Nix

Nix

  • Commented on "I doubt me an it be commercial."
    It was only her one-free-weirdness book if you ignore _Voyager in Night_, which is the earliest-written book I've ever seen to take place entirely in (an alien) virtual reality, and in which almost all the characters don't have names representable...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    The human body does need some radioactivity in order to function. That's the first I've ever heard of that. What on earth for? I can't think of anything radioactivity does that oxidative stress doesn't do better, and *that* is...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    "Disrupt" the local environment? So, a perfectly good scientific reason to not go into FTL near (near being defined as, say, within the orbit of Neptune? - not sure how big "local" is) a star, or planet. No, Charlie...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    Turns out you can track expansionist interstellar polities by the expanding wave-front of anomalous supernovae ... I'm not sure what you'd *do* in the resulting system. I mean you just blew up its star. There's not going to be...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    Space elevators would work, but so would a suitable 'reactionless' drive. Fantasy? Not quite, because we have one today - when we are in a magnetic field. I don't consider a similar one that reacts against the structure of...
  • Commented on The Pivot
    > It was a hook: it worked. So it took you only one post to start brazenly lying to me because you cannot ever admit that you might not know everything and be right about everything. Killfiled, again. I don't...
  • Commented on The Pivot
    Your argument falls down immediately: English is not Latin, and its grammar is not particularly similar to Latin grammar. (By 'grammar' here I mean the rules speakers' brains actually implement, not the stuff taught in schools invented out of whole...
  • Commented on The Pivot
    GIANT FUCKING RED HGV LORRY Breaks the English language rules for meaningful progression. https://www.gingersoftware.com/content/grammar-rules/adjectives/order-of-adjectives/ No it doesn't. It's just that 'fucking' is not an adjective. Expletives are... interesting: they are more like animal response cries than words in many...
  • Commented on Cthulhu Counterfactual
    I'm sorry, Ilya, your proposed obvious solution is not evolutionarily stable (which means, given the age of the Motie civilization, that it will not be observed). The problem is that any Master who adopts this solution of reproducing fertile offspring...
  • Commented on Burn The Programmer!
    I hope you've read Rick Cook's _Wizard's Bane_, which covers more or less exactly this from the opposite angle: programming might look like spells but at least it's passing systematic, and that's more than you can say for most fantasy...
  • Commented on Book day!
    So I've been trying to figure out a retcon for this unfortunate confusion between the Sleeper and the Black Pharaoh: it seems troublesome to have people considering two antagonists to be the same entity! A possible solution emerges from the...
  • Commented on The Day After
    Also, being a long way from anywhere seems like a good idea when you have a man with no impulse control in charge of thousands of nuclear weapons....
  • Commented on Ever Young?
    Aside: I'm sure I'm not the only lurker who reads the comment threads until Catalin's latest nom de filter evasion pops up, and then stops on the grounds that the entire conversation has just been derailed by a free-associating poster...
  • Commented on The Nightmare Stacks: US Launch
    Kindle firmware (post 5.4.x, I think, so all Kindles currently on sale: all the touch-sensitive Kindles must be running this firmware if they can still connect to Amazon) can also display footnotes in a pop-up footnote window -- except in...
  • Commented on "Tomorrow belongs to me"
    I'd have said your fascism comment was overrated, but in the small Cambridgeshire city I live in (middle-class central), on Friday, I stumbled going down the hill and a sweet little old lady on a mobility scooter nearly ran into...
  • Commented on A game of consequences
    Minor unrelated side comment: it's not terribly accurate to call the Westermarck effect a 'taboo'. Taboos are cultural: you, at some level, have to consciously decide not to do whatever it is the taboo decrees. The Westermarck effect doesn't seem...
  • Commented on Cytological Utopia and the rapture of the eukaryotes
    Of course something human could remain sane and conscious for an eternity. It would merely need to enter a periodic state, i.e. looping, forever... Doesn't really sound *desirable*, mind you. (This was the -- self-chosen! -- fate of Peer in...
  • Commented on Attention Conservation Notice
    Greg, chatbots? Oh, they're very new, the first chatbot was written in 2014 or something when some corporation was founded around them. The Economist told me so, so it must be true, and my illusion of seeing chatbots in the...
  • Commented on Deploying the monomyth in Space Opera
    Quite. I also note that Pigeon is willing to call self-driving cars harmful because they might impair drivers' ability to drive (however dangerously), without once considering the significant number of people currently unable to drive (too old, too impaired, too...
  • Commented on Burnout, creativity, and the tyranny of production schedules
    Liz, I'm sure I'm not the only person here who would always be happy to read anything you wrote. Hell, if you wrote the back of a cereal packet I'd read it, in the near-certainty that it would be good....
  • Commented on Fantasy shibboleths
    I'm sorry to say that this sort of thing (ill with X / did Y / X went away) is not enough to indicate that Y cures X, or even that Y doesn't make X worse sometimes, nor even that...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    Whales and dolphins are not thinking with those bigger brains. If all else is held equal, brain size tends to scale with body surface area, because surface area means more skin to have a sense of touch on, more or...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    There are plenty of ways to form minerals only in one solar system -- or, rather, only under one set of conditions. Earth has literally *thousands* of minerals which don't exist anywhere else in the solar system, because they require...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    Antibodies are actually inheritable, in one specific and short-term sense -- babies get antibodies in their mother's milk. (But they don't get the B cells, so they can't make more -- it's a stopgap, not inherited immunity.)...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    Black holes and people mixed just fine in Geoff Landis's _Approaching Perimelasma_. OK, they were such remote posthumans that they did things like diving into stars for fun, and even there an extremely heavily modified and stripped-down copy in a...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    I note that proton-boron-11 fusion is insanely difficult: we're talking a slow fusion rate and 6-billion-K reactor temperature at *least*. This is not the stuff that anything but nightmares are made of. Nobody sane would want to use this reaction...
  • Commented on Science-fictional shibboleths
    No, the movie Moon had a company which *claimed to the protagonist* in an obvious propaganda film to be mining for helium-3. All he knew for sure was that he went out periodically, picked up canisters, and fired them off...
  • Commented on Magic, ecospeak and genre distinctions
    Tyop report coming up. In _A Succession of Bad Days_ it becomes clear that Halt is... really quite different from the Lady, yes. But in _The March North_ this is less clear: I can imagine the Lady terrifying a [censored...
  • Commented on Magic, ecospeak and genre distinctions
    Having just read the first 75% of _The March North_ (fabulous: Graydon, if you want some typospotting I have found a few), what it reminds me most of is Glen Cook's Black Company novels. James Nicoll also made this comparison,...
  • Commented on Magic, ecospeak and genre distinctions
    Susan, speaking as an ex-identical-twin (30 weeks) there are much bigger problems with twinning than that, particularly cases where identical twins share a placenta. The thing is, this means that before birth they share a blood supply, but *not* a...
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