Beeline To The Future

Classic Science Fiction Revisited:Theodore Sturgeon’s "More than Human" by Robert Bee

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Theodore Sturgeon is one of the most significant figures of the Golden Age movement. He started writing SF for John W. Campbell’s Astounding Science Fiction in the late 30s and produced half-a-dozen or so novels, and enough short stories to fill several thick volumes of collected stories. His work influenced writers as diverse as Ray Bradbury and Samuel Delany. Among the Golden Age writers, he was probably the most talented at both writing style and character development.

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BEELINE TO THE FUTURE: Jack Kirby's 'Kamandi' Series

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I’ve been recently rereading Jack Kirby’s SF comics from the 70s when Kirby left Marvel for DC with great fanfare. Kamandi was Kirby best selling and longest lasting series from that period. A couple of years ago, DC republished the series in large folio editions, superb reproductions on good, thick paper that really gives you the opportunity to appreciate the art.

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BeeLine to the Future: The Perfume of a Sexbot

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A couple of years ago I reviewed David Levy’s book Love and Sex with Robots for the New York Review of Science Fiction. My review was lukewarm because I felt that Levy’s book was, despite its sensationalistic material, rather bland. Levy was trying so hard to make his presentation scholarly and intellectual rather than tabloidesque that he managed to wring much of the life from his topic. Despite the limits of his presentation, I did agree with most of his argument.

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BeeLine to the Future: The Future of Death

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I’ve been thinking about the future and the singularity a lot lately. One issue that Kurzweil and other singularity intellectuals focus on is death. In The Futurist magazine Thomas Fey has published an article “When Death Becomes Optional: Rethinking the inevitable.”

“The year is 2032. You have just celebrated your 80th birthday and you have some tough decisions ahead. You can either keep repairing your current body or move into a new one.

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BeeLine to the Future:Vernor Vinge Interview

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Wired posted an excellent interview with science fiction writer and mathematician Vernor Vinge entitled “Vernor Vinge Is Optimistic About the Collapse of Civilization”
(http://www.wired.com/underwire/2012/03/vernor-vinge-geeks-guide-galaxy/a...).

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BeeLine to the Future:The Exploration of Space

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Why has space exploration ground to a virtual halt? The primary reason is the expense, a problem that will not get any better as the countries of the western world, weighed down by budget deficits, find it harder and harder to fund space exploration. The western world is wasting too much money on the welfare state to fund a flight to Mars.

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BeeLine to the Future:The End of Moore’s Law

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In the mid-60s Gordon E. Moore predicted that computer processors would double in speed and memory every 18 months. This prediction has been so accurate since then that it has become known as Moore’s law; however, Moore’s law will eventually come grinding to a halt because of leakage, heat, and other inevitable physical limits.

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MOVIE REVIEW: Kurzweil's Transcendent Man

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Transcendent Man is a documentary I’ve been meaning to review for Republibot for some time. It details the life and ideas of Ray Kurzweil, one of the main proponents of the Singularity, the idea that technology will reach a point, probably in the near future, when progress will be so rapid that the world will change instantaneously.

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BEELINE TO THE FUTURE:Lenovo Essential 570

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As I’ve pointed out in previous columns, I prefer Macs to PCs; however, I recently bought a new windows laptop. The primary reason is that I just started a new job as a computer trainer at a public library, teaching technical classes with an emphasis on Microsoft Office and Windows. I will eventually have the flexibility to add classes on iOS and maybe Macs, but the emphasis will be the Microsoft software people use in most offices. Although the library provides me with a desktop, I felt I should have a Windows laptop at home to practice and use the software I’ll be teaching.

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