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Author Topic: Lonely
Mandos
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Babbler # 888

posted 23 July 2001 02:43 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Can someone discover friendly aliens for me? Please?
From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 23 July 2001 02:56 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Mandos -- ? Can you explain first?
From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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Babbler # 888

posted 23 July 2001 03:07 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A lot of people find it childish, but I read a lot of science fiction, particularly linguistics-related, anthropological, and "first contact" science fiction. My favorite kind of science fiction is where humans meet aliens and discover all sorts of things about themselves in the process. I especially like the parts where we get to see what aliens think about the human characters, and even more interesting, what humans think that the alien characters think about them, and so on...

I'm frequently jealous of the characters and want to be Just Like Them someday.

BTW, my favorite author for this kind of stuff is C. J. Cherryh, who is celebrated in many places on the internet, but particularly at Shejidan and it's associated ezboard forum. (I can't help but do a plug for CJC ).

[ July 23, 2001: Message edited by: Mandos ]

[ July 23, 2001: Message edited by: Mandos ]


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 23 July 2001 03:15 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Hmmmnn. Do you read Ian Watson? It's been so many years since I read him that I'm not sure I can reconstruct anything. In a way, I always thought he was really writing about some kind of human psychic breakthrough, whatever the character-metaphors ...

I have a feeling you need to wait for Michelle and Dr C, and probably others. I don't think sci-fi is childish, but I sure have been out of touch for a long time. And when I was reading it, I tended more to be drawn in by the psychic breakthrough stuff.

But Watson -- I feel sure you'd be impressed. Isn't The Martian Inca about universal grammar?


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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Babbler # 888

posted 23 July 2001 03:20 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I have read some Ian Watson, if my brain is screwed on correctly today. I read "Oracle", which is also about language to a certain extent (my other favorite sort of language stuff, classical languages). "Oracle" is about a Roman soldier brought forward in time from the middle of a battle to 90's Britain by a scientific accident. A brother-and-sister pair of Irish professors discovers him and tries to shield him from the authorities.

There's lots of interesting culture-shock things in there, for sure.

But other than that, I've found Watson's writing...not what I'm looking for, and have never been able to get into his books.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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Babbler # 560

posted 23 July 2001 08:11 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Probably not Michelle - she doesn't read a lot of science fiction. Not that I don't like it. My dad has a big science fiction collection, and I've read a few of his books (not many). I think my science fiction fix is pretty much satisfied by the occasional episode of Babylon 5 or Star Trek...

I tend to like science fiction when it focuses more on the interpersonal than the technical, but then, most of the science fiction I've read has done just that.

I did really enjoy Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker series, but I tend to think of that more as a work of philosophy than science fiction...

[ July 23, 2001: Message edited by: Michelle ]


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Tommy_Paine
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Babbler # 214

posted 23 July 2001 09:25 PM      Profile for Tommy_Paine     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Any chance for a cup of tea, Michelle?

I think the book "Contact" by Carl Sagan was pretty good. And I remeber liking "Childhoods End" by Arthur C. Clark.

"Contact" the movie was fairly faithful to the book, but there were enough things left out that make the book well worth the read.

Now, for a nice ginnantonix.


From: The Alley, Behind Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 24 July 2001 11:43 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I did like "Contact" the movie, but never read the book. It was too indirect and ethereal to be the sort of first contact fiction that I like.

I enjoy some of Alan Dean Foster's SF. I think he's a terrible writer, and his ideas are unfortunate (but maybe understandable), but for someone who likes direct first contact SF, his books can be quite tasty. He has a very pessimistic view of human nature, so his aliens tend to be pacifists and his humans tend to be violent and boorish from an alien point of view. If you enjoy humans frightening sensitive aliens, his books are for you.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 24 July 2001 12:10 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Any chance for a cup of tea, Michelle?

Sure! We'll go to the Restaurant at the End of the Universe...


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
writeaboutit
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Babbler # 699

posted 24 July 2001 12:22 PM      Profile for writeaboutit     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You've probably already read this, but how about Douglas Adams' "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy?"
From: Guelph | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
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posted 07 August 2001 03:24 PM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm stuck on Dr. Asimov; I've read very little other science fiction except in the anthologies I sometimes pick up.
From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
sean s.
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posted 07 August 2001 03:32 PM      Profile for sean s.   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, I love Asimov too. And I'm sorry if I sounded derisory in my earlier post re: "the meaning of life".
From: montreal | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Trinitty
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posted 07 August 2001 03:52 PM      Profile for Trinitty     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
WE just watched Soylent Green and Dune.

I'm reading Battlefield Earth, and anticipating the NEW Star Trek series starting this Fall. I have faith in this one, and hope it doesn't disappoint like Ms. Hathaway and crew.

Trinitty


From: Europa | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 03:55 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Mmmm... I could really go for some Soylent Green right now. Too bad the cafeteria just closed for the day...
From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
sean s.
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posted 07 August 2001 04:02 PM      Profile for sean s.   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Just saw the new Planet of the Apes. What a disgrace (I thought the originals were great).
From: montreal | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 04:07 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I saw POTA on Friday. I thought it was rip-roarin' fun.
From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
sean s.
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posted 07 August 2001 04:15 PM      Profile for sean s.   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I thought the costumes were good, but "Rip-roaring fun"?!?! It seemed to me there were a few sight gags, but that's about it.
So we're disagreed on this one.

However I'm with you on Dungeons & Dragons. Great, great game. Esp. the NON-computer version (how retro!)


From: montreal | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 04:17 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I liked the D&D game they made for the Intellivision.
From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Trinitty
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posted 07 August 2001 04:22 PM      Profile for Trinitty     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I like Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 2nd edition. If the dice are cold though, this priest gets real pissed.
From: Europa | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Trinitty
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posted 07 August 2001 04:24 PM      Profile for Trinitty     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
How far did you get Arkham?
Careful Mediaboy, the scoops will be coming for you!

From: Europa | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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Babbler # 554

posted 07 August 2001 04:29 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Arkham: What's your source for the Hubbard story. I've heard SO many versions of the story, it makes my head spin.

[ August 07, 2001: Message edited by: Kneel before MediaBoy ]


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
verbatim
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Babbler # 569

posted 07 August 2001 04:33 PM      Profile for verbatim   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm kind of partial to the new D20 D&D system, myself. A pretty tight system, generally, and the Star Wars version isn't bad either.
From: The People's Republic of Cook Street | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 04:41 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I see D20 as the Windows of role-playing. It's the top selling system, and it's taking over the gaming world. Most experienced players don't like it. They tend to prefer GURPS.

Ironically, D20 is also the Linux of role-playing, since the system is open-source. www.opengamingfoundation.org

D20 Star Wars makes NO sense to me. "Hi, I'm a 3rd level Jedi". Levels are just WRONG for a Star Wars game. I far prefer West End Games' Star Wars game, despite the confusing rulebook, and the wonky initiative system.

[ August 07, 2001: Message edited by: Kneel before MediaBoy ]


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
verbatim
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posted 07 August 2001 05:19 PM      Profile for verbatim   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, WoTC is definitely absorbing the smaller players (as a mirror of most other aspects of the world economy). I was a huge fan of GURPS, and I'm still a fan, but not a huge one. Basically, I think the d20 combat system is just abstract enough to keep games fun. Combat in GURPS never seemed very cinematic -- it was more micromanagement than I was happy with.
From: The People's Republic of Cook Street | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 05:50 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I was never a big GURPS fan, actually. My favourite systems are Top Secret S.I., Mechwarrior 2nd Edition, Paranoia, Toon and Shadowrun (I was very upset when I found out that FASA had closed its doors).

Another of my favourite games is RIFTS, but not because of the system, which is pretty terrible.

One of the reason my buddy loves GURPS is because you can make it as realistic or as cinematic as you'd like.

I really don't like how D20 is absorbing all these different games. A D20 version of Traveller has been announced, as well as a D20 version of Call of Cthulu. Blech!

I can only assume that D20 versions of Top Secret, Gamma World, Boot Hill and Gangbusters are on their way.

It also bugs me that WOTC is owned by Hasbro. I've heard rumours that they only bought WOTC because WOTC owned the Pokemon license. Folks were afraid that when the Pokemon fad died off, Hasbro might shut down WOTC. Luckily, they're making money offa D20.


I just bought a game by the guy that designed Toon, Paranoia and the D6 Star Wars. It's called Violence, and it's very very very politically incorrect.

[ August 07, 2001: Message edited by: Kneel before MediaBoy ]


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Dawna Matrix
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posted 07 August 2001 07:01 PM      Profile for Dawna Matrix     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Philip K. Dick, anyone?
From: the stage on cloud 9 | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Dawna Matrix
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Babbler # 156

posted 07 August 2001 07:28 PM      Profile for Dawna Matrix     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Arkham - is that as in "Arkham Prison"?
From: the stage on cloud 9 | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 07 August 2001 08:30 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It's funny that some people think my name is Neil. Nope. Teehee.

Heinlein: I liked Stranger In A Strange Land (in which the main character starts his own religion, coincidence?), but it did tax my short attention span. That's the only Heinlein I've read. I've been told that I should read Starship Troopers, because it's nothing like the movie.

Philip K Dick: I've only read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and I thought it was pretty good, but pretty basic. Like a grade 8 reading level.

Harlan Ellison: I've only read Approaching Oblivion, and I really liked it.

My fave sci-fi is Arthur C Clarke (though 3001 was a little wonky, I thought), William Gibson, Douglas Adams and Grant Naylor.


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Steppenwolf
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posted 07 August 2001 08:44 PM      Profile for Steppenwolf     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Not to budge in, but I'd think it was a reference to H.P.Lovecraft... [and not a positive one- Arkham is his center of old one worship, famously housing an asylum]

If you haven't tried either the Culture series by Ian Banks, the Red/Green/BLue Mars series by [cue lent books] or the Hyperion Cantos by [cue lent somewhere else] I'd recommended them as the hottest stuff a.t.m.


From: Earth | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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Babbler # 554

posted 07 August 2001 09:01 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Obviously, Lovecraft stole Arkham Asylum from the Batman comics . . .


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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