Saturday, December 31, 2016
I've linked to this in the past, but it is worth linking again since it came up in my feeds: A massive look at 2001: A Space Odyssey (including the script) at Cinephile.
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day takes a familiar telescopic sight (Messier 20, The Trifid Nebula) and pushes our view into the infrared. There's a lot more out there than our naked eye can see!
Friday, December 30, 2016
There really is no dark side of the Moon. At least, not all the time. Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the lunar farside, of which we can only see glimpses as the Moon "nods" in orbit around us. Another image from the hard-working (and mostly forgotten by us) Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.
Thursday, December 29, 2016
Wednesday, December 28, 2016
Two years on from this entry, today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the progress of Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity on the journey to "Mount Sharp" (Aeolis Mons).
Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Monday, December 26, 2016
Sunday, December 25, 2016
Saturday, December 24, 2016
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows NGC 2264, a diffuse nebula in the constellation of Monoceros. The area is popularly known as the Fox Fur, Unicorn and Christmas Tree Nebula.
Friday, December 23, 2016
Thursday, December 22, 2016
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Sunday, December 18, 2016
If you feed a infinite number of monkeys all of the music of Bach would they be able to reproduce works that you couldn't distinguish from the real thing?
Sunday, December 11, 2016
An interesting article on Stanislaw Lem and, by extension, the "New Wave". Do certain segments of Genre embrace the New Wave as wrongly as other segments of Genre are accused of embracing the Golden Age? Perhaps both sides need to look beyond these "singularity points" in our reading?
And in other news, a bit from one film version of Solaris. Bruegel, Tarkovsky, Bach.
Saturday, December 3, 2016
Saturday, November 5, 2016
Monday, October 31, 2016
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Sunday, October 16, 2016
Sunday, October 9, 2016
Saturday, October 1, 2016
An article talking about E.C. Tubb and his most famous series: Dumarest of Terra. Stretching well over thirty (relatively thin) books, short on character, long on fantastic ideas, the series contributed to GDW's SF-RPG Traveller.
Friday, September 30, 2016
Thursday, September 29, 2016
Here is a venerable ("old ass" give me a break) Commodore 64 that has been in use for over twenty-five years.
Now that is a durable good (says the man who still has a slide rule collection).
Wait! No dust cover on the keyboard? What?
Monday, September 26, 2016
Monday, September 12, 2016
Sunday, September 11, 2016
A two-part interview with game designer and security analyst Volko Ruhnke. I'm spending too much money on this guy's titles from GMT Games. (Part 01 of the interview here.) (Part 02 of the interview here.) (And this reposted article from The Washington Post is worth a read if you haven't read it previously.)
Tuesday, September 6, 2016
We watched as it landed. We watched as it tried to explore. We waited and listened when contact was lost. Now, as the ESA Rosetta comet probe reaches the end of mission (and will itself terminate on the same body), comet lander Philae has been located on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko.
Monday, September 5, 2016
Thursday, September 1, 2016
Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Way back when, we were going back to the Moon. And then not. And then yes. And then no. And so on.
Luckily, on one of the up cycles, we launched several probes to enhance our knowledge of our neighbor, in preparation for one of those (cancelled) plans to return. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, the cornerstone of the latest series of probes is still going and has had its mission extended.
So, what next. LRO? Here's a list of targets and why they are the cornerstone of this mission extension.
Maybe someday we'll return to the Moon. Maybe some day we'll realize we can afford a lot more missions than we currently have (maybe we'll reduce spending in other areas?). If so, the LRO and others will have helped to pave the way back.
Sunday, August 28, 2016
Happy birthday to one of my favorite authors, Jack Vance. Yes, you can see the chips of wood pulp throughout his writing, but very few write with his eye towards character interplay, odd costumes and customs, plots of vengeance, humor, mystery and more.
(Go look for the story of the houseboat project between Jack Vance, Poul Anderson and Frank Herbert.)
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Once upon a time we listened to our audiobooks on LP records. Which means they were very abridged (well, no, they were just a few excerpts). Turning up on the internet is Arthur C. Clarke reading from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Side 01 here. Side 02 here.
A short film about the restoration of the model used for filming the U.S.S. Enterprise in the original Star Trek series. I saw this model twice in it's pre-restoration life and would love to see what it looks like now.
Monday, August 15, 2016
Friday, August 12, 2016
...are the Three Hoarsemen.
Once upon a time, our fellow member of SF Signal was so busy that he could not work on the SF Signal Podcast. I mean, poor Patrick was working like 40 hours of overtime on top of 40 hours of work.
So, we volunteered to do a fill-in episode. Then a second. Then we launched as a separate episode at SF Signal.
Then around episode thirty-five, the retirement of the site as a ongoing project was announced.
But, wait! There's more! We're now on The Incomparable Network, which grew from just The Incomparable (a show I started listening to around the original posting of their episode eight).
We live. WE LIVE...
Tuesday, August 9, 2016
It always surprises me what people are surprised by. Do a little research folks, on your own. Education is a continual process.
Sunday, August 7, 2016
Saturday, August 6, 2016
Saturday, July 30, 2016
With the publication of the Alastair Reynolds–Stephen Baxter collaboration of The Medusa Chronicles, itself an expansion of a story by Arthur C. Clarke, co-author Baxter looks at the spacecraft of Arthur C. Clarke.
As a side note, David S.F. Portree has recently done a multi-part article on the craft of 2001 which is worth a look: Could the Space Voyages in the Film and Novel 2001: A Space Odyssey Really Happen? Part 01 here. Part 02 here. Part 03 here.
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
A profile of CIA analyst and game designer Volko Ruhnke, who has been sparking something of a revival (at least from my limited perspective) in gaming that combines history, politics, warfare and more.
The US military (especially the Army) has the unfortunate habit of forgetting lessons learned, figuring whatever happened won't happen again. I think games like these (plus books, movies and more) help to preserve those lessons. If distributed widely enough, maybe we'll start learning not to forget?