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SF-LOVERS Digest V6 #100 [message #8107] Wed, 01 August 2012 01:49
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: utzoo!decvax!ucbvax!sf-lovers
Article-I.D.: ucbvax.319
Posted: Fri Dec 10 11:28:57 1982
Received: Sat Dec 11 05:04:48 1982

>From SFL@SRI-CSL  Fri Dec 10 10:58:41 1982
Reply-To: SF-LOVERS at SRI-CSL
To: SF-LOVERS@SRI-CSL


SF-LOVERS Digest        Wednesday, 8 Dec 1982     Volume 6 : Issue 100

Today's Topics:
    Themes  - time travel, shrinking
    Misc    - small presses, beginning SF
    Queries - Sharra, perfect space suit
    T.V.    - Star Trek "Menagerie" & star dates
    Movies  - SW/TESB/ROTJ the other, light-saber, plot prediction
----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 20:32:17 EST  (Mon)
From: Fred Blonder 
Subject: Re:  Time travel

        From: Rene Steiner 

        There are a lot of books concerning time travel, some good and
        some not so good. What are some favorites?

``Door into summer'' (Heinlein) and ``Time and Again'' (author 
unknown), not to be confused with the movie ``Time After Time''.

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 10:03:04-PST (Mon)
From: decvax!microsof!uw-beave!uw-june!palmer at Ucb-C70
Subject: shrinking

    Enough of this science fiction stuff, try reality?

    When comet Kohoutek (sp?) passed by one year, there was someone
(in Arizona I think) who claimed that he was shrinking people 
(voluntarily), so that they could fit onto an alien's spaceship before
the comet hit the earth (on Christmas, of course).

    As you can see, we don't really need sf authors, pseudo-truth is 
stranger than fiction.

    David Palmer

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 7 Dec 1982 0843-CST
From: marick at DTI (Brian Marick)
Subject: Small presses

        I'd like the addresses of some small presses: Gregg Press,
Elephant Press, and the like. Short descriptions of what they publish
would also be helpful. Please mail direct to me and I'll summarize for
the digest.

                                brian

------------------------------

Date: 5 Dec 1982 1333-EST
From: Stephen R Balzac 
Subject: Sharra


For those who are unaware of it, Sharra is a "character" from
Bradley's Darkover series.

------------------------------

From: duntemann.wbst
Date: 7-Dec-82 12:22:51 EST
Subject: Fantastic Voyage

There are more worms in the concept of miniaturization than are
immediately obvious, as with most good SF fetishes.  I can think of
only one author who even tried to come to grips with any of them, and
that's our old friend Dr. Asimov.

I read Fantastic Voyage when it was originally serialized in (would
you believe) the Saturday Evening Post early in 1966, and later when
the book hit print.  Here's a couple of points Dr. A. brought to
light:

You do not compress space without dilating time.  Time passed much
more slowly for the microsub's passengers than it did for the Real
World.  What was one hour in the Real World was a great many hours in
Benes' bloodstream.

Communication with the sub was next to impossible.  Rdaio waves
produced by the sub were actually wavelength-reduced far beyond
visible light into UV.  It was tracked on its journey by radiation 
from its nuclear power plant.

You do not simply poke a tube into Benes' lungs to grab more air to
breathe; the air molecules are almost literally big enough for the
sub's passengers to see; in the novel they used an on-board
miniaturizer to reduce the size of the air molucules to compatibility
with what was on board.

Asimov never explained why, but his contention was that radioactive
material is not reduceable, so that the atomic pile in the sub's
engine was driven by a speck of nuclear dust which "grew" to the
proper size as the sub shrank.

The screenplay played fast and loose with some of these items, but the
novel did its best to jive with physics as we knew them in 1966.
Visually, the film was stunning for its time; in particular the views
of the interior of the brain, with l;uminous purple impulses racing
along spinderweb neurons, impressed the hell out of 13-year-old me.  I
caught the film's great error, even then:  They didn't take the sub
out with them, and left behind fifty tons of metal and glass atoms to
automatically return to normal size inside Benes' poor head.  Now
that's an Excedrin headache...

(In the book, of course, the micronauts made damned sure the white 
blood cell which engulfed the sub followed them out through Benes'
tear ducts, and they "grew" in the miniaturization room with a proper
pile of wreckage behind them.  Asimov always comes through.)

I know of no other work of fiction which dealt so squarely with the
problems of large-scale miniaturization.

--Jeff Duntemann duntemann.wbst@parc-maxc

------------------------------

Date: 8 December 1982 01:02-EST
From: Stewart D. Rubenstein 
Subject: The perfect spacesuit

Mike Meyer  mentioned one example of the attempt to
describe an optimal spacesuit.  This topic has been at least 
glancingly addressed in probably hundreds of novels.

My vote for the perfect spacesuit goes to the symbiotic growth in 
Spider & Jean Robinson's "Stardance".  Even the humans' original 
spacesuits are pretty minimal.  This is an excellent novel, by the 
way; the characters are mostly believable, including the "aliens", and
I've read no other book which so vividly conveys a feeling for the 
absolute \awesomeness/ of outer space.

                                stew

------------------------------

Date: 7 Dec 1982 2214-EST
From: Nat Feldman 
Subject: Miscellaneous

1) Shrinking-There was an Avengers episode entitled "Misson-Highly
Improbable", that involved a device for shrinking spies, tanks, etc.

2) Favorite ST-Personally, my favorites correspond exactly with Steve
Balzac's, and my least favorite (to be kind) is "The Mark of Gideon".
That episode's premise always struck me as utterly ridiculous, and was
just a way of being topical.  My eating club (Stevenson Hall,
Princeton University, circa 1975) established an in-house ratings
guide from 1 (worst) to 5 (best).  The solitary episode that rated a
five, I believe, was "The Trouble with Tribbles".  It's my father's
favorite as well.

3)My First S.F.-comic books, including the translation of the Frencch
Tin-Tin's.  Also, Citizen of the Galaxy and Runaway Robot by Lester
del Ray.

4) WAPP, a New York, northern New JerseyFM rock station is at 102.5 on
that rather crowded dial.  I did not know they were broadcasting Dr.
Demento, andd I would appreciate someone telling me whenit's on.

5) Someone (sorry I missed the name) suggested discussions on comic
book topics or some such.  Although I enjoy them, I have given up
reading them for now mostly because I cannot afford them.  I do credit
comic books with my early interest in science, expansion of my
vocabulary, and love of reading-despite the anti-intellectual
connotation they entail.

--Nathaniel Feldman

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 12:35:08-PST (Mon)
From: harpo!eagle!mhuxt!mhuxj!mhuxi!macrev at Ucb-C70
Subject: SF beginnings

I read my first sf in the seventh grade -- we all ordered paperbacks, 
and I ordered "Costigan's Needle" for me, and a book on teen-age 
etiquette to please my mother.  From "Needle" I went to Wolheim's
(sp?)  "Green Man From Mars," Heinlein's "Secret of the Martian
Moons," and the Lucky Starr series (remember "Lucky Starr and the
Oceans of Venus?).  Then I went through my Andre Norton phase.  Her
early stuff was fantastic.  How about "Starman's Son," "Starborn," and
"Star Gate?"  For old time's sake, I reread Star Gate a few weeks ago.
Even at my advanced age (I was in the seventh grade in 1957), I still
get a kick now then reading some of those old "young adult" sf novels.

Mike Lynch BTL Short Hills

------------------------------

Date: 7 Dec 82 16:45:32 EST  (Tue)
From: Fred Blonder 
Subject: Re:  Trek

        From: Lauren Weinstein 

        Many of the lines from "Menagerie" that dont seem to make much
        sense (in the "flashback" footage) make perfect sense when
        viewed in their original context.

        --Lauren--

        ------------------------------

One of these which took me quite a long time to figure out is how they
got the footage of Capt. Pike walking back to the Talosian's elevator
with the girl after he had beamed down to the planet, which was
televised to the Enterprise at the end of ``The Menagerie''. Since
they couldn't have known of the need for this scene when ``The Cage''
was filmed, and the notion that they went to the trouble of
re-creating the set for a 5-second shot seemed equally ridiculous,
there was no explanation for where this film came from.

The answer lies in Capt. Pike's request: ``You'll give her back her
illusion of beauty?'', to which the Talosian replies: ``Yes, that and
more.''. The ``more'' the Talosian was referring to (in the original)
was the illusion of Capt. Pike returning with her to the Talosian's
caves, not ``more beauty'' as was implied in the version which made it
to TV. Thus in ``The Cage'' the film is of an illusory Capt. Pike
returning to the elevator while in ``The Menagerie'' it is used as a
scene of the real capt. Pike.

This change of context seems rather clever. (and fortunate too, that
they were able to do it)

------------------------------

From: CAIN@MIT-AI
Date: 12/07/82 22:42:13
Subject: Stardates and ROTJ

CAIN@MIT-AI 12/07/82 22:42:13 Re: Stardates and ROTJ
To: sf-lovers at MIT-MC
Just a quick note:
  Stardates are an arbitrary sequence
of 5 digits (XXXX.X) in Star
Trek.  SUPPOSEDLY, they take into account
relativistic effects, but noone has
EVER explained that one to me.

About ROTJ, Obi Wan, and "The Other"--
Why shouldn't Obi be corporeal [sic]???
ROTJ chronolgically comes BEFORE Star
Wars (or A New Hope, as you like), and
thus has not yet been killed.  Also,
since this is (most probably, it seems
to me) about the end of the clone wars,

why does it even have to mention "the
other"?  In fact, they could make
alot more if they DON'T reveal him...(her?)

      Jonathan Levine
         CAIN @ MIT-AI
           (at least for December...)

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 20:19:54 EST  (Mon)
From: Fred Blonder 
Subject: Re:  "Won back from the dark side"

        Subject: "Won back from the dark side"

        Vader? won back from the dark side? How large a stack of
        bibles would you make Adolf Hitler stand on before you believe
        he was "won back" from genocidal tendancies?  After all, Vader
        only destroyed one planet...

No! It was Tarkin who ordered Alderaan destroyed. Vader just sat back 
and enjoyed the show.

------------------------------

Date: 5 December 1982 01:43 mst
From: Schauble.HDSA at M.PCO.LISD.HIS
Subject: "Won back from the dark side"
Reply-to: Schauble%PCO-Multics at MIT-MULTICS



 Date: 1 Dec 1982 2233-PST
 Subject: "Won back from the dark side"
 From: Dave Dyer       


 Vader? won back from the dark side? How large a stack of bibles would
 you make Adolf Hitler stand on before you believe he was "won back"
 from genocidal tendancies?  After all, Vader only destroyed one
 planet...

Unless my memory is suffering from several undetected parity errors,
it wasn't Vader who destroyed Alderaan. It was Governor Tarkin.

                    Paul

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 16:23:01-PST (Mon)
From: decvax!duke!mcnc!dennis at Ucb-C70
Subject: Re: SW other again

Ah HAH!  If it isn't someone we have seen, and there are no new
characters, then it must be the Millenium Falcon itself!  Don't forget
that Han had to get C3P0 to talk to the Falcon in order to learn what
the trouble was after Lando didn't fix it.  Therefore, there's
something in there...

With tongue firmly planted in cheek...

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 1982 1654-EST
From: Stephen R Balzac 
Subject: The Other

        In reality, the other is Kim Kinnison (the Gray Lensman, from
Doc Smith's books), who will drop in via Hyper-Spatial tube with
Mentor right behind him, and Richard Seaton in the Skylark of Valeron
to back them up.

------------------------------

Date: 7 Dec 82 20:02:10 EST  (Tue)
From: Rene Steiner 
Subject: Luke's light saber

When his hand was cut off, his light saber fell into that long waste
disposel shute (or whatever it was). When he fell in, and landed at
the bottom, did he get it back in the moment before he fell threw the
trapdoor?

This brings another, old, question: if Luke's father gave Obi-wan his
lightsaber to give to Luke, and Darth is Luke's father, where did
Vader get his saber? I got the impression that they were fairly rare.
(Maybe he saved up box tops from Crunchy Rebels cereal?)

                                                - rene

------------------------------

Date: 6 Dec 82 21:16:03 EST  (Mon)
From: Fred Blonder 
Subject: ROTJ: A scene I'd like to see

The line: ``I've got a bad feeling about this.'' has of course become
a Star Wars cliche. The proper person to utter the line in RotJ would
be Darth Vader at the start of the light saber battle between him and
Luke, when he realizes Luke has been practicing.

------------------------------

Date: 06 Dec 82 20:55:56 PST (Mon)
From: Stephen Willson 
Subject: TESB Plot

  Greetings fellow speculators:
  I think we can deduce a lot about the plot of TESB by reasoning from
a purely technical standpoint.  Consider the over-riding
consideration: Lucas is a sensitive person.  He wants very much to
make as many people happy as possible.  This is his mission.
  In SW4:ANH, he hit the broadest possible market: the average
American.  The reviews, while very favorable, still contained some
biting remarks.  Where is the love interest?  Where is the deeper
meaning?  The evil vs. good was often considered too black and white.
  The result of this is SW5:TESB, in which the issues are less black
and black and there is a love interest.  But where is the deeper
meaning?  I would like to suggest that many people will be satisfied
with Lucas if he does something somewhat abstract in SW6:RotJ.  He has
the job of doing this while not alienating the average American.  How
can the wizard of ILM accomplish both goals?
  Simple, as I see it.  What's your favorite SF movie with 'deep'
meaning?  2001, of course.  But 2001 is special: you can see it stoned
and still think it's great, because of the flashy ending.  Here's how
I see the basic plot structure of SW6:
  It has to start out with punch.  That's to keep Mr. Average American
happy.  The punch is from Lando and Chewie rescuing Han.  Using the
usual business of intercutting two plots that join later (ala the
first two movies), we also see Luke continuing his training and
wrapping up a few plot strands in conference with Yoda and OB1.
  After Han is rescued (Luke is still training) he returns to the new
rebel hide-out on Tatooine to be reunited with the princess.  The main
action here is Han's troublesome decision whether to settle down or to
remain Han 'Solo'.  How will this be resolved?  This is intercut with
the rebel's preparing the final assault (do or die) on the Emperor's
palace.  Luke is not seen so much .  In fact, we begin to worry, will
he arrive in time to help out?
  After exposing Han's reluctance to settle down, we start
intercutting with Darth and the Emperor.  We are introduced to 'the
other' during this time.  Darth is in charge of organizing the defense
of the Palace.  Still no word from Luke, as the rebel's begin to
transport themselves to the Palace.  Han is in charge, since the guy
in charge in SW5 was killed.
  The battle begins (lots of explosions for Mr. Average American).
Han is almost killed, but *Surprise*, Luke shows up under the ethereal
guidance of OB1 and saves him.  (After all, as Han says, "That's two
you owe me Junior".)  We begin intercutting between Luke's independent
trek through the Palace in search of Darth and the Emperor, and the
general battle.
  Luke and Darth come upon each other.  Now comes the 'deep' part that
Mr.  Average American can get into.  Remember 2 things: in SW5 we saw
just a taste of Darth's power in terms of winging stuff around.  Also,
SFX have improved since then.  One imagines the insuing fight to be
fought not only with light sabres but with the maximum available power
from the force.  The 'deep' part is going to be the mental battle that
wages between Luke and Darth.  Darth is going to pull out all the
stops and do clever things to try to trick Luke (like changing form
and causing all kinds of neat illusions to try to confound Luke).
Fortunately, the ethereal OB1 will help out.  Their fight will be
quite psychodelic.  Meanwhile, the more mundane fighting by the rebels
will be intercut.
  Leia will be captured along with Han by the Emperor.  They will be
held as hostages against an advancing Luke and army.  (Luke will have
dispatched Vader by this time.)  Unfortunately, Luke is extremely weak
from his battle with Darth, and can't save them alone.  Good thing for
the 'other', who will provide the required opening.
  Everyone is saved.  Han settles down with Leia.  Luke marries the
Emperor's daughter, thus unifying the kingdom.  We have a psychodelic
ending.  (You can tell that I think many people will take the
psychodelic ending to be 'deep', somehow.)  Darth and the Emperor are
dispatched.  The long struggle to rebuild a civilized Empire begins as
the screen irises down to reveal the credits.
  Remember, you heard it here first!
				-- Steve Willson


------------------------------

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