Science Fiction Brewed Fresh Daily

Seen Online

I wish there was a time machine just to send spoiled L.A. kids to World War II.

If homosexuality is a disease, I am calling in lesbian tomorrow.

Big weekend coming. My Star Trek club is going to dress as Klingons and ambush some Civil War re-enactors.

Nonsequitaur. Half man, half horse, half grilled cheese sandwich.

If I owned a lightsaber, pruning my hedges would go much quicker.

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions, but Hell’s patio is resurfaced with a nice textured concrete. Contractor did a great job.

If Neo would have taken the blue pill, The Matrix would’ve been the exact same movie, except he’d have had a hard on the whole time.

Posted in Humor May 31st, 2010 by Chip
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Link Dump

Base Pair Friendship Necklace – Matching DNA/RNA molecules. Tell someone that they’re the adenine to your uracil.

Awesome Papercraft Robots – A collection of 50 robots to download and assemble.

AT-AT Wedding Cake – It’s the accompanying Ewok cupcakes that really make this.

Fake Science – “For when the facts are too confusing.” I think this one is my favorite.

Zombie Attack Survivor Hotline – I’m kind of curious whether they get phone calls, too.

Cthulhu as Drawn by H.P. Lovecraft – He’s sort of adorable.

ChumBuddy – Best. Sleeping bag. Ever.

Posted in Ephemera May 28th, 2010 by Chip
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Trivia Thursday

  1. This movie was unfortunately released soon after Dr. Strangelove, but where Strangelove was humorous in a macabre sort of way, this movie was deadly serious, starring Henry Fonda in a believable role as an American President up against the wall.
  2. What author is responsible for the term “cyberpunk?”
  3. What does the “R” stand for in “R. Daneel Olivaw?”
  4. Madeleine L’Engle’s 1962 young adult novel involves Meg and Charles Wallace Murray, along with Calvin, Meg’s classmate, who become involved in an attempt to find Dr. Murray, a brilliant scientist who has mysteriously disappeared. Name it.
  5. What was the “Red Dwarf” on the TV show of the same name?
  6. What is the name of the all-powerful computer network of the future in the Terminator movies?
  7. Who wrote Sargasso of Space?
  8. The planet Dune orbits around what star?
  9. Name the movie to which the 1977 hit Close Encounters of the Third Kind lost the Oscar for Visual Effects.
  10. In this Larry Niven novel, an exploration team consisting of an exotic mix of humans and aliens investigates a huge artifact occupying a planetary orbit around a sun. A novel of imaginary tourism; its real hero is the artifact. Name this novel!

(Answers below the fold)

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Posted in Ephemera May 27th, 2010 by Chip
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Take a Walk on the Moon, Virtually

NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera has taken lots of new extremely high-resolution pictures of the moon, and they’re crowdsourcing their analysis. The public is invited to visit the Moon Zoo site to view and interpret the new images.

“We need Web users around the world to help us interpret these stunning new images of the lunar surface,” said Chris Lintott of Oxford University and chair of the Citizen Science Alliance. “If you only spend five minutes on the site counting craters you’ll be making a valuable contribution to science and, who knows, you might run across a Russian spacecraft.”

Behold the power of the Internet.

See this article at the NASA site for more details.

Posted in Science, Space May 26th, 2010 by Chip
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The Empire Strikes Back (1950)

YouTube user whoiseyevan specializes in “premakes:” Trailers for modern movies the way they might have been made 50 years ago.

There are lots more on his YouTube Channel. I like that the comments for each trailer include the “recipe” of clips used in its production.

(via Wil Wheaton)

Posted in Movies & TV May 25th, 2010 by Chip
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Nimoy Sunset Pie

Nimoy Sunset Pie

I would like, very, very much, to understand the train of thought that terminated with this.

Posted in Ephemera May 24th, 2010 by Chip
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You’ll Just Read it for the Article

CatsuitChris Sims, of Chris’s Invicible Super-Blog fame, has done a piece for the SyFy Channel’s SciFiWire site. It’s a scholarly retrospective of five decades of skintight catsuits in SF.

As he puts it:

It’s meant to be a comprehensive, chronological overview of the skin-tight outfits and what it means about our society that we’ve spent 50 years saying that’s what women are going to wear in the utopian/dystopian/video-gamey future. Which is a fancy way of saying “hey, go look at these pictures of pretty girls and enjoy my jokes about America’s most beloved astrophysicist.”

It’s all very refined and highbrow.

Posted in Movies & TV May 21st, 2010 by Chip
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Trivia Thursday

  1. In this Lois McMaster Bujold novel, Cordelia Naismith and Aral Vorkosigan were once enemies in an interstellar war. Now a fragile peace has been established and they’re a married couple expecting their first child. Name it!
  2. Arthur C. Clarke was awarded a Marconi International Fellowship in 1982 for inventing what concept?
  3. What was the title of Frank Herbert’s first book?
  4. This gender-bending story by Gwyneth Jones concerns a reporter who is contacted by an apparently female alien. Although they look human, their thought patterns are radically different.
  5. In this 1980’s sci-fi movie, the monster, which replicates the cell structure of anything it devours, is defeated when a scientist feeds it his own cancerous liver.
  6. Who are famous for being the third-worst poets in the galaxy?
  7. Isaac Asimov wrote a novelization of Harry Kleiner’s screenplay which was so well-received by SF fans that many think the screenplay was based on the novel instead of the reverse. Name the film that spawned the book.
  8. The basis for two SF horror movies, John W. Campbell’s tale of a shape-changing alien attacking an Antarctic research station epitomizes the strengths of American pulp fiction. Name it!
  9. In Larry Niven’s Ringworld, what character has “all the luck in the world?”
  10. This movie (and later novel by Orson Scott Card) is about a nuclear-missile-armed US submarine crashing at the edge of the Cayman Trough and the crew of an experimental, submersible drilling rig who are asked to help rescue any survivors.

(Answers below the fold)

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Posted in Ephemera May 20th, 2010 by Chip
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“Empire” Sketchbook

WampaThis month marks 30 years since the release of The Empire Strikes Back,* and artist Dave Lowe is celebrating by producing from-memory sketches of some of the characters and critters from the movie.

I’m not going for movie accurate versions here, nor any intentional “re-imagining”. I’m just gonna have fun drawing and see what spills out in the sketchbook. Not to sound too arty, but they’ll be nerdy impressionistic interpretations. To challenge myself, I’m not using any reference at all. Not even taking a quick glace up at my action figure shelves.

It’s fun to see what he’s been coming up with, and to read his self-critiques on how well the sketches match up with the real (so to speak) characters.

*Why yes, I do feel old.

Posted in Movies & TV May 19th, 2010 by Chip
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A Real Electric Monk

An “I-Fairy” robot presided at a wedding ceremony in Tokyo last Sunday. The groom is a professor of robotics and the bride is an employee at Sanrio’s humanoid robotics division (although a BoingBoing commenter had a more plausible theory).

The little robot’s normal job is to conduct people around museums, but Sanrio reprogrammed it for the occasion. It is, according to Sanrio, the world’s first robot-officiated wedding.

Posted in News, Science May 18th, 2010 by Chip
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