Science fiction/fantasy

Respectful Insolence

Category archives for Science fiction/fantasy

Grant deadlines strike again, and there’s no new Insolence for you to peruse today. (The problem with doing real science, as opposed to blogging, is that you actually have to apply endlessly for grant money, and, believe it or not, that comes first, before even Insolence.) Fortunately, I’ve been made aware of an endless source…

It works every time, doesn’t it?

Every so often I come across a news story relevant to the subject matter usually encompassed by this blog that makes me shake my head in disbelief at the sheer stupidity. OK, every day, if you count the antivaccine movement and its attacks on papers like the one I wrote about Monday and yesterday. True,…

Eight years

As I mentioned yesterday, Orac is currently away at an undisclosed location that is someplace warm. He is there, taking a rare pre-solstice break, preparing for the Mayan apocalypse that is to come on the 21st of this month. (Actually, he’s recharging his Tarial cell, the better to be prepared for the utter nonsense that…

When I saw the latest screed from that very living embodiment of crank magnetism, Mike Adams, I chuckled. I sent it around to some fellow skeptics, including, for instance, the crew at The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe, as well as acquaintances and friends of mine because I couldn’t believe it. Adams, as loony as…

I’m sometimes criticized for referring to various people who are “anti-science” as, well, “anti-science.” People, for whatever reason, have a hard time believing that anyone is anti-science; so when I point out how much, for example, antivaccinationists, alternative medicine believers, or creationists are anti-science, they have a had time believing it. This is particularly true…

On Daleks

After a near all-nighter working on a grant and another day and night to try to get a talk together that I have to give tomorrow, somehow Insolence, Respectful or not-so-Respectful, fell by the wayside, at least for today. Nothing like two hours’ sleep followed by a full day of work. It’s a good thing…

Goodbye, Sarah Jane Smith…

I just learned something that will sadden the heart of any Doctor Who fan. Elizabeth Sladen, who played longtime companion of the Doctor Sarah Jane Smith, has died of cancer: Doctor Who star Elisabeth Sladen, who was also in spin-off series The Sarah Jane Adventures, has died aged 63. Sladen appeared as Doctor Who assistant…

…is simple. Not only was he the original Hikaru Sulu on Star Trek (which if full of WIN to any long time Star Trek geek like myself), but he taped this PSA for the 2010 census: This is so much better than that commercial for Sharp Electronics Quattron quad pixel technology that’s been on TV…

What researchers really mean

Ha! So true, although in academia we aren’t so much concerned with getting products into consumers’ hands; so the exact times may be different: Via xkcd, of course!

Just can’t wait for “The End of Time”

Regular readers here know that I’m a long time Doctor Who fan. That’s why it’s with some sadness that I await the approach of the two-episode finale for David Tennant’s tenure as the Tenth Doctor. Over his three full seasons and multiple specials in 2009, Tennant redefined the role and even began to rival Tom…

Best Halloween costume ever?

I’d say this is definitely a contender: ADDENDUM: Sorry, I just assumed everyone knew what these guys are. If you don’t, here are a couple of classic Sesame Street videos to demonstrate the Yip Yip Aliens in action:

One last TAM7 request…

Before I close the book on the Science-Based Medicine Conference and TAM7 for 2009, I have a quick request of you, my readers. Specifically, I’d really appreciate it if any of you who were at the SBM Conference and/or TAM7 and took pictures, to send me copies, preferably full resolution. As you might guess, at…

“I’ll be back”…for your love!

I’ve noticed that a hilariously literal-minded parody of that 1980s chestnut “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler has been making the rounds in the blogsophere. I was suitably amused, but I also found this new tidbit amusing. I haven’t seen the latest Terminator movie yet, but I’ve been a big fan of the…

Coming next week…The Planet of the Dead

Sorry, all. I’m all tied up putting the finishing touches on a grant application. However, via Behind the Sofa, I did come across this trailer for the next Doctor Who special, to be aired on Easter: I suspect I’ll have to fire up BitTorrent.

So that’s what happened to that Dalek!

Damn, wouldn’t it have been cool to have been the guy who found this? A Dalek, lost from Doctor Who since the 1970s or 1980s: Workers were baffled how the Dr Who relic ended up there, but it may have been in the murky water for more than 30 years after being dumped during location…

The wit and wisdom of G’Kar

Unfortunately, as we have been dreading for the last four months or so since her relapse was diagnosed, my mother-in-law passed away from breast cancer in hospice. She died peacefully, with my wife and the rest of her family at her side. As you might expect, I do not much feel like blogging. Because I…

Back in December, I pointed out a Norwegian movie that the Hitler Zombie definitely approves of: Dead Snow (or Død Snø in Norwegian). After all, how can you go wrong with Nazi zombies in a remote, snow bound area in Norway attacking the usual bunch of hapless but beautiful young people? I don’t know about…

The (real) Next Doctor

Having recently learned that David Tennant plans to give up the TARDIS at the end of the next abbreviated series of Doctor Who (we Yanks tend to be a bit late on the uptake for news like that from across the pond), I just found out who the 11th Doctor will be after Tennant leaves:…

When Nazi zombies attack…

The Hitler Zombie definitely approves of this movie: Too bad I don’t speak German or Norwegian, because here’s the movie website, and here’s another trailer sans subtitles: I wonder if I can take some stills from this trailer to use the next time I feel “inspired” (at least I like to call it that) to…

Weekend geekery: Star Wars vs. Star Trek

Ever wonder who’d win in a war of Trek vs. the Empire? Well now you know!

PROLOGUE LOCATION: The Liberator, cruising through space. GAN: Are you sure it’s fully switched on? ORAC: Of course I’m properly switched on. Having depressed the activator button what else would you expect? CALLY: It’s his voice. BLAKE: It’s exactly as though Ensor were speaking. ORAC: Surely it is obvious even to the meanest intelligence that…

Best Doctor Who adventure ever?

I don’t recall where I saw this, but I’ve been meaning to post it. What better time than a not-so-lazy Sunday, when I have to work on a talk, paper, and other things? (It’s either this, or no blog for you on Monday; I think you know which you’d prefer.) For those of you not…

Now there’s a real toaster!

Those who are Battlestar Galactica fans, as I am, know that the disparaging slang humans in the Colonial fleet use for their dreaded enemies the Cylons is to call them “toasters.” The question then naturally follows: Sure, Cylons are toasters, but can they actually make toast? It turns out that they can.

45 years of Doctor Who

After seeing some Doctor Who silliness yesterday, I also came across this great tribute to 45 years of Doctor Who. Since it’s a beautiful Sunday afternoon, and I’m again too lazy to post anything substantive until Monday, here we go again. It’s every Who story compressed into less than 8 minutes. Truly, a tour de…

Doctor Who versus Eminem versus Benny Hill

Why? Because I love Doctor Who and Benny Hill (although I was never much of an Eminem fan) and because it’s funny, that’s why. Besides, it’s a beautiful Saturday, and I’m feeling too lazy to post anything substantive this morning. That’s all the reason I need.