Pixel Scroll 10/5/17 Pyxel Queste

Your host is on the road to New Mexico where he will celebrate his mother’s 91st birthday.

So it’s up to you, Dear Reader, to add your wisdom in the comments, along with the links to what should have been in the Scroll.

(1) THE BIG RED TWENTY. James Davis Nicoll’s latest core list – “Twenty Core Speculative Fiction Works Featuring Gingers (Cosmic or Otherwise) Every True SF Fan Should Have On Their Shelves”. It includes –

(2) BRIANNA WU VS. TRUMPZILLA. Frank Wu has the story —

So, when Brianna decided to run for US Congress, she wanted to have a very serious campaign on the issues.  Fighting for gun control and intelligent tech policy.  Defending our environment and public schools.  Fighting against wage and racial inequality, and against all the unhinged policies of Donald Trump.  I asked her if I could make my own campaign ad to support her.  With giant monsters.  Amazingly, she said yes.  So here it is.

(3) WINTER HAS WENT. That iceman Otzi (read some of this first for a refresher) has them in an uproar.

(4) TODAY’S BIRTHDAY BOY

Born October 5 — Paul Weimer

(5) THE BEYOND. Official trailer.

[Thanks to Carl Slaughter, John King Tarpinian, JJ, Cat Eldridge, and Frank Wu for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editors of the day JJ and Arifel.]

70 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 10/5/17 Pyxel Queste

  1. Happy birthday, Paul!

    There’s a news piece in Nature about the real-world status of Seastead.

    (Nature refurbished their web site recently, and I’ve been having intermittent trouble getting it to resolve, but perhaps your luck will be better than mine is at the moment of this post.)

    While I’m posting, I also came across a piece about Google’s new machine-learning demo Teachable Machines. This article’s description of the AI made me think of Naomi Kritzer’s “Cat Pictures Please” version 0.1.

  2. Mike, have fun seeing the Southwest!
    (I recommend going to Union Station L.A. at Christmas, to see the tree and the other decorations.)

  3. Happy birthday Paul.

    (1) There are so many redheads in SF and fantasy: among the first to come to my mind (not on James’ list) are Anne Reynolt in “Deepness in the Sky” (and Pham Nuwen in “Fire Upon the Deep,” but not in “Deepness in the Sky”) and too many characters to list in Heinlein. Also in “Caves of Steel” the City-dwellers stereotype of the typical “Spacer” is red-headed as well.

  4. ::aw, crap::

    Sorry, I’m a day behind. Mike ninja’d me on Pixel Buds yesterday.

  5. News stories:
    Net neutrality debate ‘controlled by bots‘: most of the messages against neutrality appear to have been auto-generated.

    The BBC’s Caryn James call Ford’s performance in _Blade Runner 2049_ “among his best”, but has quibbles with other parts of the movie.
    But Linda Holmes tells NPR that Boston theaters are showing it with a new “feature”: “They’ve put a joy buzzer under your behind.” (As if AMC’s fershlugginer oversized recliners weren’t already a pain to sit in….)

    Ever fancied owning the Joker’s costume from Batman? Jack Nicholson’s purple suit is as expensive as you’d expect, but some pieces are much more affordable.

    @1: Leaving out Heinlein entirely seems extreme considering the number of redheads he used, but it’s JDN’s list. I’m only sure of having read 8 of this list (and needed research at that — I encountered Legacy as A Tale of Two Clocks). I’ve also seen the (a?) Pippi Longstocking movie — or at least part of it; maybe it was bad, maybe I just needed to see it when I was reading the books in elementary school instead of 15 years later.

  6. Several sites have announced CBS All Access will adding more new content next month with a Funny or Die produced comedy starring Tim Meadows called “No Activity.” Listed among the guest stars is Fred Pohl.
    This is apparently Frederick Pohl IV, the son of “our” Fred Pohl. I remember the younger Pohl as a staff writer on “Jeopardy!,” but he also has some acting credits listed on IMDB.
    In a not totally unrelated question, Does anyone know if there are any publication plans for the expansion of The Way the Future Was that Pohl the elder was working on when he died?

  7. Chip Hitchcock: Leaving out Heinlein entirely seems extreme considering the number of redheads he used, but it’s JDN’s list.

    He has a rule when making his “20 Core Works…” lists that “Any given work by a particular author can appear on only one list.”  He’s also indicated that he tries to go above-and-beyond The Usual Suspects when he makes these lists, such that he might make people aware of works with which they are not already familiar. I suspect the lack of Heinlein is due to one or both of those reasons.

  8. Yay, tytle credite! Also, happy birthday Paul and happy travels Mike – hope you enjoy trains as much as I do.

    Hugo Award finalists The Book Smugglers successfully funded their Kickstarter with all stretch goals! I enjoyed their self-reflection piece about it from a few days ago.

    Also, here’s a sneaky owl.

    In filer news, occasional commenter Arifel is set to end months of speculation and agony by finally finishing her PhD proposal today, bringing her one step closer to getting her shit together and rediscovering a direction in life. Reports that Arifel actually spent most of her working hours this week replaying XCom2 (though sadly not with the expansion), reading Blue Mars or listening to the highly recommended audiobook of On the Edge of Gone are as yet unverified, though a source close to the subject mentioned it was “basically the sort of thing she’d do, under the circumstances”.

  9. Raising Dion looks like an interesting TV series about how to raise a kid with superpowers.

  10. Amazon UK ebook sales (is it really necessary for new books to come with a summary five paragraphs long? I suppose it compensates for the inferior Amazon browsing experience, but still…):

    The Explorer, by James Smythe
    Journalist Cormac Easton is selected to document the first manned mission into deep space, but when the crew wake from hypersleep they discover their captain dead in his safety pod. The word from ground control is unequivocal: no matter what happens, the mission must continue. But as the body count begins to rise, Cormac finds himself alone and spiralling towards his own inevitable death … unless he can do something to stop it.

    Insatiable, by Meg Cabot
    Meena Harper is familiar with the supernatural. After all, she knows how you’re going to die (Not that you’re going to believe her. No one ever does.) But not even Meena’s precognition can prepare her for Lucien Antonescu—who she meets and then makes the mistake of falling in love with—a modern-day prince with a bit of a dark side for which an ancient society of vampire hunters would prefer to see him dead.

    The Kingdom Beyond the Waves, by Stephen Hunt
    Professor Amelia Harsh is obsessed with finding the lost civilisation of Camlantis. Without official funding, Amelia has no choice but to accept an offer of patronage from the man she blames for her father’s bankruptcy and suicide, Abraham Quest. He has an ancient crystal-book that suggests the Camlantean ruins are buried under one of the sea-like lakes that dot the murderous jungles of Liongeli.

    Secrets of the Fire Sea, by Stephen Hunt
    The isolated island of Jago is the only place Hannah Conquest has ever known as home. For Hannah and her few friends, the streets of the island’s last occupied underground city form a vast, near-deserted playground. But Hannah’s carefree existence comes to an abrupt halt when her guardian, Archbishop Alice Gray, is brutally murdered in her own cathedral.

    The Rise of the Iron Moon, by Stephen Hunt
    Born into captivity, Purity Drake finds herself on the run with a foreign vagrant after accidentally killing one of her guards. Her strange rescuer claims he is on the run himself from terrible forces who mean to enslave the Kingdom of Jackals. Purity doubts his story, until reports begin to filter through from Jackals’ neighbours of the Army of Shadows, marching across the continent and sweeping all before them.

    Traces, by Stephen Baxter
    Short fiction anthology.

    The Gender Game, by Bella Forrest
    A toxic river divides nineteen-year-old Violet Bates’s world by gender. Women rule the East. Men rule the West. Ever since the disappearance of her younger brother, Violet’s life has been consumed by anger. Already a prisoner to her own nation, now she has been sentenced to death for her crimes. But one decision could save her life. To enter the kingdom of Patrus, where men rule and women submit.

  11. @ John A Arkansawyer

    And guess who shows up just a little further down in the article, which also discusses Milo Yiannopoulous and his effort to write “the definitive guide to the alt right”?

    Over the next three days, Yiannopoulos passed the article back to Yarvin and the white nationalist Saucier, the latter of whom gave line-by-line annotations. He also sent it to Vox Day, a writer who was expelled from the board of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America for calling a black writer an “ignorant savage,” and to Alex Marlow, the editor of Breitbart.

    “Solid, fair, and fairly comprehensive,” Vox Day responded, with a few suggestions.

    Interesting.

  12. Steve Leavell on October 5, 2017 at 8:02 pm said:

    Several sites have announced CBS All Access will adding more new content next month with a Funny or Die produced comedy starring Tim Meadows called “No Activity.” Listed among the guest stars is Fred Pohl.

    The original Australian series had its moments

  13. @Rob: That’s part of why I posted it.

    And I’ll admit something rare for me: I couldn’t carefully read the whole thing. I skimmed.

    Couldn’t get all the scum off it, though.

    You know, that’s true–it’s not just a joke–and it strongly resembles a joke. I wrote it to be a joke. I so admire Hunter S. Thompson’s thinking of “The Scum Also Rises” as a title when writing about Nixon that I’ve tried to steal it every chance I get. It ought to be funny. But it ain’t. It just ain’t. Dammit. Dying is easy, comedy is hard, like living, right?

  14. too many characters to list in Heinlein

    If Heinlein had written a book in which characters from his various timelines come together, he might well have commented in it on the large number of redheads.

  15. @ Andrew M.

    I apologize for not checking my source. In these times, I should know better.

  16. @Mark Proposal, not thesis! Dr Arifel is still at least 4 years away, first I have to convince someone to pay me to study political legitimacy…

  17. Mike: I hope you enjoy the train ride and your mother’s celebration. I’ve been on that route (going the other way, on the Texas Eagle/Sunset Limited on the way back from Chicon 7), which is part of the longest single Amtrak ride on the system, but you’re only getting one of the potential three nights on board. I hope you’re in a roomette or bedroom!

    At the moment, my next long train ride probably won’t be until (assuming they win) the DC Worldcon in 2021. I should have enough Amtrak points of of my credit card to pay for the trip by then.

    On the news front, the Hugo Awards web site has announced an update to the 1989 Hugo Awards page that was prompted by exchanges here. Thanks to Jo Van Ekeren for doing the research and to you, Mike, for being one of the sources of the material in the update.

  18. @Kevin Standlee: Did you do the whole Chicago-Los Angeles trip? I really crave making that trip myself to Los Angeles from Little Rock. (I’ve done the route to Chicago in whole and in pieces.)lee Do you have any tips other than get a room? Which I’d like to do. Someday maybe the big loop, out to LA, up to Seattle, and home by way of Chicago.

  19. The Kingdom Beyond the Waves, by Stephen Hunt
    Professor Amelia Harsh is obsessed with finding the lost civilisation of Camlantis. Without official funding, Amelia has no choice but to accept an offer of patronage from the man she blames for her father’s bankruptcy and suicide, Abraham Quest. He has an ancient crystal-book that suggests the Camlantean ruins are buried under one of the sea-like lakes that dot the murderous jungles of Liongeli.

    Definitely my favorite of Hunt’s Jackelian novels (all of which I’ve enjoyed) — kind of a steampunk Rider Haggard lost race novel where the lost continent is actually floating somewhere in the sky. And I’m still mildly cranky that neither this one nor Court of the Air (first in the series) have been released for US Kindle. Ah, well.

  20. I’m still watching The Orville and still enjoying it enough to keep watching. A week ago, the episode was Orphans of the Sky meets “Nightfall.” Last night, it was John Varley’s “Air Raid”/Millennium. Am I missing any other “inspirations” that ought to be as obvious as those?

  21. Meredith Moment:

    Live! From Planet Earth by George Alec Effinger is on sale for $1.99 from the usual suspects. It’s a collection of a lot of his best short fiction, with introductions by various writers. It includes the “O. Niemand” works.

  22. Happy birthday Paul! Tentative congratulations, Arifel!

    (1) What does it say about me that this list contains the most items I’ve read of all those so far posted?

    Also, @JJ:

    He’s also indicated that he tries to go above-and-beyond The Usual Suspects when he makes these lists, such that he might make people aware of works with which they are not already familiar.

    Given my experience (I’ve usually read between 1 and 3 of the books on those lists, and often haven’t even heard of half or more of them), that made me laugh a bit. At myself, mind you, not at you or James.

    Re: the Breitbart story. I’ve got a tab open with that. Slowly working through it. It’s very interesting to me, if also gross and slimy. Of course any article on this subject will include VD – he started out writing fashy opinion columns for far right websites, way back in the bad ol’ days of GW’s administration. Maybe before? I don’t remember now.

    Which reminds me of another story I just read, from the Seattle weekly, about a white supremacist convention or gathering or what-not. Anyway, I found out about an author who writes white supremacist dystopian novels a la The Turner Diaries. Surprised I hadn’t heard of him before. Not really into naming him, given the subject matter, though.

Comments are closed.