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Old 05-16-2012, 12:49 PM   #166
David Munch
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Hyperion - Simmons

That book made me love hardcore scifi. Amazing book.
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Old 05-16-2012, 01:08 PM   #167
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Sigh....
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Old 05-16-2012, 03:37 PM   #168
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I don't like this kind of thinking. "Best sci-fi novel" implies there is a best one. It's a form of close-mindeness. A sci-fi novel must be internally consistent. The author makes some assumptions or extrapolations based on current technology. Each novel is a vision. These visions are often mutually-exclusive.

I think no book should be all things to all people. Some Sci-fi books are good for their description of X, some are good because they are about Y.

Real world example: uranium nuclear reactors. They are, quite literally, children of war. They are very very efficient, but have several flaws:
- can cause disasters if neglected
- they produce radioactive waste
- they can be easily used to create nuclear weapons
- uranium is relatively scarce.

Now Thorium. Thorium reactors are not yet fully researched. For comparison,
- they are difficult to make weapon-grade material with
- one tonne of Thorium is worth about 200 tonnes of Uranium
- they don't cause disasters when neglected/damaged
- on top of that, Thorium is a lot more common ! Estimates vary, but some of them project that reserves of it in USA would power the country for 1000 years, and it would become pointless to measure used electricity. You would pay a flat price once.

So Thorium is much more efficient and safer. Where's the catch ? It's less than optimal for weapons ! Weapons need violent reactions.

As one person I had a conversation with wonderfully put it,
Quote:
War is an incredible catalyst of the discovery process, but it unearths such discoveries just to throw them into a local optimum.
He also said that nearly all spaceships to date are descendants of V2 rocket. And I read somewhere that all satellites are the shape of a hydrogen bomb. Once the technology (and industry) is in place, it's difficult to dislodge it. In the end, we're putting up with inefficient and costly rockets originally designed for weapons.
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Old 05-17-2012, 03:19 PM   #169
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I have not read all of the books in this thread but of the books I've read:

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (Probably the book that turned me on to Sci-Fi).

War of the Worlds by Wells

Stranger in A Strange Land by Heinlein

Neuromancer by Gibson

I, Robot by Asimov

Starship Troopers by Heinlein

Old Man's War by John Scalzi

The Time Machine by Wells
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Old 05-25-2012, 02:04 PM   #170
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Munch View Post
Hyperion - Simmons

That book made me love hardcore scifi. Amazing book.
Please, in your own words... what makes you like this book ? Everyone I know thinks it's a borefest, and I found it bland.
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Old 05-25-2012, 02:59 PM   #171
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The form of it, mimicking the Canterbury Tales, was amazingly well done. I liked the weaving together of the characters and each of their own backstory tales.

The pacing does require patience and, perhaps, a certain preference. I did like his Ilium/Olympus even more.
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