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 Sunday 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

I'm afraid that's exactly the same conclusion I came to after reading the entire piece. What's particularly sad is that I hear from scores of hopeful authors who bypass the route of traditional publishers, citing the "success" of authors such as Traviss...never realizing the immensely special circumstances of her… » 8/28/14 6:45pm 8/28/14 6:45pm

My wife and I attended an exhibition of medieval torture instruments in Rome. It was held in Renaissance-era palace and was mostly in open-air courtyards...and it was at night, so the whole thing had a pretty discomforting ambiance. What made it even more fun was that David Cronenberg was with us. After a short while,… » 8/26/14 9:51am 8/26/14 9:51am

I wish this were some sort of revelation, but the truth is that the evidence of the dust plumes was something pointed out at least as long ago as 1981, when Bill Kaysling published his pseudoscience classic, We Never Went to the Moon. The plumes were among the many things experts pointed to as countering Kaysling's… » 8/23/14 5:39pm 8/23/14 5:39pm