All of Tamfang's Comments + Replies

Eh? Perhaps I was too young to get (or remember) what's so great about it. (I haven't read much Asimov since my early teens.)

hm, is ''Tichy'' the Polish word for 'peaceful'?

Tichy is Russian for quiet. "Tichy Okean" is Russian for "Pacific Ocean."
Nah. "Tichy" is not existing word in Polish. Hovever, there is very similar word "cichy" that means "silent", low volume sound. Probably not accidental.

Ah! I read it as "Sailor's Heart's Desire", with no particular significance.

Fiction like this may be the nearest thing to a way to avoid such a blunder. Occasionally a pundit says "Nobody has ever given any thought to the consequences of biotechnology," as if sf didn't exist, so I'm not hopeful.

I don't buy the (fairly common) idea that in the post-national Future all humans will look alike, though it's a convenient device here. I wonder whether I've ever seen it used this way.

The traits that we now call ethnic may cease to be ethnic markers, but they'll continue to appear so long as the genes exist, albeit rarely in the same combinations. Is there any reason to expect Akon to recognize which clusters of traits were once ethnic markers, out of all the combinations existing in his time?

The way I read it, it looked as though humanity deliberately blurred and blended the ethnic markers, rather than just allowing them to become homogeneous on their own.

I wonder how much fiction has been written about fucking forking uploads.

"The Babyeaters don't seem to have had humanity's coordination problems. Or they're just more rational voters. Take your pick."

My pick is that they rationalize like the dickens.

"Every human culture had expended vast amounts of intellectual effort on the problem of coming to terms with death. Most religions had constructed elaborate lies about it, making it out to be something other than it was – though a few were dishonest about life, instead. But even most secular philosophies were warped by the need to pretend that death was for the best. ¶ It was the naturalistic fallacy at its most extreme — and its most transparent, but that didn't stop anyone. Since any child could tell you that death was meaningless, contingent, unjus... (read more)

That Ira Howard died well before 1911, let alone 2014.

Clearly you don't value sex with your lover

Be serious: does anyone value fucking as a terminal value rather than as a means to enjoyment?

(assuming I understand the phrase 'terminal value', which is new to me)

I think rather a lot of people view it as a means of reproduction first and foremost, and may even attempt to ignore the pleasure.

The ship employs a Master of Fandom? (Not a Secret Master, obviously; they're too hard to recruit.)

I once had a chat with Dan Alderson (1941–89) about his "tramlines" (as he called them). They follow gradients of the "fifth force" field; traversible tramlines pass through saddle-points (because potential energy must be conserved). The fifth force is generated by stars in proportion to some power of their luminosity. So, to a rough approximation and with some simplifying assumptions, a traversible tramline exists between two stars if ... (read more)