When I was in college in the late 60s I belonged to the local SF fan club and not only contributed art and articles to its fanzine, but to many others as well. I eventually gave my entire collection to the library of the National Air & Space Museum when I went to work there in 1972. The smell of ditto fluid and… » 9/25/14 1:09pm Thursday 1:09pm

The IAU definition had a built-in bias from the get-go, and that was the need to come up with a definition that made sure that the earth would be included. The idea that the earth had to be a planet slewed the definition to the point where it really didn't define anything. One result was that—as was pointed out in the… » 9/22/14 3:31pm 9/22/14 3:31pm

I agree. Fincher's big idea sounds exactly like the novel—Nemo was in fact an Indian prince named Dakkar who financially supported revolutionary movements around the world—such as the uprising of the Cretans against the Turks—as well as on occasion taking a more active role. Verne's emotionally and intellectually… » 9/18/14 6:16am 9/18/14 6:16am

The Seven Wonders of the Solar System

People like to make lists of things, especially lists of superlatives: the best, fastest, oldest, largest, heaviest and so on. There are lists of the ten fastest animals and the ten longest rivers and even of the ten highest-paid rock stars. The Guinness company created a small industry from publishing lists exactly… » 9/14/14 3:30pm 9/14/14 3:30pm

While I certainly have issues with Spider-Woman's ridiculous pose (though not the rendering itself, which is beautiful), this demonstration really only proves the limitations of software like Poser or Daz. Both of these are a little shaky anatomically at best and neither can handle a pose that is anything remotely… » 9/02/14 12:38pm 9/02/14 12:38pm

Sadly, as reprehensible as I find the cover art, using Poser/Daz to illustrate its problems is a serious mistake. These programs are not themselves very accurate anatomically and—as the Redditor poster proves—they break down completely when even a moderately extreme pose is attempted...let alone one as extreme as the… » 9/01/14 6:27am 9/01/14 6:27am