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Babylon 5/Star Trek and Serious Sci-Fi about the Shape of Things to Come
Posted: 23 October 2011 07:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 391 ]
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So a post was deleted because I duplicated it in two threads?

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Posted: 24 October 2011 04:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 392 ]
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psikeyhackr - 23 October 2011 07:24 PM

So a post was deleted because I duplicated it in two threads?

I’m not sure which you’re talking about but we do try to eliminate duplicate posts.

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Posted: 24 October 2011 12:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 393 ]
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I just assumed you posted the duplicate by mistake, so I was helping you out.

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Posted: 26 October 2011 10:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 394 ]
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Occam. - 24 October 2011 12:27 PM

I just assumed you posted the duplicate by mistake, so I was helping you out.

Occam

Nah, it was deliberate since both threads involved Star Trek.  I don’t know how many people will read it though.  Most Trek books I have tried are not worth reading so I felt those were worth mentioning.

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Posted: 05 November 2011 09:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 395 ]
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I finished Robopocalypse because there is talk of it becoming a Spielberg movie.

It has a kind of gory fascination for the first 20% but by half way it is a bore.

I could see why some people would call it a sci-fi thriller but I would not recommend it.

The Two Faces of Tomorrow by James P. Hogan is better but it starts off much slower and doesn’t get thrilling until into the last half.

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Posted: 24 November 2011 02:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 396 ]
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If there is one 20th century science fiction novel everyone should read it is The Shockwave Rider.

I violated that rule for years.  Two other books by Brunner, The Jagged Orbit and Stand on Zanzibar, came out before The Shockwave Rider.  I tried both of them and did not finish either of them.  So I gave up on Brunner.  It was a mistake.  Shockwave Rider is a completely different type of story.  It is more focused down on a particular character and does not jump around to different characters in different scenes.  The protagonist, Nick Haflinger, is a hacker.  He could be compared to Julian Assange today.  But of course this is science fiction so within the story no one knows who he is or what he is doing.

But Brunner has created a dystopian future from the perspective of 1975 run by computers.  From our perspective it might seem kind of primitive since everyone is not walking around with smartphones in their pockets but that is not really the point.  How much REAL POWER does a smartphone give the average owner?  So they can play Angry Birds.  They can watch videos.  BIG DEAL!  But what they do helps advertisers spy on them.  So we have computing power without REAL POWER.  But does it have to be that way?  John Brunner has people flooded with information and yet the really important information they cannot find.  They do not know it is out there to be searched for.  Isn’t that the reality we have today?  We can’t find the information for all of the Bit Shit and Cute Cat Pix.

So naturally our hero is pursued by the government but he is always two steps ahead until the usual fatal mistake.  So he gets strapped naked to a chair with electrodes on his head.  Actually the entire story is told in flashback after his capture.  So how does he escape his James Bond moment?  I am not giving away anything since that is on the cover.  But this book is definitely a must read.  I should have read it 30 years ago.

But now we have way better computers and the society has the potential of turning into Brunner’s dystopia if it hasn’t already.  Do we need to all become shockwave riders?  The tools are in our hands.  The Internet is there for the taking.  It is not all just garbage.  They are trying to make us dumb cyber-consumers.  I wouldn’t let them if I were you.

This book introduces the term worm for invasive computer programs just as Gibson introduced cyperspace.  But this story gives the impression that Brunner knew quite a bit about computers instead of just throwing out tropes like Gibson.  This book blows Neuromancer away.  It may demonstrate that cyberpunk was a wrong turn.

The shockwave title is derived from Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock and trends that he projected are incorporated into the story.  A nice bit of didactic science fiction.


The whole story is on this page:  http://vxheavens.com/lib/mjb01.html

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Posted: 18 December 2011 10:47 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 397 ]
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OK, I finally did it.  I broke down and read Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

It is a book I have been avoiding for decades.  If have seen it in sci-fi sections of bookstores and picked it up and put it back a number of times.  It is similar to Hyperion. something my instincts told me would not suit my tastes.  It is worse than I expected.  significantly worse than Hyperion.  It occasionally gave me a weak giggle but mostly it was just dumb.

So I did a Google search on

+“Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” +“barely funny”

to see if there were people with reactions similar to mine.

...is shit. No arguments, it was barely funny or entertaining at all. And if you think I’m just your common sci-fi hater. WRONG! I used to love Red Dwarf, so thats…

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is proper shit.

http://www.wizardsforum.co.uk/viewtopic.php?t=11638&p=327888

So at least now I can say I read it and have to figure out how to react to people who say it’s great.

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Posted: 08 January 2012 10:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 398 ]
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There are rumors of an Honor Harrington movie.

http://jonolobster.wordpress.com/2011/09/28/david-weber-announces-honor-harrington-movie-deal/#comment-48

So there needs to be commentary on the series.

http://www.lunch.com/reviews/book/UserReview-Mission_of_Honor_Honor_Harrington_Hardcover_-1478236-218851-Endless_Spacewar_20_Years_Counting.html

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Posted: 13 January 2012 09:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 399 ]
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psikeyhackr - 18 December 2011 10:47 AM

So at least now I can say I read it and have to figure out how to react to people who say it’s great.

The same way I react to people who say “Babylon 5 was the greatest sci/fi series EVER!!!”  Just roll my eyes and say, “To each his own.”

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Posted: 15 January 2012 08:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 400 ]
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advocatus - 13 January 2012 09:25 AM
psikeyhackr - 18 December 2011 10:47 AM

So at least now I can say I read it and have to figure out how to react to people who say it’s great.

The same way I react to people who say “Babylon 5 was the greatest sci/fi series EVER!!!”  Just roll my eyes and say, “To each his own.”

LOL

https://plus.google.com/118052684405036727054/posts/cz8Zi7atBNq

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/18.315827-Babylon-5-Great-Sci-fi-series-or-Greatest-Sci-fi-series

http://www.themoderndaypirates.com/pirates/2010/05/babylon-5/

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Posted: 15 January 2012 12:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 401 ]
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advocatus - 13 January 2012 09:25 AM
psikeyhackr - 18 December 2011 10:47 AM

So at least now I can say I read it and have to figure out how to react to people who say it’s great.

The same way I react to people who say “Babylon 5 was the greatest sci/fi series EVER!!!”  Just roll my eyes and say, “To each his own.”

Boy, do I agree with that.  While I watched the three series labeled “Startrek” and even Voyager to the end, I had to give up on B-5 pretty quickly into that series.  Ugh.

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Posted: 16 January 2012 05:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 402 ]
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Occam. - 15 January 2012 12:09 PM

Boy, do I agree with that.  While I watched the three series labeled “Startrek” and even Voyager to the end, I had to give up on B-5 pretty quickly into that series.  Ugh.

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Well it is sure curious that there is significant reason to think that Paramount stole their ideas for Deep Space Nine from Babylon 5.

JMS submitted his ideas for B5 to Paramount to try and get them to produce it.

Elizabeth Reiff wrote 3 years ago
 
Deep Space Nine was good, but Babylon 5 was so much better. Also DS9 obviously stole ideas from B5. smile
agreed
 
       
  Stephen Robb wrote 3 years ago
 
B5 Seasons 1-4 were the best Sci-Fi on TV ever…but Season 5 and most of the movies were not up to par with the last two of DS9. Needless to say, I wasn’t a follower of Byron.

http://minekey.com/theopinion/110575/Babylon-is-better-than-Star-Trek-Deep-Space-Nine

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Posted: 16 January 2012 06:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 403 ]
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Yeah, I forgot about Deep Space 9.  Even though it was connected to Startrek, it was pretty weak. 

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Posted: 17 January 2012 08:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 404 ]
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I didn’t mean to specifically single out B-5.  It was just an example I grabbed for simplicity’s sake.  There are a lot of extremely popular television shows (Battlestar Galactica, Lost, CSI, The Closer…) that I just don’t get.  I try watching a couple of episodes and it does nothing for me.  I shrug and get on with my life.

For the record I LOVED the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.  I thought it was the greatest, cleverist scifi parody I’ve ever read.  But if other people don’t get it, I don’t lose any sleep over it.

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Posted: 17 January 2012 12:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 405 ]
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Occam. - 16 January 2012 06:57 PM

Yeah, I forgot about Deep Space 9.  Even though it was connected to Startrek, it was pretty weak. 

Occam

It was pretty weak Star Trek, but Star Trek is pretty weak science fiction.  Lots of Trekkies don’t like DS9.

It is the best version of Star Trek as science fiction because it is the least Trek version.

Why ‘Deep Space Nine’ is the Best ‘Star Trek’ Series

http://scifiblock.com/blog/why-deep-space-9-is-the-best-star-trek-series.htm

LOL    LOL    LOL

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