A few years ago, when I was staying with relatives in the Netherlands, we decided to spend a few days in Paris – three countries and many hundreds of kilometres away. There were all sorts of ways of doing it, including by driving. Or we could have spent a lot of time driving to Schiphol, … More Why trains are sometimes faster than air travel
I am a great fan of science fiction that’s plausible enough to be ‘scientific’, but which doesn’t take the ‘science’ so far as to be boring. In the miniseries that launched the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica a decade or so ago, Galactica took a direct hit from a nuke and survived with near-undiminished fighting capacity. Is … More Sci-fi writing tricks: balancing drama with plausibility
The other day I stumbled across a fan-site description of the warships portrayed in the reimagined Battlestar Galactica (2004-09). And something struck me. Sci-fi ships usually derive from an ocean-going ‘conceptual model’ – ‘space dreadnoughts’, ‘space battlecruisers’, ‘destroyers’ and the rest. The ‘conceptual model’ for Galactica was apparently the hybrid carrier-battleship of the kind contemplated … More The cool steampunkish bit about ‘Battlestar Galactica’
If you had a choice of super-powers, which one would you pick? Personally I’d go for Dr Manhattan’s, off Dave Gibbons and Alan Moore’s Watchmen. OK, it makes him look like a radioactive Smurf. But that super-power also makes him indestructible, immortal, and gives him total control over determinist (space-time) and quantum worlds, which means … More What’s your favourite super-power?
The other day I picked up an interesting snippet about the likely breakfast menu on NASA’s upcoming Orion spacecraft. Because the vehicle is weight- and volume-critical, there are going to be problems packing enough food in for the expected 28-30 day duration asteroid investigation missions. The same issue also applies to storing the – er … More Breakfast in space, on an asteroid, in a tin can
OK so I saw Rogue 1. To me it was one of the best Star Wars movies ever made, up there with The Empire Strikes Back. In the specific, it was a sci-fi war movie – pure and simple. And it showed what usually happens in war – where people usually end up dead. It … More Star Wars without the Force – reviewing Rogue 1
Here’s a blast from 2013 about the baddest sci-fi mech ever imagined… ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ I posted last week about why huge bipedal fighting ‘mechs’ from sci-fi like Pacific Rim are unlikely, unless the laws of physics change. But that doesn’t mean sci-fi mechs have to be boring. Not at all. More in a moment. First off … More OMG – the baddest sci-fi mega-mech…e-v-a-h! -redux