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Mt. Holz Science Fiction Society
Club Notice - 10/20/00 -- Vol. 19, No. 16
Table of Contents
Chair/Librarian: Mark Leeper, 732-817-5619, firstname.lastname@example.org Factotum: Evelyn Leeper, 732-332-6218, email@example.com Distinguished Heinlein Apologist: Rob Mitchell, firstname.lastname@example.org HO Chair Emeritus: John Jetzt, email@example.com HO Librarian Emeritus: Nick Sauer, firstname.lastname@example.org Back issues at http://www.geocities.com/evelynleeper. All material copyright by author unless otherwise noted.
The End of the World:
Like it or not, the world will end some day in the (hopefully distant) future. It is inevitable. When it does go, what will be the cause? This is the way the world ends: an article that takes a serious look at twenty mechanisms that we know of that are candidates for the cause of the end of the world. Thought- provoking stuff can be found at http://www.discover.com/oct_00/featworld.html. [-ecl & mrl]
I had to share this piece of junk email with you. This is an ad Evelyn really got. [-mrl]
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I thought that this panel description from the Worldcon this year might be of interest to science fiction fans. This stuff hopefully has a little more behind it than tabloid stories do.
Past as Prologue: "Panelists discuss scientific discoveries and what they could lead to."
Participants: Gerald "G. David" Nordley, W. A. Thomasson, John G. Cramer (M), Mike Moscoe
I dropped into this panel at Chicon 2000 and found a lot that I did not quite follow, but some of the ideas floating around were either whimsical or ones with deep implications. The ones that stuck with me were:
Hopi Indians and the (or some) Japanese may have a connection. Both may be descended from the Ainu.
An early tribe said to have invaded prehistoric Ireland may have actually been Egyptians.
There was a mention of spears found thought to be 500,000 years old. This would make man a tool-building animal half a million years ago. Apparently there are indentations found of weaving that also goes back to before the ice age. Did Cro-Magnon survive the Neanderthal because when the glacier came the former had underwear and the latter did not.
New gradations on degrees of autism seem to include behavior patterns of many of our most creative people. Autism may be more widespread than we had thought.
The NSA is putting a lot of money into quantum computers, a new approach to solving equations at very high speed. The literature is hard to understand but you set for the equation and the waveform collapses only when the problem solved. NSA would like to use it to break public key systems.
Anti-matter may be useful to fight cancer. It may be possible to shoot an anti-matter beam so that it does nothing for say three inches and then interact with matter. That would mean you could destroy a tumor without boring a hole to get to it.
The energy from the Big Bang may be held in vacuum in some way we do not understand. It may be what is pushing the universe to accelerate outward.
(I am pretty sure I got these ideas correct but if a panelist wants to say that I have misquoted I let them reserve that right. If you want more complete information on any of these, presumably the reader can put the key words into Alta Vista or some other search engine.)
At http://www.aip.org you can find links to the latest breaking information in physics. [-mrl]
THE YARDS (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: A very standard gang crime and corruption plot is given a slightly different flavor since the gang is a subway manufacturing company. An innocent man is made the fall guy for a lot of corruption. The real hero of this film is the cinematographer Harris Savides who carves the film from darkness for an intense noir-ish atmosphere. Rating: +1
FACE (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: Combining themes of THE FUGITIVE and GEORGEY GIRL, a frumpy overweight worker at a dry cleaner kills the sister who ridiculed her for years. Running away, she mixes into people's lives and finds a fulfillment she never had at home. Rating: low +2
THE NINE LIVES OF TOMAS KATZ (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: A strange alien being is coming to London to bring the end of the world. Mod images of British 1960s science fiction and adventure (e.g. "The Avengers") mix in an almost totally incomprehensible surreal satire. Rating: 0
BUNNY (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: This is a film that is serious all the way through. There is not one humorous line. But there is one absurdist idea in the premise. It could give people the idea this is a comedy rather than a downbeat look at the problems of two immigrants coming to this country. Couple takes job as part of a band of people in pink bunny suits who stand on street corners and lend passersby a compassionate ear. Rating: low +2
WALK THE TALK (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: Joe Grasso is an eternal optimist who believes every motivational philosophy and everything he hears in church. He also is something of a wheeler-dealer. When he is sure without any experience that he can promote a local mediocre lounge singer to be a star. This is a rare film to look at the downside of optimism and positive thinking. Rating: +1
LIAM (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: Life among the poor Catholic family in Liverpool in 1930s. Vivid pictures of family life, clashes with neighbors, religion spiced with hellfire. When father loses job times get more difficult and ethnic relations take center stage. Rating: low +3
TELL ME SOMETHING (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: Complex and disturbing puzzle of a serial killer plot from South Korea. Dismembered parts of bodies and lots of blood keep being found. One troubled young woman seems to be an innocent link to all of the victims and may be going mad. Serial killer themes are (way) overused these days, but this is one of the better ones. Rating: +1
TIME AND TIDE (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: A light plot ties together some extended shootouts. This is a film for people with small requirements for plot but who want lots of inventive blow-em-up scenes. Rating: low +1
CHASING SLEEP (a film review in bullet list form by Mark R. Leeper from the Toronto International Film Festival):
Capsule: Ed Saxon's wife Eve did not come home from the high school where she teaches. Ed has not slept well for weeks and is not in the best condition to deal with his missing wife. Over the next few days Ed will go through his own private hell as he tries to understand the mystery of his missing wife. His life will become the stuff of an Edgar Allan Poe story. A strange claustrophobic horror story. Rating: high +1