Chat Log: March 5th, 2011

[01:09] CrazyEddy has joined #knownspace
[09:25] Merlin_McCarley has joined #knownspace
[10:40] Merlin_McCarley has joined #knownspace
[10:42] #knownspace> SeanS: .weather 40601
[10:42] #knownspace> Outsider: Overcast ☁, 53.6℉ (12℃), 29.96in (1011mb), Light Rain, Gentle breeze 7kt (↑) - KLOU, 14:53Z
[10:45] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: .weather KDFW
[10:45] #knownspace> Outsider: Overcast ☁, 42.8℉ (6℃), 30.27in (1022mb), Fresh breeze 19kt (↑) - KDFW 14:53Z
[10:48] #knownspace> SeanS: Dallas Fort Worth?
[10:49] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Tis a fairly close airport. Only 20ish miles.
[10:49] #knownspace> SeanS: Carol Phillips lives in Houston. Ever meet her?
[10:49] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Hehe, TX is rather big ye know ;)
[10:50] #knownspace> SeanS: I know. she dropped by here a couple of years ago for a a couple of days. she and her kids were on a driving vacation seeing america and I put them up for a weekend
[11:03] #knownspace> SeanS: are you on the list?
[11:09] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Yes, but I rarely read them -blushes-
[11:11] #knownspace> SeanS: I was wondering. Do you know who Carol Phillips is?
[11:12] #knownspace> SeanS: I delete a lot of threads myself without reading them. When they go off on political tangents it annoys me
[11:12] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Can't say I do, I see to many references to narrow it down. Political?
[11:50] #knownspace> SeanS: had to cook the gf some chow.
[12:19] Lensman-Free has joined #knownspace
[12:36] Jim has joined #knownspace
[12:37] #knownspace> Lensman-Free: Hi Jim!
[12:38] #knownspace> Jim: Hi, I am going to watch the WVU-Louisville game before the chat.
[12:38] #knownspace> Lensman: Have fun.
[12:41] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah, Lousyville and Kentucky are both playing today.
[12:43] #knownspace> SeanS: oops. Kentucky plays tomorrow
[12:44] #knownspace> SeanS: Louisville is peaking now... playing some good ball
[12:44] #knownspace> Lensman: Hi Sean.
[12:45] #knownspace> SeanS: Hey
[12:45] #knownspace> Lensman: How's the hunting been lately?
[12:45] #knownspace> SeanS: I havent been hunting unfortunately. Other things going on.
[12:45] #knownspace> Lensman: Got 'nuff meat frozen? Or do you not get all your meat from hunting?
[12:46] #knownspace> Lensman: More people ought to hunt their own meat. It would be less wasteful of resources. Not that I have any room to talk... don't even own a rifle!
[12:47] #knownspace> Lensman: Lots of deer and rabbit around here. But we don't have a freezer big 'nuff for a deer carcass, even cut up.
[12:48] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Hollyweird has most of the nation believing differently though, unfortuantly.
[12:49] #knownspace> SeanS: My freezer is pretty full. some stuff is several years old. need to go through it all and weed out the old stuff.
[12:53] Dan has joined #knownspace
[12:54] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: How much of it do you cure so it won't take up the freezer space?
[12:54] #knownspace> Lensman: My aunt & uncle bring us deer sausage and deer steaks regularly. They live in a small town, I suppose the opportunities for hunting there are a lot better. Here, I'd have to get permission from a land owner to hunt on their land. Of course, if the deer wandered onto my property... but then I'd get in trouble for discharging a firearm inside the city limits!
[12:55] #knownspace> Lensman: We used to have deer come every day about 3-3:30 AM to eat acorns in our front yard, under the huge oak tree. Unfortunately the tree died and had to be cut down.
[12:56] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Get a bow then, less trouble in the city.
[12:57] #knownspace> Lensman: I hadn't even thought of that, Merlin. Altho I have friends in the SCA and have occasionally handled a bow. Certainly not 'nuff to be a good shot!
[12:57] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Practice, practice, practice ;)
[12:57] #knownspace> Lensman: Crossbow would be more my speed.
[12:57] #knownspace> Dan: Well, adding updates to mIRC has gotten a bit more complex in the last couple of years. :)
[12:58] #knownspace> SeanS: I freeze everything. I have never made jerkey if that is what you were asking, Merlin
[12:58] #knownspace> Lensman: I'm using ChatZilla.
[12:58] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Yes, keeps better and taste very good.
[12:59] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Even salt curing can save that space in the freezer, can be tricky though.
[12:59] #knownspace> Dan: I seem to recall that crossbows have a very limited hunting season down here. I could be wrong, though.
[12:59] #knownspace> SeanS: To me, every season is rifle season. ;)
[12:59] #knownspace> Dan: Pirate.
[12:59] #knownspace> Dan: :)
[13:00] #knownspace> Lensman: I have no idea what the laws are regarding deer hunting and bows or crossbows. Dunno if it's legal to kill a deer on your own property without a license.
[13:00] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Should be easy enough to find on your State/City websites.
[13:00] #knownspace> SeanS: only nuisance deer and you can not harvest
[13:01] #knownspace> SeanS: that lets farmers save their crops
[13:01] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: In a country where most farmers are paid not to grow, but I digress.
[13:02] #knownspace> Dan: Best just to look up the laws and get a permit. I'd hate to kill a deer and just throw it away without being allowed to get it processed for the freezer.
[13:02] #knownspace> SeanS: Just saying what the law is here in KY
[13:02] #knownspace> Dan: I used to have a friend here in GA that thought using a rifle to hunt had gotten too easy, so he got a bow...
[13:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, I'd never intentionally kill a deer without intending to eat it.
[13:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Hunting with a bow or xbow is definitely more challenging!
[13:03] #knownspace> Dan: Then a couple of years later he thought that using the bow was getting too easy, so he got a Primitave Weapons hunting permit and got a spear...
[13:04] #knownspace> SeanS: sorry, I am not going to Rambo a deer
[13:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Overachiever!
[13:04] #knownspace> Dan: I asked him what he was going to do when the spear got too easy? Chase them down with a pocketknife? LOL!
[13:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Hand axe!
[13:05] #knownspace> Dan: Fuzzy-style?
[13:06] #knownspace> Lensman: Fuzzies use "chopper-diggers" to hunt land prawns. Does the canon describe them using hand axes?
[13:06] Akiraa has joined #knownspace
[13:07] #knownspace> Dan: Little Fuzzy learned how to make one by the 3rd novel.
[13:07] #knownspace> Lensman: I've only read the 3rd book once. Don't remember it that well.
[13:07] #knownspace> Lensman: Frankly I found it disappointing.
[13:08] #knownspace> Dan: Different strokes, I suppose.
[13:09] #knownspace> Dan: Not a big deal. I'm not one of the folks writing Piper sequels, so I'm not bothering to keep too many details in my head.
[13:10] #knownspace> Dan: I've got my own stuff to write. That's more than enough on my plate right there.
[13:10] #knownspace> Lensman: I enjoy the discussions on the Piper list... usually, anyway... but it's only Known Space where I really try to keep all the details in mind.
[13:11] #knownspace> Dan: Niven question: When was the first Draco Tavern story published?
[13:11] #knownspace> SeanS: i can pull out my copy and look
[13:12] #knownspace> SeanS: 77
[13:12] #knownspace> Lensman: I think it was in /Galileo/ magazine, as "Three Vignettes".
[13:12] #knownspace> Dan: Ah! Good! I know I'm going to credit Larry for his part in inspiring my spaceport bar series.
[13:13] #knownspace> SeanS: The subject is closed and grammar lesson are listed as 77 and 79 copyright by larry niven
[13:13] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Later than I thought. Thought they were late 60s or very early 70s.
[13:14] #knownspace> Dan: "The Fourth Profession" and "For A Foggy Night" were easy for me to recall, but I don't remember when I first read any of te DT series.
[13:14] #knownspace> Lensman: May 1977.
[13:14] #knownspace> Dan: I'll have to credit Spider Robinson, AC Clarke, and a few other folks, too.
[13:15] #knownspace> Lensman: But I'm wrong, it was in /Cosmos/ not /Galileo/.
[13:16] #knownspace> Dan: I've been asked to submit an audition-style set of my best spaceport bar stories to a pro publisher. 50k words are with a copy editor right now.
[13:16] #knownspace> SeanS: oh, Dan, mouse problem was that Casper the Roomba unplugged the mouse while he was cleaning the puter room last night
[13:16] #knownspace> Lensman: "Casper"? Is it white?
[13:16] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah
[13:16] #knownspace> Dan: LOL! I wondered it it was just unplugged!
[13:17] #knownspace> SeanS: Taz the ealier roomba has a bad battery. need to replace it and move him upstairs
[13:18] #knownspace> Dan: Once I rewrite to the copy editors recomendations, we'll send that to the publisher. If they like it, I'll get a 2 or 3 book deal.
[13:18] #knownspace> Lensman: I take it you're a pro writer, Dan?
[13:19] #knownspace> Dan: I've sold 2 short stories so far, but not any novels. But I am an online publisher of 15 years standing.
[13:20] #knownspace> Dan: So I'm a very low-tier pro, at best. One more short story published and I can join the union.
[13:21] #knownspace> Dan: My 2nd story is in an anthology that'll hit bookstores next month.
[13:21] #knownspace> Lensman: 01,00
[13:21] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[13:21] #knownspace> Lensman: "Union" = SFWA?
[13:22] #knownspace> Lensman: As I recall, it takes 3 paid short stories or 1 novel to qualify for the SFWA.
[13:22] #knownspace> Dan: I think that's the one. I don't do screenplays - I think they have a union of their own.
[13:22] #knownspace> Dan: That's my understanding too, Lens.
[13:22] #knownspace> Lensman: But my info may be outdated.
[13:23] #knownspace> Lensman: Sean: Because we have a country where the rules are set by lawyers.
[13:24] #knownspace> Dan: If Michael Z Williamson can get his publishers to spring for a steampunk anthology, Mike's asked me to submit to that, as well.
[13:24] #knownspace> Akiraa: Lensman: well, the lawyers are needed because of so many rules
[13:24] #knownspace> Akiraa: it's a kind of vicious circle
[13:24] #knownspace> Lensman: Some are needed, some are not.
[13:24] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: That's kinda like saying that Vampires are needed because there is so much blood.
[13:25] #knownspace> Akiraa: techniically, not knowing the laws is no excuse, but humanly, it's impossible even for the professionals
[13:25] #knownspace> Lensman: It must be nice to be in such high demand, Dan!
[13:25] #knownspace> Lensman: LOL! Good one, Merlin.
[13:25] #knownspace> Dan: It does give me a real thrill to have come so far on the strength of my online writing.
[13:26] #knownspace> Akiraa: you now need an entire regulatory compliance department for a medium or larger company
[13:26] #knownspace> Lensman: And you certainly deserve that. Online publishing lets anybody publish anything they please, no matter how good or bad. If you're being invited to contribute to paid anthologies, your stuff must be good!
[13:26] #knownspace> Dan: I've got a stack of rejection slips in a box somewhere. I got those back in the '90s.
[13:27] #knownspace> Dan: Ellen Datlow wrote the only on that wasn't a form letter rejection. She told me to keep working on my stuff and not give up.
[13:28] #knownspace> Lensman: This is odd. The font I see for my own messages keeps switching from gray to black. Wish it would stay black! I find dark gray on light gray to be hard to read.
[13:28] #knownspace> Dan: I think that one was for Omni Online, which my website has long outlived.
[13:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Don't recall having this problem in ChatZilla before.
[13:30] #knownspace> SeanS: never used chatzilla. X-chat for linux here. I use Filezilla for FTP tho
[13:31] #knownspace> Dan: I've been told that I'm good at creating characters & settings & dialog. My weakness seems to be that I slip into the Passive Voice too often, and use too many run-on sentances.
[13:32] #knownspace> Dan: I was also told that my acceptance of being edited and listening to editorial direction is a strength. :)
[13:32] #knownspace> Lensman: Run-on sentences IMHO is a pretty small vice. Heck, many or most Victorian writers used run-on sentences as a matter of course. You can find many examples of that in modern writing, too.
[13:33] #knownspace> Dan: Plus, in the steampunk genre, long wordy dialog is part of the style.
[13:33] #knownspace> Lensman: As long as the reader doesn't lose track of what you're talking about, I don't actually see a problem with run-on sentences in storytelling. Now, in non-fiction writing, I think run-on sentences should be avoided.
[13:34] #knownspace> Lensman: Well yes! Victorian writing style in Steampunk should be appreciated, not avoided.
[13:34] #knownspace> Dan: For Sci-fi, I'm learning to chop my paragraphs into smaller ones.
[13:35] #knownspace> Dan: Believe it or not, being in chat rooms has helped me learn to type faster, too.
[13:35] #knownspace> Lensman: Someone in another chat room accused me of having a 200 WPM typing speed today. Sorry, no, just 55 WPM.
[13:35] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Oh I believe that. I type faster in TalkShoe than I ever do elsewhere.
[13:36] #knownspace> Lensman: What is TalkShoe?
[13:36] #knownspace> Dan: I can manage 1000 words per hour, or 500 words per beer. :)
[13:36] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Chat and Voip. Goes to an autogenerated Podcast, free stuff.
[13:37] #knownspace> Dan: I have been known to whip out a 10k word short story in 12 hours.
[13:40] #knownspace> Dan: I'm actually looking forward to doing the rewrites on my spaceport bar stories. Hopefully I can speed through the changes my editor is sure to recommend.
[13:40] #knownspace> Akiraa: 500 words per beer, is that before or after the beer?
[13:40] #knownspace> Dan: During! :)
[13:41] #knownspace> Akiraa: with one of those beer-dispensing caps?
[13:41] #knownspace> SeanS: well, he has to pause typing to have a drink or use a beer dispensing hat
[13:41] #knownspace> Dan: Nah, I pause to pick up my drink.
[13:42] #knownspace> Dan: Plus I have resolved plot points on my way to the fridge for a fresh drink.
[13:43] #knownspace> Lensman: I seem to do my best creative thinking when driving or walking.
[13:43] #knownspace> Dan: My wife has learned that I sometimes walk through the house mumbling to myself. She knows I'm off in my own little world somewhere, working.
[13:43] #knownspace> SeanS: I am always in my own little world
[13:43] #knownspace> Dan: That's OK Sean, we know you here. :)
[13:47] #knownspace> Dan: Ahhhh! That's a good, cold beer!
[13:48] #knownspace> Dan: Lyn & I went to a steampunk convention in Atlanta this past weekend. My airship Captain uniform was a big hit with the costuming crowd.
[13:48] #knownspace> SeanS: damn you dan
[13:49] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[13:49] #knownspace> SeanS: I just fixed a laptop for a friend and he is bringing me beer in exchange for it later today
[13:50] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Ah yes the tech repair beer exchange, Know it well.
[13:50] #knownspace> Dan: We went to the store before noon, so I bought enough for the weekend.
[13:50] #knownspace> SeanS: i said to julie 'damn!! Dan is drinking a beer!' and she said 'don't start yet or you won't be worth a shit later'
[13:50] #knownspace> SeanS: I had to agree
[13:51] #knownspace> Lensman: My relatives used to say that I was always off in my own little world. I've become a bit more sociable since then, but certainly it's still often true.
[13:51] #knownspace> SeanS: I have plenty of beer for today but wouldnt have but a couple for tomorrow without the beer repair work
[13:52] #knownspace> Dan: It's raining here, so I can't do any work outdoors. And I've got to stay out of Lyn's way in the rest of the house 'cause she's cleaning and cooking my lunch to tomorrow's day at work.
[13:54] #knownspace> SeanS: we are in between rain showers here. still nasty and wet outside but not currently raining
[13:54] #knownspace> Dan: I don't knw if this link will work, but here is a pic of Lyn & I at the Con: Link
[13:55] #knownspace> SeanS: worked for me but i am logged into facebook
[13:55] #knownspace> SeanS: great pic. one I hadnt seen
[13:56] #knownspace> Dan: No one seems to have started uploading stuff to the convention's Flickr page yet.
[13:59] #knownspace> Dan: I'm probably going to have to get a writer's table in the hotel lobby at next year's con. So I can try and sell copies of the steampunk anthologies.
[14:01] #knownspace> Dan: I was on a couple of writing panels this year. I hope to do several more next yeear, as well as wear my tux to be a waiter for Lyn's tea party event/panel.
[14:03] #knownspace> Dan: Our next con is a literary con in July, in Chattanooga. I won't be a guest there, but some friends with a dealer's room have offered to sell some book for me.
[14:07] #knownspace> Dan: I did manage to sell 2 copies of the first anthology I have a story in. That plus the Con Guest discount on the room price saved us the cost of 2 days at the con.
[14:11] #knownspace> Dan: The restruant and bar in the hotel were both painfully expensive, but we took our own food & beer, so we minimised that cost. Only ate one meal in the restruant.
[14:12] #knownspace> Dan: The Con Suite had some wonderful free food, as well. And it seemed like half the crowd was compeeting to see who could get me sloshed with free drinks.
[14:13] #knownspace> Dan: I love conventions. Hopefully we'll be able to afford to go to a few more per year, in the future.
[14:13] #knownspace> Lensman: *chuckle* Like the beginning of /Inferno/, where the fans think it's fun to get Carpentier drunk.
[14:14] #knownspace> Dan: Exactly!
[14:14] #knownspace> Dan: But then a Big Name Pro walks in, and steals the crowd.
[14:14] #knownspace> Lensman: Conventions are great! Everyone you meet-- well, nearly everyone-- is part of our community, and they get all the references!
[14:15] #knownspace> SeanS: Never been to one
[14:15] #knownspace> Dan: Yeah! It's actually difficult to find someone who needs a joke explained.
[14:15] #knownspace> Lensman: No Mundanes who have to have everything explained to them.
[14:15] #knownspace> Lensman: (Lensman high-fives Dan)
[14:16] #knownspace> SeanS: was scheduled to meet Dan a few years ago at libertycon but it fell through. Niven and Pournelle were GoH
[14:16] #knownspace> Dan: (Dann high-fives Lensman back)
[14:17] #knownspace> Dan: Larry is famous for being the *ideal* con guest. Jerry is famous for being "someone whose time you do not wish to waste."
[14:17] #knownspace> SeanS: several other listers were there if i remember. steve sloan. someone from FL
[14:17] #knownspace> Dan: They were a big hit, that year.
[14:18] #knownspace> Lensman: I've heard many people say that fan-oriented chat rooms-- like this one-- are like a room party at a con. Well, they are like the conversations there, yes. But not some of the wild and crazy things I've seen at room parties!
[14:18] #knownspace> Dan: Yeah, I ran into Sloan in an autograph line. He was wearing a t-shirt with his name on the back. It was for a graphics company, as I recall.
[14:19] #knownspace> Dan: BRB, bio-break...
[14:20] #knownspace> SeanS: Everytime I am going to drive through Huntsville I think about giving him a call but then when I actually drive through I am too intent on getting where I am going to take an exit
[14:22] #knownspace> Dan: I understand. Road trips become an end in themselves: "I wanna get where I'm going!"
[14:22] #knownspace> Lensman: "Are we there yet?" :)
[14:22] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[14:22] #knownspace> Lensman: "Are we there yet?"
[14:23] #knownspace> Lensman: "Are we--" *slap*
[14:23] #knownspace> Dan: Luckily, we're 90 minutes drive from Atlanta, and 3 hours from Chattanooga.
[14:24] #knownspace> Dan: Of course, half those distances are posted as 70 MPH zones.
[14:26] #knownspace> Dan: Lock the Cruse Control on 73 MPH and try to keep up with the truckers.
[14:26] #knownspace> Jim: WVU was down 3 points with 10 seconds to go and ended up winning by 2 points
[14:27] #knownspace> Dan: Congrats to WVU!
[14:27] #knownspace> Dan: Whatever sport it was. Basketball?
[14:27] #knownspace> Jim: I may have to do some road trips, when I interview for some jobs.
[14:27] #knownspace> Jim: yes, basketball
[14:27] #knownspace> SeanS: you are not going to keep up with the truckers at 73
[14:27] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah, tough ending for the cards
[14:28] #knownspace> Dan: Sean, I couldn't keep up with the truckers here if I was doing 90.
[14:28] #knownspace> SeanS: didnt really matter that much for the birdy's how did it effect tourney placement for WVU
[14:29] #knownspace> Jim: I believe that WVU guaraunteed a first round bye in the Big East tournament
[14:31] #knownspace> SeanS: cant believe they called a foul with .6 seconds on the clock. was a good game. I was hoping for overtime
[14:31] #knownspace> Akiraa: what's a nice steampunk novel with a plot doesn't actually violate the rule of physics?
[14:31] #knownspace> Akiraa: like flying on a zeppelin to Mars
[14:31] #knownspace> SeanS: Dan would be the man in the room to ask
[14:32] #knownspace> Dan: Damn! Steampunk usually plays hob with the rules of physics.
[14:32] #knownspace> Akiraa: like, if the Romans got steam power, what would the world look like
[14:33] #knownspace> SeanS: What is Ceaser had a Piper Cub?
[14:33] #knownspace> Dan: Look up GD Falksen, or Nick Valentino, and Nick's novels are a bit of a reach into the occasional paraphysics.
[14:33] #knownspace> Akiraa: early industrial tech was pretty much available to the ancient people
[14:33] #knownspace> Akiraa: the ability to build it, that is, not the knowledge
[14:34] #knownspace> Akiraa: all later stages are much more capital-intensive, though
[14:34] #knownspace> Akiraa: if history had its way, we could be thousands of years ahead or behind
[14:35] #knownspace> Dan: My own steampunk universe starts off with the assumption that Hero of Alexandria actually figured out a way to get useful work out of his steam-toy, giving Greeks & Egyptians steam-powered war chariots & allowing them to conquor Rome.
[14:35] #knownspace> SeanS: In Procyon's Promise by Michael McCullum, we reverse engineer a stardrive. a quote from that is 'we know what lever to pull and buttons to push but of the underlying principles we have no idea whatsoever.'
[14:36] #knownspace> Jim: The ancient Egyptians were very skilled at the bronze-age technology that they did possess. Some of their techniques for working stone without steel tools have been lost.
[14:36] #knownspace> Lensman: Romans with steam power? Try the Germanicus trilogy, an alternate history trilogy of books written by Kirk Mitchell. Starts with /Procurator/. Good, altho not great.
[14:37] #knownspace> Jim: I strongly doubt that we would have the where-with-all to reverse engineer an alien's stardrive (FTL or non-FTL) that we found.
[14:37] #knownspace> Dan: Not Romans, they wound up being Greek & Egyptian slaves. My SP world doesn't have a Roman Empire.
[14:38] #knownspace> Dan: But then, I do love to root for the underdogs of real history.
[14:38] #knownspace> SeanS: they found a record strip that was basically a manual for the stardrive if I remember right. like lensman said about the trilogy he mentioned. good but not great
[14:39] #knownspace> Lensman: I really like the game background for "Space: 1889". Space is filled with vacuum, but the ether is real. You get to Mars or Venus in spaceship which uses hydrogen or helium lift, but an ether propeller for propulsion. On Mars you find "liftwood", a naturally growing antigravity material, which gives them airships not unlike Burroughs' Martian airships.
[14:39] #knownspace> Dan: Of course, thanks to Lensman's google-fu, and others on the Niven List, I was also able to provide cycles of HG Wells Martian invasions, too.
[14:39] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Usually tracks back to a woman or issues over genital size.
[14:40] #knownspace> SeanS: My water glass is almost empty. Dan, twist my arm.
[14:41] #knownspace> Dan: Sean, plan for the future, but live in today. Ratoin your beer so that you have some for tomorrow. Meanwhile, I need a fresh one myself, LOL!
[14:41] #knownspace> Lensman: I did a whole website exploring Wells' WOTW. If I wrote a steampunk story, that would definitely have to be part of the background.
[14:42] #knownspace> SeanS: I have another whole box coming by later. ;)
[14:43] #knownspace> Dan: Well David, I do have you to thank for those links to Mars close approaches throughout history. That allowed me to replace the US War of 1812 and the Civil War with Martian invasions.
[14:43] #knownspace> Lensman: In "Space: 1889" they use solar-heated boilers for steam power. The airships are sealed against vacuum. The spaceships carry green plants to replenish the oxygen and absorb CO2.
[14:43] #knownspace> Lensman: "David" = Lensman? I'm never sure, that's why I ask people to just stick with "Lensman". Too many "Davids" around.
[14:44] #knownspace> Dan: If I could figure out a way to allow people to actually live through Verne's "space cannon" launcher, I'd add that into my mix as well. Probably circa 1920 or so.
[14:45] #knownspace> Dan: Yeah, I meant you, Lens.
[14:45] #knownspace> Dan: Everyone has many names. I tend to utilize whichever one I am thinking at the moment.
[14:45] #knownspace> Jim: Dan, use stasis fields for the cannon launcher
[14:46] #knownspace> Lensman: Dan: You should read /The Space Machine/ by Christopher Priest. The Martians use their Heat Ray to heat up ice behind the manned capsule. The barrel of the space gun has to be *very* long, though. Miles long. Of course, much shorter on Mars because of the low escape velocity.
[14:47] #knownspace> Lensman: You can do the same without the Heat Ray, it just takes explosives placed along the length of the barrel at regular intervals, and of course they are placed in side passages, not in the main barrel itself.
[14:47] #knownspace> Jim: Am I the only one here who feels threatened by the enormous wave of fantasy literature being published today?
[14:49] #knownspace> Dan: Jim, I have to say that I rarely read Fantasy any more.
[14:49] #knownspace> SeanS: I havent been in a bookstore lately. Mostly doing the library bit
[14:49] #knownspace> Lensman: I've heard complaints about how the volume of fantasy exceeds that of SF, but I don't feel "threatened" by it. One person can only read so much, and anyway I don't read nearly as much as I did at a younger age. I'm a lot more selective these days. I have other hobbies, like woodworking, and the Known Space Concordance website is something that I'll never finish working on.
[14:49] #knownspace> Dan: It *is* easier to write than SF, or at least hard SF, but that's OK because the different readers can pick their own fandom.
[14:50] #knownspace> Lensman: Dan, I read not too long ago about a gun that was made using staged explosives. I think it was the Germans in WWI or WWII.
[14:51] #knownspace> Dan: I think it's just a fad the publishers are promoting. They can get Fantasy books on the shelves faster than they can SF.
[14:53] #knownspace> Dan: Lens, I do use handgun-sized heat ray weapons to act as boilers for steam engines in a few vehicles, like fxed-wing aircraft in a time of LP gas fueled steam-powered airships.
[14:53] #knownspace> Jim: Lensman, the Germans had a staged gun in WWII that was destroyed by Allied bombing. John Bull tried to make a staged gun for Saddam.
[14:54] #knownspace> Dan: I think that was a WWII cannon. Could throw a heavy shell from behind the Front all the way to Paris. I could be wrong, of course.
[14:54] #knownspace> Lensman: I didn't realize John Bull's gun was staged. Or I forgot.
[14:54] #knownspace> SeanS: If I remember right the german one was so big that it took several railroad flatcars to transport
[14:55] #knownspace> Jim: Dan, the Paris gun was in WWI and was not staged
[14:55] #knownspace> Lensman: I think Priest had a brilliant idea about using the Heat Ray to launch capsules from the Space Gun!
[14:55] #knownspace> Dan: Jim, I don't think Fantast is too much of a threat to SF fandom, although the publishers sometimes treat Fantasy as their version of Barbra Cartland Romance novels.
[14:55] #knownspace> Lensman: No, the Paris Gun and Big Bertha were not staged.
[14:56] Fred has joined #knownspace
[14:56] #knownspace> Jim: CO2 from quick heated dry ice would be an excellent propellant for a gun
[14:57] #knownspace> SeanS: Hiya Fred
[14:57] #knownspace> SeanS: Traitor to the Babelfish. ;)
[14:57] #knownspace> Fred: SS
[14:57] #knownspace> Jim: I think that we should be producing Bull guns to launch unmanned spacecraft
[14:58] #knownspace> Jim: Hi Fred
[14:58] #knownspace> Fred: Hey Jim
[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: The reason for staged explosions in the Space Gun is to have the acceleration be spaced out along the length of the barrel. Verne's space gun, in /From the Earth to the Moon/, would crush the astronauts *and* send the capsule no higher than the surrounding trees, from what I've read. A single explosion is all wrong, it needs to accelerate at a more or less constant rate along the length of a...
[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: ...very long barrel.
[14:58] #knownspace> Fred: Lensman!
[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: I'd put them inside a water tank so you can use about 30 gees of acceleration and not kill or maim them.
[14:58] #knownspace> Lensman: Fred!
[14:58] #knownspace> Dan: Unmanned, sure. But isthere a way to do that withmanned capsules, a la Verne? Can real science find a way?
[14:59] #knownspace> Lensman: I was just explaining that, Dan.
[14:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: john bull was somewhat crazy
[14:59] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, he was.
[14:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: besides, he built gunpowder-based guns
[14:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: there was also project haarp, which was about light-gas guns
[14:59] #knownspace> Dan: I see. I often have to watch my fingers while typing rather than looking at the screen.
[14:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: technically, the only chance to go into space with a gun is with the light-gas gun
[15:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes. Google "lawrence livermore gas gun".
[15:01] Larry has joined #knownspace
[15:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Or you could use a linear accelerator, like the launcher underneath the Map of Mars in /The Ringworld Engineers/ and /Ringworld's Children/. Also /The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress/ and Larry's "All the Bridges Rusting", altho that last one is mounted on an asteroid, not a launch from Earth.
[15:02] #knownspace> Jim: Larry!
[15:02] #knownspace> Dan: Hello, Larry!
[15:02] #knownspace> Fred: Greetings Larry!
[15:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Welcome, Larry!
[15:02] dmac44 has joined #knownspace
[15:02] #knownspace> dmac44: Hey guys.
[15:02] #knownspace> Akiraa: electric launchers are good only if you really have a lot of power available
[15:02] #knownspace> Larry: Hello all.
[15:02] #knownspace> Dan: You caught us discussing the almost-possible engineering problems of writing steampunk stories.
[15:02] #knownspace> Akiraa: it's a way to concentrate a lot of power
[15:02] #knownspace> Jim: We was talking about using guns to launch spacecraft.
[15:03] #knownspace> Larry: We used to think power would be easy. Fusion was just around the corner.
[15:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Without superconductors, the linear accelerator is very expensive, due to the very long length of the barrel.
[15:03] #knownspace> Jim: at least we got nuclear fission from the bomb work
[15:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Explosions and/or high pressure gas is a lot cheaper.
[15:04] #knownspace> Dan: Fusion has been "around the corner" for most of my life. I wish we could make a real breakthrough on it!
[15:04] #knownspace> Lensman: What is the saying? "Fusion has been 10 years away for the last 60 years." Something like that.
[15:04] #knownspace> Fred: Like those flat screen TVs they've been promising 'next year' sincee th50s
[15:04] #knownspace> Larry: Superconductivity would be easy too. I daydreamed of a single fusion plant on the Greenland icecap, serving all continents thru undersea superconducting cables.
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Hmmm that was in "Procrustes" wasn't it, Larry?
[15:05] #knownspace> Fred: Hmm. Why Greeenland?
[15:05] #knownspace> Fred: Is it expendable?
[15:05] #knownspace> Jim: Carnot's Law
[15:05] #knownspace> Dan: No one lives there to protest, Fred. :)
[15:05] #knownspace> Jim: Dan, LOL
[15:06] #knownspace> Lensman: I think Jim means you use the ice cap for a heat sink, so a more efficient use of a heat engine. I agree.
[15:06] #knownspace> Fred: plus, look at my mercator map - greenland is bigger than Africa
[15:06] #knownspace> Larry: Greenland so you could cool the plant. Dump heat.
[15:06] #knownspace> Fred: lots of room to spread out
[15:06] #knownspace> Fred: ah. Thanks Larry
[15:07] #knownspace> dmac44: Why not just drill down into the Earth and sink superconducting cables there to pull the heat out for power there?
[15:07] #knownspace> Lensman: But the subject was launching a manned space capsule with Steampunk tech.
[15:07] #knownspace> Jim: heat rejection is an important problem in siting thermal power plants today; EPA (state and fed) do not want you using too much river water
[15:07] #knownspace> Akiraa: with superconducting magnets, the accelerator is still very expensive
[15:08] #knownspace> Jim: Did they have dry ice in Victorian times?
[15:08] #knownspace> Dan: I finally figured out what to do with the waste from fission reactors world-wide. Put a little under each seat in Congress. That way no humans would be harmed. :)
[15:08] #knownspace> dmac44: I read the Navy is experimenting with launching aircraft off of aircraft carriers with rail gun type devices (replaceing the steam cats).
[15:08] #knownspace> Lensman: Building the accelerator is very expensive. But each launch then becomes quite cheap. Just the cost of electricity, and amortization of the launcher.
[15:09] #knownspace> Akiraa: those are not rail guns
[15:09] #knownspace> Akiraa: just linear accelerator catapults
[15:09] #knownspace> Dan: I really like rail-guns, but then I've always loved Laumer's Bolo stories.
[15:09] #knownspace> Akiraa: rail guns have huge power requirements
[15:09] ronn has joined #knownspace
[15:09] #knownspace> dmac44: I think I said rail gun type devices
[15:09] #knownspace> Lensman: A rail gun is a specific type of linear accelerator. Most don't know the difference between types.
[15:09] #knownspace> Fred: Dry Ice goes back to 1834
[15:10] #knownspace> dmac44: Aircraft carriers have nuclear reactors, power shouldn't be a problem.
[15:10] #knownspace> Jim: OK
[15:10] #knownspace> Fred: but commercial use is more like WW1 erra
[15:10] #knownspace> ronn: Hello, all! What's up?
[15:10] #knownspace> Dan: Easily Victorian, then.
[15:10] #knownspace> Fred: ronn!
[15:10] #knownspace> Jim: Ronn!
[15:10] #knownspace> Akiraa: well, a railgun uses a conductive shell in between two rails at very high voltage
[15:11] #knownspace> Akiraa: there is direct contact between the projectile and the rails
[15:11] #knownspace> Akiraa: there are also gauss guns, which just use repealing magnets
[15:11] #knownspace> dmac44: there is direct contact today between the airplanes and the steam catapult.
[15:12] #knownspace> Akiraa: yes, but the current does not pass through the aircraft
[15:12] #knownspace> dmac44: correct but it can pass through what the aircraft is connected to.
[15:13] #knownspace> Dan: It's have to use a recoverable "sled: then?
[15:13] #knownspace> SeanS: the shoe connects to the electromagnetic whatever. contact between the shoe and the plane is the same.
[15:13] #knownspace> Dan: "sled"
[15:13] #knownspace> Akiraa: that's interesting, dmac44
[15:13] #knownspace> Akiraa: I don't think they're making these cats that way, but that's intriguing at least
[15:13] #knownspace> Lensman: Dan, just Google "ice gun". The first hit is what you want. A tunnel bored in Antarctic ice, mated to staged explosions to launch the capsule. It's a serious proposal, and I can't think of any reason you couldn't do it with Victorian tech.
[15:14] #knownspace> dmac44: I bring it up only because it is an example of accelerating something using a linear accelerator. It's still a far cry launching a spacecraft into orbit.
[15:15] #knownspace> Dan: This is all my fault, Larry. I announced to the room that I've sold some steampunk short stories. We kinda went into "what if" mode from there while we waited for Chat Time.
[15:15] #knownspace> Akiraa: there are interesting paralleles between electric-based and magnetic-based propulsion, like the difference between magsails and e-sails (analogous to the solar sail)
[15:16] #knownspace> Lensman: I did read about the proposal to replace the steam catapults on aircraft carriers. I don't think the proposal was for a railgun, but I don't recall exactly what the mechanism is.
[15:16] #knownspace> ronn: Giant rubber bands, perhaps?
[15:16] #knownspace> Akiraa: magsails use magnetic fields to repeal the solar wind, e-sails use electric fields
[15:16] #knownspace> Dan: Big rubber bands, wound up by squirrels!
[15:16] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, if Larry has a topic for discussion, he's welcome to inject it at any time.
[15:17] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Methane powered ships powered by Tex-Mex.
[15:17] #knownspace> ronn: Yes, please! Inject away!
[15:17] #knownspace> Dan: What are you working on at the moment, Larry?
[15:17] #knownspace> Jim: What is in the new "of Worlds" book? Just kidding. LOL.
[15:18] #knownspace> dmac44: The 10x reduction for the cost of launching payload with a ice gun is suspect in my opinion. If the method uses 1/10 the number of people then I'd buy it.
[15:18] #knownspace> SeanS: hmm, drill into the ice for a launcher... the greenies would go nuts
[15:19] #knownspace> Larry: I'm just enjoying listening.
[15:19] #knownspace> Dan: LOL! We live to entertain!
[15:19] #knownspace> Larry: I just finished proofing THE MOON MAZE GAME (with Steven Barne.) It'll be out soonish.
[15:20] #knownspace> Dan: Cool!
[15:20] #knownspace> SeanS: is the ice actually thick enough? ya know there is a continent underneath all that ice.
[15:20] #knownspace> Dan: Dream Part is a grand series.
[15:20] #knownspace> dmac44: Drill the tunnel under the auspices of scientific research (a long ice core bore). :)
[15:20] #knownspace> Larry: Steve and Jerry and I are working on a novella set between the two HEOROT books.
[15:21] Hippy has joined #knownspace
[15:21] #knownspace> Dan: Park, sheesh! You'd think the beer was causing these typos. But I haven't had that many yet.
[15:21] #knownspace> Jim: Hippy!
[15:21] #knownspace> Hippy: Jim!
[15:21] #knownspace> Larry: In the "Worlds" books: BETRAYER is ready to go, THE FATE OF WORLDS is on track.
[15:21] #knownspace> SeanS: hi Hippy
[15:21] #knownspace> Hippy: How's West Virginia?
[15:21] #knownspace> Hippy: G'day, Sean
[15:21] #knownspace> Jim: no snow!!!
[15:22] #knownspace> SeanS: Betrayer is on my shelf ;)
[15:22] #knownspace> Hippy: No snow here, either
[15:23] #knownspace> SeanS: rain here... I will send some your way, Jim. If it isnt there already
[15:23] #knownspace> Dan: Once again, I have to wait for the paperback editions. No room for hardbacks on my shelves. I need a bigger house!
[15:23] #knownspace> SeanS: Build a library outbuilding.
[15:23] #knownspace> Akiraa: Iice idea this ice gun. But dumping nuclear waste in Antarctica? The greenies will go nuts, it won't happen.
[15:23] #knownspace> Akiraa: *I like*
[15:23] #knownspace> Jim: I used to know this fellow who had his house and an outbuilding stuffed with books.
[15:23] #knownspace> Dan: Sean, it'd have to be bigger than the house, too!
[15:24] #knownspace> ronn: Speaking of Antarctic ice, I saw something earlier that said that someone has discovered that it grows from the bottom as well as the top. (Naturally I can't recall where or find it right now . . . )
[15:24] #knownspace> SeanS: I have to keep rotating books on and off the shelves to boxes in the basement.
[15:25] #knownspace> SeanS: Niven books stay on the shelf of course
[15:25] #knownspace> ronn: Wait for the house next door to go on the market, then buy it & fill it with shelves?
[15:25] #knownspace> Dan: Some of my books got smoke-damages in the house fire back in 2007. That was a bad year for us.
[15:25] #knownspace> dmac44: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=antarctic-ice-grow-from-bottom
[15:25] #knownspace> Dan: ronn, the house next door is a quarter mile away.
[15:25] #knownspace> Dan: :)
[15:25] #knownspace> SeanS: Dan has sent me pics of his shelving issues. H literally can not put another book shelf in his house
[15:25] #knownspace> Hippy: And some of mine got rain-damaged here last month. Not a happy day, that one
[15:25] #knownspace> SeanS: He
[15:26] #knownspace> ronn: Yeah, I thought it was SciAm but couldn't find it . . .
[15:26] #knownspace> Dan: I've run out of walls!
[15:26] #knownspace> Jim: SeanS and Dan, that was the way this elderly fellow's house and outbuilding were.
[15:26] #knownspace> ronn: And for Dan, put in a halon system?
[15:26] #knownspace> Dan: I've even built shelves in a couple of closets.
[15:27] #knownspace> Dan: Adding onto the house seems to be the cheapest solution.
[15:27] #knownspace> dmac44: Or go to e-books.
[15:27] #knownspace> Hippy: You're the Forrest Ackerman of the Delta hub, Dan
[15:28] #knownspace> SeanS: I enjoy ebooks but there is nothing like going to the bathroom with a print book in hand
[15:28] #knownspace> Larry: My most recent books are all still in boxes in the exercise room. Now what?
[15:28] #knownspace> Dan: Although Mom has broached the subject of having a smaller house built for her & Dad, then selling me the family home.
[15:28] #knownspace> Fred: I can't afford to take the family home
[15:28] #knownspace> Fred: taxes alone would kill me
[15:28] #knownspace> Fred: :(
[15:28] #knownspace> ronn: Larry: lift the boxes repeatedly as exercise?
[15:29] #knownspace> Fred: ronn, beat me to that one
[15:29] #knownspace> Dan: Dad's alzheimers is holding steady, but he's needing a smaller home to take care of.
[15:29] SolBelter has joined #knownspace
[15:29] #knownspace> Fred: just started mom on a new Alzemers med, working ell
[15:29] #knownspace> Fred: wlel
[15:29] #knownspace> Merlin_McCarley: Alternate between alphabetical and author alpha, mental and phisical
[15:29] #knownspace> Fred: WELL
[15:29] #knownspace> Dan: Mom won't let him drive anywhere alone any more.
[15:29] #knownspace> Fred: tanj dammit
[15:30] #knownspace> ronn: Fred: Someone had to.
[15:30] #knownspace> SeanS: fingers tripping over each other, Fred?
[15:30] #knownspace> Dan: Fred, do you remember the name of the meds?
[15:30] #knownspace> Dan: I could mention it to Mom.
[15:31] #knownspace> ronn: So not going to make the obvious reply to that question (about the meds) . . .
[15:31] #knownspace> SolBelter: my mom and dad had an agreement to cut up the other's driver's license, if need be...
[15:31] #knownspace> Dan: Mom just yelled. So much less work than sissors. :)
[15:31] #knownspace> SolBelter: but mom gave hers up voluntarily
[15:32] #knownspace> SolBelter: and faded from alz
[15:32] #knownspace> Fred: Dan, just looked
[15:32] #knownspace> Fred: Exelon patch
[15:32] #knownspace> Fred: replaced her Aricept
[15:33] #knownspace> Dan: Thank you! Copying that to a Notepad file right now!
[15:33] #knownspace> Lensman: The "ice gun" concept proposes using wet newspaper, which will freeze to the sides of the tunnel, to reinforce the ice so the tunnel will withstand the pressure of launch.
[15:33] #knownspace> Fred: sure thing
[15:34] #knownspace> Jim: You could make the mixture of ice and sawdust that was tried in WWII to seal the tunnel.
[15:34] #knownspace> ronn: See? I knew all those hoarders were saving all those stacks of newspaper for something!
[15:34] #knownspace> Larry: Ice and wet newspaper...a home hobby launch, for Yetis
[15:34] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[15:34] #knownspace> Fred: Mom had become very chronologically impaired, rapid onset, and after just a few days on the Exelon ramp up samples she was carrying around the right calendar page again, and her physical therapist remarked on how she was more alert and talkative
[15:34] #knownspace> Lensman: Is the ice thick enough? As I understand it, we're talking about an ice /cap/, not just a bit of ice on the ground. So, yes. As far as I know, anyway.
[15:35] #knownspace> Dan: Piecrete, wasn't it?
[15:35] #knownspace> Dan: Or some phonetic equalivalent?
[15:36] #knownspace> Lensman: Was that what the Brits were gonna make their WW II super-aircraft-carrier out of? Piecrete?
[15:36] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't know how to spell that either.
[15:36] #knownspace> ronn: What precisely is Piecrete?
[15:36] #knownspace> Dan: Sawdust and ice.
[15:36] #knownspace> Fred: fifty bucks
[15:37] #knownspace> Fred: same as in town
[15:37] #knownspace> Lensman: Water and sawdust frozen into ice.
[15:37] #knownspace> Jim: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pykrete
[15:38] #knownspace> Dan: Named after the inventor, as I recall.
[15:38] #knownspace> SeanS: Christopher Pike? ;)
[15:38] #knownspace> Dan: Smart-ass.
[15:38] #knownspace> SeanS: LOL
[15:38] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[15:39] #knownspace> Lensman: The idea was to make a colossal ship with very thick walls made of pykrete, so it would be immune to torpedoes and it would sustain little damage from bombs dropped on the flight deck.
[15:39] #knownspace> dmac44: And the crew would freeze their asses off.
[15:39] #knownspace> Jim: Pykrete has a compressive strength of 7.6 GPa, a tensile strength of 4.8 GPa, and a density of 980 kg/m^3
[15:40] #knownspace> Dan: If I remember the article about the aircraft carrier correctly, the thing was more of an artificial islant (or iceberg) than a boat.
[15:40] #knownspace> Lensman: There seems to be some question about its practicality.
[15:40] #knownspace> Dan: Huge thing!
[15:40] #knownspace> ronn: Only if they sat down on the job?
[15:41] #knownspace> Dan: Had a batch of internal refridgeration devices to keep the hull frozen.
[15:41] #knownspace> Jim: It would be an excellent material to make cold weather structures out of, such as ice hotels.
[15:41] #knownspace> Hippy: Then use it in the defense of Singapore. Brilliant!
[15:41] #knownspace> dmac44: It would be stealthed in the infrared.
[15:41] #knownspace> Lensman: I suppose if people could live in igloos and ice hotels, there's no reason you couldn't live in that sort of ship.
[15:42] #knownspace> Dan: Really? Just look for a big thing that showed up as cold as an iceberg, then target it. Of course, you'd have to use thermite weapons on it.
[15:43] #knownspace> Lensman: I thought the idea was that it would take so long to melt, due to its large size, that they didn't need to worry about it. But I don't think they planned to use it in the warm waters of the south pacific, either!
[15:43] #knownspace> dmac44: Singapore is not that far from the Equator.
[15:43] #knownspace> Dan: North Atlantic was supposed to be its arena.
[15:43] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, that's a bit more sensible
[15:44] #knownspace> Dan: Steam up into the North Sea, then launch planes to hit Germany.
[15:44] #knownspace> Jim: What really killed the idea was advances in the range of long range aircraft. You only need a Pykrete aircraft carrier when your planes cannot cross the Atlantic the normal manner.
[15:44] #knownspace> SeanS: that and mid-air refueling
[15:45] #knownspace> Fred: ob Tom Swift and his Ocean Airport
[15:45] #knownspace> Dan: Indeed!
[15:45] #knownspace> Hippy: LOL!
[15:45] #knownspace> Dan: of course, using that same sort of thing for an artificial asteroid would work in a SF story.
[15:45] #knownspace> Jim: SeanS, yes
[15:46] #knownspace> Lensman: Did they have mid-air refueling in WW II? I don't think they did.
[15:46] #knownspace> Jim: Lensman, no
[15:46] #knownspace> Dan: Make your own Ice-teroids, attach engines, and slowly explore your solar system.
[15:47] #knownspace> dmac44: Ice-teroids would take a lot of newspapers. :)
[15:47] #knownspace> Hippy: IF it's made of ice and wet newspaper you've got something to read on the trip
[15:47] #knownspace> Lensman: LOL
[15:48] #knownspace> Dan: Just don't name the bloody thing "the Icarus" and get too close to the sun.
[15:48] #knownspace> dmac44: lol
[15:48] #knownspace> Jim: One would need to have some method for producing a large amount of fiber to go with the ice.
[15:48] #knownspace> SolBelter: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Habakkuk
[15:48] #knownspace> Hippy: Millions and millions of Valentine's Day notices and shopping coupons
[15:48] #knownspace> Dan: Junk mail!
[15:48] #knownspace> SolBelter: yes! re Tom :)
[15:48] #knownspace> Lensman: Several boxes of "Colon Blow" cereal should do the trick. ;)
[15:49] #knownspace> SeanS: I remember reading a book ages ago where during the ice age humans took off from earth in ice ships but it is a very hazy memory
[15:50] #knownspace> Dan: Hmmm... That's one I've not yet read.
[15:50] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry: So, is /The Fate of Worlds/ set *after* /Ringworld's Children/?
[15:50] #knownspace> SeanS: it was like a look into the past from the novels present time
[15:51] #knownspace> SeanS: very indistinct memory
[15:52] #knownspace> Larry: "Fate of Worlds" is set after "Ringworld's Children", yes.
[15:52] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry: How about that "Mother hunt" story? Is it finished?
[15:53] #knownspace> Hippy: What, what? Another Gil Hamilton???
[15:53] #knownspace> Dan: Can't wait to read it. Got to go back out ot the local B&N to look for the latest release. All the rest ofthe local bookstores have closed.
[15:53] #knownspace> Lensman: Latest release is /Betrayer of Worlds/.
[15:53] #knownspace> Jim: Is it not funny what happend to Borders?
[15:54] #knownspace> Hippy: Dan: this can't be because people are shopping overseas and online, which is the excuse given for why all our bookshops are closing
[15:54] #knownspace> SeanS: there is a heck of a borders up in louisville, hopefully it wont be affected
[15:54] #knownspace> Lensman: Borders' bankruptcy is yet another illustration, not that we needed one, of what happens when management stops caring about providing their customers with service.
[15:55] #knownspace> Larry: I stalled on "The Mother Hunt".
[15:55] #knownspace> Jim: Louisville's Borders may not be affected because the stores that failed were the result of poor real estate decisions.
[15:56] #knownspace> Lensman: No, Borders didn't fail because of competition with online book sellers. There is still value in being able to browse thru a shelf full of books in a real bookstore. The reason Borders failed is because they abandoned their policies of making sure their staff knew the section they were working, and abandoned their local sales promotions.
[15:56] #knownspace> SolBelter: well, as an indie bookstore [Science Fantasy, 1977-89], i have little sympathy for borders
[15:56] #knownspace> SolBelter: live by competition, die by it
[15:57] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes
[15:57] #knownspace> Lensman: I read a long analysis of this subject. They changed from the idea that every employee specializes in a few types of books, and adopted the idea that every employee should be able to work any section. A customer who wants recommendations no longer was served by someone who knew the field well.
[15:58] #knownspace> Hippy: People here were saying that tehy gave up on Borders when it stopped stockiing things they wanted to buy. Whatever you wanted, you had to order in. It took weeks to get a book Amazon could ship you in days and you paid five times the Amazon price
[15:58] #knownspace> Dan: We has B&N, Books-a-million, and a dozen mom & pop indie bookstores. Now only the B&N and 3 indie boostores are left in a 3 county area.
[15:58] #knownspace> SolBelter: oooh - bad move indeed
[15:58] #knownspace> Lensman: This analysis was supported by a local fan who has worked in a college bookstore-- a *successful* college bookstore, which sells more than just textbooks-- for years and years. I think she knows what she was talking about.
[15:58] #knownspace> Hippy: Plus, here they had borrowed so heavily to secure prime sites the level of debt was staggering
[15:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: are there any semi-direct sequels planned for Ringworld's Children?
[15:59] #knownspace> Dan: Oh! I have the solution! "StarBooks!" A free paperback with every latte sold! :)
[16:00] #knownspace> Jim: e-book maybe
[16:00] #knownspace> Jim: maybe an e-novella
[16:01] #knownspace> Lensman: You do realize, I hope, that Larry has *always* said he never plans to write a sequel to /Ringworld/. Until he actually starts writing one, of course.
[16:01] #knownspace> Dan: Given the mentality of the average Starbuck consumer in this area, an e-coloring book would be enough of a challenge for them.
[16:01] #knownspace> Larry: Akires: no.
[16:01] #knownspace> Hippy: Once booksellers remember that books aren't persishable items and can be kept on shelves for years if need be, then they'll have a business model that will keep them in business. The idea that you've got to move books like beers is what's killing them off
[16:02] #knownspace> Larry: I like "Starbooks". :)
[16:02] #knownspace> Hippy: An e-colouring book is an intgeresting idea
[16:02] #knownspace> Dan: It's yours to use if you want it, Larry. I don't even ask to be credited.
[16:03] #knownspace> Hippy: An e-notebook, with someone's dates and reminders already in it, would be fun to browse over a coffee
[16:03] #knownspace> Jim: When all you sell is Ann Coulter books, I think that you have to treat the book as perishable.
[16:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Hippy: Yeah. I understand that the publishers have moved to a larger number of titles with a much shorter print run on most of 'em. Seems an odd approach to business to me.
[16:05] #knownspace> dmac44: Our Borders sold coffee and still closed.
[16:05] #knownspace> ronn: Yeah, but can you color outside the lines with an e-coloring book?
[16:05] #knownspace> Dan: Well, they's already stink when the dealer shelved them, 'eh Jim?
[16:05] #knownspace> Jim: Would one need to purchase a Venti latte with unlimited refills to get a free paperback copy of Dune?
[16:05] #knownspace> Lensman: ronn: That's an add-on pack.
[16:05] #knownspace> Dan: Ah, "Dune." One of my favorite short stories. :)
[16:06] #knownspace> Lensman: Tanj, I guess /Ringworld/ is just a vignette!
[16:06] #knownspace> ronn: Or you could do it as another layer in Photoshop . . .
[16:06] #knownspace> Lensman: I have yet to master layers in PS.
[16:08] #knownspace> Hippy: If you had your pub, because, you know, beers bears coffee every time, and it had a wireless hub or whatever you call them, then the publisher could send their e-books from just that hub, allowing you to get a free e-book with every beer purchased
[16:08] #knownspace> ronn: What are you trying to do with them?
[16:08] #knownspace> Lensman: Seems like advertising would be more effective with fewer titles, promoted well 'nuff to sell lots of copies. With more titles, that means most don't get any promotion.
[16:08] #knownspace> Hippy: Or serialise the e-boo, so you had to keep buhing beers until you a) finish the book or b) forget how to read
[16:08] #knownspace> Dan: Lens, re-reading has made me long for new stuff I've never read before. Sadly, Dune lasts me less than 8 hours now. Ringworld lasts me 2 hours, but then I love it more.
[16:08] #knownspace> Hippy: Alas, it would be the pub with no Niven, though :(
[16:09] #knownspace> Dan: There *are* no pubs without Niven!
[16:09] #knownspace> SolBelter: @hippy, or give the customer itumes or amazon cred
[16:09] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[16:09] #knownspace> ronn: And for those of us who avoid both beer and coffee?
[16:09] #knownspace> Lensman: ronn: It would be nice to be able to work with an element that I've already created, after I've gone on to something else. I keep getting messages that "this layer is locked" or I just can't select it. I wind up saving the entire thing as a .jpg just so I can work on other parts of it!
[16:11] #knownspace> Lensman: Bars in Niven stories. Well, I would be lousy at that Jeopardy category. I can't even remember the name of the bar in "The Fourth Profession".
[16:11] #knownspace> Dan: The Long Spoon.
[16:11] #knownspace> Dan: I *owe* Larry for that one!
[16:12] #knownspace> ronn: Lens: Lets go into that later off-list. I get that sometimes, too. It's a pain when you don't think you told it to do that.
[16:12] #knownspace> Lensman: There was a bar in "Inconstant Moon". And "Madness Has Its Place".
[16:12] #knownspace> Lensman: ronn: I agree this chat isn't the place for a discussion of PhotoShop.
[16:12] #knownspace> Hippy: 'For A Foggy Night', too
[16:12] #knownspace> Dan: Indeed!
[16:12] #knownspace> Hippy: And. ..'ARM'
[16:13] #knownspace> Hippy: 'Oath of Fealty'
[16:13] #knownspace> dmac44: Of course there were a lot of bars in "For a Foggy Night"
[16:13] #knownspace> Hippy: Okay, there's heaps of them, but I can't find any Niven e-books
[16:13] #knownspace> Hippy: At least, not for the Kindle
[16:13] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah but they were all in different dimensions
[16:13] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't remember the bars in "ARM" or /Oath of Fealty/.
[16:13] #knownspace> Dan: If my own spaceport bar series sells, I'm gonna have to mention my debt to Larry & Spider Robinson in particular in a forward.
[16:13] #knownspace> Lensman: All variations on the same bar!
[16:13] #knownspace> dmac44: Yes but different realities
[16:14] #knownspace> SolBelter: Oath had that Yggdrasil tree one
[16:14] #knownspace> SeanS: spider robinson made up a hell of a bar. I hear people actually look for it
[16:14] #knownspace> Hippy: That's it
[16:14] #knownspace> Lensman: Ah, thanks SolBelter. *That* I remember!
[16:14] #knownspace> Hippy: Any bars in the Warlock series?
[16:15] #knownspace> Hippy: Cziller's House of Irish Coffee from whichever one it was
[16:15] #knownspace> Dan: Sean, they make a chat room version o Undernet. I've been there. Great place to vent when life deals you a raw one.
[16:15] #knownspace> Hippy: The virtual one in that 'Choosing Life' or. . .with Brenda Cooper
[16:15] #knownspace> Lensman: The were-sea lion's resteraunt isn't a bar.
[16:15] #knownspace> SeanS: I have dropped in to #callahans before
[16:15] #knownspace> Lensman: Dang I can't even spell restaurant!
[16:15] #knownspace> SolBelter: lions Restaurant - did it serve alcohol? [warlock]
[16:16] #knownspace> SeanS: there is a newsgroup callahans as well
[16:16] #knownspace> Lensman: Probably
[16:16] #knownspace> Dan: Lens, I can never spell it either, don't fret.
[16:16] #knownspace> SolBelter: right, Lens
[16:17] #knownspace> Lensman: Lessee... the automat in "Intent to Deceive" wasn't a bar, either.
[16:18] #knownspace> Dan: Oh wow! Real British chips with lunch today. Lyn just put them in the oven and the house smells of baked potato wedges & spices.
[16:18] #knownspace> Lensman: But the bar in Louis' estate on Earth served heated bourbon and warm carrot juice!
[16:19] #knownspace> Hippy: What an exotic cocktail
[16:19] #knownspace> Hippy: 'The Angry Rabbit'
[16:19] #knownspace> SeanS: I like Elephant's bar with the glass that would not empty
[16:19] #knownspace> Dan: Wars have been fought in the SCA over people in one kingdom mixing their Glenlevet with Orange Crush, LOL!
[16:20] #knownspace> dmac44: Dan: Rightly so!
[16:20] #knownspace> Hippy: I hate Scotch, but that's sacrilegfe even to me
[16:20] #knownspace> Jim: Bourbon and Mountain Dew
[16:20] #knownspace> Lensman: But, Dan! The SCAdians are *always* looking for an excuse to go to war! They have to do it so frequently.
[16:20] #knownspace> SeanS: Good bourbon and good scotch should be straight up or with good water only
[16:20] #knownspace> Hippy: Ooh, has anyone herad from Euan since the earthquake?
[16:20] #knownspace> Dan: I prefer Irish Whiskey, myself. But that's one mix that my bartenders pretend doesn't exist.
[16:20] #knownspace> SeanS: Euaan is fine
[16:20] #knownspace> SolBelter: now we have negative refractive index materials to even better hide the transfer node in the stem
[16:21] #knownspace> Jim: Hippy, yes
[16:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Hippy: Yes, he's okay.
[16:21] #knownspace> SolBelter: re Elrphant everfill glass
[16:21] #knownspace> SeanS: He had little damage
[16:21] #knownspace> Hippy: Thanks, Sean
[16:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Knocked his server offline, but he had it back on within a few hours.
[16:21] #knownspace> Hippy: Jim, Lens
[16:21] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, that's good news
[16:22] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah and that was a virtual box issue... he is switching to more robust virtualization software the name of witch i can not remember
[16:22] #knownspace> Hippy: No bars in the Warlock's universe. This must be redressed
[16:23] #knownspace> SolBelter: hmmm...racking brain -no bars in Tep's Town...
[16:23] #knownspace> Lensman: There might well be one in /The Burning City/, I just can't remember one. And I still haven't read /Burning Tower/.
[16:23] #knownspace> Dan: Maybe a Fantasy-cognate to Draco Tavern?
[16:24] #knownspace> Dan: "Ye Olde Dragon Bar and Girl?"
[16:24] #knownspace> Dan: :)
[16:24] #knownspace> Larry: The Warlock's universe wasn't up to inventing bars.
[16:24] #knownspace> Lensman: LOL
[16:24] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, that explains that
[16:25] #knownspace> dmac44: No wonder the magic went away :)
[16:25] #knownspace> Hippy: I don't think Svetz ever enjoyed a quiet libation either
[16:25] #knownspace> Lensman: All the magic had to go away before anyone could invent a bar ?? 80
[16:25] #knownspace> Lensman: 8-0
[16:25] #knownspace> Lensman: 8O
[16:25] #knownspace> Lensman: Hmm, no "shocked" smiley, apparently.
[16:26] #knownspace> Dan: I'd say chain the serving wench to the counter, but that's more of a "Gor" universe thing than Larry writes.
[16:26] #knownspace> SolBelter: if magic could cure hangovers, drinking even more popular
[16:26] #knownspace> SolBelter: therefor bars
[16:26] #knownspace> SeanS: That is most efinately Gor
[16:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Indeed!
[16:26] #knownspace> Dan: Cure? Nay! Prevent!
[16:26] #knownspace> ronn: O_O
[16:27] #knownspace> SeanS: d
[16:27] #knownspace> Lensman: What is the code please, ronn?
[16:27] #knownspace> Larry: you need a bar that can stand up to sword-and-clubfighting.
[16:27] #knownspace> dmac44: That's why there aren't any bars. Too popular. Burns the magic out too quickly.
[16:27] #knownspace> Hippy: Prevenintg hangovers is easy. Just stay drunk
[16:27] #knownspace> ronn: Cap "O", underscore, Cap "O"
[16:27] #knownspace> Dan: Hippy, I like the way you think!
[16:27] #knownspace> Lensman: O_O
[16:27] #knownspace> Jim: O_O
[16:27] #knownspace> Lensman: Thanks Ronn!
[16:28] #knownspace> ronn: Thank the ChatZilla FAQ.
[16:28] #knownspace> SolBelter: I like Dan's 'prevent', not 'cure'
[16:28] #knownspace> SeanS: Bloody Mary always worked for me
[16:29] #knownspace> Hippy: Considr a bar with a dozen drunk wizards, all using up the mana in a single night as they try to outdo each other to impress a pretty girl at the end of the bar
[16:29] #knownspace> Hippy: Bars would thus be dangerous
[16:29] #knownspace> Dan: "Any bar can have the occasional blood-spot on the floor. But blood on the ceiling? Now *that's* a rough bar!"
[16:29] #knownspace> SeanS: Depends on gravity in the bar
[16:30] #knownspace> Hippy: It's the Kent in Rathdowne St, Carlton
[16:30] #knownspace> Dan: Anyone remember where that quote came from? I remember the line, but not the source.
[16:30] #knownspace> Hippy: I thought you'd just made it up
[16:30] #knownspace> SeanS: no joy
[16:31] #knownspace> Dan: Nah. I think it's from a movie. I hear it in Willie Nelson's voice.
[16:31] #knownspace> SeanS: I had to google 'this is liberty hall. you can spit on the mat and call the cat a bastard' to figure out where I had read that
[16:31] #knownspace> ronn: Sounds like the beginning of an episode of "CSI" (or one of its variants) . . .
[16:32] #knownspace> ronn: Most cats don't care what you call them: they don't answer anyway . . .
[16:32] #knownspace> Dan: As long as you don't call them late for dinner...
[16:32] #knownspace> Lensman: Sean: A Heinlein book, isn't it?
[16:33] #knownspace> ronn: That call is the sound of a can opener.
[16:33] #knownspace> Dan: I know that line from an L. Neil Smith book, too.
[16:33] #knownspace> Dan: Neil channels Heinlein quite often.
[16:34] #knownspace> dmac44: Okay, we have a bar (with a blood spot on the ceiling) at the loading station of the ice tunnel in Antarctica ......
[16:34] #knownspace> Hippy: I think it is a Heinlein. 'Citizen of the Galazy', possibly
[16:34] #knownspace> Lensman: I should read more LN Smith. I read /His Majesty's Bucketeer/ which was pretty original, if not all that great.
[16:35] #knownspace> Dan: And the signature drink of this Antarctic bar is called "the Big Bang"?
[16:35] #knownspace> Larry: Love the talk of bars, but it's my lunchtime. Farewell.
[16:35] #knownspace> Lensman: Wikipedia thinks it comes from Chandler's "John Grimes" books.
[16:35] #knownspace> Dan: A free one to every patron who can remain standing during a launch!
[16:35] #knownspace> Hippy: It's squeezed penguin and Japanese whisky
[16:36] #knownspace> Lensman: Bye Larry!
[16:36] #knownspace> Dan: Bye, Larry!
[16:36] #knownspace> Hippy: 'Bye, Larry
[16:36] #knownspace> ronn: Bye, Larry!
[16:37] #knownspace> Hippy: I might ust lurk for hald an hour or so whilst I ready myself for the day
[16:37] #knownspace> SolBelter: LNSmith Proability Broach series uneven but fun
[16:37] #knownspace> Dan: Agreed, Sol.
[16:37] #knownspace> SolBelter: LNSMith's 'Probability Broach' series uneven but fun
[16:38] #knownspace> Dan: I have all of Neil's books, including one that is his non-fiction political rants that I'm partly responsible for having been published.
[16:38] #knownspace> SolBelter: testing....
[16:38] #knownspace> SeanS: its from the John Grimes books
[16:39] #knownspace> SeanS: sorry, had to walk the gf out
[16:39] #knownspace> Lensman: Okay. I coulda sworn I read that more recently than any Grimes book, so I thought it was Heinlein.
[16:39] #knownspace> Dan: Neil must have been quoting it, then. I know it's a line from "Probability Broach."
[16:40] #knownspace> SolBelter: sorry for repeat - i froze for five mins
[16:40] #knownspace> Dan: 'Bout time I read that series again. Soon...
[16:40] #knownspace> Lensman: Oh, I thought you were just correcting your typo, SB. Unnecessarily.
[16:41] #knownspace> SolBelter: naw, lagged :)
[16:42] #knownspace> SeanS: My ISP needs to do some upgrading. most times I am not getting full bandwidth.
[16:43] #knownspace> SolBelter: mine is concast and it improved this year, not saying maxed out
[16:44] #knownspace> SeanS: they maxed me out for years. guess they have been a bit lax with their backbone. it really shows on weekends and after most people get off work
[16:44] #knownspace> Dan: I'm on Windstream, and they've been speeding up my DSL in increments for the last couple of years.
[16:45] #knownspace> SeanS: i mean i am still getting 600K downloads... down from 1000 but my upload is fine. most people only upload mail and facebook posts
[16:45] #knownspace> Lensman: Heck, I would be happy if my ISP just didn't go offline every time we have a thunderstorm!
[16:45] #knownspace> Dan: My DL speed has gone up by 50kps and my uploads by 10kps.
[16:46] #knownspace> SolBelter: i'm getting 600kps dowm, and far fewer dropouts this year
[16:47] #knownspace> Dan: I average 375 DL and 40 UL right now.
[16:47] #knownspace> SolBelter: 9am, noon, 6pm 8pm used to dropput often for a few
[16:47] #knownspace> SeanS: Firestone pulled all the original Battlestar Galaticas off me and he said he was getting 60+ off me which is about as fast as I can go. I had to ask him to throttle down cuz he was choking off my stuff
[16:48] EML has joined #knownspace
[16:48] #knownspace> SeanS: Hi Ed
[16:48] #knownspace> EML: S'up?
[16:48] #knownspace> SeanS: Larry just took off
[16:48] #knownspace> SolBelter: meant 9pm not 8pm
[16:48] #knownspace> Jim: Ed!
[16:48] #knownspace> SolBelter: hi EML
[16:49] #knownspace> Dan: I do have to throttle everything down to those numbers or we can use the LAN for anywhing else.
[16:49] #knownspace> Dan: Hiya Ed!
[16:49] #knownspace> Lensman: Hi Ed!
[16:50] #knownspace> EML: The subject line reads Wrath of God ... should I recognize that? (Now if it were Fist of God, I would.)
[16:50] #knownspace> Dan: We thrilled Larry with talk of spaceport bars. What can we do you for?
[16:50] #knownspace> SeanS: I forgot to mention the chat to Steven Barnes this month. my bad. he seemed interested but was busy last month
[16:51] #knownspace> SeanS: subject line here says Welcome to #knownspace
[16:51] #knownspace> Jim: mine says "Wrath of God" also
[16:52] #knownspace> EML: Dunno why it says "Wrath of God" in my window header. I suppose it hardly matters.
[16:52] #knownspace> SeanS: hows that
[16:52] #knownspace> SolBelter: <=='welcome to#knownspace'
[16:52] #knownspace> EML: But it IS a cool topic.
[16:52] #knownspace> Lensman: Hmmm, I never saw any "Wrath of God" subject line. I just saw the usual "Welcome to Known Space" when I came in earlier.
[16:53] #knownspace> EML: Sorry there wasn't time for Louis to visit more bars in Betrayer ;-)
[16:53] #knownspace> SeanS: I guess it depends on the client if it refreshes or not
[16:53] #knownspace> SolBelter: lol EML!
[16:53] #knownspace> Dan: Oh well, a good pun, wasted on IRC...
[16:53] #knownspace> SeanS: We'll stick with Dan's topic
[16:53] #knownspace> SeanS: Chandler as it almost is
[16:54] #knownspace> EML: Sean: I think maybe it's a message associated wiht the chat client -- perhaps a proxy server is involved.
[16:54] #knownspace> SolBelter: i c the revised
[16:54] #knownspace> dmac44: Hi Ed. So what's the best bar anyone here has been in?
[16:54] #knownspace> Dan: Bertram or Raymond?
[16:54] #knownspace> Jim: Real World Bar?
[16:54] #knownspace> ronn: FWIW when I got home a while ago the neighbor's cat was on the mat (by the front door).
[16:54] #knownspace> dmac44: Yeah.
[16:54] #knownspace> SeanS: Bertram
[16:55] #knownspace> Dan: I can't remember having been in a bad bar. But I can remember having been told later that I'd been in some really good ones.
[16:55] #knownspace> Lensman: Callahan's Bar sounds like a great place to visit. In real life, I avoid bars.
[16:55] #knownspace> SeanS: Carlos and Charlies... Cozumel, Mexico. but I was trashed and on a cruise and didnt give a shit
[16:56] #knownspace> SolBelter: never been in many bars...
[16:56] #knownspace> dmac44: I don't go to many anymore but in my Navy days I hit a few.
[16:56] #knownspace> SeanS: ah, another navy man
[16:56] #knownspace> EML: Where' s a detox pill when you could really use one?
[16:57] #knownspace> Dan: There was some really complicated mixed drink at the Con this weekend. I had about 3 and wound up falling down a small flight of stairs. Fortunately, the ground broke my fall.
[16:57] #knownspace> dmac44: SeanS: Long ago and far away.
[16:57] #knownspace> Lensman: ROTFL!
[16:57] #knownspace> SeanS: went to a great british bar in Lehave <sp> France.
[16:57] #knownspace> SeanS: same for me dmac44. I got out in 90
[16:57] #knownspace> dmac44: I guess what I was thinking is what made it such a great bar?
[16:57] #knownspace> SolBelter: EML, we discussed curing or preventing hangovrs with Warlock universe magic
[16:57] #knownspace> ronn: Sounds more like LOFPO.
[16:58] #knownspace> dmac44: SeanS: I got out in 75.
[16:58] #knownspace> SolBelter: while discussing why no bar scenes in that timeline
[16:58] #knownspace> SeanS: i was still drooling and crayoning the walls in 75
[16:58] #knownspace> Dan: I think the best I've ever been in would have to be a tie between the Sherlock Holmes Pub in London, or the Red Lion in Portsmouth.
[16:58] #knownspace> SeanS: well not really
[16:58] #knownspace> EML: I have to admit, I read very little fantasy.
[16:58] #knownspace> ronn: Sean: Some of us are still doing those things . . .
[16:59] #knownspace> SeanS: i have read fantasy but am much more of a hard sci fi person
[16:59] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't read much but I do read some. In fact, I just started George R.R. Martin's /A Song of Fire & Ice/ series.
[16:59] #knownspace> dmac44: The tag line for the Navy used to be "Join the Navy and see the World." They expected you to be smart enough to know that the Navy is 3/4 water.
[17:00] #knownspace> dmac44: That the world is 3/4 water.
[17:00] #knownspace> Dan: Although I was in the White Hart in the East End of London too. It had great drinks and food, but the staff didn't want me to take photos.
[17:00] #knownspace> Lensman: It was funnier the first time, Dmac.
[17:00] #knownspace> EML: Hell, *we're* 90% water.
[17:00] #knownspace> SeanS: I was on a big cruise ship called the America... I just had to fix valves and pumps and stuff
[17:01] #knownspace> SolBelter: @dmac And that u werent going to be floating on the other part
[17:01] #knownspace> dmac44: that's what the bars are for.
[17:02] #knownspace> SeanS: pretty much what i did when hitting port... draw money, head for food, bar and sex. not necessarily in that order
[17:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed, do you have any plans for Known Space short stories, after /The Fate of Worlds/ is done?
[17:03] #knownspace> dmac44: being at sea for any length of time tends to focus your interests when you hit shore.
[17:03] #knownspace> EML: Lens: I won't rule that out, but (post-Fate) I plan to spend more time in Lerner space for a while.
[17:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed, have you published many short stories?
[17:04] #knownspace> SolBelter: more InterstellarNet stories Ed?
[17:06] #knownspace> EML: Lens: I've been in Analog (a couple dozen times), Asimov's, Artemis (RIP), Baen's Universe (RIP) and other.
[17:06] #knownspace> SeanS: I still need to pick those InterstellerNet books up
[17:07] #knownspace> EML: Sol: I expect to get back to Interstellarnet, but the next book looks to be a standalone.
[17:08] #knownspace> ronn: Okay . . . I'm going to have to go inactive for awhile . . . I am (hopefully, assuming things work) logging this chat so I can read it later, but I signed in after getting back from the store and I just /have/ to go lie down for awhile before I fall over. If I get back before long, I'll come back to the keyboard, if not . . .
[17:08] #knownspace> EML: Bye ronn
[17:08] #knownspace> SolBelter: see u ronn
[17:08] #knownspace> Jim: bye
[17:08] #knownspace> SeanS: ronn, I log all the chats and they are available on the website
[17:08] #knownspace> Hippy: 'Bye, ronn
[17:08] #knownspace> ronn: What I meant is that I am going to leave it logged in so I'll get the log . . .
[17:09] #knownspace> SolBelter: Sean, dont buy th InterstellNet books
[17:09] #knownspace> SeanS: i know what you meant. just saying.
[17:09] #knownspace> SeanS: why not?
[17:09] #knownspace> EML: What'd Larry have to talk about today?
[17:09] #knownspace> SeanS: not much
[17:09] #knownspace> SeanS: he seemed to be gleaning info for more draco tavern
[17:09] #knownspace> Hippy: There was a discussion about bars in each of the Niven universes
[17:09] #knownspace> SolBelter: trade knowledge or a favor with someone, then *they* buy it for u :))
[17:09] #knownspace> Jim: some books will be released soon
[17:10] #knownspace> SeanS: heh
[17:10] #knownspace> Lensman: No, actually Larry did not initiate any conversation at all today. He just responded.
[17:10] #knownspace> SolBelter: think like a centaur
[17:10] #knownspace> dmac44: Ed, besides Larry who are your favorite science fiction writers?
[17:10] #knownspace> Fred: EML
[17:10] #knownspace> EML: Sol: better a Centaur than a Snake.
[17:11] #knownspace> Fred: :)
[17:11] #knownspace> SolBelter: oh so true EML!
[17:11] #knownspace> EML: Jim: what books are you talking about?
[17:11] #knownspace> dmac44: you're just biased against red star people. :)
[17:12] #knownspace> SeanS: Larry mentioned a short Herot novel with pournell and barnes and that Fate is on track
[17:12] #knownspace> Lensman: Heorot? I think /Moon Maze/ is a Dream Park book.
[17:12] #knownspace> Jim: SeanS, thank you
[17:13] #knownspace> Jim: Lensman, than you
[17:13] #knownspace> EML: Doug: at risk of leaving someone out (I'm sure I have), I'll say I enjoy Vernor Vinge, David Brin, Jack Campbell, James P. Hogan.
[17:14] #knownspace> Jim: EML, read much Alastair Reynolds?
[17:14] #knownspace> Lensman: I guess I need to check out Jack Campbell, the name does not ring a bell.
[17:14] #knownspace> SolBelter: any Schroeder or Stross?
[17:15] #knownspace> EML: Jim: no, not much. As it happens, most of my reading is nonfiction -- research for my books.
[17:15] #knownspace> Hippy: ]Unless you mean John W Campbell Jr
[17:15] #knownspace> SolBelter: Lens - check under John W. or i'lm not familiar either
[17:16] #knownspace> EML: Jack Campbell writes the Lost Fleet series of miltary SF. He's retired navy. (It's a pen name. The real guy is John. G. Hemry, a frequent contributor to Analog.)
[17:16] #knownspace> SolBelter: d'oh, thx
[17:16] #knownspace> Jim: ok
[17:16] #knownspace> Hippy: Ah. . .
[17:16] #knownspace> Lensman: I think I've read all of John W. Campbell's fiction. Or at least, his SF.
[17:17] #knownspace> EML: I'm not on a nickname basis with John W.
[17:17] #knownspace> Lensman: :)
[17:17] #knownspace> SolBelter: Watson *told* me that but i ignored him
[17:18] #knownspace> SolBelter: IBM's Watson
[17:19] #knownspace> SolBelter: i have never heard any fan in five decades ever say 'Jack' Campbell... :) therefore, a different Campbell.
[17:19] #knownspace> SeanS: Lensman: he also mentioned moon maze with barnes alone. a Dream Park. my bad for not including it
[17:20] #knownspace> EML: SciFi.com (in its Science Fiction Weekly guise) once said I wrote, "proudly in the classic hard-SF tradition of John W. Campbell and Robert A. Heinlein." I was okay with that :-)
[17:20] #knownspace> Lensman: Now that the Honor Harrington series has run its course, I need to look for another good military SF series.
[17:20] #knownspace> SeanS: Drake?
[17:20] #knownspace> Lensman: Sean: A Dream Park novel *and* a Heorot short story? Oh, I missed that, thanks.
[17:20] #knownspace> EML: Lens: FWIW, I recommend the Lost Fleet (Jack Campbell) series.
[17:21] #knownspace> SeanS: a Heorot short novel but yes
[17:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: I've tried Bolo; I've tried Hammers' Slammers; I've tried Dorsai and Jerry Pournelle's stuff. None of that appeals. So thanks for your recommendation.
[17:21] #knownspace> SeanS: apparently the Heorot is set betweent the 2 existing
[17:21] #knownspace> SeanS: ok... my fingers are getting drunk
[17:21] #knownspace> SolBelter: wow EML
[17:22] #knownspace> SeanS: what about the Lobo books... cant remember the author
[17:22] #knownspace> Hippy: Between them? That should be interesting
[17:23] #knownspace> EML: Lens: have you tried Roman miitary SF? IIRC, David Drakes writes that, too.
[17:23] #knownspace> Dan: Michael Z. Williamson isalso writing some good military-based SF. Nice guy, too.
[17:24] #knownspace> Lensman: I love the 163X series-- well, those by Flint & Weber alone, anyway. But that's getting into alternate history, not future SF.
[17:24] #knownspace> SeanS: Lobo is future
[17:25] #knownspace> Lensman: Roman military SF? Not sure what you mean, Ed. Alternate history Roman empire? I enjoyed /Procurator/ altho it was... okay, but not all that great.
[17:25] #knownspace> EML: Harry Turtledove has a series called the Misplaced Legion (or something close). I think it's also Roman military SF.
[17:25] #knownspace> Jim: well, it is about supper time on the East coast, so I am going to quit now. It has been real.
[17:25] #knownspace> Lensman: And /The Lost Legion/ altho that's mildly fantasy, not SF.
[17:25] #knownspace> EML: Aliens kidnap Roman Legion to fight low-tech wars for them.
[17:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Yeah, that's it, /The Lost Legion/. I think I read at least two of that, maybe three. Rather mediocre IMHO.
[17:26] #knownspace> dmac44: Ed, are you going to worldcon in Reno this year?
[17:26] #knownspace> SeanS: their is the Stephen R Donaldson trilogy of humans recruited to fight off planet.
[17:26] #knownspace> SeanS: there
[17:27] #knownspace> Dan: Supper here is New Mexico chili cheese fries, cooked as if they were English chips, by a British lady who loves crossing cooking genres.
[17:27] #knownspace> EML: Doug: I probably won't go to Reno. That's a long way to go (for me), and the desert in August isn't much of a draw.
[17:27] #knownspace> Lensman: Hmmm, no, that's not the plot of /The Misplaced Legion/. No aliens. Just a magic sword that magically sends the legion elsewhen.
[17:27] #knownspace> SolBelter: Fortchen ]sp] did Alexandrian Ring trilogy
[17:28] #knownspace> SeanS: Dinner here will be leftovers for the dinner last night. Crab and artichoke bake with a rice pilaf and cheesy biscuits like red lobster's
[17:28] #knownspace> EML: Lens: the kidnapped-by-aliens legion is the David Drake premise.
[17:28] #knownspace> SeanS: from
[17:28] #knownspace> SolBelter: earthers dueling for aliens, also
[17:28] #knownspace> Lensman: No, I'm looking for more Hornblower in Space. Like Honor Harrington and Nicholas Seafort, altho I can't stand the latter.
[17:28] #knownspace> SeanS: old man's war
[17:28] #knownspace> SolBelter: afk
[17:28] #knownspace> EML: Lost Fleet is very much Honblower in space.
[17:29] #knownspace> Lensman: -/Old Man's War/ is one of the very best SF novels I've read in recent years. Didn't care for the sequel all that much. Still, may try the third 'cuz Scalzi is such a superior writer.
[17:29] #knownspace> EML: But tho John Hemry (Jack Campbell) is a friend, I'm not on commission. I'll stop plugging his stuff :-)
[17:30] #knownspace> SeanS: zoe's tale is the same as the last colony but better. read it instead
[17:30] #knownspace> EML: I thought Old Man's War was derivative of Forever War. Now *that's* a great military SF novel.
[17:30] #knownspace> Lensman: What is /The Last Colony/? Another Scalzi title?
[17:31] #knownspace> SeanS: yes
[17:31] #knownspace> SeanS: last colony is number 3 after the ghost brigade
[17:32] #knownspace> SeanS: number 4 is zoes tale. last colony told from zoe's perspective and is better
[17:32] #knownspace> Lensman: Oh, it's highly derivative of /The Forever War/, I couldn't stop thinking about the echoes. And occasionally an echo of /Starship Troopers/, which inspired /The Forever War/. I didn't care much, tho, because /Old Man's War/ is such a terrific book!
[17:33] #knownspace> SeanS: I havent read the forever war
[17:33] #knownspace> EML: As it is approaching dinner time (I'm East Coast, too), I'm going to head on out.
[17:33] #knownspace> Lensman: Bye, Ed.
[17:33] #knownspace> SeanS: night Ed
[17:33] #knownspace> dmac44: Bye
[17:33] #knownspace> Hippy: Seeya, Ed
[17:33] #knownspace> Lensman: Sean: You really ought to. It's one of the best SF novels ever published.
[17:34] #knownspace> Hippy: High praise indeed
[17:34] #knownspace> Lensman: Haven't read anything else by Haldeman that is even in the ballpark of being that good.
[17:34] #knownspace> SolBelter: i agree with Lensman re Forever War
[17:35] #knownspace> Lensman: I've read it 3 times now.
[17:35] #knownspace> SolBelter: one of the great antiwar books ever
[17:35] #knownspace> Hippy: I liked it, but would I read it again? Hmmm. . .
[17:35] #knownspace> SolBelter: difference reference frame, Hippy
[17:36] #knownspace> SolBelter: i like books to be longer and denser for me to really enjoy reread
[17:36] #knownspace> SolBelter: but still thot Forever to be good
[17:37] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes, you havea point there
[17:37] #knownspace> Hippy: Lord of the Rings is good to re-read, 'Damnation Alley' not so much
[17:37] #knownspace> Lensman: LOL!
[17:38] #knownspace> SolBelter: but i take your point too on rereading
[17:38] #knownspace> Hippy: Okay, not the best comparison
[17:38] #knownspace> Lensman: That's because DA is a lousy book.
[17:38] #knownspace> Hippy: I was thinking of Tolkien's 'Damantion Alley' and Zelazny's 'Lord of the Rings', of course
[17:39] #knownspace> Hippy: There's an altenrate history for you :)
[17:39] #knownspace> SolBelter: Moon is a Harsh Mistress, i reread every few years
[17:39] #knownspace> Lensman: Me, too.
[17:40] #knownspace> SolBelter: DA was really a novella
[17:40] #knownspace> SolBelter: streeetched
[17:40] #knownspace> Lensman: In general, I prefer shorter novels. I can't imagine not liking, for instance, /Deathworld/ a second time just because it's a short novel. (Or third, since I've already re-read it.)
[17:40] #knownspace> Lensman: Diff'rent strokes for diff'rent folks.
[17:40] #knownspace> Dan: Indeed.
[17:41] #knownspace> SolBelter: 'not on this galley!'
[17:41] #knownspace> Lensman: At least the book was better than the movie! (But twice nothing is still nothing.)
[17:41] #knownspace> SolBelter: oops - open door to time machine
[17:41] #knownspace> Dan: I try to reread each of my favorites once a year, but I have too many favorites and not enough reading time, nowadays.
[17:42] #knownspace> SolBelter: same here, and books longer on average
[17:42] #knownspace> Lensman: I have far too many favorites to re read all of 'em every year!
[17:42] #knownspace> SolBelter: newwer books longer
[17:42] #knownspace> SeanS: company
[17:42] #knownspace> Hippy: I'm just going through the KIndle menu again and again of late. There are more books to buy, but soon, soon, I will have the new glasses and can go back to print media.
[17:42] #knownspace> Dan: Lens, I actually *liked* the movie, in an MST3k sort of way, even though I first saw the movie when it was new.
[17:42] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, the very long length of modern novels make me more reluctant to even pick up a new one.
[17:42] #knownspace> Fred: They made a book out of Damnation Alley?
[17:42] #knownspace> SolBelter: lol
[17:43] #knownspace> Lensman: NO, FRED! DON'T GO THERE!!
[17:43] #knownspace> Lensman: Oops... nevermind. I read that backwards.
[17:43] #knownspace> Hippy: LOL!
[17:43] #knownspace> Fred: heh
[17:43] #knownspace> SolBelter: my favorite scene of understated Hell Tanner in book ----
[17:43] #knownspace> Dan: What I want is a movie of "Bored of the Rings!"
[17:44] #knownspace> SolBelter: 'back off or you;ll hear the noise!' to attacking biker gang
[17:44] #knownspace> Lensman: -/Dribble dribble dribble whoosh!/
[17:44] #knownspace> Hippy: Oh, God, no!!!
[17:44] #knownspace> SolBelter: they don't - he slays them all.
[17:44] #knownspace> Lensman: But no. "It had been raining since the top of the page" simply will *not* transfer to the screen!
[17:45] #knownspace> Hippy: You can quote it? Egad
[17:45] #knownspace> SolBelter: 'the bed looked as though it had been slept in by perverted kangaroos'
[17:45] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes, I must change the sheets
[17:46] #knownspace> Lensman: You have read it, and can't? Egad
[17:46] #knownspace> Dan: LOL! Sure it can translate. Get Christopher Lee as a narrator and you're all set.
[17:46] #knownspace> dmac44: I'm heading off. See you guys.
[17:46] #knownspace> SolBelter: seeya!
[17:46] #knownspace> Dan: Bye!
[17:47] #knownspace> Lensman: Bye to all leaving.
[17:47] #knownspace> Hippy: Seeya
[17:47] #knownspace> SolBelter: I'll say bye too.
[17:48] SolBelter has joined #knownspace
[17:48] #knownspace> Hippy: Oops, missed him
[17:48] #knownspace> Lensman: "Boggies were capable of killing someone fully half their size, if they got the drop on them from behind." (That's not an exact quote... paraphrase.)
[17:48] #knownspace> Dan: Close enough to exact.
[17:49] #knownspace> Dan: I make sure I read that again each time I read the Tolkein series.
[17:49] #knownspace> Hippy: You know I'm trying to block the book out of my mind? Now I may have to buy it!
[17:49] #knownspace> Dan: Ka-CHING!
[17:49] #knownspace> Lensman: Sorry Hippy. I think it's a hilariously fun book.
[17:50] #knownspace> Hippy: I suppose I'm too much of a Tolkien purist
[17:50] #knownspace> Dan: No, I don't get a commission. Just time off my sentence...
[17:50] AlexA has joined #knownspace
[17:50] #knownspace> Lensman: Right up there with /Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers/. Which I'm gonna have to re-read, 'cuz Larry says there is a reference to /Ringworld/ in it, which I can't remember.
[17:50] #knownspace> Hippy: Morning, AlexA
[17:51] #knownspace> Dan: Hiya, Alex!
[17:51] #knownspace> Hippy: Now, that was a funny book, Lens
[17:51] #knownspace> AlexA: Hi all
[17:51] #knownspace> Hippy: Although I don't remember a Ringworld reference, either
[17:51] #knownspace> Lensman: Ho, Alex!
[17:51] #knownspace> AlexA: It's 22:50 here Hippy :)
[17:52] #knownspace> Hippy: Ah. It's 9:50 Sunday here
[17:52] #knownspace> AlexA: Hey Lensman - is your knownspace concordance down?
[17:53] #knownspace> Dan: 5:53 Saturday afternoon here.
[17:53] #knownspace> Lensman: http://www.freewebs.com/knownspace/
[17:53] #knownspace> Lensman: No. Why?
[17:54] #knownspace> AlexA: Tried to acces a week ago & got errors
[17:54] #knownspace> Lensman: But the new version is prettier:
[17:54] #knownspace> Lensman: http://news.larryniven.net/concordance/main.asp
[17:54] #knownspace> Lensman: You can thank Mark Firestone (Chief Strike Anywhere, Dennis Nedry and other pseudonyms) for that!
[17:55] #knownspace> Lensman: Not ready for prime time yet, though.
[17:55] #knownspace> AlexA: Anyway, was trying to find canon on "Suicide Night" command
[17:55] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, webs.com is not very stable. That's one reason I'm glad KSC 2.0 is going to be hosted elsewhere. Not that LarryNiven.net is all that stable either, though... come to think of it.
[17:55] #knownspace> AlexA: Wikipedia has it as commanding "all chordates" to die
[17:56] #knownspace> Dan: Alex, you missed Larry by about an hour, but if anyone else knows, it's be Lensman.\
[17:57] #knownspace> AlexA: But passage in Ptavvs has it as "everything", but that's just Greenburg-Kanzol speculating
[17:57] #knownspace> Lensman: Lots of disinformation out there on the suicide command. Canon says "all life" or "nearly all intelligent life", as I recall. "Chordates" is conflating the ramscoop killing all chordates within its field with that.
[17:58] #knownspace> Lensman: I think the most complete description is in "There Is a Tide".
[17:59] #knownspace> Lensman: The term "suicide night" isn't even from canon. It's from a MKW story.
[18:00] #knownspace> AlexA: By definition there are no witnesses so there is room for confusion :)
[18:01] #knownspace> Hippy: No, there are bandersnatchi
[18:01] #knownspace> Hippy: They could probably tell you the exact date
[18:02] #knownspace> AlexA: The qu came up in connection with the theory that pak breeders survivived because they weren't intelligent
[18:02] #knownspace> AlexA: Bansdersnatchi are immune to The Power
[18:02] #knownspace> Hippy: I would dispute that Pak are that old as a species
[18:02] #knownspace> Dan: We've debated that.
[18:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Anyway, if you look at the "Tnuctipun-Slaver war" entry, and the footnote for that, you'll find the canonical references. I see it's in "The Handicapped" as well as "There Is a Tide".
[18:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, obviously "all life" is a vast overstatement. We know many races are descended from food yeast, so obviously that survived. If I were to re-write it, it would be "everything with a brain".
[18:04] #knownspace> AlexA: Yeah I'm not convinced myself, just wondering if canon would allow inintellegent life to survive
[18:04] #knownspace> Lensman: And even then, Bandersnatchi are an exception.
[18:04] #knownspace> Fred: and delicious
[18:04] #knownspace> Hippy: They're certainly value for money
[18:04] #knownspace> AlexA: It could have been "all life susceptible to The Power"
[18:05] #knownspace> Dan: Obviously, any psyonically blind (or shielded) species wouldn't hear the command at all.
[18:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Pak cannot possibly be 2 billion years old. If the Pak were created by Tnuctipun, then either the Pak are descended from a breeding population stuck into stasis which popped out only a few million years ago, or else there were Tnuctipun around only a few million years ago.
[18:05] #knownspace> AlexA: Grogs use The Power to feed & I believe some of their food is non-intelligent
[18:06] #knownspace> Dan: Grogs use "A" power. Not established if it is the same as that used by Thrints.
[18:07] #knownspace> Lensman: But only intelligent beings are susceptible to the Power. Why would lower animals, even ones with brains, be susceptible to the suicide command, even if amplified? I guess there was something about the super-duper amplifier helmet that allowed it to affect a more broad spectrum of animals with nervous systems.
[18:07] #knownspace> Dan: Might be different psy frequencies, etc.
[18:07] #knownspace> AlexA: Yeah I did consider putting a "if grogs are Thrint" caveat there :)
[18:08] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes indeed, I am pretty sure Jumpin' Jeepers are not intelligent. Just more proof that Grogs are not related to Slavers.
[18:09] #knownspace> Dan: Got to remember that "Down In Flames" isn't necessarily Known Space compatable.
[18:09] #knownspace> Lensman: Also, note the lack of "crystalline certainties" in those affected by Kzanol in /World of Ptavvs/.
[18:09] #knownspace> AlexA: I'm pretty sure LN meant grogs to be slaver descendants - the errors pointed out in DIF were just that, errors
[18:10] #knownspace> Lensman: "Down in Flames", like "One Face" and "Bordered in Black", give insights into what the author was thinking at the time. But it's not canon.
[18:10] #knownspace> Dan: You'd have to ask Larry. I disagree with you, but that's just fans debating.
[18:11] #knownspace> Dan: Oh, "I disagree with you, Alex..."
[18:11] #knownspace> Lensman: I think Larry left it deliberately ambiguous as to whether Grogs are descended from Slavers or not. Yes, I rather suspect the "sex change" was a mistake.
[18:11] #knownspace> AlexA: Yeah pity I missed Organlegger
[18:12] #knownspace> Dan: We made him hungry. LOL! So he left to make himself some lunch.
[18:12] #knownspace> AlexA: I think Larry would be evaisive if directly asked - leaving options open for future works :)
[18:13] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, Larry does not like to be pinned down on anything he didn't actually write down.
[18:13] #knownspace> Lensman: Or rather, anything that hasn't appeared in a published book.
[18:13] #knownspace> Dan: Alex, I strongly suspect that the Grog / Thrint question is one Larry doesn't wish to answer. Partly because he enjoys listening to we fan debate it.
[18:14] #knownspace> Dan: fans
[18:14] #knownspace> AlexA: And the whole edited memory thing makes things even more open :/
[18:15] #knownspace> Dan: I willing to guess that the answers we readers bring to these sorts of discussions make writing even more fun for Larry.
[18:16] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, indeed. He says he got 'nuff inspiration for /Ringworld's Children/ by reading posts on the LarryNiven-l discussion list.
[18:16] #knownspace> Dan: I've got to hook up that new keyboard. The keys on his one don't always depress all the way when my fingers hit them.
[18:17] #knownspace> Hippy: A ea p obl m, that
[18:17] #knownspace> AlexA: I scanned "The Slaver Weapon" and couldn't find narrator's voice passage on the Slavers - thought there was one
[18:17] #knownspace> Dan: LOL!
[18:18] #knownspace> Lensman: The animated "Star Trek" episode?
[18:18] #knownspace> Hippy: Yeah, don't you mean 'The Soft Weapon'?
[18:18] #knownspace> AlexA: Well I'm on iPod touch screen keyboard - comes up with some odd autocorrections :)
[18:18] #knownspace> Dan: Slaver Weapon *was* the TAS title.
[18:19] #knownspace> AlexA: Oops "soft" yes
[18:19] #knownspace> Dan: Wasn't it?
[18:19] #knownspace> Hippy: It was
[18:19] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, there is a reference to the Tnuctipun-Slaver war in "The Soft Weapon". But a more complete description is in the other two stories I mentioned.
[18:20] #knownspace> Hippy: And doens't the Grog in 'The Handicapped' specificlly deny that they're descendd from Thrint?
[18:20] #knownspace> AlexA: Thanks I'll read the concordance later
[18:20] #knownspace> Dan: Thrint have come to make Vogons look like nice guys. :)
[18:21] #knownspace> AlexA: Do the Thrint write poetry? :D
[18:21] #knownspace> Hippy: They have other people write it for them
[18:22] #knownspace> Hippy: And everyone just applauds it like mad
[18:22] #knownspace> Hippy: Like going to an open mike night
[18:22] #knownspace> Lensman: "A billion and a half years ago there had been a war. The Slavers, who controlled most of the galaxy at the time, had also controlled most of the galaxy's sentient species. One such slave species, the tnuctipun, had at last revolted. The Slavers had had a power like telepathic hypnosis, a power that could control the mind of any sentient being. The tnuctipun slaves had possessed high...
[18:22] #knownspace> Lensman: ...intelligence, higher technology, and a slyness more terrifying than any merely mental power. Slavers and tnuctipun slaves alike, and every sentient being then in the galaxy, had died in that war."
[18:22] #knownspace> Lensman: That's from "The Soft Weapon".
[18:23] #knownspace> Lensman: But if you're looking for a reference to "suicide night", there may well not be one in that story.
[18:23] #knownspace> Hippy: Sentient being. Therefore, not one at a poetry openn mike night
[18:24] #knownspace> AlexA: No I realise "Suicide Night" isn't LN
[18:25] #knownspace> Lensman: The Grog in "The Handicapped" claims her people have no memory of any existence before they were on Down. Even if that's true, it doesn't prove anything.
[18:25] #knownspace> Hippy: I stand corrected
[18:26] #knownspace> AlexA: Of course "sentient" is ambiguous, as it strictly means "feeling" but in SF usually means "intelligent"
[18:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Since they have no written records, their "racial memory" is only what is preserved in oral tradition.
[18:26] #knownspace> Hippy: Or inherited genetically
[18:26] #knownspace> Lensman: I assume it means "sapient", that's what it's used to mean in SF.
[18:27] #knownspace> AlexA: And the Grogs could be lying
[18:27] #knownspace> Lensman: Indeed.
[18:27] #knownspace> Hippy: Yeah
[18:28] #knownspace> AlexA: Is the "repeated suicide command" just a concept from MKW "Peter Robinson"?
[18:30] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes.
[18:30] #knownspace> Lensman: Or some MKW story, anyway.
[18:30] #knownspace> AlexA: Right. So in canon, the whole "suicide command" concept is just speculation by Greenburg/Kanzol?
[18:31] #knownspace> Lensman: But you do have to wonder: Since we know both species possess stasis fields, how could the Slavers possibly think they've killed off all the Tnuctipun with one single use of the super-duper amplifier?
[18:32] #knownspace> Lensman: No, it's just the term "suicide night" doesn't appear there.
[18:32] #knownspace> AlexA: I guess that may be why the author of PR coined the repeated command concept
[18:33] #knownspace> AlexA: To deal with anyone emerging from stasis
[18:34] #knownspace> Lensman: "There had come a day, a billion and a half years ago, when the Slavers found that most of the tnuctip gifts were traps. The rebellion had been a long time building, and the Slavers had underestimated their slaves. To win that war they had been forced to use a weapon which exterminated not only the tnuctipun, but every other sentient species then in the galaxy. Then, without slaves, the...
[18:34] #knownspace> Lensman: ...Slavers too had died."
[18:35] #knownspace> Lensman: That is from "The Handicapped". You won't find more info on the suicide command than that anywhere in Canon.
[18:35] #knownspace> AlexA: ^thats in narrator voice?
[18:36] #knownspace> Lensman: You'll note that it doesn't even say there was a super-duper amplifier helmet and a suicide command. That is Kzanol's or Greenberg/Kzanol's speculation in /World of Ptavvs/.
[18:36] #knownspace> Hippy: I would guess so
[18:37] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, technically that's Garvey's explanation, since that story is told in first person.
[18:37] #knownspace> Hippy: Oh, so it is
[18:37] #knownspace> AlexA: As I suspected Lensman
[18:37] #knownspace> Lensman: It's Garvey's narration, not the omniscient narrator.
[18:38] #knownspace> Hippy: Therefor, Garvey's thoughts may only be remembering Greenberg's speculation from a couple of centuries earlier
[18:38] #knownspace> Hippy: Or something the Grogs put there to put him off the scent
[18:39] #knownspace> Lensman: I believe you are correct, Hippy. Atho we don't know what records were found in Slaver stasis boxes in the meantime.
[18:39] #knownspace> AlexA: Yeah so it's all just a theory that does fit the facts
[18:39] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes, it's looking like that
[18:40] #knownspace> Hippy: Another certainty gone
[18:40] #knownspace> Hippy: Life is now even more frightening than it was when I got up
[18:40] #knownspace> AlexA: Sorry Hippy !
[18:42] #knownspace> Lensman: However, the Trinoc in "There Is a Tide" is an independent source of info. But he's not as sure about it as Garvey is.
[18:42] #knownspace> AlexA: IIRC there is a vague list of types of things found in stasis boxes in "Soft weapon"
[18:43] #knownspace> AlexA: Can't remember if records are mentioned
[18:44] #knownspace> Hippy: They would likely pre-date 'suicide night' anyway
[18:44] #knownspace> Lensman: The Trinoc tells Louis " "It is thought that that species used a single weapon to end their war
[18:44] #knownspace> Lensman: and all its participants."
[18:45] #knownspace> AlexA: Could/would/do Bandersnachi recall events of the final war? Via oral tradition
[18:45] #knownspace> AlexA: Built as spies so might have good recall
[18:45] #knownspace> Hippy: The Trinocs wouldn't know about Greenberg's speculations, so there must be some other source of information about the war
[18:46] #knownspace> Lensman: I'm pretty sure the Bandersnatchi would have records of that. They remember a treaty made with, presumably, the Tnuctipun, and presumably made 2 billion years ago!
[18:46] #knownspace> AlexA: Or whatever equivalent or oral tradition they have (do they speak?)
[18:47] #knownspace> Hippy: They can write
[18:47] #knownspace> Hippy: I'm not sure about speaking
[18:47] #knownspace> AlexA: Yeah I know the writing thing
[18:47] #knownspace> Lensman: There has been fan speculation that the Bandersnatchi have some method of semi-permanently recording data in their bodies. If so, we must assume than when they bud, this info is transferred to the bud. This would be very useful in a species genegineered to be spies!
[18:48] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, they have speech or its equivalence.
[18:48] #knownspace> AlexA: Big brains = lots of data storage
[18:48] #knownspace> Lensman: The RPG says they communicate via ground vibrations. We know they can communicate sophisticated concepts quickly, from their behavior described in WOP.
[18:49] #knownspace> Lensman: Or, of course, it may be just that they have infallible memories.
[18:49] #knownspace> AlexA: Louis wanted to stop & "talk" to the bandersnach in RW - Speaker stopped him (ironic!)
[18:49] #knownspace> Hippy: Good point!
[18:50] #knownspace> Hippy: So if they can't speak they would need a speaking device hooked up to them, and somehow the knowledge to use it
[18:50] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, it's not like nobody ever talked to a Bandersnatch. It's just that no one-- to Louis' knowledge-- ever talked to a *Ringworld* Bandersnatch.
[18:51] #knownspace> AlexA: I know you've done this already Lensman, but I must re-read LN with these issues in mind
[18:52] #knownspace> AlexA: It's over 20 years since I last read a lot of the older LN
[18:53] #knownspace> Lensman: Since Humans on Jinx negotiated the treaty for hunting Bandersnatchi, we know that Humans were able to communicate with Bandersnatchi. Furthermore, the Institute of Knowledge on Jinx has hired some Bandersnatchi, with Bandersnatchi Hands, to monitor instruments in Jinx's lowlands. Again, this indicates sophisticated communication between Humans and Bandersnatchi. Yes, I would imagine the...
[18:53] #knownspace> Lensman: ...Bandersnatchi have to have some sort of vocoder hooked directly into their nervous system to be able to talk to Humans, just as their Bandersnatchi Hands have to be directly connected.
[18:55] #knownspace> Lensman: What's funny is Greenberg's belief that his mild telepathy would make him a good First Contact specialist for Bandersnatchi. They are psionically dead-- he can't read their minds!
[18:55] #knownspace> AlexA: So the possibility of releatively reliable info on the final war from the Bandersnachi exists
[18:55] #knownspace> Hippy: Very much so
[18:55] #knownspace> AlexA: Probably embargoed by the ARM though
[18:56] #knownspace> Hippy: I'd tell you, but I'd have to kill you
[18:56] #knownspace> Hippy: Speaking of killing, I'll just duck into lurking mode again, as I must now water the garden
[18:57] #knownspace> Hippy: Some plants may yet survice even that
[18:57] #knownspace> Lensman: Alex: Well, theoretically. But keep in mind that the Bandersnatchi themselves don't have any ability to communicate beyond their ability to, perhaps, thrum on the ground. It's not like they can send a message to a distant star.
[18:57] #knownspace> AlexA: The Outsiders might have info for sale - sourced from Bandersnachi or stasis boxes
[18:57] #knownspace> Dan: I wonder if Bandersnatchi might be touch-telepaths like Vulcans or Time Lords, but unable to receive or transmit otherwise...
[18:58] #knownspace> Lensman: No, the Bandersnatchi are psionically dead.
[18:58] #knownspace> Lensman: That's why they are immune to the Power.
[18:58] #knownspace> Dan: You say that as if you were the final authority. :)
[18:58] #knownspace> Lensman: No, Larry is the final authority. :)
[18:58] #knownspace> AlexA: If Bs were T spies then they must have efficient method of transfering info
[18:59] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes. Maybe the Tnuctipun had machines which could translate the Bandersnatchi communication.
[19:00] #knownspace> Dan: And if they had to physically touch another being to trlepathically link with them would make them vulnerable to Thrint telepathic transmissions in what way?
[19:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Or maybe the Tnuctipun had a more direct way of getting info from a B's brain. They are, after all, very ruthless.
[19:00] #knownspace> AlexA: Maybe just reading brainwaves
[19:01] #knownspace> Dan: I am merely speculating, of course.
[19:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Dan: You're entitled to your opinion, of course, but there is no evidence that telepathy works that way in Known Space.
[19:02] #knownspace> Dan: Not an opinion, just a question I choose to brainstorm upon. I have no dog in this hunt.
[19:03] #knownspace> AlexA: There may be a hidden command that triggers a B to dump recorded info via brainwaves
[19:04] #knownspace> Lensman: At any rate, the B's method of communication does not require touch. As described in WOP, they had the ability to communicate over distances, and rapidly. Since they are not described as having a voice, thrumming on the ground sounds like a reasonable method. It would also give them the ability to communicate over longer distances than humans shouting.
[19:04] #knownspace> AlexA: If LN wants to further explore the Slaver war from a human perspective, Bandersnachi records might be an "in"
[19:05] #knownspace> AlexA: Or deus ex machina from a stasis box, but that's been overused in MKW stories
[19:06] #knownspace> Lensman: While I don't consider the RPG to be "canon", at least John Hewitt discussed the material with Larry, and presumably at least some of it was given Larry's blessing. The problem is that I can't tell what was so blessed and what was not.
[19:07] #knownspace> Lensman: And Larry did used Hewitt's summary of the MKWs as the "writer's bible' for MKW writers, so that makes at least some of it canon.
[19:07] #knownspace> AlexA: No disagreement there
[19:11] #knownspace> AlexA: Ok it's past midnight, so I'll duck out.
[19:11] #knownspace> AlexA: See you guys
[19:12] #knownspace> Dan: I'm on my way as well. Stuff to finish before I have to go to bed. Work tomorrow, and all that.
[19:12] #knownspace> Lensman: Bye.
[19:12] #knownspace> Lensman: Anybody left here?
[19:12] #knownspace> Dan: Good chat today! Thanks! See you again, soon!
[19:14] #knownspace> Fred: nobody but us chickens
[19:15] #knownspace> Akiraa: hm... there is literally more radiological exposure from coal fired plants than from nukes
[19:19] #knownspace> Lensman: Yup. The anti-nuke movement is... well, I'll try not to foam at the mouth. Let's just say it's counter-productive, for both environmental and economic reasons. We should be building lots more nuclear power plants as part of a national strategy to free ourselves from foreign oil and, ultimately, stop casually consuming fossil fuels.
[19:20] #knownspace> Akiraa: or for that matter
[19:20] #knownspace> Akiraa: use nuclear power to produce hydrocarbons
[19:20] #knownspace> Akiraa: they're very useful chemicals
[19:21] #knownspace> Akiraa: or separate sea water into hydrogen fuel cells to power cars
[19:21] #knownspace> Akiraa: lots of things are possible with more abudant electricity
[19:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Sure. They are great for lubrication and making plastic and no doubt lots of other uses. It's just a bad idea to burn the stuff in massive quantities.
[19:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said (paraphrasing) "Practical hydrogen fuel requires five miracles. And saints need only three!"
[19:23] #knownspace> Lensman: If the electricity to electrolyze hydrogen were that cheap, it would make electric cars that much more attractive.
[19:25] #knownspace> Lensman: But having sufficient power to make seawater into fresh water in massive quantities would be great!
[19:46] #knownspace> Hippy: Oh, yes, they're building a plant in Gippsland to do that. Ironic, since now lots o Victoria are fooded
[19:47] #knownspace> Hippy: Including my fuchsia - I was a bit overzealous with the hose
[19:47] #knownspace> Akiraa: the US is building the first nuke in 30 years?
[19:47] #knownspace> Hippy: About time
[19:48] #knownspace> Akiraa: but just one, sadly
[19:48] #knownspace> Akiraa: the chinese are building them by the dozens
[19:49] #knownspace> Akiraa: "As of March 2011, China is building 27 new nuclear power plants (and plans 50). Russia is building 10, India and South Korea five each, Japan and Canada two. In the US, there is exactly one new reactor complex being built."
[19:50] #knownspace> Hippy: Still ahead of us. We're still frightened of them
[19:50] #knownspace> Hippy: I mean, Australia
[19:51] #knownspace> Akiraa: can you beam high amounts of power through microwave?
[19:51] #knownspace> Akiraa: more or less effectively?
[19:51] #knownspace> Hippy: Jerry Pournelle says 'yes'
[19:51] #knownspace> Akiraa: say, bouncing it by a satellite and back down
[19:52] #knownspace> Hippy: Ah, he was talking about convering it by solar cells in orbit and then beaming it down
[19:52] #knownspace> Akiraa: albeit, it's much cheaper to just lay a high voltage cable these days
[19:52] #knownspace> Akiraa: even under the sea
[19:53] #knownspace> Akiraa: but the losses would be significant over too large distances
[19:53] #knownspace> Akiraa: normal powerlines lose what, 1-3% every 1K km?
[19:53] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, several applications for new nukes in the USA, but there's a real question how many will make it past regulatory hurdles.
[19:54] #knownspace> Lensman: I totally agree, it's sad that at the moment only one is being built. But at least that's more than there were for a long time!
[19:54] #knownspace> Akiraa: there may be opposition from industry that's invested heavily into green tech (subsidized)
[19:55] #knownspace> Akiraa: so after you spend $1bn on windmill farms, you don't want the price of electricity to really go down
[19:55] #knownspace> Hippy: and the usual 'no more Chernobyls' crowed
[19:56] #knownspace> Lensman: Solar power satellites... You know, I really hate to throw cold water on anything that could promote the exploitation of space. But I was on the LiftPort forum for quite some time, that's the company that said it wanted to put up a Space Elevator, and informed opinion there said that even if launch costs were zero, SPS still could not economically compete with ground-based power generation.
[19:56] #knownspace> Hippy: But that only works where power distribuors compete for territory, and that doesn't hpppen in my end of the world, or the US it seems
[19:56] #knownspace> Lensman: Average transmission loss in the US grid is 7%. I don't know what the loss is over 1000 miles.
[19:57] #knownspace> Hippy: Lens, doens't that assume that power generation on Earth will stay at the same price?
[19:58] #knownspace> Lensman: Spending lots of money on wind farms is insane. Wind is literally as changeable as the weather! We should be developing tidal or ocean current power. And trying to develop deep drilling techniques for geothermal power.
[19:58] #knownspace> Akiraa: DC power lines may be more effective over long distances
[19:59] #knownspace> Hippy: I think it's the other way around
[19:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: Edison's revenge
[19:59] #knownspace> Hippy: That's why there's mostly AC now
[19:59] #knownspace> Lensman: Hippy: Sure, if you postulate that ground-based electricity generation costs skyrocket, at some point SPS becomes competitive. I don't see any realistic possibility of that happening, though.
[19:59] #knownspace> Akiraa: HVDC Link
[19:59] #knownspace> Hippy: I stand corrected
[20:00] #knownspace> Lensman: HVDC, High Voltage Direct Current, is used for a lot of long-distance transmission.
[20:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Oops... Akiraa got there first.
[20:00] #knownspace> Hippy: Lens: if you triple the price of coal, say, what about then?
[20:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Hippy: Then nuclear looks a lot more attractive!
[20:01] #knownspace> Hippy: Until the price of radioactives goes up
[20:01] #knownspace> Akiraa: technical advantages made AC better during Edison's time
[20:01] #knownspace> Lensman: Fourth generation thorium reactors. And at worst, we could use breeder reactors to make more plutonium.
[20:02] #knownspace> Akiraa: but now we have more effective transformers and most electronics run on DC anyway
[20:02] #knownspace> Lensman: And I'm secretly hoping for the Polywell fusion reactor project to deliver!
[20:02] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, yes. .. and we might have just perfected fusion three minutes ago.
[20:02] #knownspace> Akiraa: Lensman: didn't their inventor die?
[20:03] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes, I thought that, too. Bussard died
[20:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Robert Bussard-- of Bussard Ramjet fame-- did die, yes. He invented the Polywell in his 70s. But it's now a project being funded by the Navy. A very small budget, but still it is being worked on.
[20:04] #knownspace> Hippy: Fantastic!
[20:05] #knownspace> Lensman: The good news is, the second Polywell test did generate sufficient test results for the science to pass a peer review! But it's still iffy... lots of people think technical difficulties will prevent it from ever generating over-unity power. (That is, generate more power than the reactor consumes to make it run.)
[20:06] #knownspace> Akiraa: either way, the tokamak design has less hope
[20:06] #knownspace> Akiraa: but is much better funded
[20:06] #knownspace> Akiraa: although, there is an advantage to not having limitless money
[20:06] #knownspace> Akiraa: keeps the base research focused
[20:07] #knownspace> Hippy: Can you tell that to my bankruptcy trustee?
[20:07] #knownspace> Akiraa: if they gave $5bn to the polywell overnight, everyone would be jumping on board
[20:07] #knownspace> Lensman: What astonishes me the most is that tidal/ocean current generators are not being developed. "Well, the sea is a harsh environment. Well, we tried that and storms ripped the generators up from the sea floor. Good grief! We can build ships to last for decades, can't we build turbines that will last as long? And as for storms, put the turbines down deep where storms never touch, and use ocean...
[20:07] #knownspace> Lensman: ...currents to power them instead of tidal action.
[20:07] #knownspace> Akiraa: possibly ruining the project with make-work stuff
[20:09] #knownspace> Hippy: What about Ocean Top Thermal Exchange? I remember LN talking about those in a thing in Starlog in the 70's
[20:09] #knownspace> Lensman: Tokamak and laser blaster both have the same problem. Every time they build a new test reactor, the researchers say "Well, this wasn't big enough. We need a bigger and more expensive one!" About the time it costs a billion dollars to build a bigger one, doncha think maybe it's time to start looking for a different approach? The advantage of the Polywell is that it *can* be funded with just a...
[20:09] #knownspace> Lensman: ...couple of million dollars or so.
[20:09] #knownspace> Akiraa: there is one better, the Moon has areas that are nearly permanently lit by the sun, right next to areas permamently in darkness
[20:10] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes, but the power loss over 300000km of wire. . .
[20:11] #knownspace> Hippy: :)
[20:11] #knownspace> Lensman: There are lots of ways to generate power which are practical in the engineering sense. That doesn't mean they are practical in the economic sense. Building large scale power generators on the moon and beaming the power back to earth? When we can't even afford a robust manned space program? Not gonna happen, sorry.
[20:12] #knownspace> Hippy: The manned space program didn't pay for itself. The moon generators might
[20:13] #knownspace> Lensman: If you build the power antenna large enough, the loss over distance isn't significant. The problem comes with the fact that solar cells are expensive, and launching them into orbit-- or the moon-- is very expensive, and construction in orbit on on the moon is extremely expensive.
[20:13] #knownspace> Akiraa: there's some talk of mining helium-3, but from what I saw, even helium-3 is present in trace amounts, even if it's more abundant relatively speaking
[20:14] #knownspace> Hippy: Those are accounting questions, Lens. Travelling to Australia used to be expensive, as did flying a plane. But look what happened
[20:16] #knownspace> Akiraa: paying about 35 eurocents per kWh last I checked
[20:16] #knownspace> Akiraa: so about $0.5 per
[20:17] #knownspace> Hippy: Okay, good figure. Now, if you tripled that, to one Euro per kW/h, would orbital satellites be cost-effective?
[20:17] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, the cost of orbital spaceflight is going to come down, due to space tourism. The problem is that, so far, we don't have any practical reason to go to orbit. Those perfect ball bearings and magical pharmeceuticals you can make in zero-g have not materialized.
[20:17] #knownspace> Akiraa: practical excluding satellites
[20:18] #knownspace> Lensman: I hope y'all don't think I'm at all opposed to the commercialization of orbital space or mining the asteroids or doing all those other wonderful things, but who's gonna pay for them?
[20:18] #knownspace> Akiraa: right now, satellite bandwidth is at a very large premium
[20:18] #knownspace> Hippy: But there are hundreds of satellites up there. Surely some of them are paying for themselves
[20:18] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, communication satellites is the one wildly successful orbital industry.
[20:19] #knownspace> Lensman: But so far, at least, orbital communications don't seem to be leading to the Space Wheel from "2001: A Space Odyssey".
[20:19] #knownspace> Hippy: Curse my crap memory. I only got the rates told to me over the phone last week and I can't remember them!
[20:20] #knownspace> Hippy: Ah! $AU0.33 per kW/h
[20:20] #knownspace> Akiraa: it's kWh, actually, not kW/h
[20:20] #knownspace> Lensman: Cost per kWh varies widely between different states, from about 3-4 cents to about, oh, 18 cents? My memory is fuzzy.
[20:21] #knownspace> Lensman: Maybe as much as 22 cents.
[20:21] #knownspace> Hippy: Oh, of course. What was I thinking of. km/h as a speed
[20:22] #knownspace> Hippy: We should all check our most recent bills
[20:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Lots of variables, including if you have time-of-use differential or not. Here in my area of Kansas, we do not.
[20:22] #knownspace> Hippy: We do have peak and off-peak rates
[20:22] #knownspace> Lensman: There ya go.
[20:23] #knownspace> Hippy: Of course, if your meter is as old as mine, it won't measure them
[20:23] #knownspace> Hippy: Okay, Lens. A delight as always
[20:23] #knownspace> Hippy: See you next month
[20:23] #knownspace> Hippy: And possibly in Reno
[20:23] #knownspace> Akiraa: "over 100 million tons of regolith to obtain one ton of helium 3" -- there goes that theory of mining the moon (oft-repeated in the media)
[20:24] #knownspace> Hippy: Mining it for that, at least
[20:24] #knownspace> Akiraa: at best, helium-3 can be useful as a by-product of another mining operation
[20:24] #knownspace> Hippy: Yes
[20:25] #knownspace> Lensman: People considering getting an electric car should investigate off-peak rates. Charging your EV will be cheaper and better for the environment if you can charge it at night. Better because there is a lot of slack in the generating system during off peak hours. And a lot of power plants, such as coal fired and hydroelectric, run 24/7 anyway, whether they are adding power to the grid or not....
[20:25] #knownspace> Lensman: ...So, no increase in use of fuel to power the grid if you charge at night.
[20:25] #knownspace> Hippy: Like they're mining all the slag heaps from copper mining because there's buckets of cobalt in it
[20:25] #knownspace> Akiraa: coal plants can be ramped up and down a little
[20:25] #knownspace> Akiraa: some more than others
[20:26] #knownspace> Lensman: I am speaking in glittering generalities here, Akiraa. What I said is only partially true.
[20:26] #knownspace> Akiraa: you basically control the number of burners and the flow of fuel, so coal plants are used to regulate peak loads I believe
[20:27] #knownspace> Akiraa: not instantaneously, of course
[20:27] #knownspace> Lensman: Mostly, coal fired plants are "base load" plants. Peak load plants, such as natural gas fired plants, are used to regulate the peak loads.
[20:28] #knownspace> Hippy: I think they use hydro for that in the UK
[20:28] #knownspace> Akiraa: some hydro plants have two reservoirs, one on top of the other, pumping water into the top reservoir during off-peak times
[20:28] #knownspace> Akiraa: and pouring it down again during peak
[20:28] #knownspace> Akiraa: oh, I see, gas is the regulator
[20:28] #knownspace> Lensman: Nuclear and coal tends to be base load. Peak plants are those plants which have higher fuel costs, generally. So shutting them down for a few hours a day saves more money. It saves virtually no money to shut down a nuclear plant, so might as well run it 24/7.
[20:29] #knownspace> Akiraa: thorium reactors could be built to be ramped up and down more easily
[20:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, pumped hydro storage is the most cost-effective way to store energy during the night for used during peak hours. It's pretty much the *only* cost effective mass energy storage system we have.
[20:31] #knownspace> Lensman: That's right, thorium plants as you say can be ramped up and down much more quickly than a standard U.S. style nuclear plant. The Chernobyl style plants could be ramped up and down more quickly... which was not really an advantage!
[20:31] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, it was an economic advantage. Just a huge safety disadvantage!
[20:31] #knownspace> Hippy: No. In hindsight, no
[20:32] #knownspace> Akiraa: I didn't know that about Chernobyl
[20:33] #knownspace> Lensman: I strongly recommend Fred Pohl's novel /Chernobyl/. It gives lots of insight into the Soviet system, and I don't just mean their nuclear power industry. I found it very enlightening, and also a good read. If very tragic.
[20:33] #knownspace> Akiraa: so they were using nukes as peak load regulators?
[20:33] #knownspace> Akiraa: the soviets
[20:34] #knownspace> Hippy: Good God
[20:34] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, that's one way to disarmament
[20:35] #knownspace> Lensman: I don't know enough details to answer that question. But the reactors were designed to have the heat output be increased or decreased fairly quickly, at least in comparison to our safer reactors. The fact that they *could* have the heat increase fairly quickly is one thing that lead to the Chernobyl explosion.
[20:36] #knownspace> Akiraa: the nuclear reactions can be accelerated or moderated, yes
[20:37] #knownspace> Lensman: Certainly not the only thing! They did the same thing we stupidly did at the Three Mile Island plant; disconnected multiple safety systems as part of a test. They had a runaway heating reaction as a result of disconnecting the safety systems. The heat became so intense, and the steam so superheated, that it blew the end caps off the pipes containing the water & steam. Superheated steam then...
[20:37] #knownspace> Lensman: ...blew holes in the roof, and there was no Western-style containment dome over the roof.
[20:37] #knownspace> Akiraa: I think thorium plants are inherently safer against meltdown
[20:38] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, Akiraa. Lots safer, and they can be run in such a fashion that they produce almost no weapons grade fissionables.
[20:39] #knownspace> Lensman: And what country is the *only* country in the world to be working on a pilot thorium plant project? Hint: It ain't the USA!
[20:39] #knownspace> Akiraa: some designs need a plutonium core to kickstart the reaction
[20:39] #knownspace> Akiraa: or a particle accelerator
[20:39] #knownspace> Akiraa: going the particle accelerator route eliminates all possible risks of proliferation
[20:40] #knownspace> Lensman: China very recently announced they would be building a pilot thorium plant. I hope they follow through!
[20:40] #knownspace> Hippy: I wonder if we hae any thorium out in the desert?
[20:41] #knownspace> Lensman: I have no idea what the source of thorium is.
[20:41] #knownspace> Lensman: What ore, I mean.
[20:43] #knownspace> Akiraa: another benefit of thorium is greater availability of U-238 for space probe RTGs
[20:44] #knownspace> Hippy: RTG's?
[20:44] #knownspace> Akiraa: pu-238
[20:44] #knownspace> Lensman: Radio-Thermal Generator. Or Radioactive Thermal Generator. Something like that.
[20:44] #knownspace> Akiraa: plutonium 238, a very hot isotope used in nuclear batteries
[20:45] #knownspace> Lensman: But those only use a few pounds of radioactives. Not exactly a major consumer!
[20:45] #knownspace> Akiraa: they are the only good power source for deep space probes
[20:45] #knownspace> Hippy: Ah, yes. Most useful
[20:46] #knownspace> Akiraa: there are already limited quantities of this isotope in stocks
[20:46] #knownspace> Lensman: The Pioneer space probes are powered by RTGs, for example.
[20:46] #knownspace> Akiraa: future kuiper belt exploration won't be possible once the stocks run out
[20:46] #knownspace> Lensman: I'm sure they could refine more if they wanted to.
[20:47] #knownspace> Akiraa: at extreme costs
[20:47] #knownspace> Lensman: One of the stupid things we do is not recycling our nuclear waste, as France does. 90% of our high level nuclear waste could be recycled and reused for nuclear fuel.
[20:48] #knownspace> Akiraa: separating pu-238 right now means separating the chemically idendical blend of pu-239,240,241...
[20:49] #knownspace> Akiraa: and other stuff in nuclear waste
[20:49] #knownspace> Lensman: I rather doubt that only one particular isotope of Pu can be used to power a RTG! You just need something sufficiently radioactive to generate a moderate amount of heat.
[20:50] #knownspace> Akiraa: this is worth a watch http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdusXIvyLFQ
[20:50] #knownspace> Akiraa: the only alternative is strontium-90
[20:50] #knownspace> Akiraa: which has a half-life of 20 or so years
[20:50] #knownspace> Akiraa: whereas pu-238 is 80 or so years
[20:51] #knownspace> Akiraa: strontium may work, but you need to pack several times the weight
[20:52] #knownspace> Lensman: Perhaps other options would necessitate a higher launch weight, but that wouldn't make Kuiper Belt missions "impossible". Just more expensive.
[20:52] #knownspace> Akiraa: shielding for electronics also becomes a bigger problem
[20:52] #knownspace> Akiraa: due to the beta radiation of strontium
[20:53] #knownspace> Lensman: That's certainly an important consideration.
[20:54] #knownspace> Akiraa: there are also some isotopes with a similar energy, but they release gamma rays, which are much harder to shield against or actually capture for an RTG
[20:56] #knownspace> Hippy: Well, gentlemen, as fascinating as all this is - it's like eavesdropping on a bar conversation - it has rolled on to lunchtime and Hippy needs food, badly
[20:57] #knownspace> Hippy: So, same time next month and I wish you all the best for the upcoming Apring
[20:57] #knownspace> Akiraa: http://i.imgur.com/Kgehz.png
[20:58] #knownspace> Hippy: I ment either April or Spring, possibly both
[21:03] #knownspace> Akiraa: I remember the great media storm about possibly galileo diving into jupiter
[21:04] #knownspace> Akiraa: because, you see, the plutonium inside the RTG may blow up under the pressure
[21:05] #knownspace> Akiraa: "Van der Worp further argued that this fission reaction might well initiate a much larger thermonuclear fusion reaction in the deuterium (heavy hydrogen) making up a significant percentage of Jupiters atmosphere ultimately, igniting Jupiter as the solar systems second sun!"
[21:06] #knownspace> Akiraa: if only it were so easy to blow up a planet :p
[21:07] #knownspace> Akiraa: well, I'm off too, goodbye
[21:26] #knownspace> SeanS: I am going nuts on high speed rail on the niven list