Pixel Scroll 3/18/16 How Green Was My Pixel?

(1) WHEN MARS HAD BEACHES. The Daily Galaxy covers the announcement — “NASA: ‘Ancient Mars Had a Vast Ocean Covering Half Its Northern Hemisphere’”.

A primitive ocean on Mars held more water than Earth’s Arctic Ocean, according to NASA scientists who, using ground-based observatories, measured water signatures in the Red Planet’s atmosphere. Scientists have been searching for answers to why this vast water supply left the surface.

“Our study provides a solid estimate of how much water Mars once had, by determining how much water was lost to space,” said Geronimo Villanueva, a scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and lead author of the new paper. “With this work, we can better understand the history of water on Mars.”

Perhaps about 4.3 billion years ago, Mars would have had enough water to cover its entire surface in a liquid layer about 450 feet (137 meters) deep. More likely, the water would have formed an ocean occupying almost half of Mars’ northern hemisphere, in some regions reaching depths greater than a mile (1.6 kilometers).

(2) ELLISON AUDIOBOOK CROWDFUNDED. The Kickstarter for a Skyboat Audiobook of Harlan Ellison’s Star Trek Teleplay “The City on The Edge of Forever” has successfully funded.

This project will produce a full-cast audiobook of the Harlan Ellison’s original Star Trek Teleplay, including Ellison’s commentary on the story’s inception and development and the controversy over its rewriting by the TV show heads.

The Stretch Goal for a separate enhanced adaptation of the teleplay with a full Dolby soundtrack and complete Foley sound effects was not achieved.

Links to audio and video snippets from the recording process can be found on the Campaign Updates tab.

(3) HAUNTED IRELAND. Dublin, the City of Ghosts and Guinness will host the Dublin Ghost Story Festival from August 18-21. Guests of Honour will be Derleth Award winner Adam Nevill (Banquet for the Damned, Apartment 16, House of Small Shadows, No One Gets Out Alive, and Lost Girl).

The literary ghost story in all its guises has deep roots in Ireland – from the domestic hauntings of Mrs. Riddell’s Weird Stories to the spectral disturbances of J.S. Le Fanu’s In a Glass Darkly; from Elizabeth Bowen’s urbane “Demon Lover” to Bram Stoker’s blood-drenched and monolithic contribution to literature: Dracula. We invite you to join us at the Dublin Ghost Story Festival to raise a pint of the black stuff and celebrate literature of the supernatural—both past and present—in a city where some of the genre’s most memorable nightmares were born. Slainte!

The MC will be John Connolly (The Book of Lost Things, Nocturnes, and Night Music). Other guests include John Reppion and Lynda E. Rucker.

(4) MAINSTREAM ENTROPY. Brandon Kempner has his “Final Best of 2015 Mainstream Meta-List” at Chaos Horizon.

It’s Spring Break for me, so I’ve got a chance to wrap up some of my “lists of lists.” The first we’ll look at is my Best of 2015 Mainstream Meta-List. This list collates 20+ “Best of 2015” lists by mainstream outlets such as the NY Times, Amazon, Goodreads, Entertainment Weekly, and so on.

The collation works in a simple fashion: appear on a list, get 1 point. I then add up the points from all 20 lists. Results are below. I tried to use the same sources as last year so we can meaningful year-to-year comparisons.

(5) DRAKE OBIT. Larry Drake, who won two Emmy Awards playing mentally-challenged office worker Benny Stulwicz on L.A. Law, passed away March 17 at the age of 66.

He also starred in the 1990 cult classic, Darkman, as well as playing Administrator Chellick in the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Critical Care” and had additional appearances on various shows including Firefly, Crossing Jordan, and Six Feet Under.

(6) HUGO NOMINATING DEADLINE. The Worldcon reminds you that March 31 is not far away….


  • March 18, 1964 The 7 Faces of Dr. Lao makes its premiere in Denver, Colorado.

(8) REACTING TO THE PUPPIES. Rachael Acks does a very good job of presenting a writer’s thought process about the Sad Puppies 4 list in “I wish I could trust you and I hate what we’ve become”.

But it’s just a recommended list. But it’s got the “Sad Puppy” name all over it and all that goddamn baggage.

Because this is the thing. After three years of slates and shouting and people being intensely shitty, after the porous barrier between sad and rabid and the fecal stench known as Beale that clings to everything, I cannot fucking trust any of this.

So is it a recommended reading list, innocently offered? Or is it a Trojan Horse, intending to get people to maybe think hey, we don’t really need to ratify those WSFS amendments everyone voted on last year when we were almost universally pissed off about a slate rolling the Hugos. See, it’s not so bad. Let it go. And then next year it starts all over again because nothing’s been fixed.

Or is it a way to try to fuck over a lot of writers who don’t want anything to do with this, because suddenly they’re on the damn list, and no one knows if it’s a slate or not, but there’s the knee jerk feeling of if these assholes want a thing, I don’t.

Or is it a way to score some cheap points because if these writers end up on the final ballot and win (or score over No Award), look at all these SJW hypocrites, see they’re okay with slates as long as it’s people they like. That’s certainly consistent the Wile E. Coyote-style Sooper Genius I’m Totally Playing Six Dimensional Chess nonsense we perennially get out of Beale.

And is the very existence of this post (and ones like it) going to be used to add to the carefully curated sense of grievance that’s been fueling this entire stupid, stupid fight?

This makes me so angry, because I’m already seeing people getting dragged into this bubbling cesspool of bullshit and paranoia. And I hate thinking like this. I hate it. I want to believe the best in people. I want to believe in good intentions, and change, and moving on from bad times.

(9) MAKING A DECISION. Catherynne M. Valente asks “When Is a Slate Not a Slate? or Why Is the Puppy Sad?”

So what do I do? Honestly, I still don’t know. My stomach hurts. At the moment, it really does look like people just liked my book. Anyone could recommend something, after all. Locus doesn’t need my permission and neither does anyone else, so requiring it from the Puppies alone, as long as it is not a slate, would be strange. I’ve been on some WEIRD rec lists in my time, I tell you what. And I will absolutely not dismiss readers because of the URL where their desires are expressed.

It all comes down to whether this recommendation list is a list or a slate.

Right now, it doesn’t look like a slate. Right now, it looks like a list complied by people with extremely wide-ranging tastes and interests. Right now, I’m inclined to try to mend fences across fandom in whatever little way I can by giving them the benefit of the doubt that this is all in good faith–because I want to be given the benefit of the doubt that I act in good faith. So for right now, that’s what I’m going to do. I am going to believe in the better angels of our–and Puppy–nature. I’m going to choose to believe that they looked at the thousand suggestions of ways to recommend books that would not run afoul of the spirit of the Hugos and adjusted their methods accordingly. I’m going to choose to believe that the political rhetoric of the Puppy movement is a thing of the past, and from here on out, it will be about what each and every one of us said it should be about–good books. Nothing else.

If this changes, if all that ugliness comes roaring back and it becomes about something other than the content of books, I will change my mind and very quickly. But for right now, I have to try to believe that things can get better. This is my Pollyanna moment. I sincerely hope I don’t regret it.

(10) NO DILEMMA. John Scalzi does not have conflicting feelings about his presence on the SP4 list — “Notes on Awards and Slates 3/18/16”.

8. In sum: I’m not seeking award consideration this year; I would not willingly participate on an award nomination slate; If I’m on such a slate it’s without my consent; Those who have put me or my work on such a slate should remove me from it; If they won’t remove me, or anyone who asks to be removed, they’re likely assholes; And maybe you should factor that in when thinking about them and their motives.

(11) NO WAR. Alexandra Erin recommends a simple response to the list, in “The Pups of Wrath Yield Bitter Whine”.

So, if the Sad Puppies have a plan to claim victory no matter what happens, the question is, how do we beat them?

And the answer is: we don’t. We shouldn’t. No one’s goal should ever be to “beat” these truly sad individuals at anything, no more than our goal should be to shut them up or shut them out of the process.

The Sad Puppies are at war with both the future and past of science fiction and fantasy, but no one is (or no one should be) at war with the Sad Puppies. Our goal should be to make speculative fiction welcoming and inclusive in spite of them, not to shut them out of it in the hopes that this will make things welcoming and inclusive. Our goal should be to get more people involved and keep them engaged so as to dilute the ability of small cliques of bigots motivated to become the tastemakers and kingmakers to game the system.

The correct course of action to take on the Puppy list is to ignore it. If they’re going to claim victory no matter what happens (and the fact that they claimed victory in 2015 should be enough to convince anyone that they will), then there’s really nothing more for anyone to do except get out and nominate now, and get out and vote later. Don’t let the existence of their list or its contents sway you one way or another.

And if you found yourself on their list? Well, they’re just a pack of dogs howling at the moon. This is not a situation that requires the moon to answer.

(12) MY MILEAGE MAY VARY. Meanwhile, back in 1961, The Traveler deprecates the short fiction in the April issue of Analog, including a slap at one of my favorite Christopher Anvil stories. Hmph! Don’t expect to see Galactic Journey on my Seacon Hugo ballot!

Back to the dreary stories, Pandora’s Planet, by Chris Anvil (whose best work always appears outside of Analog), is another “Earthmen are just plain better at everything than everyone else” story.  In this case, some fuzzy humanoids can’t seem to win a war to subjugate a planet’s native race without the help of some plucky, original Terrans.  The point of the piece seems to be that unorthodox war is just as valid as “real” war, and stuffy rigidity will only lead to failure.  That’s fine so far as it goes, but the canny Terran tactics aren’t that innovative, and the stodginess of the fuzzies is insufficiently explored.  Two stars.

(13) HANGING AROUND THE GUARDIANS SET. At ScienceFiction.com, “Karen Gillan Takes Us Behind-The-Scenes In This ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2? Photo!”

If you’ve been dying to see more from ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2‘ it looks like Karen Gillan (‘Doctor Who’,’Oculus’) has brought us another behind-the-scenes photo from the set! Our first shot of Nebula in the film came from Gillan herself and while it wasn’t much, this time we’ve got quite a different view as the 28-year old looks to be flying around in a harness against a blue-screen.


(14) TOTALLY TEA. The B&N Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog delivers the latest in a series of Incredibly Specific Lessons, “A History of the Tea-Creating Machine in Fact and Fiction”.

Synthetic food replicators in science fiction (and real life) can vary a ton. They might create anything imaginable, or just spit out soylent green; they might function perfectly, or constantly fall apart. But everyone wants just one thing out of them: tea.

The entirety of Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series is the masterpiece of a sci-fi satire artist, but the franchise features one particularly memorable moment: when Arthur Dent locates the Nutri-Matic Drinks Dispenser and places a simple, if predictably English, request.

Of course Beckie Leckie is also in the mix.

(15) DICK SHORTCOMINGS. MD Jackson suspects “You Don’t Know Dick”, but tries to remedy your shortcomings in a post at Amazing Stories.

So how is it that this crazy science fiction writer (and, some would argue that he was literally crazy) has come to have such a hold on audiences today? How is it that his work (lauded as it was) that languished in the sci-fi ghetto of the mid-twentieth century, has become amplified in the twenty-first? Has the rest of the world only now caught up to where Dick was when he wrote all those stories years ago?

The phenomenon is nothing new. Look at Vincent Van Gogh. Largely ignored in the 1800’s, he died poor and insane, but in the twentieth century his genius is applauded by the art world. Almost everyone in the twentieth century loves a Van Gogh. In the 18th he couldn’t sell a painting to save his life.

Is Phillip K. Dick the twenty-first century’s Vincent Van Gogh? Have we arrived at the place where he was decades before? Is he watching us, amused that it took us all so long to get here?

(16) ZWICKER INTERVIEW. The indefatigable Carl Slaughter has an interview with “Short Story Writer Richard Zwicker on Humor, Detective, and Greek Mythology” at SF Signal.

CS: Why Greek mythology?

RZ: I don’t usually write straight fantasy. I do like to borrow from mythology, however. Borrowing can work as long as you do something different and worthwhile with the source material. You’re not going to get far if all you do is retell the myth or slap on a different POV. On the other hand, many myths aren’t detailed, so there is plenty of opportunity to flesh things out or consider “What if?”

A recurring detective character I use is Phokus, set in ancient Greece, who has to deal with the whims of the gods. In these I borrow problems from the Greek myths. Phokus gets hired by Zeus to find out who stole fire, or he has to track down Daedalus, who pushed his nephew Talus off a cliff.

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, James Bacon, JJ, and David K.M. Klaus for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day ULTRAGOTHA.]

87 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 3/18/16 How Green Was My Pixel?

  1. 1) Still no great civilizations or canals, but I do like the idea of seas on Mars that dried up, slowly retreating. It’s so retro pulpy.

    8-11) What they said.

    12) I disagree with him often. It’s definitely not getting my vote for best fanzine, and I’m going to write angry things to his lettercol! Should be a good con, though.

    13) What does her age have to do with anything? If she were a child or a senior citizen, it might be noteworthy that she’s suspended, but geez.

    14) I enjoyed that.

    16) This is a collection I might actually pick up!

  2. Pingback: sad puppies 4: the… better behaving? | Crime and the Blog of Evil

  3. Don’t know if I missed this conversation elsewhere, but I’m very excited to hear that Disney is re-adapting the Chronicles of Prydain into films! I’m not fond of their animated adaptation of The Black Cauldron, and I’m hoping they do better this time around. I’m personally hoping for live-action(and it seems most likely).

  4. Catherynne Valente (9): Just so you know (if you read this), I’m a Hugo nominator and I loved Radiance. I’m also ignoring the Puppies of all varieties, and have all along. In the case of the Sad Puppies, it hasn’t been because I disagree or disapprove or anything like that–from discussions here and elsewhere, their list does seem to be a solid recommendations list, not a slate, and good for them–but because by the time their list got posted, I didn’t need recommendations any more. Actually, with a couple of notable exceptions in certain categories (artists! gack), I didn’t really need any recommendations all along. I did most of my reading on my own, and I’m pretty happy with my choices. So . . . why bother?

    And I’m ignoring the Rabid Puppies because why on earth would I pay attention to Beale? But that’s a different issue, this year. At least, so far it seems to be, and I hope it stays that way.

  5. Catherynne Valente: I too oppose slates and am nominating your work. Actually, HAVE nominated your work a 2-3 weeks ago already, as soon as I got my PIN. Like Mary Frances, I’d already decided most of my choices as I went along and started making a list in November.

    Radiance rearranged my brain, in a good way. It was floating when I finished.

    I’m a cat person anyway, so who cares about puppies? 🙂

  6. OGH: The time machine is acting very strangely. I started this at 10:10 PM Filer Standard Time, but it says 7:28 PM. It’s got the right day and year, but what gives with the two hour and forty-two* minute difference? I can’t think of a simple answer from an obvious bug.


  7. Glad to hear that, Liz! I will cross my fingers for you! And pet your puppies for me. 🙂

    I think I’m going to try to use the attitude expressed in Cat Valente’s blog post as my model in approaching about SPIV.

  8. @Mary Frances & @lurkertype: thanks, guys, that means a lot. All I want is to have my work read fairly, and to know if a nomination does or doesn’t happen, it was only the quality of my writing that was in question. Worth noting they didn’t recommend Radiance, it was my novella Speak Easy. And thanks for the offer of tea in the last post, @lurkertype. They haven’t gotten tired of berating me for using the word “furious” on my Twitter and battering me about the head with accusations and promises to never buy my work yet. Vox Day’s told me to “suck it up, buttercup,” so I guess that happened. I’ve switched from tea to rum.

    I like books. Books are nice.

  9. lurkertype
    Time machines are a pain in the ass. Look at Vincent Van Gogh (in 15)! His can only take him back to the 18th century, and nobody there digs his genius. If he could have moved forward in time to the 20th or 21st, he’d be rich and have all the potatoes he could ever desire.

  10. Cat Valente: Worth noting they didn’t recommend Radiance, it was my novella Speak Easy.

    Heh. Told you I wasn’t paying any attention to the Puppies’ rec list!

    Seriously, Radiance is remarkable. As lurkertype said, it made me think sideways for a while . . . and possibly upside down and backwards, too.

  11. @Cat V: I got rum too. 🙂 “Radiance” was probably too artsy and SJW for them.

    It’s not like they were buying your work before, so what are they going to do — not buy it HARDER? That’s like me, a clumsy middle-aged woman, saying I’m boycotting playing in the NFL because of the concussion issue.

  12. Another great thing about Vietnam is that Twitter is blocked by many ISPs. No need to even remind myself of why I’ll never sign up for that shitstorm.

  13. @lurkertype It also has a lot of gays and non-whites in it. But it has space rockets and hot chicks! But yeah, I can’t really imagine any of these people were super into buying my work to begin with, whatever list I was on. It was the Mad Genius Club commentariat themselves who responded to (apparently heretofore secret) news of how many times I’ve been nominated for Hugos with the immortal words: “Who the hell does she think she is?”

    @Mary Frances That means so much. I worked on that book till my eyes and my soul bled.

  14. Thanks Soon Lee. You are hereby named File 770 Savior Proofreader of the Day, with all the rights and privileges appertaining thereto!

  15. @Cat V: I’m so EssJayDubbleYew that I forgot about the gays and the non-whites till you mentioned it here. “Oh, yeah…” But there were spaceships and hot blonde chicks! And a hard-boiled gumshoe! And my brain was a different shape when I finished it than from when I started.

    Their continual surprise seems to indicate that they can’t remember the lists of Hugo nominees that have been gathered and printed and posted online PUBLICLY for decades. It must be hard to be them, bless their hearts.

  16. 12) Read “Pandora’s Planet” when I was younger and mostly remember that I liked it very much. So I ordered it again from Amazon and it is in my TBR-pile now.

  17. It really looks as though the Sad Puppies, this year, have done what they said they were going to do – run an open submissions process and produce a recs list from that, openly and transparently. So, umm, fair play to them, well done for that, I guess.

    Of course, this means their recs list reflects popular taste… which means it looks, well, pretty much like any other recs list floating around the SF world. There’s things on it that are on my nominations list, even though I’ve had nothing to do with the SPs myself. I imagine that’s true for a lot of people.

    In itself, I guess the SP4 list is pretty harmless. The problem, of course, is that it is inextricably linked with Sad and Rabid Puppies of the past, and people could be reasonably excused, I think, for treating a Sad Puppy endorsement much like the Charles Manson Seal of Approval. It’s the brand that’s toxic, even though this particular iteration of it seems not to be. I think a lot more water will have to flow under the bridge before it’s generally accepted that the Sad Puppies have changed their spots. (The game of the week is, how many metaphors can Steve mix in one sentence?)

  18. 1. I’m thinking of buying some rocket-shaped hood ornaments. It might be a good idea to have some in hand, come August.
    2. it’s “the brand”. Well, yeah, but “the brand” has people behind it. Those people have chosen to A: put out a list that is carefully constructed to confuse its nature and B: have chosen to continue to attack elsewhere on social networks. This makes it pretty clear that the purpose remains political, which in turn settles the slate/reading list question. It’s a Slate.
    3. There is every reason to ratify EPH this year, even if you’re having warm fuzzies over puppiez. The process has been revealed to be vulnerable to bad actors. After the third child falls into the well, it’s a good idea to permanently cover it up.
    4. Thank you to those authors who have publicly repudiated slates. As we’ve read, this can be a difficult decision to make. I would like to see the whole community make similar statements.
    5. Again (ad nauseum): if puppies wanted to make nice, they’d take the high road, bow wow out for a few years, redefine their goals, reconstruct their process, bring things in line with the rest of the community, drop the us vs them rhetoric/strategy, repudiate their sense of entitlement, and eliminate the hatefulness they’ve displayed. This has not happened.
    6. All due respect to the “just ignore them strategy”, but these are not the kind of people who just “go away”. They don’t. They feel entitled. They feel they’ve been done an injustice that must be righted. Any tiny shred of success (real or imagined) is proof of the rightness of their cause, proof of the existence of the cabal, proof of weakness in their opposition, proof that if they adjust and try harder, they will be victorious in the end. If one wants to “ignore” – ignore what they say, but don’t ignore what they do, and don’t for one second think that ignoring them will make them go away.

  19. Another terrorist attack here in Istanbul today, on a busy thoroughfare that I often walk along. This weekend is becoming an ideal opportunity to tackle Mount 770, as I don’t particularly fancy leaving the house.

    First up, Beth Cato’s The Clockwork Dagger. I’m hoping for a diverting read…

  20. @Rob. I read The Clockwork Dagger (still need to read its sequel, although I read one of the short stories she released). It’s steampunky, it has a good heroine, and an engaging world and story. I liked it a lot. I hope you find the same.

    So if it walks like a slate, talks like a slate, is released in a time frame like a slate…its a slate. And I agree that even the somewhat more desultory slating this year from the puppies is NO reason not to pass EPH.

  21. @rob_matic – Stay safe. Your reason for staying inside and reading definitely trumps mine.

    Re SP4:
    Had this come out in January, I wouldn’t have had any issues with it. As it is, the list is good for me only for artist and blog suggestions, as my reading stack is full.
    My concern is that some people will simply vote by cribbing the list without reading anything. They were so late to the party, I cannot see another use for it.

  22. Re 15: Not that we’ve planned it that way from the beginning, but on SFF Audio, its head honcho, Jesse Willis, and two frequent guests, myself and Marissa Vu have been doing Readalong podcasts on Dick’s novels, working through the oeuvre. Some of these are second (or more) reads for me, others are brand new to me. Almost all of this is new to Marissa, but Jesse has consumed most of them.

    If we are living in a Dicksian world, might as well get the stuff from the source, I say.

  23. Hey, guys! Regular lurker, occasional commenter with a vaguely OT question. I had to miss my home con, MidsouthCon in Memphis, due to financial reasons. My sweetheart and I are looking for another comparable con no more than 8 hours drive from the Central Arkansas area later this summer. I like a little gaming, a little panelling about books and media fandom, some LARP and costuming. Sweetheart is not particularly fannish, but did like Cory Doctorow’s panels at the last MSC, and is a massive space science fanboy. MSC does have a robust room party scene, and I do enjoy that. I went to Dragon*Con about 15 years ago, and it was too big then. Very overwhelming, and I can imagine my hermity boyfriend would just lay down and die right there in the grand concourse. So, that’s out.

    Can y’all think of anything that would fit the bill?

  24. I put up the latest version of the 1940 novelettes. All but three have been proofread and all are in the thematic table of contents. Just the epub 2 and kindle versions were updated.

    “Cold” by Nat Schachner stood out. A handful of Earthicans and Martians jointly administer a moon with the only source of the ultimate mineral and then it runs out.

  25. (8)-(11)

    Eh, part of life now in every area where you deal with more U.S. conservatives than three is that inevitable game of Deal With The Trump Supporters. In a weird way, it makes it more routine when we’re looking at areas where that paranoid, resentful conservatism had reared it’s head prior.

    The Puppies are the Trumpers of science fiction. The evil brown people are rising to take what’s rightfully yours! Having to be polite to people you disagree with is oppression! Someone you don’t like saying they have an opinion is some kind of shrieking extremism! It’s the new normal. I’m not sure it can be ignored, but it can be mitigated. And its the normal of people on the wrong side of history, trying to win through the volume of their tantrums.

  26. I agree that Worldcon should still pass EPH. In addition to the fact that, as people say, we now know that people can take advantage of the exploit if they choose, the Little Elkherd Boy is still running RP2, and there’s no reason to assume RP3 will be any different.

  27. [12] Ha – you can still find those openings in some Analog stories. I think it’s because people who grow up reading that stuff and think “I can write like that” end up writing like that. They think it’s the way stories are supposed to be.

  28. Jim Henley on March 19, 2016 at 6:17 am said:

    I agree that Worldcon should still pass EPH. In addition to the fact that, as people say, we now know that people can take advantage of the exploit if they choose, the Little Elkherd Boy is still running RP2, and there’s no reason to assume RP3 will be any different.

    I absolutely agree that EPH should be supported – it’s a painless way to fend off any future shenanigans, from any side. Let’s not forget that EPH is a politically neutral thing; it works to dilute the effectiveness of any block-voting campaign, regardless of who’s running it or why. It’s only an “anti-Puppy” measure because the Puppies, so far, are the only people to run a slate.

  29. Remember when most pixels were green? Ah the days of the emerald VT100s.

    Memories! Light the pixels of my mind! Emerald colored pixels of the way we were! Scattered pixels of the scrolls we left behind. Scrolls we gave to one another for the way we were.

    Just a demonstration of the Streisand Effect. Carry on.

  30. Jack Lint – oh yes! And staring in wonder at the novelty of the new blue screens!

  31. I’m amazed I’m on anyone’s Seacon Hugo ballot! 🙂

    That said, I am flattered that, despite your not necessarily agreeing with my tastes, you continue to read my column. I always appreciate your comments, even (perhaps especially) the contrary ones.

    Congratulations on your making the ballot!

  32. Of course the best pixels were orange plasma screens. I never used PLATO, though I did go to the celebration at the CHM a couple of years ago. As a system it had a huge effect on what became the Internet, and also influenced much early computer networking concepts in SF, inspiring John Brunner in Shockwave Rider for example.

    Also, hello from Seattle! It’s 7867 and we have a huge statue of a pixel in every city.

  33. Rob_matic

    Stay safe and enjoy your reading!


    We need to get this through to mitigate the risks of slates of any kind being used to game the Hugos and the not-a-Hugo Campbell. I don’t care who creates the slates; that isn’t the issue. It’s the slates themselves which I reject.

    To those who have been slated

    I have studiously ignored the contents of the two slates, though I have seen references here which I have tried to ignore as well. The end result is that if I nominate your works I will do so because I have read/seen/heard them, and thought they were worthy of being nominated, unless you, the creator/s of the works, have expressed the desire not to be nominated.


    I’ve just bought the anthology which, amazingly enough, was available on Amazon UK. I propose to read it today, on the off chance that it may have a 2015 piece in it. The fact that it looks just the thing to lighten a grey day is, of course, entirely irrelevant…

  34. Let’s not forget that, ergonomically speaking, one of the best monochrome CRT phosphor colours was considered to not be green (using the P1 phosphor) but amber (using the P3 phosphor) … which would seem to tie things back to SF rather nicely?

  35. I recall IBM ran an ad around 1983-4 where they were playing up the new plasma screen technology. Used it to create the image of a steaming cup of coffee. Pretty exciting stuff. Can’t seem to find it on YouTube, but it’s probably out there.

    When I was new to Usenet, I remember buying a T-shirt with a smiley face emoticon on the front and back where one side was emerald and the other side was amber. Had to explain that shirt to a lot of people. Might still have it somewhere.

  36. Jim Henley on March 19, 2016 at 6:17 am said:
    I agree that Worldcon should still pass EPH. In addition to the fact that, as people say, we now know that people can take advantage of the exploit if they choose, the Little Elkherd Boy is still running RP2, and there’s no reason to assume RP3 will be any different.

    If there actually is a plan going on in the RP/SP camp(s), it’s to try to defuse support for EPH so this nonsense can go on forever.

  37. @Steve Wright

    In itself, I guess the SP4 list is pretty harmless. The problem, of course, is that it is inextricably linked with Sad and Rabid Puppies of the past, and people could be reasonably excused, I think, for treating a Sad Puppy endorsement much like the Charles Manson Seal of Approval.

    Or the Muammar Gaddafi Human Rights Prize. 🙂

    Seriously, I agree that this year they seem to have tried to do the right thing–in some sense–but I don’t see how they escape from their historic associations with white supremacy without starting a new group with a new name and a charter that clearly repudiates bigotry and harassment.

    I’ll repeat my prediction that there won’t be an SP5.

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