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Big mistakes in sf.

j d worthington

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May 9, 2006
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Exactly. This is a common theme in a lot of sf and, as I said, it has a fair amount of validity in many ways. The postulates we begin with often influence our overall understanding of a particular aspect of reality and therefore the results we are able to get where that is concerned.
 

Marvolo

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I like SF&F
Exactly. This is a common theme in a lot of sf and, as I said, it has a fair amount of validity in many ways. The postulates we begin with often influence our overall understanding of a particular aspect of reality and therefore the results we are able to get where that is concerned.
There is no spoon.

Oh yeah, killed all credibility with one movie quote.
 

steve12553

The Enigma of Steel
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Moved my books to the deep south. I have a loft/li
This is a hell of a place to jump back in.

I really think the difference between good and bad Science Fiction is the manor in which they disguise the unknown. Someone mention faster than light travel as a mistake. It is only a mistake if you explain it in terms of science as we know it. If I write that I powered up my rockets and accelerated up to Warp 1.5, I'm full of beans. If I use dilithium crystals to focus a matter-anti-matter reaction, we don't know what that really means in terms of science but it might work. It isn't laid out in discernable detail to pick apart. It says that there may be a way that we haven't discovered that will allow us to travel faster than light. 150 years from now this discussion may still be valid or we might be thinking this discussion into a computer network across lightyears of distance as we cruise along at many times light speed. It's much easier to prove something does exist or is possible rather than the converse.
 

j d worthington

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Hi, Steve! Good to see you back around the place!

And yes, that's largely what Lovecraft was talking about when he said the following:

The time has come when the normal revolt against time, space, & matter must assume a form not overtly incompatible with what is known of reality – when it must be gratified by images forming supplements rather than contradictions of the visible & mensurable universe. And what, if not a form of non-supernatural cosmic art, is to pacify this sense of revolt – as well as gratify the cognate sense of curiosity?
 

lin robinson

Science fiction fantasy
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Jun 18, 2007
Messages
483
The one with the Ben Hur rocket race in it had that super cool waterfall city...which can be studied more closely in the book Dinotopia.
 

Quokka

wandering
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Mar 26, 2005
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1,403
Please, look at my location again.:confused:
Maybe you need to change your location to

Perth: The draft version ;)

*ducks as a Roman Spear goes screaming past*


I know Hal Clement later said that he got the maths wrong in Mission of Gravity, the polar gravity of Mesklin should have been much lower than what is described in the book.

And speaking of Star Wars, there are alot of sound effects for stuff that is happening in space.
 

sarakoth

Uncool
Joined
Sep 13, 2007
Messages
187
Now I dont know how true this is but someone once told me that people used to sneak up behind Frank Herbert and whisper OXYGEN to him, as Dune has no oceans or forests where most of our gas exchange appears to happen.

Now I am totally willing to be corrected on this as it wasnt a very reliable source.:)

Oh and Ace is from Scotland, Perth in Australia was named after it.

I assume that's what you mean.:D
There are plants on Arrakis.
 

sarakoth

Uncool
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Sep 13, 2007
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Another thing I don't get is how they move around so fast in The Butlerin Jihad. Fold space drive wasn't invented yet but they could traverse the galaxy in a matter of months.

Also, astronomy seems to be a lost science. The "known universe" in Dune is much smaller than the "known universe" today.
 

Marvolo

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Another thing I don't get is how they move around so fast in The Butlerin Jihad. Fold space drive wasn't invented yet but they could traverse the galaxy in a matter of months.

Also, astronomy seems to be a lost science. The "known universe" in Dune is much smaller than the "known universe" today.
The known universe today is much bigger than the known universe back when the book was originally written too.
 

lin robinson

Science fiction fantasy
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Jun 18, 2007
Messages
483
Arrakis is not located in another galaxy, and you don't see any Tatooine people running around with blue-in-blue eyes, or any mention of spice. People seem able to exist there quite well without benefit of stillsuits, there are no worms cruising around the desert, and Arrakis doesn't have any nonhumans that remotely resemble those found on Tatooine.
None of that seems much of a barrier to an imaginative writer. I don't know what "another galaxy" means...that gets relative pretty quick, I'd say. But how many Tatooine people did we see? A few little mongers here and there. Who knows whether there is not deeper desert somewhere else on the planet. I would see Luke's family as colonists from elsewhere anyway. And we see at least two different races...who says there aren't more? Suits shouldn't be all that necessary near irrigation equipment. Another great planetary secret/irony...there was water way down there all along, but it took some hi-tech gringos to come find it and drill it up.
 

Timewalker

Orthodox Herbertarian
Joined
Oct 1, 2006
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59
Another thing I don't get is how they move around so fast in The Butlerin Jihad. Fold space drive wasn't invented yet but they could traverse the galaxy in a matter of months.

Also, astronomy seems to be a lost science. The "known universe" in Dune is much smaller than the "known universe" today.
Simply put, Kevin J. Anderson and Brian Herbert just decided to completely ignore the inconvenient fact of Ensteinian relativity. The entire Legends trilogy simply should not have been able to happen, because even in the course of ONE trip from Planet A to Planet B, a much shorter span of time would have happened on the ship than on the world they left/were going to and they would have arrived at their destination to find that the situation they expected was completely different (ie. the planet was dead, the war was won, etc.).

As for the size of the "known universe" -- it's fair to say that Frank Herbert didn't have all the benefits we do today from the fantastic knowledge gained by using the Hubble telescope, the IRAS, and many other far-reaching telescopes and instruments.

For story purposes, I suppose we could speculate that the anti-Thinking Machine fighters regarded such astronomical instruments as a form of thinking machine and simply destroyed them. Or even more simply, Earth's records at this point are tens of thousands of years in the past and likely destroyed anyway.
 

lin robinson

Science fiction fantasy
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Jun 18, 2007
Messages
483
As for the size of the "known universe" -- it's fair to say that Frank Herbert didn't have all the benefits we do today from the fantastic knowledge gained by using the Hubble telescope, the IRAS, and many other far-reaching telescopes and instruments.
I'm trying to figure out how that would have affected his books and just can't come up with anything.
 

Marvolo

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I think they are trying to say that Herbert didn't know how large the universe truly is when he originally wrote the novel because the scientists of the day didn't.
 

lin robinson

Science fiction fantasy
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Jun 18, 2007
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But now we do, right? :)

What I'm saying is...what possible effect could the size of the universe have on the matter?
 

Marvolo

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The only thing it affects in the series is the references to the size of the known universe in the time period of the novels. The implications in the novels is that the universe is much smaller than the discoveries since the novels were written have revealed.
 

Omphalos

הדרךקפיצת
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Oct 24, 2007
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777
Lucas has acknowledged Dune as an inspiration, and I believe Brian Herbert mentions that Frank considered a lawsuit after A New Hope came out. There used to be an amazingly good page out there that went into a great amount of detail about Dune as a source for Star Wars.

The page is now gone, but for example, consider Alia, Leia. In the original script instead of plans for the Death Star Leia had a load of spice. BG body controls reflected in the Jedi. Jedi's use of voice. Jabba and worms. Tatoonie and Arrakis. A young hero with dead parents who overthrows an empire and becomes mythically famous and gets superpowers. I think there is a powerful trade guild in Star Wars too. There are more. Too bad that page is gone. She said that she wanted to write a book. I hope to god she is, because she was really onto something.
 
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