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Archive for the ‘Science Fiction’ Category

Should We Bring Extinct Animals Back to Life?

Wouldn’t it be cool (or would it?) if we could bring wooly mammoths back and have them live in Greenland, Siberia or the Canadian tundra?

mammoth

Even a single herd of wooly rhinos roaming around in some secluded part of the world?

woolly_rhinoceros

With cloning, we probably could. But should we?

When I saw these photos… when I asked myself this question… I was immediately reminded of the famous scene in Steven Spielberg’s 1993 movie, Jurassic Park

Dr. Ian Malcolm: Gee, the lack of humility before nature that’s being displayed here, uh… staggers me.

Donald Gennaro: Well thank you, Dr. Malcolm, but I think things are a little bit different than you and I had feared…

Dr. Ian Malcolm: Yeah, I know. They’re a lot worse.

Donald Gennaro: Now, wait a second now, we haven’t even seen the park…

John Hammond: No, no, Donald, Donald, Donald… let him talk. There’s no reason… I want to hear every viewpoint, I really do.

Dr. Ian Malcolm: Don’t you see the danger, John, inherent in what you’re doing here? Genetic power is the most awesome force the planet’s ever seen, but you wield it like a kid that’s found his dad’s gun.

Donald Gennaro: It’s hardly appropriate to start hurling generalizations…

Dr. Ian Malcolm: If I may… Um, I’ll tell you the problem with the scientific power that you’re using here, it didn’t require any discipline to attain it. You read what others had done and you took the next step. You didn’t earn the knowledge for yourselves, so you don’t take any responsibility for it. You stood on the shoulders of geniuses to accomplish something as fast as you could, and before you even knew what you had, you patented it, and packaged it, and slapped it on a plastic lunchbox, and now

[bangs on the table]

Dr. Ian Malcolm: you’re selling it, you wanna sell it. Well…

John Hammond: I don’t think you’re giving us our due credit. Our scientists have done things which nobody’s ever done before…

Dr. Ian Malcolm: Yeah, yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.

John Hammond: Condors. Condors are on the verge of extinction…

Dr. Ian Malcolm: [shaking his head] No…

John Hammond: If I was to create a flock of condors on this island, you wouldn’t have anything to say.

Dr. Ian Malcolm: No, hold on. This isn’t some species that was obliterated by deforestation, or the building of a dam. Dinosaurs had their shot, and nature selected them for extinction.

John Hammond: I simply don’t understand this Luddite attitude, especially from a scientist. I mean, how can we stand in the light of discovery, and not act?

Dr. Ian Malcolm: What’s so great about discovery? It’s a violent, penetrative act that scars what it explores. What you call discovery, I call the rape of the natural world.

Dr. Ellie Sattler: Well, the question is, how can you know anything about an extinct ecosystem? And therefore, how could you ever assume that you can control it? I mean, you have plants in this building that are poisonous, you picked them because they look good, but these are aggressive living things that have no idea what century they’re in, and they’ll defend themselves, violently if necessary.

John Hammond: Dr. Grant, if there’s one person here who could appreciate what I’m trying to do…

Dr. Alan Grant: The world has just changed so radically, and we’re all running to catch up. I don’t want to jump to any conclusions, but look… Dinosaurs and man, two species separated by 65 million years of evolution have just been suddenly thrown back into the mix together. How can we possibly have the slightest idea what to expect?

John Hammond: [laughing] I don’t believe it. I don’t believe it! You’re meant to come down here and defend me against these characters, and the only one I’ve got on my side is the blood-sucking lawyer!

Donald Gennaro: Thank you.

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One year ago today, April 25, 2012, I started writing The Great Dead North.

It is a post apocalyptic journal entry novel on Twitter.

When I blogged about it last year, I called it My Twitter Experiment.

Cdn-zombie-licence

Each entry is no more than 140 characters… the maximum allowed per tweet.

I post daily journal entries from the second year in aftermath of the Zombie Apocalypse.

Only a relative handful of people have survived the first year. Food, vehicles, gasoline, medicine and supplies were relatively abundant during the first year. By the second year, gasoline (a highly refined product) has ‘gone bad’ and vehicles no longer run on it. Most of the ‘easy picking’ supplies have been exhausted. Specialized ‘city folk’ are now forced to exist in a hostile environment. Our world, at best, has been plunged back into the Dark Ages. For some survivors, they have been thrown back to the Stone Age.

Please check it out on Twitter and Follow it, if  you like it.

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Here’s the famous footage of Apollo 15 astronaut Dave Scott who dropped a hammer and feather on the moon.

hammer-feather-drop-moon

This experiment was conducted in order to prove Galileo’s theory that in the absence of atmosphere, objects will fall at the same rate regardless of mass.

Before Galileo, the accepted theory was that heavier objects would fall faster than light objects.

Well done!

aa-kendo-kanji-red

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Ever heard or seen nerd humour?

Let me give you an example…

Or how about some literary nerd humour…

How about this version?

You either get them or you don’t.

Explaining a joke is like dissecting a frog. You can open it up, analyze it and figure out exactly what makes it tick…

But the frog rarely survives the process.

I think one of the things I love most about nerd humour is that there is a certain amount of elitism involved with it.

It’s the ultimate “in” joke because you know only about 6% of the population truly “gets” it.

So lighten up, get in touch with your inner nerd… and have a good snorty chuckle.

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I have been accused by more than one alleged friend of having an ‘Unhealthy Interest’ in zombies.

Well, honestly. These days, who doesn’t? I mean, really.

(♥ I’m a zombie girl… in a zombie world ♥)

Yes, but [1]… these so-called friends are quick to point out that, unlike yours truly, most other (i.e. normal) people…

  • Are not lifetime members of The Zombie Research Society (with membership card in wallet to prove it);
  • Haven’t given newspaper interviews or had newspaper articles written about them and zombies;
  • Haven’t given lectures/seminars on the subject on zombies;
  • Aren’t writing an ongoing Twitter fiction ‘journal-style’ story about life in The Upcoming Zombie Apocalypse;
  • Don’t regularly write blog articles about zombies and The Upcoming Zombie Apocalypse;
  • Don’t regularly use the expression ‘The Upcoming Zombie Apocalypse’;
  • Don’t refer to Walmart as ‘The Zombie Serengeti’;
  • Don’t have a large cache of weapons [2] in easy reach of their computer desks;
  • Don’t have a 3-month supply of food in the basement; [3]
  • Don’t have a dozen gallons of fresh water and boxes of Twinkies and Strawberry Pop-Tarts [4] in their apartments;
  • Don’t call Twinkies and Strawberry Pop-Tarts ‘The Official Snacks of The Upcoming Zombie Apocalypse’; [5]
  • Can’t speak for an hour straight on the most efficient/effective and least efficient/effective ways to kill zombies;

(The last thing a Georgia zombie sees)

The list goes on, as you can imagine.

Frankly, I don’t see how this interest of mine can be seen in any way as ‘unhealthy.’ If anything, it promotes emergency preparedness which, if done right, ensures survival.

(Yeah… I wish!)

And you can’t get much healthier than ‘not being eaten by hordes of living dead.’

So, back-off, buzz-kills!

You don’t see me kvetching about your ‘unhealthy interest’ in taking long walks and hitting little balls with sticks while wearing stupid gaily-colored pants.

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[1] “You know, my brother once told me that nothing someone says before the word ‘but’ really counts.” (Benjen Stark, ‘Game of Thrones’)

[2] Off the top of my head (and looking around me):  samurai blades, four (2 katanas, 1 wakizashi, 1 tanto); standard machete, one; bayonets, two (1 U.S. Indian wars, 1 French, WW1); Bowie knife, one;  gurka knife, one; ‘Book of Eli’ machete, two (1 large, 1 small); ‘Eragon’ medieval dagger (Arya’s blade), one; billhook sickle/machete, one.

[3] With respect, that’s my mother, not me. I barely have a 6-week supply. Hardly anything, really.

[4] Twinkies and Strawberry Pop-Tarts are the official snacks of The Upcoming Zombie Apocalypse.

[5] D’OH! 

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Today is Star Wars Day, for obvious reasons. [1]

Here are a couple of Star Wars related photos that have tickled me over the past year or so.

For me, Imperial Stormtroopers are a constant source of fun!

I love nerd humour!

Yoda is also good for a few laughs.

We’ve all seen Star Wars tshirts. Now… Star Wars swimwear by Black Milk Clothing!

So, my little geeks and nerdlings, remember…

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[1] For starters, George Lucas was born on May 14, 1944.
Another point of interest is that all 6 Star Wars films were released in May.
Episode II – Attack of the Clones was released on May 16, 2002.
Episodes I & III – The Phantom Menace & Revenge of the Sith were released on May 19, 1999 and 2005.
Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back was released on May 21, 1980.
Episode IV & VI – A New Hope and Return of the Jedi were released on May 25, 1977 and 1983.
Today and every May 4th has been considered an unofficially holiday by all Star Wars fans.
The play on words of ‘May The Force (Fourth) Be With You’ is perfect for the month of May.

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On the eve of Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You), fun by Geektroverted!

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