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Sci-Fi Eye for the Geek Guy

By kpaul in Culture
Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 09:13:55 PM EST
Tags: Humour (all tags)
Humour

Quick, think of your favorite sci-fi television or movie franchise or writer (i.e. Star Trek, Star Wars, Dr Who, Dune, HHG2TG, Asimov, Babylon 5, Blade Runner, Lexx, BattleStar Galactica, Flash Gordon, Arthur C. Clarke, William Gibson, Philip Jose Farmer, or Planet of the Apes, Buckaroo Banzai, The Matrix.) Don't think about it too much. I just want you to remember the first one that popped into your mind. Ok, got it? Great. Read on to see if I peg your personality type at all. (Participants receive a handy home version of the game.)


Star Trek

You are in one of the groups that are hard to pin down because there is such a wide range of shows and fans. Typically, you will have a higher nerd factor (irritating laugh, thick glasses with masking tape, etc.) You're also typically very passionate about their views on the show, ranging from who was the best captain to whether the Borg or Klingons were more horrifying enemies.

  • Original Star Trek - You own a couple pocket protectors and an advanced calculator. The Russians are the world's greatest threat.
  • Star Trek TNG - You have come to fisticuffs over whether it's day-ta or dah-ta. You were in the drama club in high school.
  • Star Trek DS9 - You are just plain weird. Even your grandmother isn't sure about you.
  • Star Trek Enterprise - You miss Quantum Leap and/or enjoy top 40 music.

    Star Wars

    You are more action and adventure oriented. While you might occasionally dress up in costume (usually a stormtrooper), you're typically more obsessed with seeing every last second of footage and being the first to do so. You are more athletic that other sci-fi types, having Jabba the Hut as a good image to stave off over eating too much. Also, you will most likely have genuinely tried the Jedi mind-control trick at least once in your life.

  • Episodes IV - VI - You are cool and hate Jar Jar Binks.
  • Episodes I thru II - You think you are cool and like Jar Jar Binks for what you believe is much needed lighter humor.
  • Christmas Special - You are warped and twisted and probably own all the original action figures (with 20+ storm troopers) and several giant Darth Vader heads to keep them in. You live in your parent's basement. Get a haircut and job, freak.

    Babylon-5

    You are obsessed with details. Not having a huge franchise to get into, you spent countless hours memorizing and studying entire seasons of episode and character names, constantly testing the inferior fan's knowledge of the show. You're most likely affiliated with some 'save the $thing' foundation and think the U.N. is the most realistic form of government known to mankind.

    Mad Max

    You like fast cars that eat a lot of fossil fuels and make a lot of noise. You're probably the most violent of the sci-fi types, and the most likely to have an iron box buried in the backyard full of automatic weapons and bullets. Typically an extremely offensive driver, you purposefully took a job 200 miles away so you could commute each day.

    Blade Runner

    You are into wearing black and being as gothic as you can. To you, there is no future other than a giant computer and machines enslaving mankind to dirty up the steamy and seedy city-scapes the world over. You like humans.

    Dr Who

    You're in a group that also has a lot of sub-types, but at the core, your geek and nerd components are almost equal. You're likely to also be Monty Python and HHG2TG fans. While you may dress up as this or that, you've always dreamed of owning your own 42' scarf. (Well, ok, maybe not that big.) You lack a certain sense of reality, though, somehow not realizing the Daleks have plungers painted silver and never questioning why they can take over the universe if they can't even get up the stairs.

  • First Doctor - You are old and are a black and white purist.
  • Second Doctor - You like math puzzles and calculating prime numbers to pass the time.
  • Third Doctor - You are an English dandy (or secretly want to be one.) You have a puffy shirt that you proudly wear in public (one of the reasons you're still single.)
  • Fourth Doctor - You also dig Douglas Adams and think humor can overcome it all.
  • Fift Doctor - For some strange reason, you like animals a lot, like you were a vet in another life. Strange, that.
  • Sixth Doctor - You're somewhat of a poser, but not all the way. People don't understand you.
  • Seventh Doctor - You are a combination of all the above doctors, with a lithp thrown in for good meathure.
  • Crazy Fox American Doctor - You are all too USian.

    Dune

    You think you're the chosen one. There's a conspiracy behind every rock. You have a strange connection to your family and hoard turmeric and other spices, thinking one day you may be ruler of the universe.

    Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

    You like a good pint of Guinness. Actually, a few of them. Well, no, to be quite honest, you like a lot more than just a few. In fact, you remind me of a Hitchhiker fan on Garbleon Beta-Five that once drank so many pints of imported Earth Guinness that she woke up married to a Rapscillion Raptoress. She quickly swore off the brew forever. But I digress...

    Isaac Asimov

    You most likely wear glasses, have unkempt hair and run Linux on at least two of your computers. You secretly believe robots will take over the world one day and are planning for that eventuality by reading and studying as much as you can. You're typically found in academia, either as a professional student or professor.

    Robert Heinlein

    You are the closest thing Sci-Fi has to a hippy. You're into free love and free drugs and groovy grokking. You envision yourself joining the space marines to conquer distant planets and mate with distant planet broads, usually becoming involved in highly unusual clan/polyandry/line/troika-type marriage arrangements. Unless you're into the so called juvies (Encyclopedia Brown meets Nancy Drew), which are the Reader's Digest version of the latter Heinlein.

    LEXX

    You also like Mad Magazine, National Lampoon, Chevy Chase and Beavis and Butthead. You think There's Something About Mary should've won an oscar. (A handful are doing time in local jails for writing threatening notes to Seymour Oscar in Idaho, demanding that the movie have a shot even though Mr. Oscar had, in fact, nothing to do with the oscars.) You liked Joe Dirt because he was a janitor and think of Hudsucker Proxy every time you watch the show.

    Battlestar Galactica

    You are in the sci-fi set most likely to be into soap operas, even occasionally. Melodrama is a big part of youe life. (Tim has just woken up. There's enough hot water left for maybe one shower. Will he have time to rinse? Stay tuned next week...)

    Flash Gordon

    You have boxes and crates of comic books in plastic covers to protect them. You enjoy 80s hard rock, glam metal and football. Your favorite foods are cheeseburgers and apple pie. You always get the girl.

    Ray Bradbury

    You most likely drink wine and are similar in appearance and attitude of the Beatniks in the 1950s US. Your life consists of short episodes loosely tied together.

    Arthur C. Clarke

    You know they're out there, watching us. You imagine they're smarter than us and understand us more than us. You like big phallic symbols and are cautious around real world A.I.

    William Gibson

    You 'got' War Games when it first came out. You're online more than you sleep every day. You have more Proxy Servers than friends. Your mom and dog and even the goldfish are afraid of you. You wear black and will be one of the first to attach hardware to their body.

    Philip Jose Farmer

    You've often wondered what Cleopatra would've said to Abraham Lincoln. You've given it lots of thought, actually, and even wrote some fan-fic for the Internet.

    Planet of the Apes

    You've always hated the zoo because the monkey cages freak you out. You've used the 'Damn apes!' line at least 13 times so far in your life and think it's funnier every time you do it.

    Buckaroo Banzai

    You're in a New Wave Brit Pop Band, wear white leather, long to live in a bus and crave Fritos and other junk food. You believe the Vice President is actually a being from another dimension and are intent on proving it using music and snazzy clothes.

    The Matrix

    You think you know philosophy, but you don't. You enjoy Drum & Bass music, tribalism, and leather trenchcoats. You think you're cooler than everyone else. You aren't. It's all an illusion.

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    Poll
    i am
    o arthur c clarke 6%
    o asimov 8%
    o dr who 6%
    o HHG2TG 11%
    o star wars 3%
    o babylon 5 10%
    o blade runner 8%
    o lexx 2%
    o battlestar galactica 2%
    o flash gordon 0%
    o star trek 11%
    o william gibson 11%
    o phillip jose farmer 0%
    o planet of the apes 0%
    o other (see below) 16%

    Votes: 93
    Results | Other Polls

    Related Links
    o Also by kpaul


    Display: Sort:
    Sci-Fi Eye for the Geek Guy | 169 comments (136 topical, 33 editorial, 0 hidden)
    Red Dwarf: (2.69 / 13) (#4)
    by Lode Runner on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 08:31:36 PM EST

    The Grant-Naylorist is more fun and more knowledgeable of sci-fi than any of the other categories combined. Same inattention to personal hygiene as others--see 'smeg', but heightened senses of parody and irony.

    NB: This holds true for those who admire ONLY seasons I-V.

    can i steal that with appropriate credit? /nt (none / 0) (#5)
    by kpaul on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 08:35:08 PM EST


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]
    go ahead/ nt (none / 0) (#7)
    by Lode Runner on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 08:43:39 PM EST



    [ Parent ]
    or, notcing you had it as a topical comment, (none / 0) (#8)
    by kpaul on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 08:45:54 PM EST

    let everyone add their own as a comment?


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    whatever, man /nt (none / 0) (#10)
    by Lode Runner on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:10:29 PM EST



    [ Parent ]
    by that, i wonder... (none / 1) (#12)
    by kpaul on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:14:38 PM EST

    heh. just kidding.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    WIPO: I agree with this monkey (none / 1) (#56)
    by MrHanky on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:24:30 PM EST

    But not with its description.

    The Grant-Naylorist comes in three flavours: The dirty monkey, the git with the H stapled to its head, and the good-looking cat. Now how am I looking? Looking good. And how am I looking now? Still looking good. Looking good, looking good, looking good. I think I might be a cat.


    "This was great, because it was a bunch of mature players who were able to express themselves and talk politics." Lettuce B-Free, on being a total fucking moron for Ron Paul.
    [ Parent ]

    Heinlein (none / 1) (#9)
    by janra on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:07:31 PM EST

    What if you like Heinlein but prefer his juvies over his, er, later books? "free love and free drugs and groovy grokking" isn't what I think of with The Rolling Stones or Space Cadet or ...

    As for a favourite, it depends on my mood. Heinlein juvies are great when I'm feeling blah and burnt-out and brain-dead because they're simple, straightforward, and good clean fun.
    --
    Discuss the art and craft of writing
    That's the problem with world domination... Nobody is willing to wait for it anymore, work slowly towards it, drink more and enjoy the ride more.

    good points.... /nt (none / 0) (#11)
    by kpaul on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:13:21 PM EST


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]
    the "readers digest version" (none / 1) (#59)
    by janra on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:12:18 PM EST

    heh...

    If anything, I'd say they're a sign that you're still a boy scout at heart :-)
    --
    Discuss the art and craft of writing
    That's the problem with world domination... Nobody is willing to wait for it anymore, work slowly towards it, drink more and enjoy the ride more.
    [ Parent ]

    On the other hand... (none / 1) (#88)
    by wumpus on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:47:31 PM EST

    You like RAH. You are the closest thing in Sci-Fi to being a hippy. Well a violently anti-communist, pro-baby-killing hippy. Maybe not.

    Wumpus

    [ Parent ]

    Good, clean fun? (none / 0) (#99)
    by wurp on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 12:22:03 AM EST

    Have you read the original version (not the one printed originally, but the reprint of how he originally wrote it) of Podkayne of Mars?

    I agree, though - I am a big Heinlein fan and I don't fit the description here at all.
    ---
    Buy my stuff
    [ Parent ]

    The juvies are way better. (none / 0) (#118)
    by waxmop on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 11:49:15 PM EST

    Space Cadet has got to be one of the best books I've read. Time Enough For Love was so sucktacular I have a hard time believing they came from the same author.
    --
    fuck meatspace man I gotta level my dwarf cleric lonelyhobo
    [ Parent ]
    off-by-one error? (none / 1) (#13)
    by ill decide later on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:24:56 PM EST

    Your Asimov description fits me the closest, but I would have to say HHGTTG is my favourite of the listed choices. Of all sci-fi, right now I'm loving Firefly, having recently watched it. As for Battlestar Galactica, you really should have split it up into old and new versions. I haven't seen the old one, but the new one is okay.

    interesting. how others see you vs how you see ... (none / 0) (#16)
    by kpaul on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 09:33:58 PM EST

    yourself? like that hearing your voice on tape the first time thing?


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    Where is Dune? :.(... nt (3.00 / 3) (#21)
    by taste on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 10:32:57 PM EST



    simple (3.00 / 8) (#32)
    by speek on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:18:58 AM EST

    Frank Herbert

    You're a closet conspiracy theorist. Everything is a grand scheme by a shadowy power elite. You laugh at tin-foil hat jokes, but secretly you wonder if you shouldn't line your wallet because you know that little strip in the dollar bills is used to track people. You think the Arthur C. Clarke people don't know what phallic really means.

    --
    al queda is kicking themsleves for not knowing about the levees
    [ Parent ]

    also... (3.00 / 2) (#51)
    by regeya on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:58:15 PM EST

    You have a secret suspicion that nuns run the world.

    [ yokelpunk | kuro5hin diary ]
    [ Parent ]

    What if (2.33 / 3) (#23)
    by Kasreyn on Thu Feb 17, 2005 at 11:40:40 PM EST

    you like almost all of those things (me), and don't resemble any of those stereotypes (also me)?

    -1, didn't make me laugh. But it is nice to find another person who's even HEARD of the Hudsucker Proxy. :)


    "Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
    We never asked to be born in the first place."

    R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
    that was a great fucking movie (3.00 / 2) (#24)
    by circletimessquare on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:46:29 AM EST

    drawing of a circle on a napkin

    "you know, for kids!"

    open mouth stares

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA


    The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

    [ Parent ]

    *huge grin* -nt (none / 1) (#28)
    by Kasreyn on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:47:29 AM EST

    nt
    "Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
    We never asked to be born in the first place."

    R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
    [ Parent ]
    I'd say you're a goddamn nerd. (3.00 / 2) (#25)
    by 00000 on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:21:11 AM EST



    [ Parent ]
    I would have to agree n/t (none / 0) (#47)
    by thankyougustad on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:15:10 PM EST



    No no thanks no
    Je n'aime que le bourbon
    no no thanks no
    c'est une affaire de goût.

    [ Parent ]
    one of my favorite movies (none / 1) (#37)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:52:12 AM EST

    still makes me laugh. it was running on cable over and over a month or so ago. the mailroom was just hilarious. also, it mentions Muncie, IN! heh.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    Best. Coen. Movie. Evar. (none / 1) (#42)
    by rusty on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 10:50:43 AM EST



    ____
    Not the real rusty
    [ Parent ]
    :D! -nt (none / 0) (#101)
    by Kasreyn on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 12:32:46 AM EST

    nt
    "Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
    We never asked to be born in the first place."

    R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
    [ Parent ]
    I knew that film too (none / 0) (#45)
    by Niha on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 11:43:56 AM EST

    About stereotypes...well, they are just stereotypes.

    [ Parent ]
    Larry Niven (2.85 / 21) (#27)
    by godix on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:46:14 AM EST

    You've worked out, in detail, the sex lives of most aliens. Even the non-humanoid ones like Jabba the Hutt. You pride yourself on knowing what rishathra means, you envy people who are anally probed by aliens, and there's a good chance you're a closet furry. Despite spending most of your waking life dwelling on deviant sexual practices, or perhaps because of, you're 36 years old and still a virgin.


    - An egotist is someone who thinks they're almost as good as I am.
    uh, don't remind me (none / 0) (#58)
    by ill decide later on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:04:21 PM EST

    I downloaded the Ringworld books in audio book form. All I can say is, I feel sorry for the guy who had to read them.

    The first book was okay though.

    [ Parent ]

    Weird (none / 0) (#100)
    by wurp on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 12:25:29 AM EST

    I loved them.
    ---
    Buy my stuff
    [ Parent ]
    did I read bowdlerized Niven? (none / 1) (#65)
    by Polverone on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:55:26 PM EST

    What I remember from Niven in various forms:
    -a bleak future where minor crimes carry the death penalty so as to provide human organs for transplant
    -a boring but safe future where technology can protect you from almost any stupidity or mishap
    -flashlight lasers, room temperature superconductors, scrith, General Products spacecraft, ragweed-derived antiaging drugs, and other techno-geewizardy
    -Pak protectors, which are clearly based on the heroes of Ayn Rand's novels

    Did he write about sex a lot and I forgot it, or were some books/short stories more sex-obsessed than others?
    --
    It's not a just, good idea; it's the law.
    [ Parent ]

    Later Ringworld books (3.00 / 2) (#73)
    by rpresser on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 04:14:01 PM EST

    In Ringworld Engineers Larry introduced rishathra, which is sex between humanoids of differing subspecies. (It turned out that the Ringworld, like Earth, was settled by Pak, after which the protectors died out. But the Ringworld for whatever reason had a higher mutation rate.) Rishathra has formal social implications - clans of differing species like to use rishathra to seal pacts; some species without any good birth control habitually use rishathra to keep their numbers down; etc.  Ringworld Engineers is stuffed to the gills with rishathra, and Ringworld Throne is almost as bad. (Actually it's much worse, but for different reasons.)

    In comparison, sex plays a very minor role in everything else Niven's written. Maybe in Engineers he was trying to compete with the Heinlein novels of the time.
    ------------
    "In terms of both hyperbolic overreaching and eventual wrongness, the Permanent [Republican] Majority has set a new, and truly difficult to beat, standard." --rusty
    [ Parent ]

    Higher mutation rate? (none / 0) (#142)
    by Theoretical User on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 11:25:03 AM EST

    If you'll recall, sir, the problem was that there were no indigenous fauna on ringworld, and so the hominids had to adapt to fit several different needs.

    ___
    Your Wife Gives Bad Head. -- CheeseburgerBrown
    [ Parent ]
    Scrith Rules (none / 0) (#120)
    by tincat2 on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 02:34:43 AM EST

    A ot of fun and interesting concepts in those books.

    [ Parent ]
    You missed Matrix (2.40 / 10) (#33)
    by speek on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:22:41 AM EST

    Matrix

    You are just sad and pathetic. Get the fuck out of here.

    --
    al queda is kicking themsleves for not knowing about the levees

    and buckaroo banzai!!! (none / 0) (#35)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:43:14 AM EST

    i'll try to add them at lunch today...


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    And you get a +1 (none / 1) (#48)
    by MrHanky on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:27:07 PM EST

    just for the precise descripition of the typical Matrix dork.


    "This was great, because it was a bunch of mature players who were able to express themselves and talk politics." Lettuce B-Free, on being a total fucking moron for Ron Paul.
    [ Parent ]
    Hippy Space marines (1.50 / 2) (#34)
    by werebear on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:31:40 AM EST

    Surely a bit of a contradiction on the Robert Heinlein fan description ... SF Hippy *and* a wannabee space marine ? And you also could have mentioned 'inclined to become involved in highly unusual clan/polyandry/line/troika-type marriage arrangements'.

    Nonetheless +1, really grokked it.

    No contradiction at all (none / 0) (#143)
    by jolly st nick on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 11:52:18 AM EST

    It's all about nookie, isn't it?

    You invest so much of your fantasy life in being a macho alpha-male type, and then you look over the fence and see that the free-love types are actually getting a lot more.

    [ Parent ]

    SCIFI IS FOR FUCKING GEEKS (1.61 / 13) (#39)
    by noogie on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 09:11:19 AM EST




    *** ANONYMIZED BY THE EVIL KUROFIVEHIN MILITARY JUNTA ***
    IAWTP (3.00 / 3) (#54)
    by Sgt York on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:06:36 PM EST

    But you say it like it's a bad thing....

    There is a reason for everything. Sometimes, that reason just sucks.
    [ Parent ]

    You're not even funny anymore, only annoying. -nt- (3.00 / 2) (#62)
    by wobblywizard on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:19:37 PM EST


    --
    You never win an argument with anyone who fucks you or signs your paychecks. I just smile, bite my lip and sip my drink. --Philalawyer
    [ Parent ]

    When was I funny? (1.00 / 2) (#68)
    by noogie on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 03:15:03 PM EST




    *** ANONYMIZED BY THE EVIL KUROFIVEHIN MILITARY JUNTA ***
    [ Parent ]
    Exactly my point. Please cease and desist. -nt- (none / 0) (#70)
    by wobblywizard on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 03:57:48 PM EST


    --
    You never win an argument with anyone who fucks you or signs your paychecks. I just smile, bite my lip and sip my drink. --Philalawyer
    [ Parent ]

    Oh dear (1.50 / 2) (#40)
    by Pelorat on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 10:04:23 AM EST

    Isaac Asimov

    You most likely wear glasses, have unkempt hair and run Linux on at least two of your computers. You secretly believe robots will take over the world one day and are planning for that eventuality by reading and studying as much as you can. You're typically found in academia, either as a professional student or professor.

    --> Pelorat

    Crap. =)

    But then, at this moment I'm listening to the collected works of Chris Franke's Babylon 5 scores, and my first reaction to the original question was Firefly, which isn't even listed.

    So I guess I'm just a hopeless mix of nerd and geek.

    Hooray for Firefly! (3.00 / 2) (#55)
    by coderlemming on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:11:57 PM EST

    Why do the good ones always have to die?


    --
    Go be impersonally used as an organic semen collector!  (porkchop_d_clown)
    [ Parent ]
    Which LEXX? (2.00 / 3) (#41)
    by shinnin on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 10:44:34 AM EST

    Are you talking about Lexx: The Dark Zone (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0115243/) or the abysmal Lexx series that followed it (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0178149/)? This definately needs differentiating. You can't go differentiating doctors and trek shows without applying the method to Lexx.

    Lexx (3.00 / 3) (#128)
    by nine of mirrors on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 06:24:07 PM EST

    Agree, the movies (aka Season 1) were best. Though the series' three seasons weren't all that "alike" either.

    Season 2 - self-replicating robotic drones devouring the derelict, anarchic post-"His Shadow" universe, some trashy sex, "exploring strange new worlds and new civilisations" (and then blowing them up - accidentally, of course). Pretty uneven, but many good moments. (The "musical" episode, the "Name of the Rose" episode.)

    Season 3 - binary heaven/hell planetary system in earth's orbit, strangely one-track-minded people dying over and over again just to be reborn into the very same bizarre afterlives, Stan's guilt/punishment theme, very low-tech, nice gondola'd balloons and sunsets and a lovely "A Walk in the Desert" theme. Single coherent story arc.

    Season 4 - right now I can't bear the thought of summing it up. It's pretty awful, and rather incoherent, although almost all of it takes place on earth. Highlights - "The Game" (of chess), "The Trip" (as in "paranoia"), final episode (the universe is glowing... one last good bang *sniff*)

    Oh, and no, I don't like MAD magazine or Beavis and Butthead. It's easy to dismiss Lexx as pure trash, but I really like its atmosphere - and the fact that the crew are anything but professionals and basically just want to find a good place to live and have some fun along the way (a little like Ford and Zaphod during the Krikkit war). It's neither truly "science fiction" nor is it one of those bad-ass space marine adventure stories.

    [ Parent ]
    Pure trash? I think not. (none / 0) (#140)
    by shinnin on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:16:17 AM EST

    Actually, I found Lexx (the movies) to be quite philosophical, albeit in a very offbeat sense, and quite critical in a very satirical way. The overall B-movie kinkiness of the plot, characters and set most likely distracted many viewers from its implicit depth. One comment from a trekkie friend of mine regarding Lexx was "I'll say one thing: gay sci-fi." Ford and Zaphod are good point of reference, maybe Arthur Dent even moreso, as Brian Downey's excellent work as the average joe Stanley H. Tweedle amongst the rest of the crew provided much comic relief and satirical perspective. I didn't give the following series much time, as most of the charm, wit and intelligence seemed to have disappeared in the first couple of episodes I followed. Maybe I should give them the benefit of the doubt.

    [ Parent ]
    no offense intended. (none / 0) (#156)
    by kpaul on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:28:39 PM EST

    i knew there was a separate movie, but haven't seen it, i don't think.

    what is the difference? i'm thinking the movie was better? darker?


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    You didn't peg me...but +1 anyway n/t (1.00 / 2) (#44)
    by haplopeart on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 11:23:27 AM EST


    Bill "Haplo Peart" Dunn
    Administrator Epithna.com
    http://www.epithna.com

    you don't know real sci-fi until.. (2.75 / 4) (#46)
    by fourseven on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:12:37 PM EST

    you've read some Stanislaw Lem. and no, Solaris the movie doesn't count, it's a watered-down hollywood version of a good book.

    which movie? (none / 0) (#49)
    by C Montgomery Burns on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:35:54 PM EST

    Are you talking about the crappy version made a few years ago, or the Russian one?
    --
    ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNOTOAD
    Intelligent design
    [ Parent ]
    Question (3.00 / 3) (#50)
    by nollidj on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 12:52:36 PM EST

    What do you think of Tarkovsky's version? I saw Soderbergh's bloody abortion first, so I had to contend with pushing it aside when watching the Russian film.

    It was certainly a much better movie, if indeed rather long; the story about Tarkovsky telling the Soviet censorship board that he made the introductory scenes so soporific so that the stupid people would leave before the movie started seems to contain a core of truth. Tarkovsky is good at what he does, and this movie was a good one, bearing rewatching and careful scrutiny.

    That said, I still do not feel that either movie gets at the heart of what Lem's novel was about. Much of the focus in the films is on the love story between Kelvin and Rheya; this may be a result of the fact that much of the surface action in the novel is centered about the interactions between Kelvin, Rheya, and the other inhabitants of the station. When I first read the novel, however, the love story was completely sidelined by the immense role played by the planet-ocean itself. To my mind, in the novel the ocean is as much a character as any of the humans; this may be strange anthropomorphic projection on my part, but it is necessary to note that the ocean's character takes shape from those who observe it, both literally (in the form of the visitations) and metaphorically (as expressed by the numerous scholarly writings and internal thoughts described in prose). I am wondering if you have experienced the novels and films thus -- with much of the content of the book submerged and not entirely, properly presented on the reel.

    muahaha. MuaHaHA! MUAHAHAHAHAHAAAHAHAHAA!!!!
    [ Parent ]

    The book's stuff was packed in at the end (none / 0) (#64)
    by jongleur on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:33:01 PM EST

    in a few lines (in the movie) as I recall. It was headful few sentences, and now that you mention it I wish they'd spent more time on it, elaborated it. But, it's probably hard to put philosophy on film.
    --
    "If you can't imagine a better way let silence bury you" - Midnight Oil
    [ Parent ]
    A good one, but different (none / 1) (#166)
    by Ashalind on Fri Mar 18, 2005 at 10:50:59 AM EST

    Tarkovsky used the original story as a basis to go on with some concepts of his own (for example: his relationship with his father, who BTW was quite a good poet). Lem did not like Tarkovsky's variant.

    Similar thing was done by Tarkovsky in another scifi attempt, The Stalker (claimed to be made after Strugatsky's "Roadside Picknick"). Again, a film in its own right, but completely different from the book. Nevertheless, I think this is the only decent way to turn a good book into a good movie, if you want to stay a creator. That is why I also back LOTR films.

    By the way: what about LOTR fans? :)

    [ Parent ]

    Hell yes (3.00 / 3) (#57)
    by ksandstr on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 01:47:56 PM EST

    The Cyberiad should be one of those books that kids are compelled to read in school. With maybe the one where the protagonist gets a telelobotomy or the one where the coordinator and cybernetician and the rest are stranded on an alien world as optional follow-ons.

    Even if Cyberiad is just a particularly masterful translation (and it obviously is), that is one humorous sci-fi book that has dated far better than anything Douglas Adams ever wrote.

    What has taken up residence in the Princess's rectal cavity?
    [ Parent ]

    hard sci-fi verses light sci-fi (none / 0) (#60)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:16:42 PM EST

    i never could get into the really technical hardcore sci-fi...

    doesn't make either one 'more scifi' in my book, tho.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    He wrote a book about a mental hospital once... (2.75 / 4) (#67)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 03:14:47 PM EST

    ... it wasn't science fiction, it was about a mental hospital in Poland under the Nazi occupation. Let's see if I can find it...

    I didn't realize, it was his first novel, written in 1948 but not published until 1975. From the Amazon page:

    "Insane asylums have always distilled the spirit of the age." So claims one of the central characters in this, Lem's first novel, written in 1948 before he began his career in science fiction. And so Lem chose to set in a mental institution this gripping story of a young Polish doctor's attempt, following the Nazi invasion of 1939, to make sense of his world. The institution proves a microcosm of the chaos outside, for here doctors seem as deranged as their patients. That one patient is a famous poet also allows Lem to probe into the nature of art and provides insight into his literary development. Obviously the work of a young author, both in its passion and its occasional pontification, this should appeal particularly to college students but is highly recommended for all. David W. Henderson, Eckerd Coll. Lib., St. Petersburg, Fla.

    I gotta get me an Amazon affiliate account so I can make some coin off all the books I recommend here.

    By the way, I would agree with that character's assertion, that insane asylums distill the spirit of the age.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    I always enjoy reading your comments, if only for (none / 1) (#71)
    by wobblywizard on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 04:00:12 PM EST

    their entertainment value. Please keep up the good work! And get an Amazon whatever account. Yours, the wizard who wobbles.

    --
    You never win an argument with anyone who fucks you or signs your paychecks. I just smile, bite my lip and sip my drink. --Philalawyer
    [ Parent ]

    Well thank you! (none / 0) (#77)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 05:57:45 PM EST

    I'll sign up tonight. It can't be too hard to find the page.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    i gave you the link on my ad page... (none / 0) (#78)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 06:08:52 PM EST

    at least i think it was you. it's there anyway...


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    I'm writing a diary about it write now... (none / 0) (#79)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 06:40:26 PM EST

    I'll post a link when it's ready.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    ... here it is: (none / 0) (#82)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:25:37 PM EST

    I'm grateful for your help, and so will be Bonita, when I tell her our direct deposit has come in at the end of March.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    actually, (none / 0) (#84)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:09:37 PM EST

    it's about a month after the quarter. so, for quarter one, you get the check around the end of april. direct deposit was the smart way to go.

    i'm actually thinking of writing something up this weekend on how to make money with your site - at least enough to pay for hosting and a few brews...


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    Want to collaborate? (none / 0) (#85)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:12:25 PM EST

    I might have something intelligent, or at least helpful to say about google adsense.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    hmm. maybe that's a new 'feature' for Scoop? (none / 0) (#87)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:23:19 PM EST

    as it is now, one of us would have to 'claim it' and submit it, with the other mentioned in the text (intro or otherwise)...

    unless i wrote a part one and you a part two - or vice verse.

    i do like the idea of collaborative articles, though. not sure how it would work exactly, but it should be looked into.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    Two parts would work well (none / 1) (#89)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:48:30 PM EST

    I have to write in snatches when I can, so to try to collaborate on the same text wouldn't work well for me. And I don't have any actual experience with Amazon's program.

    I think if we each wrote about what we knew best, and emailed our drafts back and forth, we could relate them to each other in an intelligent way.

    Alternatively, we could sign up for a new account, and maybe call it kCrawford, Michaelpaul or some such, and both have the password.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    collaboration (none / 0) (#92)
    by janra on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 09:40:47 PM EST

    That's something I'd like to see too. Unfortunately, I haven't figured out or heard of a good way to implement it yet.
    --
    Discuss the art and craft of writing
    That's the problem with world domination... Nobody is willing to wait for it anymore, work slowly towards it, drink more and enjoy the ride more.
    [ Parent ]
    lemme try to grok it for a while... /nt (none / 0) (#94)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 10:11:54 PM EST


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]
    just brainstorming... (none / 0) (#96)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 11:13:12 PM EST

    well, to get around having two people posting changes at the same time you would almost have to have it be a tag team kind of thing. one person makes changes, then 'tags' the other person to give them edit abilities. and so on. both people would have to release it into the edit queue. i'd almost like to see a third edit queue - kinda like the diaries but where you could edit and change and throw the first draft out there. not everyone is into that kinda thing (like not everyone votes at all), but some (i think) are or might be. so maybe only trusted users have the ability, or human editors give them the ability or whatever...

    to not have to muck with the current story tables, make a new dual author table that's built with two authors in mind...

    just thinking out loud. does that spark anything? maybe i should move this idea to the Scoop site?


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    tag team (none / 0) (#106)
    by janra on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 02:09:30 AM EST

    Yeah, even on a wiki only one person can edit at a time. Having a "tag team" idea would be necessary, I think, or at least a flag of some sort that whoever was editing would pick up when editing and release when finished for the moment. Kind of like a wiki's edit lock.

    It would also need some way of indicating who is a collaborator - with your specific "tag you're it" method, that would be built in, but if you get an article with more than two collaborators, you may not know which one to "tag" next, so being able to simply release the lock for one of the others to pick up would be more handy.

    As for how to store the authors, that's trivial compared to the rest of the implementation details :-)

    Having some kind of "first draft space" has been proposed before, both as a public and private space. It hasn't gone anywhere yet, but that's largely because none of the Scoop developers have felt the need to write it. It would be useful in conjunction with an article collaboration feature though, so that collaborators wouldn't be held to the edit queue's schedule.

    And I think this thread should definitely be moved to Scoop.k5...
    --
    Discuss the art and craft of writing
    That's the problem with world domination... Nobody is willing to wait for it anymore, work slowly towards it, drink more and enjoy the ride more.
    [ Parent ]

    What I do with first drafts... (none / 0) (#109)
    by MichaelCrawford on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 10:02:02 AM EST

    I post them on my own website, and ask for help in my diaries. Here's an example.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    Yeah, but you're a link whore. (none / 0) (#115)
    by Danzig on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 07:27:44 PM EST

    Not that there's anything wrong with that.

    You are not a fucking Fight Club quotation.
    rmg for editor!
    If you disagree, moderate, don't post.
    Kill whitey.
    [ Parent ]
    I'm a shameless one too: (none / 0) (#116)
    by MichaelCrawford on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 08:32:22 PM EST

    Just this afternoon I finished reading Julia Cameron's The Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life. It gave me goosebumps. I think it is a very important book, one everyone should read. I'm going to write a review at my new Recommended Reading page.

    If you were to buy Cameron's book at Amazon as a result of clicking the link above, I would earn 15% of $9.71, or $1.46.

    I'm not proud.


    --

    Live your fucking life. Sue someone on the Internet. Write a fucking music player. Like the great man Michael David Crawford has shown us all: Hard work, a strong will to stalk, and a few fries short of a happy meal goes a long way. -- bride of spidy


    [ Parent ]

    If you were to reply to this, maybe we could... (none / 0) (#132)
    by MichaelCrawford on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 09:41:26 PM EST

    ... move the thread off the right edge of the window.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    Are You Sure? N/T (none / 0) (#160)
    by derg on Tue Feb 22, 2005 at 10:54:42 AM EST


    Really? Wow.. Thats AmAzing.. No Really. It is!
    [ Parent ]
    Absolutely! Money Back if Not Satisfied! (none / 0) (#161)
    by MichaelCrawford on Tue Feb 22, 2005 at 08:21:51 PM EST

    Your turn.


    --

    Live your fucking life. Sue someone on the Internet. Write a fucking music player. Like the great man Michael David Crawford has shown us all: Hard work, a strong will to stalk, and a few fries short of a happy meal goes a long way. -- bride of spidy


    [ Parent ]

    What about Bester, Ellison, Sturgeon? (1.66 / 3) (#61)
    by bgalehouse on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 02:17:38 PM EST

    Ok, perhaps the goal is to list people that are well known. However, it always bothers me when a list of S.F. authors leaves out all of these. Hmm...

    Bester

    Life is an adventure. Or at least, it should be. You wish you were the hero, but never quite realized that the hero never spends his time reading S.F.

    Ellison

    Life is tough. People are evil. Technology exists to accentuate these points. You accept your dark side and in this way claim to be an interesting person.

    Sturgeon

    You play improvisations jazz and otherwise attempt to strengthen your communications with fellow man. You just wish more people went about this in the same way that you do.

    Buckaroo Bonzai on personal growth: (2.00 / 3) (#66)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 03:07:45 PM EST

    Wherever you go to run from your troubles, there you are.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    You forgot Star Trek Voyager (2.00 / 3) (#72)
    by trane on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 04:02:40 PM EST

    You have a dominatrix fetish and preoccupation with holodecks and their possibilities.

    I did until you mentioned it.. (none / 0) (#74)
    by Pelorat on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 04:21:46 PM EST

    Thanks fer nothin!

    Star Trek V! Highlander 2! Muhahahah

    [ Parent ]

    heh. me too. weird, that... /nt (none / 0) (#80)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 06:45:05 PM EST


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]
    I'm an Asimov fan... (none / 0) (#76)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 05:55:38 PM EST

    ... and would have a PhD in Physics had I not cracked up in grad school. Now I work as a software consultant.

    I wear glasses, and not only run Linux on two of my computers, but they both run Debian, and one of them is a PowerPC Macintosh.

    But I'm working on getting out of music, in the short term through my writing and in the long term, I want to go back to school to study musical composition.

    Wanting to edit musical scores on a computer, I'm not going to buy, or even steal Finale like my less technically literate brethren, but install Debian PowerPC on my iBook so I can use it as a base for porting A GNU/Linux Audio Distribution to the Mac.

    I'm practicing two hours a day now on the piano, have recently taken guitar up again (and am finally making sense of it), and, this last Tuesday, I joined the Truro Concert Band, to play snare drum again for the first time in twenty-six years.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    I read your piece on music... (3.00 / 2) (#125)
    by IndianaTroll on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 05:02:59 PM EST

    Well, ok, I didn't read the whole thing.  But I did read the part where you asked your teacher, "Why does an octave have eight notes?"

    There is a scientific answer to this question, and  although I'm not going to be able to answer it completely accurately, I hope I can give you an idea of where to look for your answer.

    Consider a scale starting at a given note.  That note is simply shorthand for a frequency, right?  Most orchestras tune to middle A = 440hz.  A note an "octave" higher is double the frequency (the A above that would be 880hz).  I'm not quite sure what it is that makes this note the "same" as the other note, but most everyone would agree that the A-above-middle-A is the same note, just higher in pitch than middle-A.

    So there's the idea of "sameness" in notes going up and down the range.  Double the frequency => note one "jump" higher (I'm avoiding the term octave because of its implication of an eight-tone scale...odd, isn't it?  There's actually twelve.)

    Now imagine you're a musician in the dawn of civilization.  Consider an incredibly early stringed instrument...one string taught between two endpoints.  Tightened to a certain tension, it rings with a specific tone.

    If you put your finger RIGHT on the middle of the string, and get it resonate at exactly twice it's standard frequency, you've made the exact same tone, only an "octave" higher.

    If you put your finger RIGHT on the third-way point and get the string to resonate (harmonics on a guitar) then the note you ring is not an octave, but the "dominant" of the note described by the un-touched string.

    Continue by stringing a second, parallel string to the first, but tune it to the tone achieved by touching the third-point of the first.  Let me attempt to diagram this below:

    String 1: |--------------------------| Tuned to "C" (just for kicks)
    String 2: |--------------------------| Tuned to the "third-of-the-string-harmonic" of C (happens to be "G")

    Continue this proccess for a while, adding strings that are the dominant of the string above, and eventually you'll derive a lot of notes.  Like these:

    Dominant of G is D
    Dominant of D is A
    Dominant of A is E
    Dominant of E is B
    Dominant of B is F#
    Dominant of F# is Db
    Dominant of Db is Ab
    Dominant of Ab is Eb
    Dominant of Eb is Bb
    Dominant of Bb is F
    Dominant of F is C (the same note as the one we started with!!!)

    So you've just derived every note, and if you use this particular method (tightening strings and using harmonics on the strings) you'll derive all 12 notes in the diatonic scale, and ONLY the 12 notes in the diatonic scale.

    There are other harmonics on a string, but it turns out that they correspond almost EXACTLY to one of the 12 notes we derived above.

    It's worth noting that I've read about 10-tone scales used in other cultures, but I'm not totally sure how they derived those scales, nor if they're culturally aware of the idea of an octave...as in two notes which are either double or half of the other's frequency sound "the same" in some deeply rooted way.

    I hope this provides at least a basis for why there are 12 notes in a diatonic scale, and where they come from.  It's not hard to go from there to the idea of an eight-tone scale by way of the melodic minor scale (popular amongst the monks of the 1200's to 1600's), the major scale (it's a mode of the minor scale, but I'm sure it appeared before any of the other modes of the minor scale, I'm just not sure of the musical history), the pentatonic scale, the natural and harmonic minor scales, etc.  And it's also true that the 12 notes of the diatonic scale, whatever you choose to call them, are the building blocks of music based at least partially on their tonal relationships, and not solely because we're culturally conditioned to understand them.  Notice the difference between western music and indian (dots not feathers) music.  Each is describable in the vocabulary of the other...because they're both based on a 12-tone scale which was more-or-less derived independently from the other.

    Music is fascinating, and my understanding is rudimentary.  But theory is important for many many many reasons.  I'm sorry that your teacher couldn't explain why there are 8 notes in an octave, or why there are only 12 tones in a diatonic scale and where they come from.  That doesn't mean that those questions don't have answers.

    Your personal experiences don't mean diddly in a nation of 300 million people. jubal3
    [ Parent ]

    Hey thanks! (none / 0) (#129)
    by MichaelCrawford on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 06:51:06 PM EST

    Some other people have read my piece, and taken the trouble to answer some of my questions, as you just have.

    If you'd like to correspond privately, write me at michael at geometricvisions dot com and we can talk more, if you'd like I'll introduce you to the other folks.

    I think that a lot of the mysterious final part of the article is going to discuss how a number of people came out of the woodwork to answer my questions, or to recommend books where I could find the answers.


    --

    Live your fucking life. Sue someone on the Internet. Write a fucking music player. Like the great man Michael David Crawford has shown us all: Hard work, a strong will to stalk, and a few fries short of a happy meal goes a long way. -- bride of spidy


    [ Parent ]

    Well, almost... (none / 0) (#134)
    by joto on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 03:04:31 AM EST

    The problem is that if you follow this procedure, when you get from F to C, it doesn't really ring that well. The numbers don't really add up that nicely. Either the interval will not be harmonic, or the C will not be a C. So we have a number of different tunings that achieve different things.

    Ignoring the problem, and keeping one or more ghastly intervals, was pretty common for a period before Bach. This works out ok, as long as you don't play that interval too much.

    Slightly fudging everything to make the all the intervals equal is typical on the piano, and is called equal-tempered.

    It turns out that the ear doesn't only like fifths (third harmonic), but alsa thirds (fifth harmonic). So singers, many guitar players, and musicians using other instruments that can vary pitch continuosly tend to use another tuning called "just" tuning, that will give you more accurate thirds (in equal-tempered tunings C-E is too wide, and C-Eb is to narrow).

    The fact is, there's no true number of tones in the scale. It's only because we are already accustomed to twelve notes, that this derivation "makes sense". But if you actually were to try it, you would find that it doesn't really fit any scale. Some musicians use a 17-tone or 31-tone equal-tempered scaled scale, that fit slightly better than the ordinary 12-tone. And music not descending from greek/western tradition (e.g. indian music), use all kinds of other scales.

    There's really no right here, just a lot of wrongs. Because you will never get it to fit perfectly anyway.

    [ Parent ]

    thanks to you too! (none / 0) (#145)
    by IndianaTroll on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 02:57:49 PM EST

    thanks for straightening me out on that.  I didn't know that about choice of tunings, but it makes some stuff I've read about how luthiers tune guitars and what the "guild of luthiers" considers "approved" in terms of tuning methods.  Most guitarists tend to tune using harmonic thirds and fifths on adjacent strings...but this isn't an "approved" method, even though it makes things more even-tempered for the kinds of chords that most guitarists play.  But then, when you get to weird intervals, you need to do some bending to adjust each individual string a tiny tiny bit.  Glad to know why that is!

    However, you said that there is no "right" here, just lots of wrongs.  Yeah, it seems true that the numbers don't add up perfectly and that there's lots of different ways to make the scales fit together with different numbers of tones between octaves.  However, as you said above, the ear "likes" thirds, fifths, etc.

    Is it simply conditioning that leads a minor triad to feel "sad" and a major triad to feel moving?  Is tonal resolution purely a socially indicated phenomenon?  I haven't done the requisite developmental psychology experiments on babies and eye-motion to really say for 100% certain, but look at the widespread appeal that certain types of music have across cultural boundaries.  And I remember feeling chills when I first heard George Winston on the piano when I was like four years old.

    Yes, there are many ways to deconstruct the tonal patterns of music, but even though there is no completely accurate way of indicating a system of music, there's SOMETHING there.  Something that most human brains respond to.  Something that basic diatonic music theory attempts (and does a half-way decent job of it!) to explain in terms of basic math and patterns.

    Yeah, there's no absolute right answer, but there's most definitely a framework that helps to edify and educate the novice, despite its tendency to constrict the master.  Theory is important, specifically so one knows how to break its rules when one gets really good.

    Your personal experiences don't mean diddly in a nation of 300 million people. jubal3
    [ Parent ]

    Thanks (none / 0) (#149)
    by joto on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 04:36:27 PM EST

    I think I agree with you

    There seems to be a lot of social conventions in regard to how we interpret music. Even as a 4 year old, you have been exposed a lot to childrens tunes, which almost always use the major or minor scale, and thus your ear is already accustomed to "interpret" western music. So even if we can't understand why, we, as westerners will understand the tension created by e.g. George Winston to some degree, even if we are only four years old.

    But there also seems to be something there that makes music universal. Even if it's in a completely unfamiliar scale, I bet you can hum most traditional indian or chinese music after a few tries, and figure out what "mood" it is supposed to create in the listener (you). I've had less success with gamelan music, though, which uses some pretty weird 10-tone scales. It might feel "grand" or something like that, but is really hard to hum...

    I guess we will never really learn the answer to which is most important, unless we do some cruel experiments to babies :-(

    [ Parent ]

    What about Kurt Vonnegut? (none / 1) (#81)
    by Big Sexxy Joe on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:24:54 PM EST

    What do you say if Kurt Vonnegut is your favorite?  Or what if 1984 is your favorite work of sci-fi?

    P.S.  I almost voted -1, but I voted 0 instead because the article insults "Matrix" fans.

    I'm like Jesus, only better.
    Democracy Now! - your daily, uncensored, corporate-free grassroots news hour

    you are above all this nonsense ;) /nt (none / 1) (#83)
    by kpaul on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 07:53:58 PM EST


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]
    You will die at your own hands (3.00 / 2) (#86)
    by MichaelCrawford on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 08:14:22 PM EST

    Vonnegut tried to, back in '84, and his son Mark wrote a book about his experiences with schizophrenia called The Eden Express.


    --Could you use a software consultant with seventeen years experience?


    [ Parent ]

    Oh, yeah, I forgot - his mom DID commit suicide nt (none / 0) (#112)
    by MichaelCrawford on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 05:17:20 PM EST


    --

    Live your fucking life. Sue someone on the Internet. Write a fucking music player. Like the great man Michael David Crawford has shown us all: Hard work, a strong will to stalk, and a few fries short of a happy meal goes a long way. -- bride of spidy


    [ Parent ]

    Your name is Yon Yonsen, (none / 0) (#119)
    by nurglich on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 12:52:14 AM EST

    And you work in Wisconsin.

    ------------------------------------------
    "There are no bad guys or innocent guys. There's just a bunch of guys!" --Ben Stiller, Zero Effect

    [ Parent ]
    I work at a factory there (none / 0) (#127)
    by Big Sexxy Joe on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 06:03:53 PM EST

    When I walk down the street
    The people I meet
    ask, "What's your name?"

    I'm like Jesus, only better.
    Democracy Now! - your daily, uncensored, corporate-free grassroots news hour
    [ Parent ]
    Kurt Vonnegut (none / 1) (#139)
    by the sixth replicant on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 07:03:51 AM EST

    You go through life thinking that you're the centre of it all, then realise you aren't until some trash SF writer tells you that you *are* the centre of the universe - but you need to share it with everyone else. So be it.

    Ciao

    [ Parent ]

    1984 (none / 1) (#163)
    by Russell Dovey on Thu Feb 24, 2005 at 01:13:19 AM EST

    You are LilDebbie.

    "Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light." - Spike Milligan
    [ Parent ]

    Philip K. Dick (2.75 / 4) (#91)
    by localroger on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 09:12:07 PM EST

    You wear tie-dyed clothes, have hair down to your ass, and frequently drop acid. You practice yoga and have really, really deeeeeep thoughts but nobody understands just how deeeeeep your thoughts happen to be except other Philip K. Dick fans.

    I am become Death, Destroyer of Worlds -- J. Robert Oppenheimer
    IAWTP (none / 0) (#95)
    by Benny Cemoli on Fri Feb 18, 2005 at 10:58:24 PM EST

    Remember, just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not beaming messages into your brain from a satellite.


    "the fabric of space quivers at the touch of even a microbe."
    [ Parent ]

    They? (none / 0) (#102)
    by Gluke on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 12:41:45 AM EST

    Beaming? Goats? Remember? Whoa, manng

    [ Parent ]
    Anne McCaffrey (2.66 / 9) (#108)
    by Anonymous Howards End on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 05:05:07 AM EST

    You'll live and die alone, but at least your thirty seven cats will dispose of your corpse neatly.
    --
    CodeWright, you are one cowardly hypocritical motherfucker.
    no Iain Banks? (none / 1) (#110)
    by Battle Troll on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 12:59:25 PM EST

    And what about localroger, k5's favorite writer? For shame.
    --
    Skarphedinn was carrying the axe with which he had killed Thrainn Sigfusson and which he called 'Battle Troll.'
    Njal's Saga, ca 1280 AD
    that's Iain M. Banks (none / 0) (#124)
    by Lode Runner on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 02:22:04 PM EST

    The M stands for "Maybe my calling was Space Opera not pretentious fluff like The Bridge or Canal Dreams." And in case you're wondering, that's the Battersea Power Station behind him.

    I predict that localroger's fanbase is entirely a subset of Niven's.

    [ Parent ]

    haven't read any Niven (none / 0) (#141)
    by Battle Troll on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 09:45:50 AM EST

    I'll have to take your word for it. How would you characterize Niven?
    --
    Skarphedinn was carrying the axe with which he had killed Thrainn Sigfusson and which he called 'Battle Troll.'
    Njal's Saga, ca 1280 AD
    [ Parent ]
    get ye to a library (none / 1) (#159)
    by Lode Runner on Tue Feb 22, 2005 at 03:12:43 AM EST

    and check out Ringworld. Think of it as the best K5 fiction submission, EVAR.

    [ Parent ]
    yeah, localroger... (none / 0) (#154)
    by kpaul on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:19:21 PM EST

    he didn't pop into my head initially, although i did eventually think of putting him in there. i really need to getting around to buying a hardcopy of prime intellect so i can read it. ;)

    also a lesser known one i should've put on there was the polish writer who wrote the series where an engineer goes back in time and alters history, introducing the steam engine, etc... can't think of the name, tho...


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    Iain M Banks (3.00 / 3) (#164)
    by Russell Dovey on Thu Feb 24, 2005 at 01:17:27 AM EST

    You own a Winnebago called Somebody Else's Problem, live in it with three other hippies, and drive around looking into people's front windows. If you see someone beating their wife, you give them money until they stop.

    "Blessed are the cracked, for they let in the light." - Spike Milligan
    [ Parent ]

    DAMN IT I meant to vote -1 (none / 0) (#111)
    by communistpoet on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 01:38:43 PM EST

    Not enough material on my favorite show.

    We must become better men to make a better world.
    Piers Anthony? (none / 1) (#113)
    by Pseudonym on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 06:07:12 PM EST

    No, don't laugh. If your favourtie sci-fi is Piers Anthony, then that speaks volumes about you.


    sub f{($f)=@_;print"$f(q{$f});";}f(q{sub f{($f)=@_;print"$f(q{$f});";}f});
    Sicko (none / 0) (#131)
    by repp on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 09:11:56 PM EST

    I can't beleive you brought Piers Anthony into this. Tell you what, let's make a bet. You run across this empty field and we'll see if you make it to the other side. Mmm?

    [ Parent ]
    xanth was cool... (none / 0) (#133)
    by kpaul on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 11:22:50 PM EST

    when i was about 12... ;)


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    eh, i've been stereotyped better (none / 1) (#117)
    by suntzu on Sat Feb 19, 2005 at 10:12:17 PM EST

    the gibson one was only about half right about me, and the matrix one was totally wrong (those being my two favorite franchises on the list).

    i will be one of the first to attach hardware to my body.

    L. Ron Hubbard (none / 0) (#121)
    by Kwil on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 04:05:49 AM EST

    You're gullible. And a fool.

    That Jesus Christ guy is getting some terrible lag... it took him 3 days to respawn! -NJ CoolBreeze


    Or... (none / 0) (#165)
    by astatine on Sat Feb 26, 2005 at 02:40:32 PM EST

    My take:

    L. Ron Hubbard
    Life just isn't fair. Everyone is out to get you one way or another, while well-intentioned idiots seem to skate by at every turn. You also have trouble coming to terms with sexuality, yours or anyone else's, and have probably had bad experiences with body modification.

    Society, they say, exists to safeguard the rights of the individual. If this is so, the primary right of a human being is evidently to live unrealistically.Celia Green
    [ Parent ]
    SF&F (none / 0) (#122)
    by gmuslera on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 10:32:42 AM EST

    What if we put Fantasy to the mix? And putting Lord of the Rings (what characterize here? Hobbits? Elfs? Wizards? Author?) or even worse, Terry Pratchett (you have a lot of very interesting characters along the Discworld series) ?

    Also, other interesting authors/series more in scifi realm to put in the list could be Orson Scott Card/Ender (i.e. you are a genetically breeded estrategist, like war games, etc) and Dan Simmons/Hyperion (here the main character should be the Shriek, and, what kind of people can identify with it?)

    Erm... favorite show (none / 0) (#123)
    by ruskie on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 01:48:19 PM EST

    Hmmm... there is no one fav show for me...
    Impossible...
    And I take a bit of every in here...

    Firefly (none / 0) (#126)
    by Bnonn on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 05:48:29 PM EST

    You insensitive clod.

    Oops, wrong site.



    What about Ben Bova? (none / 1) (#130)
    by naitha on Sun Feb 20, 2005 at 07:54:22 PM EST

    You are a philanthropist who thinks he has the cure for humanity. You think you know sociolgy and psychology real well, and although you have some really good ideas, deep down you're scared shitless of death. And no, I wasn't trying to out obscure everyone. I identified with Heinlein (who is my favorite author). Except for the entire taking over worlds thing. We've fucked this one up enough, no need to post our tyrrany on other worlds.


    "To listen is an effort, and just to hear is no merit. A duck hears also."
    -Igor Stravinsky,
    What about the Terry Gilliam trilogy? (none / 0) (#135)
    by cactus on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 03:10:29 AM EST

    Time Bandits, Brazil, and The Adventures of Baron Munchausen.

    But especially Brazil.
    --
    "Politics are the entertainment branch of Industry"
    -- Frank Zappa
    heh. never thought of it as a trilogy, but you're (none / 0) (#153)
    by kpaul on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:16:44 PM EST

    right. i did think of brazil, but i left it out. (maybe an essay on that movie on its own. scary how close to reality it's becoming...)

    anyway, i can't believe i forgot time bandits, a classic. i guess donnia darko could be considered sci-fi as well, dealing with time travel...

    time bandits is a masterpiece - john cleese as robin hood. heh. the legos...


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    trilogy (none / 1) (#157)
    by ucblockhead on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:34:19 PM EST

    Imagination in childhood, adulthood, and old age. I forget where Gilliam talks about it.
    -----------------------
    This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
    [ Parent ]
    Outer Limits (none / 0) (#136)
    by ShiftyStoner on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 04:40:24 AM EST

    Was my first thought, good show, not neccesarily my favorite...

    What you have to say about that?

    Planet of the apes, the original, was fucking hilariouse. I lafed thinking about it. This story, mildy amusing. Worthy even.
    ( @ )'( @ ) The broad masses of a population are more amenable to the appeal of rhetoric than to any other force. - Adolf Hitler

    you control the vertical and the horizontal (none / 1) (#152)
    by kpaul on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:06:57 PM EST

    Your dream is to really own an Outer Band Individuated Teletracer, which rang and buzzed and beeped yesterday as hunter s thompson went on his way in his own way. The future sure is shiny, but in a trinket like way, with a layer behind what we thinly see day to day through the haze of reality. You wonder sometimes how it might have been to be the man who was never born.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    H2GT2G, Farscape, Dr Who, Orig Trek, New Battlesta (none / 0) (#137)
    by Lord Gwydyon on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 05:17:01 AM EST

    I think this was an interesting and amusing sociological hypothesis, but you didn't really peg me on any counts except the one minor following one: My favorite Doctor is Tom Baker (4th) and that was a 100% true assessment. I know I've seen enough people who do fit these stereo types and the 77 gods help us, they are usually in need of a life. But in my experience, the majority of the people that watch and like sci-fi are all so varied as to make it impossible to stereotype them.
    Ah well, nice try anyway.

    thanks. (none / 0) (#151)
    by kpaul on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 08:01:23 PM EST

    it was difficult to do and if i'd held it back any longer, i might never have written any of it, hence letting it loose here. i'm trying to polish stuff more before sending it out, though.

    anyway, thanks for the thoughtful comment.


    2014 Halloween Costumes
    [ Parent ]

    I'm surpised... (none / 1) (#138)
    by illegal eagle on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 06:52:54 AM EST

    ... that nobody mentioned STARGATE.

    I've recently started watching this (none / 1) (#158)
    by zrail on Tue Feb 22, 2005 at 01:53:39 AM EST

    A friend of mine is a really big Stargate geek. He's got an air force regulation jacket with all the Stargate patches sewn on, and his airsoft loadout is lifted directly from the series (P90, Colt 1911, official BDU's, etc). We've been watching the new Battlestar series when we get a chance, and before that on SciFi they air new episodes of SG1 and Atlantis, so I'm getting heavy doses of Stargate right now. Reruns all Monday long doesn't help matters either, as it has really started to distract me from homework.

    [ Parent ]
    I thought of Hitchhiker's Guide (3.00 / 3) (#144)
    by HollyHopDrive on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 12:03:47 PM EST

    And while I do like the occasional half a Guinness, I'm really more into jinnan tonnix. My next thought was Asimov, but actually I don't like his novels and much prefer his short stories. Then I thought Philip K Dick, then Ray Bradbury, then Arthur C Clarke.

    Good story, albeit you missed quite a lot of prominent writers. You are clearly a hoopy frood who knows where his towel is.


    I make too much sense to be on the Internet.

    Futurama&Iain Banks? (2.66 / 3) (#146)
    by edremy on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 04:19:14 PM EST

    How could you miss these?

    Futurama: You aspire to be a delivery boy. You secretly Photoshop Playboy images to remove an eye from all of the models, and are scared to enter a phone booth lest you get the wrong type.

    Iain Banks: You laugh at the pansy "Enterprise vs. Star Destroyer" debates at fan conventions, knowing a decommissioned ROU could wipe the floor with both, much less a GSV. You eagerly await biotech developing drug glands, and you secretly wish that your genitals were a state secret. When someone asks about novels with happy endings, you look at them blankly.

    You're missing the point (none / 0) (#147)
    by jolly st nick on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 04:23:58 PM EST

    the point of the Queer Eye show is that it is a makeover show.

    So, to do this article right, you have to take some poor shlump (say a unreconstructed trekkie, or somebody who still sleeps in his old Star Wars sheets) and transform him so that he's into something cooler.

    The problem is deciding what cooler would mean in this context.

    My favorites (3.00 / 2) (#148)
    by schrotie on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 04:31:08 PM EST

    None of my favorites made it to the story and few are even mentioned in the comments. I'll start with those mentioned in comments:

    Stanislav Lem
    You hate humans. You frequently find yourself wondering how that pathetic lot made it off the trees. Your try coping with this miserable planet and its despisable inhabitents with deep, bitter humor or philosophical discurs that none of your audience can ever follow. That's why you have no audience, loner.

    Terry Gilliam
    You are a Terry Gilliam fan? Please congratulate the head doctor of your soul asylum that he installed internet into the cells. Very progressive, very liberal.

    Now for the unmentioned.

    Jeff Noon
    You are on a mission. You made your life a quest for finding the perfect halucinogen. You've tried them all but you hate the side effects. Now you are stuck with literature. After reading Alice a dozen times in a row you discovered science fiction. When not burning incense at your Leary shrine you do your own research.

    Ken MacLeod
    Every year when the powers that be converge in Davos or some other remote town you expect the revolution to finally come. So you refresh the stocks in your bunker that was once your wine cellar. Your pacifism keeps you from stockign up on automatic guns. But you bought the heaviest SUV you could find on the market and costomized the motor to run on anything that burns. Your urge to be able to live through the revolution has led you to compromize with your pacifism and become a Zen Archer. BTW, that Che poster above your computer looks really anachronistic.

    The Strugatzki brothers
    How posh. You read real books. Well brother, they might be labled science fiction but believe me: you're not one of us. Get lost.

    And now my absolute favorite, the first thing on my mind after reading the introduction

    Greg Egan
    You regularly visit your local mensa club even though you never passed the test. But so what? They are open, aren't they? You are the healthiest nerd in town. You really look after yourself. That's because you want to live long enough to get rid of that miserable meat bag and finally free your mind.

    Farscape (none / 1) (#150)
    by hardburn on Mon Feb 21, 2005 at 06:50:18 PM EST

    You wear black leather and use swear words that nobody understands. Upon cancelation, you sent crackers to the Skiffy Channel's offices. You've been slowly replacing the lighting in your house with dimmer and dimmer lights, until you finally have large rooms and hallways lit by a single Zippo.

    I had first thought of Farscape, but didn't see it on the list, so I went with B5 instead. That descrption didn't fit me at all. Then again, I don't wear much black leather, and I didn't send crackers to Skiffy.


    ----
    while($story = K5::Story->new()) { $story->vote(-1) if($story->section() == $POLITICS); }


    David Brin (none / 0) (#162)
    by student on Wed Feb 23, 2005 at 07:45:32 PM EST

    What about David Brin as in Uplift and Sundiver?

    He's done Star Trek too.

    ¤¤¤¤¤¤
    Simon's Rock College of Bard, a college for younger scholars.

    Alastair Reynolds, Stephen Baxter (none / 0) (#167)
    by Ashalind on Fri Mar 18, 2005 at 10:51:52 AM EST

    What about them?..

    zamyatin (none / 0) (#168)
    by hildi on Wed Mar 23, 2005 at 04:41:27 PM EST

    you dropped out of college to run off with a hippie girl. unfortunately you found out she was an 'animal liberation front' terrorist and she dies setting arson to a weasel farm.

    Dick Cheney (none / 1) (#169)
    by OzJuggler on Wed Mar 30, 2005 at 09:05:09 AM EST

    You have authored many works of fiction, but usually published under pseudonyms such as "George Bush" and "Colin Powell". You are the kind of person who has a close circle of friends and it takes years for someone to earn your trust - unless they pay real good.
    The Cheney fan often conceals an addiction or compulsion that they indulge in, such as self-injecting crude oil, and will seek other like minded addicts to share the experience with.
    You don't wear glasses because you prefer not to be distracted by inconvenient details. Your preferred operating system is Deception 1.0.
    Like the other Cheneyiites, you believe that might makes right and that war is healthy for everybody.
    In destruction, you see opportunity.
    Your lucky numbers are 666, 678, 1060 and 911.
    Your star sign is...vital to national security.

    ---
    OzJuggler.
    "And I will not rest until every year families gather to spend December 25th together
    at Osama's homo abortion pot and commie jizzporium." - Jon Stewart's gift to Bill O'Reilly, 7 Dec 2005.

    Sci-Fi Eye for the Geek Guy | 169 comments (136 topical, 33 editorial, 0 hidden)
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