Science Fiction Brewed Fresh Daily

More dollars than sense

I’m pretty sure that if I had an extra $155,000 around the house, I wouldn’t do this.

Posted in Science January 30th, 2009 by Gandalara
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Star Trek Convention, 1986

It’s nice to know that certain things remain constant through the years. Like embarrassing media coverage of SF conventions.

“A Trekker is almost anybody. Not only does it span all ages from 8 to 80, but all walks of life as well, all career endeavors.”

The hairstyles alone will make you weep.

(via Weird Universe)

Posted in Movies & TV January 30th, 2009 by Chip
1 comment

We Know Where You Live

Wired has a rather arresting article on the “Location-Aware Lifestyle” we’re now living with social media sites and software like Flickr, Twitter, blogs, FaceBook, etc., etc., etc.

To test whether I was being paranoid, I ran a little experiment. On a sunny Saturday, I spotted a woman in Golden Gate Park taking a photo with a 3G iPhone. Because iPhones embed geodata into photos that users upload to Flickr or Picasa, iPhone shots can be automatically placed on a map. At home I searched the Flickr map, and score–a shot from today. I clicked through to the user’s photostream and determined it was the woman I had seen earlier. After adjusting the settings so that only her shots appeared on the map, I saw a cluster of images in one location. Clicking on them revealed photos of an apartment interior–a bedroom, a kitchen, a filthy living room. Now I know where she lives.

Y’know, I work with computers for a living, and I keep an eye on developing technology, and every time I wonder if I’m being too paranoid I discover that I’m not being paranoid enough.

Link

Posted in Computers & Internet January 29th, 2009 by Chip
1 comment

Medium Large

Medium Large

As long as I’m mentioning Webcomics….

Francesco Marciuliano writes the family-oriented comic strip Sally Forth. Medium Large is apparently how he blows off steam.

The strips tend toward SF- and (mild, amusing) horror themes, and they are invariably irreverent and wonderful. I want this one blown up and framed on my wall.

Posted in Humor January 28th, 2009 by Chip
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The Who Scarf: A Paean

Who ScarfWhere SF fandom and crafting overlap with maybe just a teensy bit of obsession, you get a site devoted entirely to Dr. Who’s scarf. And I do mean devoted.

The site explores the scarf worn by Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor, detailing its history through various episodes. There are also patterns and tutorials for making your own, and the site owner also sells handmade scarves on eBay.

If you’ve ever wanted an authentic-looking scarf for a costume, or if you’d just like to know…well, anything…about the famous scarf, this site is the place for you.

Link (via Extreme Craft)

Posted in Ephemera January 27th, 2009 by Chip
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Digital SF Art

CheckpointPSDTUTS–an awesome resource for Photoshop tutorials and a good place to make those of us who think we know a thing or two about Photoshop consider resigning in shame–has a roundup of “digital paintings,” heavy on the science fiction and fantasy. Their digital nature make them seem hyper-realistic, and they’re eye-poppingly lovely.

Each entry also links to the artist’s Website or gallery, so there’s plenty more where these came from. (Some are on the NSFW side, so practice safe surfing.)

Link (via Big Dumb Object)

(Cross-posted at The Art of Darkness)

Posted in Computers & Internet January 26th, 2009 by Chip
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Skeptical of the Singularity

The Daylight Atheism site is taking a stab at a few stock SF tropes, including The Singularity and Cryonics. Blogger Ebonmuse suggests that our assumption that they simply will happen, sooner or later, sounds a little like blind faith.

The fastest number-cruncher imaginable, if given faulty data, will produce nothing of meaningful application to the real world. And it follows that the dreamed-of Singularity machines will never exist, or at least will never be the godlike omnisciences they’re envisioned as. Even they would have to engage in the same process of slow, painstaking investigation that mere human scientists carry out.

The comments on both posts are interesting as well.

What do you think? Are these technologies inevitable, or are they SF pipe dreams?

Posted in Science January 23rd, 2009 by Chip
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Darths and Droids

Darths and Droids ScreencapThis Webcomic has actually been running for a while now, but I keep forgetting to post about it because I’m easily distracted by shiny objects.

Darths and Droids is a “screencap comic” in the DM of the Rings mold, but where DMOTR pretty much ran its campaign in alignment with the plot of Lord of the Rings, D&D is using screencaps from The Phantom Menace but is playing much more loosely with the story. It’s fun.

Most comics also include commentary at the bottom, either discussing the particular RPG quirk featured in the strip or pointing out that the same scene in the movie is actually, um, kind of loony. There is no shortage of the looniness.

(Also, the character of Jar-Jar Binks is being “played” by a ten-year-old girl. Which is just an inspired idea because it actually makes most of what Jar-Jar does in the movie make way more sense.)

Link

Posted in Humor January 22nd, 2009 by Chip
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Yeah, What He Said

Defective Yeti sums it up:

Defective Yeti

Posted in Ephemera January 21st, 2009 by Chip
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Time Travel Pharmacy

Although I occasionally wish that domain names were still expensive enough to dissuade casual registration, I have to admit getting a kick out of sites like http://www.khaaan.com/ and, well, Time Travel Pharmacy.

All medications are shipped from the pharmacy’s facility in Bombay, India, in the year 2395.

If for any reason, you feel that you are not completely satisfied with your order, please contact our Customer Support department, and we will issue a full refund back to your credit card within 10,000 years forwards or backwards in time.

They’re going to be surprised when legislation in 2275 makes their operation retroactively illegal.

(via The Presurfer)

Posted in Ephemera January 20th, 2009 by Chip
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