Chat Log: September 4th, 2011

[07:44] Akiraa has joined #knownspace
[08:40] SeanS has joined #knownspace
[14:36] Lensman has joined #knownspace
[14:37] Jim has joined #knownspace
[14:37] #knownspace> Jim: anyone home?
[14:38] #knownspace> Lensman: Greetings, Niven fen!
[14:39] #knownspace> Lensman: I have STARS AND GODS checked out from the library, and at the moment I am busy adding up the various types of material in the book.
[14:39] #knownspace> Jim: has S&G come out in MMPB
[14:40] #knownspace> Jim: when is the next installment of the Fleet of Worlds series due?
[14:40] #knownspace> Lensman: S&G is new out this month in hardcover.
[14:41] #knownspace> Lensman: Pretty sure I'm the first to check it out from my local library!
[14:42] #knownspace> Lensman: BETRAYER OF WORLDS to be released Oct. 12
[14:44] #knownspace> SeanS: .weather 40601
[14:44] #knownspace> Outsider: Scattered, 73.4℉ (23℃), 30.02in (1013mb), Moderate breeze 11kt (↑) - KLOU 13:53, 1753Z
[14:46] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah, they have been coming out just in time for my birthday. for some reason, I am forbidden to pick them up for myself
[14:49] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, my first attempt came up with 367 pages out of 365. :)
[14:50] #knownspace> Jim: weather 26287
[14:51] #knownspace> SeanS: put a dot in front of weather
[14:51] #knownspace> Jim: .weather 26287
[14:51] #knownspace> Outsider: Overcast ☁, 64.4℉ (18℃), 29.94in (1011mb), Moderate breeze 11kt (↑) - KEKN 13:51, 1751Z
[14:51] #knownspace> Lensman: But basically it seems to be similar to SCATTERBRAIN, with a similar mix of excerpts from previously published novels, newly collected fiction, a bit of non-fiction, and some author's notes and anecdotes.
[14:52] #knownspace> Lensman: Which means I'll wait for the paperback edition before buying it.
[14:55] #knownspace> Lensman: There are a lot of stories here, but most are vignettes. Of the 11 newly collected stories-- those which have not before appeared in any Niven collection or MKW volume-- 8 of the 11 are 9 pages or less, one is 11 pages, one 26, and one 42.
[14:55] #knownspace> Lensman: Both the longer ones are collaborations with Brenda Cooper. Haven' read those yet, don't have an opinion.
[14:59] #knownspace> SeanS: .g stars and gods
[14:59] #knownspace> Outsider: SeanS: http://www.amazon.com/Stars-Gods-Larry-Niven/dp/0765308649
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Okay, I found my error.
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Let's see if I can paste this in without flooding...
[15:05] #knownspace> Jim: ?
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Total pages: 365
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Novel excerpts: 67
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Stories previously published in a Niven collection or a MKW volume: 97
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: New or newly collected stories: 124
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Non-fiction: 18
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Author's notes and personal stories: 31
[15:05] #knownspace> Lensman: Title pages, blank pages, TOC: 28
[15:06] #knownspace> Jim: Is S&G out for the kindle
[15:06] #knownspace> Jim: ?
[15:06] #knownspace> Lensman: I think so.
[15:06] #knownspace> SeanS: yes
[15:06] #knownspace> Xenovalent: The amazon.com link that Outsider posted says that it is. $12.99.
[15:07] #knownspace> SeanS: you can follow that link that outsider gave me and there is a kindle link on the page for kindle
[15:08] #knownspace> SeanS: talk about a messed up sentence
[15:08] #knownspace> Lensman: Now, this volume will be more valuable to those who don't buy the MKW volumes, and did not buy BRIDGING THE GALAXIES, which was a small press "convention collection".
[15:08] #knownspace> SeanS: btw, I talked to Euan Ritchie earlier and he is fine. just some broken glasses and cracked plaster
[15:09] #knownspace> Lensman: And his broken barometer.
[15:11] #knownspace> Jim: will Larry and/or Ed be here?
[15:11] #knownspace> Lensman: There are a couple of "Warlock's Era" stories. Unfortunately both the stories together are only 10 pages.
[15:12] #knownspace> SeanS: I havent talked to them
[15:13] #knownspace> Lensman: Neither e-mailed me to say they won't be here, so most likely they will show up or else they are out of town and didn't see my e-mail.
[15:13] #knownspace> SeanS: my gf broke her ankle 5.5 weeks ago and i have been taking care of her. she has been basically immobile.
[15:13] #knownspace> SeanS: lucky i am here today.
[15:13] #knownspace> Lensman: Major bummer.
[15:14] #knownspace> SeanS: yeah, i have basically not been home except to feed the dog for about 5 weeks
[15:14] #knownspace> Lensman: Six months to heal?
[15:14] #knownspace> SeanS: she should have a screw removed and be in a walking boot next week
[15:15] #knownspace> SeanS: that will release her to drive and stuff and my confinement will be mainly over
[15:15] #knownspace> Lensman: Better.
[15:18] #knownspace> Akiraa: hello
[15:18] #knownspace> SeanS: hi akiraa
[15:20] #knownspace> Akiraa: I wonder why some science fiction writers want to make their universes consistent at all costs
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[15:20] #knownspace> SeanS: Hi Larry
[15:20] #knownspace> Jim: coherence theory of truth
[15:21] #knownspace> Akiraa: larry: I wonder why some science fiction writers want to make their universes consistent at all costs
[15:21] #knownspace> Larry: Hi y'all. What's under discussion?
[15:22] #knownspace> SeanS: stars and gods and my gf's broken ankle ;)
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[15:22] #knownspace> Larry: Consistency...hmm. now, you do see that a story should be consistent.
[15:22] #knownspace> Akiraa: there is an easy way out: alternate timelines
[15:22] #knownspace> SolBelter: greetings all :) [Spike MacPhee]
[15:23] #knownspace> Lensman: Welcome Larry!
[15:24] #knownspace> Lensman: Under discussion: STARS & GODS; earthquake in New Zealand; Sean's gf has her ankle in a cast.
[15:24] #knownspace> Larry: Oh, there are even exceptions (see "All the Myriad Ways".) but a writer normally wants consistency. In a universe of stories, he's telling one big story. It should be consistent.
[15:24] #knownspace> Akiraa: but I enjoy how Known Space wants to become an all-encompassing alternate history of the universe :)
[15:25] #knownspace> Larry: Evading that obligation is easy: just design a different universe for that story. Re-using a set of assumptions is easy but lazy.
[15:25] #knownspace> Lensman: Why do authors try to make stories in their series consistent? 'Cuz they get smug, smarmy letters from readers if they don't.
[15:26] #knownspace> Larry: I know little of the quake in NZ, but - no death rate? Either they build well or it wasn't very big.
[15:26] #knownspace> Jim: 7.4 on open-ended Richter scale
[15:26] #knownspace> Jim: they build well
[15:27] #knownspace> SeanS: one of our own was there
[15:27] #knownspace> Larry: Smug, smarmy letters: right. It takes an attitude to continue in a universe that's been busted.
[15:27] #knownspace> SeanS: Euan Ritchie. shook him out of bed
[15:27] #knownspace> Larry: 7.4 is horrendous.
[15:28] #knownspace> SeanS: 7.1 is what Euan said. lots of collapsed chimneys and fallen brick walls
[15:28] AgincourtDB has joined #knownspace
[15:28] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hi all
[15:28] #knownspace> SeanS: hi david
[15:28] #knownspace> Jim: Google had stories that claimed 7.4 at about the time that I read Euan's 7.1 number.
[15:28] #knownspace> Jim: Aggie
[15:29] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: how is everyone this fine day
[15:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Here's my favorite non-Niven author story: "A horrible little boy came up to me and said, 'You know in your book The Martian Chronicles?' I said, 'Yes?' He said, 'You know where you talk about Deimos rising in the east?' I said, 'Yes?' He said, 'Nah.' So I hit him." —attributed to Ray Bradbury
[15:29] #knownspace> SeanS: hoping the few clouds will clear out by nightfall. buddy loaned me his 9.25 inch shmidt cassegrain scope and i have been dying to use it
[15:30] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: did you see the picture of Ray watching that Funny-or-Die video about him?
[15:30] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: http://www.wired.com/underwire/2010/08/rachel-bloom-ray-bradbury/
[15:31] #knownspace> Lensman: The "F*** Me, Ray Bradbury" song?
[15:31] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah
[15:31] #knownspace> SeanS: heh
[15:31] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: so funny
[15:31] #knownspace> Lensman: No, I didn't see anything about his reaction.
[15:32] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: apparently someone in his camp sent her a picture of him watching the video
[15:32] #knownspace> SeanS: So, Larry, we can expect Betrayer in mid October?
[15:32] #knownspace> Xenovalent: Speaking of Ray Bradbury...did anyone besides me hear the interview with him on Starship Sofa?
[15:32] #knownspace> Jim: Are there "groupies" at conventions? I have never been at a convention.
[15:32] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, but they are *quiet* groupies.
[15:32] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: lol
[15:32] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hopefully in Cosplay outfits
[15:33] #knownspace> Lensman: Not so much.
[15:33] #knownspace> Lensman: People into cosplay generally are not literary fen.
[15:33] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: well, it's true that cosplay is dominated by gaming subjects
[15:34] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I don't necessarily assume they don't read hehe
[15:34] #knownspace> Larry: Betrayer in mid-October: sounds right. It's due soon.
[15:34] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: new book yay :-)
[15:34] #knownspace> Lensman: There is some overlap, but in general there are media cons and literary cons, and the two don't overlap that much. Larry is often invited to literary cons. Not sure about media cons, but I would guess not so much.
[15:34] #knownspace> Jim: :roflol:
[15:35] #knownspace> Jim: roflol:
[15:35] #knownspace> Larry: There are indeed groupies at conventions. There are all kinds at conventions.
[15:36] #knownspace> SeanS: I was about to head to LibertyCon in chattanooga a number of years ago to meet Larry and Jerry along with Dan Hollifield and Steve Sloan when the river started rising forcing me to abandon plans. was a major bummer
[15:36] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I want to go to one of the new geek cons
[15:37] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: to commune with my people
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[15:37] #knownspace> SeanS: wb
[15:37] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I'd love to go to a W00tstock
[15:37] #knownspace> Jim: What is a Geek Con? Is that like w00stock?
[15:37] #knownspace> Lensman: There are always people walking around in costumes at cons, including literary cons. It's just that the people who are heavily into cosplay-- which is a subset of Anime fandom-- aren't generally the type that read traditional SF much.
[15:37] #knownspace> SolBelter: thanks Sean :)
[15:38] #knownspace> SolBelter: hi Agincourt and Jim
[15:38] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I think you may be underestimating the growth of Cosplay at Comicons
[15:38] #knownspace> Lensman: Comicon is a media con, not a literary con.
[15:38] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah, but that doesn't mean the people there don't read
[15:39] #knownspace> Jim: Does anyone come dressed as Alice (Wonderland)?
[15:39] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I have seen pictures of Alice
[15:39] #knownspace> Larry: Visual people (like costumers or artists) tend to favor fantasy. Don't know why, but I empathize. We own some wonderful fantasy paintings.
[15:40] #knownspace> Larry: Marilyn came to the costume event dressed as Alice in Wonderland, the evening after I met her.
[15:41] #knownspace> SeanS: heh
[15:41] #knownspace> SolBelter: at sf cons in late 60s-70s, there was a predujice against hall costumes, and a subset of wearers didnt read much sf - as types of cons evolved, stereotypes changed
[15:42] #knownspace> Lensman: Media cons tend to attract a younger, more vocally enthusiastic crowd. Big-name celebrities at media cons may need security to keep from getting mobbed by groupies. Literary cons tend to be attended by older, more laid-back convention goers. Not so much mobbing. Still groupies, but not so aggressive or vocal.
[15:42] #knownspace> SolBelter: also, con size growth exacerbated those security issues
[15:43] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: okay, but he just said 'conventions', not 'literary conventions', so I stand by my [what should have been a throwaway] cosplay joke.
[15:43] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: so there
[15:43] #knownspace> Lensman: Finagle yes! Comicon is up to, what is it, 50,000 people? Or is it more?
[15:43] #knownspace> Jim: I have heard of stories where David Hewlett was treated almost as a Beatle when Stargate Atlantis was a going concern.
[15:44] #knownspace> SolBelter: and traffic flow considerations made hall crowds [flash mobs?] a hinderance
[15:44] #knownspace> Lensman: But back to the question: What is a "Geek con" ?
[15:44] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: like W00tstock
[15:45] #knownspace> SolBelter: fewer impromptu chats of a dozen fans in halls ... with or within authors/artists
[15:45] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: http://w00tstock.net/
[15:45] #knownspace> Lensman: Comicon-- THE Comicon in, where is it, San Diego?-- is now the place where movie studios debut the ads for major summer blockbusters. It is not primarily about Comic books anymore.
[15:45] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: http://www.paxsite.com/paxprime/index.php
[15:45] #knownspace> Xenovalent: also Nerdapalooza, then? http://nerdapalooza.org/
[15:46] #knownspace> Lensman: Okay, then what is W00tstock?
[15:46] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Wil Wheaton, Paul and Storm, and one of the guys from Mythbusters run it
[15:46] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: click on the link ab ove
[15:46] #knownspace> SeanS: .g wootstock
[15:46] #knownspace> Outsider: SeanS: http://www.paulandstorm.com/gigs/w00tstock/
[15:48] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: so is anyone considering doing nanowrimo this year (to change the subject)?
[15:48] #knownspace> Larry: nanowrimo???
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[15:48] #knownspace> Xenovalent: "National Novel Writing Month"
[15:48] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: National Novel Writing Month
[15:48] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: what he said :-)
[15:49] #knownspace> Jim: Is that in Sep?
[15:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you have a month to write a novel of 50k words
[15:49] #knownspace> Larry: I can't write a novel in a month.
[15:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: November
[15:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: apparently neither can I larry lol
[15:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I've tried and failed like 3 times
[15:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: but people do it
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[15:49] #knownspace> Dmac44: Hi guys.
[15:50] #knownspace> Larry: And I've got a big hole poked in November. Nantes, France, 5 days +,
[15:50] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: niiice
[15:50] #knownspace> Xenovalent: No one expects it to be a *good* novel if you do it in 30 days
[15:50] #knownspace> nedry: you need Catherine Cookson for that.
[15:50] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: it's meant to be first draft
[15:50] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: no editing-while-you-go
[15:50] #knownspace> nedry: she could churn out two before lunch. of course, they're all the same
[15:50] #knownspace> Jim: I think that Isaac Asimov could write a novel in 30 days.
[15:50] #knownspace> Larry: I always edit-while-I-go.
[15:51] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah
[15:51] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry: Speaking of consistency, I note that you keep the science updated in newer stories even if it makes newer stories in a series inconsistent with older stories. Frex in RINGWORLD'S CHILDREN Louis describes the galaxy as a barred spiral, which appears (to me) to be inconsistent with the spherical galactic core in "At the Core". Not sure how to phrase the question... what is your approach...
[15:51] #knownspace> Lensman: ...to this sort of thing? Do you see RINGWORLD's Children happening in a different "universe", a slightly different one, than "At the Core"? Or do you regard such details as not very important?
[15:51] #knownspace> nedry: that was Clarke's excuse for 3001
[15:51] #knownspace> Jim: Clarke used that excuse in 2010, 2060, and 3001.
[15:52] #knownspace> nedry: someone tell my son he can't have ANOTHER ANIMAL
[15:52] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I like the movie of 2010
[15:52] #knownspace> nedry: yeah, but 2010 was worth reading
[15:52] #knownspace> nedry: the other two were horrible
[15:52] #knownspace> Lensman: What nedry said.
[15:52] #knownspace> Jim: I liked them all.
[15:52] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I think I tried to read the third one and didn't get very far
[15:52] #knownspace> SeanS: 2061 was ok... 3001 sucked
[15:52] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: but then, I couldn't get into Rama either
[15:53] #knownspace> Larry: If the real universe changes, I feel free to change the fiction unless the change is too great. Notice no more Mercury stories in Known Space after "The Coldest Place" went obsolete.
[15:53] #knownspace> nedry: 3001 undid everything he'd done in the other books.
[15:53] #knownspace> Jim: Ramalamadingdong?
[15:53] #knownspace> Lensman: I guess I didn't read 2061. 3001 sucked big time.
[15:53] #knownspace> SeanS: Larry, I totally agree... you have to stick with the science. especially for you as a hard SF writer.
[15:54] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry: Quibble: Part of "Madness Has Its Place" was set on Mercury. As we've discussed before, in that later story Mercury rotates, so I suggested as a fanfix that in "The Coldest Place" it was at one of the rare periods when Mercury's orbit was perfectly circular.
[15:55] #knownspace> Larry: Note also my early Mars stories, written during the first age of probes. They kept changing Mars, and I followed.
[15:56] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Mars is a fickle lass
[15:56] #knownspace> Jim: Yes, I agree with updating the story universe to reflect the state of science at the time of writing.
[15:56] #knownspace> Lensman: I once heard Larry give a talk where he explained that his real "job" was educating his readers in science. With that philosophy, Larry, it's understandable that you want to keep the science as up to date as possible.
[15:56] #knownspace> Larry: As for Mercury in "Madness Has its Place", check it out. I may not have committed myself to a rotation.
[15:57] #knownspace> Jim: All, are the rare earth metals available on the surface of other planets in the solar system?
[15:57] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: let's go find out
[15:57] #knownspace> SeanS: dont know.. unfortunately never been to any.
[15:58] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: who's with me
[15:58] #knownspace> Jim: I am.
[15:58] #knownspace> SeanS: most definately
[15:58] #knownspace> Lensman: The surface of Luna is rather devoid of heavier elements. It seems that without tectonic plate activity, the heavier elements sink to the core?
[15:59] #knownspace> SeanS: punch up man conquers space in google. tis a independent film thingy about what might of been. it has a trailer
[15:59] #knownspace> SolBelter: I'm recalling an old Winston SF book by Lester del Rey using Eric van Lhin pseudo ... rivers of lead on Mercury
[15:59] #knownspace> SeanS: .g man conquers space
[15:59] #knownspace> Outsider: SeanS: http://manconquersspace.com/
[16:00] #knownspace> Lensman: The surface of Mercury looks a lot like Luna, except it's brown instead of gray.
[16:01] #knownspace> Lensman: Sadly, no rivers of lead.
[16:01] #knownspace> Jim: Venus is geologically active.
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[16:01] #knownspace> SeanS: hi Ed
[16:01] #knownspace> Jim: ed!
[16:01] #knownspace> SolBelter: http://www.amazon.com/Battle-Mercury-Winston-Science-Fiction/dp/B000OP9M4Q
[16:01] #knownspace> EML: Hi, guys.
[16:01] #knownspace> Lensman: The planets were much more interesting in the novels of Burroughs et al!
[16:02] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Venus is geologically active, much like myself.
[16:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Welcome, Ed!
[16:02] #knownspace> SolBelter: hi Ed :)
[16:02] #knownspace> nedry: he ed
[16:03] #knownspace> nedry: hi ed
[16:03] #knownspace> EML: what's up for discussion today?
[16:03] #knownspace> Xenovalent: From "Madness Has Its Place": "When the Sun set, it set for thirty-odd Earth days" (taken from N-Space)
[16:03] #knownspace> Lensman: Consistency in SF series, or lack thereof.
[16:03] #knownspace> SeanS: well, agincourt is gassing up his car and we are going to explore some strange new worlds
[16:04] #knownspace> Larry: Hi, Ed.
[16:04] #knownspace> Jim: In search of rare earth metals for our electric cars.
[16:04] #knownspace> EML: Consistency in series ... yeah, that's a challenge.
[16:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Xeno: You're in danger of violating Bradbury's "horrible kid" rule. :)
[16:04] #knownspace> SolBelter: whether or not to revise science in a series/futory [future history] as realworld data changes over the years, Ed, is one topic
[16:05] #knownspace> Larry: Okay, Xenovalent.
[16:05] #knownspace> Lensman: "Rare earths" aren't really that rare, but don't let that stop a good story!
[16:05] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I tend to think if you're obsessing over details like that you're usually missing the point of the story itself
[16:06] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: even in hard SF
[16:06] #knownspace> Xenovalent: Lensman: Larry said to "check it out", so I did!
[16:06] #knownspace> EML: hard SF becomes alternate history as real science passes by the story.
[16:06] #knownspace> SolBelter: but we read story first to experience it, then go back and take notes, Agin :)
[16:06] #knownspace> Lensman: Xeno: I was trying to make a joke, sorry.
[16:07] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: SolBelter: I tend to put myself in the world of the story too much to worry about inconsistencies between that world and my own ;-)
[16:07] #knownspace> Dmac44: You were mentioning Clarke's 2001 sequels earlier. One of the ideas he had was to genetically engineer coral to pull gold out of seawater. Why not rare earths?
[16:07] #knownspace> SolBelter: Lensman *did* put a siley on his comment...grin
[16:08] #knownspace> Lensman: I *do* read to story first! *Then* I go back and do the obsessive fanboy with magnifying glass schtick. :)
[16:08] #knownspace> SolBelter: same here!
[16:08] #knownspace> Lensman: ...for the second reading.
[16:08] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hehe ok
[16:09] #knownspace> Dmac44: Of course you wouldn't want them to be able to seperate out elements by isotope!
[16:09] #knownspace> Lensman: Of course, this means I have to read all KS stories twice... but that's a *good* thing!
[16:09] #knownspace> SolBelter: but i have seen fans who got so bent by an inconsistancy that they couldnt enjoy the rest of the story...
[16:09] #knownspace> EML: Still, doesn't OBE science and tech (or cultural cues) sometimes throw you out of a story?
[16:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: bad writing throws me out of a story
[16:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: pretty much anything else I can deal with
[16:10] #knownspace> SolBelter: OBE? is ?
[16:10] #knownspace> EML: overcome by events
[16:11] #knownspace> Larry: Bad writing throws me out of a story too, but not easily. My willing suspension of disbelief comes cheap.
[16:11] #knownspace> Lensman: Iithium is not a rare earth, but supposedly the Japanese have developed a method of refining lithium from seawater. If the price ever gets to about $25 per pound-- which it might, due to use in lithium ion batteries-- then that will apparently be economically viable.
[16:11] #knownspace> EML: or Order of the British Empire
[16:11] #knownspace> SolBelter: oh, absolutely! Hearing the roar of the puter's card-punchs or later OBEs
[16:11] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: how does WSoD come into play with bad writing? You can pretend it isn't bad? ;-)
[16:13] #knownspace> EML: I find ancient social customs in ther "future" more jarring than bad tech.
[16:13] #knownspace> Jim: EML, do you know of an example?
[16:13] #knownspace> Lensman: I can have a movie ruined for my by "science made stupid" material. Or even a book-- look at Hoyle's ROCKETS IN URSA MAJOR. Or better yet... don't.
[16:13] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: EML: that annoys me as well. It's the one flaw with Firefly, for example
[16:14] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: there is no confluence of future events that could possibly end with people talking, dressing, and living like cowboys
[16:14] #knownspace> EML: Secretaries in space. Simpering housewifes waiting for their asteroid miner husbands to come home.
[16:15] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hehe yeah, the '50's future'
[16:15] #knownspace> Lensman: I find my WSoD is a lot stronger if the story is well written. Perhaps not fair of me, but my emotional reaction doesn't have to be "fair".
[16:15] #knownspace> Dmac44: EML: on Milky Way lane? :)
[16:16] #knownspace> EML: hte Jetsons :-)
[16:16] #knownspace> Jim: ok
[16:17] #knownspace> SeanS: i dont have a problem with low tech in firefly.. the outer planets are just more frontier like. you stilll see high tech. like a guy on horseback with a cool laser pistol
[16:17] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, "Firefly" suffers from the jarring juxtaposition of gritty reality in the foreground and science fantasy as unreal as Flash Gordon in the background.
[16:17] #knownspace> EML: curiously, far-future consistency is easier to maintain than near-future.
[16:17] #knownspace> SeanS: and using serenity to haul cattle. hell, ya gotta eat!
[16:17] #knownspace> Dmac44: the firefly solar system seems unbelievable.
[16:17] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I don't have a problem with the low tech either, it's the fact that they talk like cowboys that bugs me
[16:17] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: that wouldn't happen
[16:18] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and dress like them too
[16:18] #knownspace> SeanS: cowboys that also cuss in chinese
[16:18] #knownspace> Lensman: Near-future goes out of date too quickly. Who reads Martin Caidin's early works today?
[16:18] #knownspace> Jim: I suppose the cure for the obsolete social conventions in the Jetsons is to view the NSFW cartoons of the Jetsons on the Internet.
[16:18] #knownspace> EML: Dmac: I'm with you -- the solar system in Firefly makes no sense.
[16:19] #knownspace> Dmac44: Too many planets too close together and no FTL.
[16:19] #knownspace> Lensman: I could buy the /Firefly/ hauling cattle if it was breeding stock, but certainly not to eat beef!
[16:19] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah
[16:19] #knownspace> Xenovalent: In "Firefly" (the show), I don't believe that there was anything to point to everything occuring in a single solar system; that was retconned in for "Serenity" for some reason
[16:19] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: it's a wild west pastiche laid over a SF show
[16:19] #knownspace> Dmac44: And a spacehip that looks like a horse?
[16:19] #knownspace> SeanS: i agree eml and dmac. but i didnt let that interfere with the story
[16:19] #knownspace> SolBelter: Dmac, one excuse for planets was many were asteroids with boosted grav,
[16:20] #knownspace> SolBelter: ...and horses ARE a lowtech replicating vehicle
[16:20] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: the writing is just so good that you can ignore that
[16:20] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: which is kind of my point
[16:20] #knownspace> Jim: Semen and embryos are much more easily transported than breeding stock.
[16:20] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: if the writing were bad, I wouldn't bother suspending my disbelief
[16:20] #knownspace> SeanS: the ships name was serenity. and breeding stock for more cattle... to eat maybe?
[16:21] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Jim: for semen and embryos to be viable at the destination, there would need to be more tech on the ground there
[16:21] #knownspace> EML: alas (for me), I *like* near-future stories. Much of what I write (aside from with Larry) is near-future. If I'm lucky, it will segue gracefully into alternate history.
[16:21] #knownspace> SolBelter: Jim - but the facilities to grow the embryos might not exist...
[16:21] #knownspace> Jim: Semen frozen in liquid nitrogen is transported nowadays.
[16:22] #knownspace> Akiraa: " Too many planets too close together and no FTL." Why is FTL a requirement?
[16:22] #knownspace> Dmac44: For me the science won't rule out my enjoyment if the writing is good, the acting is good, there are other tings to keep you interested and there is consistency in their premise.
[16:22] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: sure, but you have to then have a freezer on site to keep it
[16:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Okay, so there is a viable scenario for hauling breeding cattle instead of just frozen embryos, but then you'd have to be a rich rancher to afford to hire a spaceship to travel long distances to haul the stock. Generally we see the /Serenity/'s customers as dirt-poor.
[16:22] #knownspace> Larry: I've done near future, but it is harder work. There's real danger of finding you're writing the past.
[16:23] #knownspace> EML: I tend to need humor to get past egregious science. Hence, I enjoy Eureka and Stargate.
[16:23] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Lens: I'm not saying transporting the cattle is viable, I'm just saying transporting semen/embryos might not be viable to all locii either
[16:23] #knownspace> SeanS: just serenity... sorry browncoating it a bit ;)
[16:23] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Larry: Oath of Fealty works well as near-future even now
[16:23] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I reread recently, holds up
[16:24] #knownspace> Jim: Many farmers today have liquid nitrogen freezers. Ice cream of the future at the mall in Morgantown, WV is kept in liquid nitrogen.
[16:24] #knownspace> Dmac44: Akirra: the planets have earth-like environments. You need to be in a habitable zone around a single star unless there are technologies at work that are magical and I didn't see any of that in Firefly.
[16:24] #knownspace> SeanS: so did i db and it does
[16:24] #knownspace> Lensman: Agreed, OATH OF FEALTY holds up quite well. Stories like "The Coldest Place" and "Wait it Out" have not fared so well.
[16:24] #knownspace> SolBelter: Andrew Offutt once pujt an oxygen-vending machine in a future polluted city - then got a clipping from a friend about one in Tokyo already
[16:25] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: lol
[16:25] #knownspace> Jim: EML, what do you think of Stargate Universe?
[16:25] #knownspace> SolBelter: mid-70s or earlier
[16:25] #knownspace> SeanS: the coldest place didnt make it to print before being out of date. still a good story. dang science
[16:25] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I try to avoid thinking of the Stargate Universe if at all possible
[16:26] #knownspace> SolBelter: as Larry has said "I'd cashed the check, so Fred Pohl had to publish 'Coldest Place'
[16:26] #knownspace> Jim: hehe
[16:26] #knownspace> Lensman: The solar system of "Firefly" is as unrealistic as that of any Flash Gordon setting. A hundred worlds all in the habitable zone? Even if you assume gravity control for moons of gas giants, it makes no sense.
[16:26] #knownspace> EML: Jim: I enjoy Stargate. Loved the movie. The series has lots of illogic -- like descendants of kidnapped Egyptians who speak English -- but used consistently enough that I overlook the illogic to enjoy the fun.
[16:26] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: lol, as if to illustrate the discussion, Craig Ferguson (TV host) just tweeted: "Watched Timecop last night. Haven't seen that movie in years. Boy 2004 is going to be awesome."
[16:27] #knownspace> SeanS: i liked the stargate movie until they went through the gate. then it went downhill for me
[16:28] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry offered to return the payment to Pohl. I don't mind the rotation thing, really. It's that a brain-in-a-bottle and things like the NERVA propulsion in "Wait it Out" that seem dated now.
[16:28] #knownspace> Dmac44: Stargate is fun. It has enough of the other things a story needs so that I overlook the language issues (every planet speaks English).
[16:28] #knownspace> SeanS: i have never gotten into stargate series.
[16:28] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I don't mind tropes like 'brain-in-a-bottle'
[16:29] #knownspace> EML: Netflix has the first several seasons of Stargate to stream. I just started rewatching them.
[16:29] #knownspace> Jim: I like the "Brain in a Vat" trope.
[16:29] #knownspace> SeanS: jim, if you do try to find a copy of the book mayflies.
[16:29] #knownspace> Lensman: Arrakis is science fantasy, too. A habitable world with no water exposed on the surface? Not gonna happen. The temperature difference between day and night would be too extreme for earth-like life to live there.
[16:30] #knownspace> SolBelter: Lensman, either Larry said more than version of check story or u and I are from diff Myriad Ways universes...
[16:30] #knownspace> Jim: .g Mayflies
[16:30] #knownspace> Outsider: Jim: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayfly
[16:30] #knownspace> EML: Lensman: agreed -- Arrakis makes no ecological sense. So it's ironic how it's embraced as ecological SF.
[16:30] #knownspace> SolBelter: joking
[16:31] #knownspace> Lensman: I like "Stargate" too. Yes, that's an example of writing that's good enuff for me to ignore things like everybody speaking colloquial English.
[16:31] #knownspace> Jim: Dune was never intended to be hard SF.
[16:31] #knownspace> SolBelter: Jim, Sean - Mayflies by O'Donnell is great fun
[16:31] #knownspace> Lensman: SolBelter-- What??
[16:31] #knownspace> Jim: The blue aliens (smurfs) on the new show do not speak English.
[16:32] #knownspace> SolBelter: Lensman - i was joking about Larry's 2 versions of the Coldest Place check story
[16:33] #knownspace> SeanS: was it by O'Donnell? I just remember Mayflies as a great brain in a bottle book
[16:33] #knownspace> Lensman: Sol: Oh, okay.
[16:33] #knownspace> SolBelter: SeanS - yes, he's a great storyteller
[16:33] #knownspace> EML: Emerson: A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.
[16:34] #knownspace> Lensman: Not to mention sandworms so big that they would collapse under their own weight.
[16:34] #knownspace> Jim: I don't like Emerson's philosophy.
[16:34] #knownspace> Akiraa: Dmac44: you may as well have a bunch of gas giants with lots of earth-like moons
[16:34] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Long ago I wrote a not-very-good story where a brain-in-a-jar flying a ramscoop colony ship grows a colonist (from frozen embryo/semen) to keep him company on the trip.
[16:35] #knownspace> SeanS: not a bad idea
[16:35] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I remember it not ending well
[16:35] #knownspace> Dmac44: Again, I suspect that a even with the gas gaints in a Kempeler Rosette, the number of planets would be limited. And, economically, power centers would form, not one big uber-state.
[16:35] #knownspace> Jim: They should have put two brains in a vat to keep each other company/simulated sex.
[16:35] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: but I've lost the story (in a hard drive crash) so I no longer have to worry about it being bad
[16:35] #knownspace> SeanS: heh
[16:36] #knownspace> SolBelter:
[16:37] #knownspace> Dmac44: that's the gas giants in a Kempeler Rosette around a sun.
[16:37] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Dmac44: states are a result of tech, not economy. Once you can project force 'quickly', states form
[16:37] #knownspace> SeanS: i think its nastier in Destiny's Road than gift from earth
[16:37] #knownspace> SolBelter: the embodied colonist might go mad quickly, or be conditioned to like it... [buthas nothing to compare it to] hmmm
[16:37] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: SeanS maybe not: ignorance being bliss
[16:37] #knownspace> Jim: AgincourtDB: death to the state (lol)
[16:38] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Jim: fight the power
[16:38] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hehe
[16:38] #knownspace> SolBelter: "Corbell, speaking for himself!"
[16:38] #knownspace> Lensman: I can enjoy cartoons, which deliberately violate what we think of as the rules of reality for humorous effect. I can enjoy superhero comic books, with a heedless disregard for physics. I can enjoy science fantasy like the Flash Gordon comic strip. Where I have a hard time is with stories which seem to have an inconsistent level of reality. "Firefly" seems to want to tell a story about the...
[16:38] #knownspace> Lensman: ...gritty hard reality of frontier worlds existing on the edge of survival, but the story background would be better suited to heroic fantasy. I find the juxtaposition jarring. If y'all don't, then I'm glad you can enjoy it.
[16:38] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah, the "State" universe is scary as a whole
[16:39] #knownspace> SeanS: but from the state universe come the 2 smoke ring books which i love. i keep begging for more but the man himself says no. :(
[16:39] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: as well as being the most likely to actually occur
[16:39] #knownspace> Akiraa: it's also possible to have a hierarchical solar system with several suns
[16:39] #knownspace> Akiraa: close together
[16:40] #knownspace> Lensman: Hogan wrote a wonderful short story about a robot raising a child from a frozen embryo, the first generation destined for a new colony world. "Silver Shoes for a Princess".
[16:40] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I'll have to read that
[16:41] #knownspace> Dmac44: Akirra: I'm not sure what that would look like or whether that would violate the laws of gravity.
[16:41] #knownspace> Jim: Alastair Reynolds wrote a story where a ship carried embryos to a distant star, then raised them with robots. The colony had a bad end.
[16:41] #knownspace> Akiraa: Dmac44: i.e. one large sun with orbiting smaller stars, each maybe with other planetary or stellar satellites
[16:42] #knownspace> Akiraa: and gas giants
[16:42] #knownspace> Lensman: Akiraa: Yes, that was my personal attempt to fanfix the "Firefly" world background. It's at least theoretically possible to have up to eight suns in a single stellar system. We can certainly get a lot of worlds that way, if we have wide-area gravity control and can use small moons. But even still, I think they'd have to use artificial orbiting "suns" ala FLEET OF WORLDS to get that many...
[16:42] #knownspace> Lensman: ...habitable planets.
[16:42] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: there's no reconciling it with reality
[16:42] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you just have to ignore it
[16:42] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and pay attention to the Big Damn Heroes
[16:42] #knownspace> Lensman: But the canonical diagram of the "Firefly" solar system has only one sun.
[16:43] #knownspace> Dmac44: Reynolds "Golden Hour" is a another "many worlds close together" concept but most are converted asteroids.
[16:43] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Lensman: yes. There is even a poster you can buy
[16:43] #knownspace> Akiraa: firefly fans have been hard at work indeed: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Firefly_planets_and_moons
[16:43] #knownspace> Lensman: Aggie: Hogan's story is in MINDS, MACHINES AND EVOLUTION.
[16:44] SloanS has joined #knownspace
[16:44] #knownspace> SloanS: Hello, been a while
[16:44] #knownspace> SeanS: that firefly poster is about the most convoluted thing i have ever seen.
[16:44] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: really? I found it as "Star Child" looks like an expanded novel
[16:44] #knownspace> Jim: The "Golden Hour" was a volume of solar system space filled with space settlements, inhabited moons and asteroids, and the like.
[16:44] #knownspace> SeanS: hi steve
[16:44] #knownspace> SloanS: Hi, Sean
[16:44] #knownspace> Lensman: Aggie: Yes, there was some discussion of the poster. Maybe a Niven list discussion? That's why I'm familiar with it.
[16:44] #knownspace> Dmac44: Jim: Correct.
[16:44] SolBelter has joined #knownspace
[16:45] #knownspace> Larry: I reread the Smoke Ring stories and found I'd said it all. Alas, there were wonderful suggestions--sails and kites to steer the integral trees--and I'll miss those.
[16:45] #knownspace> SolBelter: [accidentally disconnected] i sympsathized with Sean re no 3rd or more SMoke Ring books - "We want Ghost Ships!" :))
[16:46] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: yeah that's such a gorgeous setting
[16:46] #knownspace> SeanS: larry, i know.
[16:46] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you should open it up like the Warlock Universe and the MKW
[16:46] #knownspace> SloanS: Hi, Larry. Glad to see you here.
[16:46] #knownspace> SolBelter: at least tell us what the ghost ships *were*
[16:46] #knownspace> Akiraa: But then, this is sci-fi, why do we even need Earth-like worlds? The inhabitable volume of asteroids is huge, not to mention that of artificial space structures.
[16:47] #knownspace> SeanS: good question
[16:47] #knownspace> Lensman: Larry: Yeah, can't we get a novel excerpt from THE GHOST SHIPS?
[16:47] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hehe
[16:47] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I'd love to write a story in the Smoke Ring universe
[16:47] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: maybe I'll do it just for fun
[16:47] #knownspace> Larry: I can't open the Smoke Ring to other writers because I'd have to find writers good enough. They're there, I know, but I'd have to hand pick--and tell friends they can't do it.
[16:47] #knownspace> SeanS: dave, if you do, shoot it my way.
[16:47] #knownspace> Lensman: "Please, sir, may I have some more?"
[16:47] #knownspace> Dmac44: Akirra: We were talking about the Firefly Universe as it exists not how we could remake it to make sense.
[16:47] #knownspace> Akiraa: something like the Motie civilization
[16:48] #knownspace> SolBelter: Akiraa - Jack Williamson used peegees [paragravity generators ] to give asteroids atmosphere in Seetee Ship and Seetee Shock
[16:48] #knownspace> SloanS: Firefly universe obviously has very fast and very cheap terraforming.
[16:48] #knownspace> Akiraa: I think that's the problem, dmac44, we focus on making individual universes consistent, not building one from the start
[16:49] #knownspace> SolBelter: so why not have Blue Sun setting up lots of small rocks similiarly?
[16:49] #knownspace> EML: on the subject of sequels and consistency ...
[16:49] #knownspace> Lensman: If I remember the very brief intro given for the "Firefly" series, they were using nanotech to terraform the planets; tech which subsequently was lost.
[16:49] #knownspace> Larry: Lunchtime. Fare ye well, all.
[16:49] #knownspace> Dmac44: Bye, Larry.
[16:49] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: by larry :-)
[16:49] #knownspace> Jim: seeya Larry
[16:49] #knownspace> EML: Larry & I are about to toss a new one into the mix -- Louis Wu's back story. (Has this come up today?)
[16:50] #knownspace> SolBelter: bye Larry! Yes, EML?
[16:50] #knownspace> Lensman: Goodbye, Larry.
[16:50] #knownspace> EML: Bye, Larry
[16:50] #knownspace> SolBelter: wow!
[16:50] #knownspace> Dmac44: EML: Toss away.
[16:50] #knownspace> SloanS: Ooh, that sounds awesome
[16:50] #knownspace> Lensman: LA LA LA LA LA LA LA! (Not listening to Ed...)
[16:50] #knownspace> EML: This is to say: Betrayer of Worlds. It's coming out next month.
[16:51] #knownspace> EML: And not to worry, Lens: I will give no spoilers.
[16:51] #knownspace> Lensman:
[16:51] #knownspace> Dmac44: EML: Are you changing KS history?
[16:51] #knownspace> Jim: Was Louis Wu raised by a pair of Lesbians (what is the reference)?
[16:52] #knownspace> SolBelter: Louis got a broken nose, and wasnt used to the pain - so when he fought with i think'the rebels on Wunderland' he didnt get hurt? grin
[16:52] #knownspace> EML: Doug: there's no intent to change history. But you find find you need to reinterpret some past events.
[16:52] #knownspace> Dmac44: Ah, the tease. :)
[16:52] #knownspace> Lensman: Dmac: I think the appropriate question is "Are you changing KS history *again*?"
[16:52] #knownspace> Dmac44: lol
[16:52] #knownspace> SolBelter: EML, i loved the extra layers of motives and players
[16:52] #knownspace> EML: Sol: thanks.
[16:52] #knownspace> SolBelter: in previous books by u two
[16:53] #knownspace> Lensman: Entirely possible if his guerrilla warfare was all long-distance fighting with a "light sword".
[16:53] #knownspace> SolBelter: a huge kick to my head to see 'behind the scenes' after decades [when i read the original stories]
[16:53] #knownspace> EML: (cat who ate the canary grin)
[16:54] #knownspace> Lensman: There was a *lot* of changing history in DESTROYER OF WORLDS!
[16:54] #knownspace> SolBelter: agreed Lensman
[16:54] #knownspace> Dmac44: EML: lol
[16:54] #knownspace> Jim: Lensman, do you mean fighting with a fusion ship?
[16:54] #knownspace> EML: Lens: changed history in DOW? Truthfully, I don't see that.
[16:54] #knownspace> Akiraa: can you have planets orbiting at approximately the same distance from the sun, but at different angles or excentricities, stabilized by gravitational resonance?
[16:54] #knownspace> Lensman: Jim: No. Louis was caught on Wonderland in a revolution, and fought as a guerrilla for months (six months?) before he could get to a ship.
[16:55] #knownspace> Lensman: ...er, Wunderland...
[16:55] #knownspace> EML: Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat :-)
[16:55] #knownspace> SloanS: Feed your head
[16:56] #knownspace> SolBelter: Lensman - that's the cause of the fighting - the proper spelling grin
[16:56] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: lol
[16:56] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: "U or die!"
[16:56] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: "O or go!"
[16:56] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: The Core Explosion in "At the Core" and the Core Explosion in DESTROYER OF WORLDS did *not* happen in the same universe!
[16:56] #knownspace> Dmac44: Akirra: I'm not a scientist but I suspect they'd pull each other out of orbit. Large scale gravity manipulation doesn't seem to be available (or seen yet) in the Firefly universe.
[16:56] #knownspace> EML: Hare of the dog that bit me?
[16:57] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hare of the dog? is that, like, a rabbit riding a dog?
[16:57] #knownspace> EML: Lens: please explain.
[16:58] #knownspace> EML: DB: yeah, rabbit transit.
[16:58] #knownspace> SolBelter: <==puzzling if pulling a hat out of a rabbit is tougher...
[16:58] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: rofl
[16:58] #knownspace> EML: messier, certainly
[16:58] #knownspace> Akiraa: another possibility is twin planets orbiting each other
[16:58] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: depends on the hat
[16:58] #knownspace> Akiraa: 2 earths for the price of one
[16:58] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and the rabbit
[16:58] #knownspace> Lensman: Nor was the Pssthpok who traveled about 33,000 lightyears from Pakhome to Earth the same Phssthpok who Thssthfok has records of. That other Phssthpok must have left Pakhome *much* earlier.
[16:59] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: maybe he stopped for lunch on the way
[16:59] #knownspace> SloanS: Messier or NGC
[16:59] #knownspace> EML: Lens: we meant him to be the same Pak. I don't see why he couldn't be.
[16:59] #knownspace> Dmac44: Akirra: Double planets make sense but again you can only put so many of them in close proximity to each other.
[17:00] #knownspace> SeanS: might try some messiers tonight
[17:00] #knownspace> SeanS: buddy loaned me a 9.25 inch shmidt cassegrain.
[17:00] #knownspace> SloanS: Nice
[17:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: How fast did F'fok's fleet travel? Between .4 and .9 lightspeed, right? What was the average speed?
[17:00] #knownspace> EML: Lens: Mr. T and Mr. P arrived in the Known Space area only a few hundred years apart.
[17:00] #knownspace> Jim: Yingling break
[17:00] #knownspace> SeanS: it was just gathering dust in his garage since he bought his 16 inch
[17:01] #knownspace> SloanS: Makes sense. It's been a while since I got up the mountain for the astronomy club.
[17:02] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: Yes, they arrived only a few hundred years apart in the same region of the galaxy. That's the problem, since Mr. P traveled very, very close to lightspeed, and Mr. T travelled much, much slower.
[17:02] #knownspace> SeanS: has an equatorial mount that i have not had the chance to mess with yet
[17:02] #knownspace> EML: lens: the Gw'oth could only see recent behavior of the Pak fleet.
[17:03] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: somewhere, someone is furiously typing. I can just feel it.
[17:03] #knownspace> Dmac44: EML: Why did the Pak only recently change their acceleration parameters?
[17:04] #knownspace> EML: stop for resupply? stop to fight each other? not necessary to know.
[17:04] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: So, the Pak fleet travelled for 99.5% of the journey all getting along just fine, never slowing to stop for resupply, never fighting each other for position, and then only when they got close to the Fleet of Worlds, suddenly they started slowing for resupply, suddenly started jockeying and fighting for position, suddenly started stopping to kill off worlds in their path?
[17:05] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: Lens: because they're smarter than you and have thought of something you haven't ;-)
[17:05] #knownspace> Dmac44: Not trying to pile on, but Lensman's question seems reasonable.
[17:05] #knownspace> EML: Or, Mr. P was insane and didn't quite remember how many stops he made.
[17:05] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: that's usually what I tell myself anyway
[17:06] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: trying to second-guess a protector is well beyond me
[17:06] #knownspace> Lensman: Note that in the 33,000 lightyears of travel they seemed to travel close together for mutual support, then when they got to the events of the novel, they started fighting each other and spreading out in a cone shaped travel pattern. Again: why?
[17:06] #knownspace> SolBelter: lol
[17:06] #knownspace> EML: Cone shape is meant to impoy spreading all along.
[17:06] #knownspace> Dmac44: Maybe another prequel-sequel is required to answer that question.
[17:07] #knownspace> EML: impLy
[17:08] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I like the idea that Pssthpok was insane
[17:08] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and not just for mathematical reasons
[17:08] #knownspace> EML: Doug: planned for after Betrayer is a sequel sequel -- that is, AFTER the four RW books.
[17:09] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: his story is just so pathetic
[17:09] #knownspace> Dmac44: I'll look forward to it.
[17:09] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: if you think about it
[17:09] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: I feel for the guy
[17:09] #knownspace> EML: DB: yeah, Mr. P had a tough row to hoe.
[17:09] #knownspace> Jim: Pssthpok?
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: sp?
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: did I leave out an h?
[17:10] #knownspace> SolBelter: Agin, alone in a room for thousands of years between stars? Might cause mental stress...
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: oh, I think he was nuts before he left
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: think about it
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: everyone you love is killed *flash*
[17:10] #knownspace> SolBelter: good point
[17:10] #knownspace> EML: I can't spell names like Pgjsgdhyasyt. I have to use a Word macro. Not available in the IRC client.
[17:10] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you decide to starve to death
[17:11] #knownspace> Lensman: Seems to me that if the Core explosion spread at only 1/10 lighspeed, it never would have achieved the *intensity* described in "At the Core", and never would have posed a danger of sterilizing the galaxy. Spread out over time, the radiation would never have been that intense, and never would have been *seen* as a blazing explosion the way Bey saw it.
[17:11] #knownspace> Jim: yup, he was batpoop crazy - all of the protectors are crazy
[17:12] #knownspace> Dmac44: just because you're crazy doesn't mean you're wrong. :)
[17:12] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you decide on the basis of a thousands-year-old book that some people who are probably dead are worth turning your homeworld upside down over
[17:12] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: you start multiple wars and get millions more killed just to build yourself a ship
[17:12] #knownspace> EML: Well, any astronomer will tell you the core explosion of At the Core can't happen. So I'll admit to a bit of retcon there.
[17:12] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: which then you get in and are alone for 33k years or whatever
[17:13] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: only to get where you're going and discover it was all for nothing
[17:13] #knownspace> SolBelter: Dmac - 'help, the paranoids are after me!"
[17:14] #knownspace> Dmac44: lol
[17:14] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and you manipulate someone into murdering you
[17:14] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: a sad tale
[17:14] #knownspace> SolBelter: well stated!
[17:14] #knownspace> EML: yeah, many of the reasons Mr. T didn't much like Mr. P.
[17:14] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: he was batshit crazy, even by protector standards
[17:14] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: in my humble opinion
[17:15] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: oh, and let's not forget he started out as a bioweapons engineer
[17:15] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: hehe
[17:16] #knownspace> SolBelter: every time i listen here, i end up saying 'I gotta reread that!' re Agin & P being bioweapons eng
[17:17] #knownspace> EML: I'm off to dinner soon. Any last "of Worlds" questions or comments before I go?
[17:17] #knownspace> SolBelter: gonna stop at 5 books? :))
[17:17] #knownspace> Lensman: I had retconned the Core explosion seen by Bey as evidence of genocide on a vast scale. Or else the scenario in "Down in Flames" was right, that the Core explosion was faked... Bey saw a projection, not reality.
[17:18] #knownspace> Lensman: The 1/10 speed thing would appear to make it rather a non-event as far as endangering the entire galaxy.
[17:18] #knownspace> EML: Sol: yeah, probably stop at five, at least for a while.
[17:18] #knownspace> SolBelter: grin...for a while
[17:18] #knownspace> Lensman: Mr. P was a bioweapons engineer?
[17:18] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: he designed Virus QQ or whatever
[17:18] #knownspace> SloanS: It's great being able to read new Known Space books.
[17:19] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: don't remember exactly the name
[17:19] #knownspace> SolBelter: Larry used to deny he'd ever write a Ringworld sequel...
[17:19] #knownspace> Jim: I am curious, does Larry have a literary estate manager?
[17:19] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: it's in the bit where they're describing the wars that ended with the flash over his valley
[17:19] #knownspace> EML: Lens: slow <> safe. If it's deadly, it's deadly, even if coming more slowly than you thought.
[17:19] #knownspace> SolBelter: Jim, he's referred to agents...
[17:20] #knownspace> Lensman: Hmmm... interesting. So what implications do you see in that? Was turning TOL into a virus an invention of Phssthpok and not Brennan?
[17:20] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: oh, I'm sure Brennan (being smarter than Phssthpok) could have come up with the idea independently
[17:21] #knownspace> EML: okay, all. TTFN. Enjoy the rest of your long weekend.
[17:21] #knownspace> Dmac44: Bye Ed.
[17:21] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: later Ed :-)
[17:22] #knownspace> SloanS: Bye, Ed
[17:22] #knownspace> Jim: bye ed
[17:22] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: and I am going to go shower... have a poker night tonight
[17:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Ed: Maybe I need a reality check. The scenario as described in "At the Core" had the Core explosion spreading at near-lightspeed. Seems to me that if it spread at 1/10 the rate, then it should never be seen as a spreading blazing patch of blue-white light. Instead, it would be seen as an expanding globe of points of light, hollow inside. Yes? Or am I crazy?
[17:22] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: thanks for reminding me about chat Sean!
[17:22] #knownspace> Lensman: Bye, Ed.
[17:22] #knownspace> SeanS: no worrie
[17:22] #knownspace> SeanS: s
[17:22] #knownspace> SloanS: Same here, Sean
[17:23] #knownspace> AgincourtDB: bye all
[17:23] #knownspace> SeanS: no worries again... i am going to stand up for a bit.. .but all have fun
[17:23] #knownspace> Akiraa: So no Ringworld sequels period?
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[17:23] #knownspace> EML: hmm. new chat client. can't find the ^&*%!! disconnect. I may have to ungracefully close my browser. Bye (again).
[17:23] #knownspace> SeanS: server is up 24/7 so enjoy
[17:23] #knownspace> SolBelter8: see u all!
[17:24] #knownspace> Lensman: "As Phssthpok learned more the game grew more complex. His own Virus QQ would kill all but eight percent of breeders but would leave their protectors unharmed... unharmed and fighting with doubled fury to salvage a smaller and less vulnerable group of strain-resistant hostages. He agreed to suppress it."
[17:24] #knownspace> Dmac44: Lensman: I agree. I would think that if the core explosion expanded at 1/10 the SOL then the radiation would be 1/10th the intensity but last 10 times as long.
[17:25] #knownspace> Lensman: Aggie: You have an excellent memory, sir! My propeller beanie is off to you.
[17:26] #knownspace> Lensman: Not sure it would be 1/10 the intensity. I need to think about that. It may be far less.
[17:26] #knownspace> Dmac44: Back-of-the envelope.
[17:27] #knownspace> Dmac44: or a WAG.
[17:28] #knownspace> Jim: We should have asked Larry or Ed for the mathematics behind the core explosion.
[17:31] #knownspace> Dmac44: I'm heading out too. Talk to you all next month.
[17:32] #knownspace> Jim: bye
[17:32] #knownspace> SloanS: Bye
[17:33] #knownspace> Jim: Could the core explosion be a deliberate act?
[17:33] #knownspace> Jim: i.e. bomb
[17:34] #knownspace> SloanS: Or a science experiment gone wrong?
[17:34] #knownspace> Jim: I don't know much about supernovae.
[17:34] #knownspace> SloanS: Something like those big bad things some people always worry about when new supercolliders get built.
[17:35] #knownspace> Jim: yes
[17:35] #knownspace> SloanS: biobreak
[17:35] #knownspace> Jim: suppose a supercollider large enough to test string theory
[17:36] CCulpepper9 has joined #knownspace
[17:36] #knownspace> Jim: culpepper
[17:36] #knownspace> Jim: culpepper9
[17:36] #knownspace> CCulpepper9: Hello All
[17:37] #knownspace> Jim: cculpepper9
[17:38] #knownspace> CCulpepper9: Hello
[17:38] #knownspace> Jim: you missed Larry and EML
[17:39] #knownspace> CCulpepper9: I have been missing a lot. :/
[17:40] #knownspace> CCulpepper9: EML?
[17:40] #knownspace> Jim: Ed Lerner
[17:41] #knownspace> Jim: I have gotta go, bye
[17:41] #knownspace> CCulpepper9: Bye
[17:42] #knownspace> Lensman: If the Core explosion would *naturally* spread at only 1/10 lightspeed, then what Bey saw had to be a massive and widespread deliberate act. It had to be some force deliberately moving from star to star at FTL speed and blowing up suns. At least, it seems that way to me.
[17:43] #knownspace> Lensman: Well actually not a FTL speed, but at near-lightspeed.
[17:43] #knownspace> SloanS: Wow
[17:44] #knownspace> Lensman: Note this takes a very large number of starships to accomplish! Or *something* travelling at near-lightspeed between the stars in the core. Something like the starseeds, but faster?
[17:46] #knownspace> Lensman: Something capable of spreading like life, or like Von Neumann machines.
[17:47] #knownspace> SloanS: Something needing exploding stars in its life cycle?
[17:47] #knownspace> Lensman: Yes, SloanS.
[17:48] #knownspace> SloanS: That's disturbing. I don't see how that could evolve naturally.
[17:48] #knownspace> SloanS: Not enough stars.
[17:50] #knownspace> Lensman: I like that scenario better than to believe there is a race so powerful and so genocidal that it would sterilize the whole galaxy. Let's say some spacefaring critter that evolved to need a supernova to reproduce, and the ability to trigger one... something like the tech the Monks had in "The Fourth Profession". Obviously this is ultimately an anti-survival trait... the species would expand...
[17:50] #knownspace> Lensman: ...exponentially in numbers as it spread out from an origin point then die off as it reached the edge of the core, where the distance between stars was too great to sustain its life-cycle.
[17:51] #knownspace> SloanS: Multiple species may have to pool money to buy a solution from the Outsiders.
[17:51] #knownspace> Lensman: Well, if you can believe the starseeds evolved naturally... they use the solar phoenix reaction for their metabolism. If that's possible, why not something that can trigger a supernova?
[17:53] #knownspace> Lensman: The alternative would seem to be some species that wanted the galaxy for themselves, so triggered the explosion to kill off or drive away every other species.
[17:54] #knownspace> Lensman: In that case, we're back to the "Down in Flames" scenario on steroids; a galaxy-wide conflict, not just a Known Space wide conflict!
[17:56] #knownspace> Lensman: A story about such a conflict would be on the scale of SKYLARK DUQUESNE. When the protagonists are so god-like that they can literally toss suns between galaxies... it's no longer a story on the human scale.
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[18:58] CCulpepper has joined #knownspace
[19:00] #knownspace> Lensman: Welcome back Chris.
[19:12] #knownspace> CCulpepper: Why thank you. I was using the moniter and it disconnected
[20:46] #knownspace> SloanS: Guess it's wound down. Night!
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[21:21] #knownspace> growler: Ping