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Old 11-27-2008, 10:49 AM   #69
tompe
Grand Sorcerer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
I've never been entirely surely of the value of "taxonomy" of this form because for me personally, it tells me next to nothing about whether I'll actually enjoy the book.

For example, I like C.J. Cherryh's SF books very much indeed, and I don't think there would be any argument that books like "Downbelow Station" are "Hard SF". On the other hand, "Cyberpunk" as written by authors like William Gibson does nothing for me at all - I just don't enjoy him as an author, full stop.
I would not call Downbellow station hard sf. For me it is more space opera. I find hard sf a useful concept since you know what kind of book to expect when it is hard sf. See wikipedia which says for example:
Quote:
Hard science fiction is a category of science fiction characterized by an emphasis on scientific or technical detail, or on scientific accuracy, or on both.

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The heart of the "hard SF" designation is the relationship of the science content and attitude to the rest of the narrative, and (for some readers, at least) the "hardness" or rigor of the science itself.[7] One requirement for hard SF is procedural or intentional: a story should be trying to be accurate and rigorous in its use of the scientific knowledge of its time, and later discoveries do not necessarily invalidate the label.
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