Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Writing Science Fiction for the Government

Filed under: Art,Fiction,Fun,News and Current Events,Things to Read — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:06 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

Yeah, it’s kind of a mind-bender, isn’t it?

So, the few regular readers who are left at this sad, old, mostly-neglected blog know that I’m a big fan of science-fiction.  And, when I have time, I read a lot.  Granted, since college I think I read more non-fiction than fiction, but, still, I manage to hammer away at it and more than exceed the national average of three to four books per year.  Also, I tend to think of myself as a bit of an amateur futurist.  By that I mean that I like to look at news stories and speculate on just where that particular trend is headed and what it will mean for us in the future.  As it turns out, the U.S. government has similar leanings.
Now, I’ve heard stories about how they gathered together some great sci-fi authors of the moment to brain storm some alien invasion defense ideas, but, frankly, that’s old hat and, well, kind of boring to me.  I mean, I think the alien invasion thing is kind of played out now, don’t you?  What’s far more interesting to me is a recent story from Wired about science-fiction book pitches to assorted U.S. Government agencies.  Apparently, the government can be more forward thinking than you might imagine from more recent news and a number of agencies have solicited book pitches from science-fiction authors based on the agencies’ area of specialty.  Yes, basically what I’m saying is they were looking for propaganda pieces cleverly disguised as sci-fi novels.
And, shockingly, some of them actually sounded like they might be good.  Imagine, your tax dollars finally put to good use; writing compelling, new science-fiction!

In any case, it’s Friday and you’re bored, so why not go check it out?  You might be surprised by who pitched what to the government!


Get your ass to Mars!

Filed under: Fun,Life, the Universe, and Everything,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:15 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

I love me some science-fiction!

Tonight, Ridley Scott’s return to the [amazon_link id=”B001AQO3QA” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Alien[/amazon_link] universe premiers tonight and I’m quite excited to see it.  In part, I’m excited because it starts on Earth and then follows the first team to the movie’s namesake planet; [amazon_link id=”B005LAIHY0″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Prometheus[/amazon_link].  I hope it will show more of Ridley Scott’s vision of the future Earth and how we got to be the space-faring race we become in the later movies.  I’m looking forward to that because I think we’ve lost the drive to do that kind of exploration and I hope this movie will spark someone’s imagination and help get us off this sad, busted planet we’ve got now.
But, of course, that’s not quite what this post is about.

The quote which makes the title of this post comes from another science-fiction movie, which is being remade; [amazon_link id=”B000HIVOIM” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Total Recall[/amazon_link].  That movie, of course, has a significant portion of the action on our closer alien cousin; Mars.  And, frankly, I have more hope of us reaching Mars than leaving our solar system in my life time.  Part of that hope is due to projects like Mars One, who hopes to have people on Mars by 2023.
Granted, it is an ambitious project, but one that is possible.  How?  For one thing, they plan on the trip being one-way.  First there will be a series of unmanned missions that will bring habitat modules to the surface of Mars.  Then, again hopefully in 2023, a team of four colonists will travel to Mars and begin to live there.  Then, every two years another group of colonists will head to Mars, all also on a one-way trip.
And, how will they finance all this?  Simple.  With reality television.  Think of it as an interplanetary “Big Brother” or “Real World“.

Will it work?  Who knows?  But the Mars One video at IO9.com is pretty convincing.  And, hey, it’s Friday, so why not check it out?  (And, enjoy the movie tonight, too!)

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