the tube-and-wing model common today, the Silent Jet is a flying wing, evoking current "stealth" military aircraft. It lacks the central vertical stabilizer common at the tail of current passenger jets, instead using a pair of stabilisers at the wingtips.
The design allows the plane to remain in the air at slower speeds, which would allow it to cruise in for a landing more quietly. The plane does not use wing flaps, which are common on today's passenger jets and create much of the landing noise.
- Blade Runner
- The Matrix
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- A Clockwork Orange
- The Boys From Brazil
- Jurassic Park
- Star Wars
- The Road Warrior
- The Terminator
- Soylent Green
- Planet Of The Apes
- The Day The Earth Stood Still
Thursday, November 02, 2006
The writers have set a deterministic path that doesn’t deviate from any of the tried and true post atomic apocalypse predecessors. The argument could be made that
The plot is more driven now by character development than the theme of the show. All the main characters are becoming very well rounded, which is not necessarily a bad thing. However at what point do we say that, who had a boyfriend -before, who was married to whom - before, who had a mysterious or criminal past – before….etc. There were several instances in this week’s show where information about this or that person “before” seemed almost silly and certainly didn’t add an iota positive or negative to what is currently the situation in
The previews of next week however have Jake and his brother off getting medication for their critically ill father in another town that isn’t faring anywhere near as well as
I don’t know about you but I am more than ready to see what’s happened to the outside world.