• Spider Star

    Spider Star

    The human colony on the planet Argo has long explored and exploited the technology left behind by an extinct alien race. But then an archaeology team accidentally activates a terrible weapon...
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  • Praise for Star Dragon

    Spider Star

    "Seldom does a storytelling talent come along as potent and fully mature as Mike Brotherton. His complex characters take you on a voyage that is both fiercely credible and astonishingly imaginative. This is Science Fiction."
    -- David Brin

    "Star Dragon is terrific fare, offering readers a fusion of hard science and grand adventure."
    -- Locus Magazine

    "Star Dragon is steeped in cosmology, the physics of interstellar travel, exobiology, artificial intelligence, bioscience. Brotherton, author of many scientific articles in refereed journals, has written a dramatic, provocative, utterly convincing hard science sf novel that includes an ironic twist that fans will love."
    -- Booklist starred review

    "Readers hungry for the thought-provoking extrapolation and rigorous technical detail of old-fashioned hard SF are sure to enjoy astronomer Brotherton's first novel."
    -- Publishers Weekly

    "Mike Brotherton, himself a trained astrophysicist, combines the technical acuity and ingenuity of Robert Forward with the ironic, postmodern stance and style of M. John Harrison. In this, his debut novel, those twin talents unite to produce a work that is involving on any number of levels. It's just about all you could ask for in a hardcore SF adventure."
    -- Paul di Fillippo, SCI-FI.COM

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Sunday Starlinks

May 6th, 2012

The problem with some conservatives is that they have no intellectual integrity.  They value loyalty, faith, and their side above reality and honesty.  Don’t agree?  Here’s proof: a new Heartland Institute effort to discredit global warming.  More at Bad Astronomy.  I bet a lot of serial killers believe reasonable things — intelligence and ethics are not coupled in such individuals.  Horrors!  Here’s the lesson:  try to use only arguments that you yourself find convincing.  On the issue of climate, if your argument is not scientific in nature, it can be dismissed without any consideration as bogus, stupid, and offensive to thinking people everywhere.  This is not a scientific argument.  The Heartland Institute are being stupid assholes and this is proof that they lack credibility.  These deniers have jumped the shark.  (And I understand the ads are being pulled.  Too late.  We’ll remember.)

And here’s some good and bad journalism.  Guess which is which.  Wind farms causing global warmingWind farms not causing global warming.  Hint: the second story came out after a spate of bad stories like the one at the first link.

Back to more serious things…like the Avengers movie, which was really pretty damn good!  First, if you haven’t seen it, you should know that there’s an end scene after the credits.  No, after the first set of credits and the first extra bonus scene, and after the second set of credits.  So stay late if you want a little laugh.  And Scarlett Johansson wants to make a Black Widow movie.   From what I’ve seen so far, it could be great and it wouldn’t be hard to top Elektra or Catwoman.  Superhero movie fans will go see a movie with a female lead if it doesn’t suck!  And how about Ant-Man (and the Wasp?) in the Avengers sequel?  Cracked tells us why it sucks to be Ant-Man, unfortunately.  Finally, Five Ways the Avengers Bend the Laws of Physics.  Only five?  Not the best article, in my opinion, but a starting place for analytical thought about superheroes if you want to go down that dangerous path.

Analytical thought can weaken faith and induce doubt in the religious.  Duh!  But things that seem to be obvious need to checked out scientifically, because our intuition is far from perfect, and the analytically inclined realize that!  Another way to derail the many religious off their hate train, and get them to reduce their intuitive distrust of those analytically thinking atheists is to remind them that atheists are still watched by secular authorities, if not a god.

Oh, and here’s a winner from the intuitive woo-spouting mindless writer that lacks analytical thinking entirely: Darwin was wrong: why we need to update our model of evolution.  Warning for anyone who knows anything about evolution or science in general: it’s not pretty, and includes abuses of quantum mechanics to support a new age god consciousness.

Game of Thrones is a great story and TV show.  But what’s with those screwed up seasons?  How might they be explained scientifically?

Hmm…should I grow a bat-stache?

Really cool video graphically showing exoplanets discovered via transits (thanks Rachel!):

 

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