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Sources for Sci-Fi Writers

majanzmajanz Registered User regular
edited November 2015 in The Writer's Block
Wait, wait, wait - before we get into a debate about if the magic space wizard's glowing sword is realistic or not - I am talking about what is called 'Hard Sci-Fi' not 'Science Fantasy'.

Its not that I hate Science Fantasy - in fact I love it! Its just that the sources are pretty easy. Watch a bunch of Akira Kurosawa movies! That's what George did!

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KCWiseRonin356Zilla360

Posts

  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    edited November 2015
    Okay, Hard Sci-Fi sources. Here's my short list:

    Mary Roach, "Packing for Mars"
    mars_custom-1ad3c1c79cc3f97689228a6f05d60c587f0a6b68-s300-c85.jpg

    This book is an excellent reference for the history of man in space! Plus, she has a whole chapter on the difficulty of sex in space! Did you know male Dolphins have a prehensile penis to help them reach coitus in a buoyant environment?

    Actually a prehensile penis would be awesome for holding onto your beer.

    Actually I just like saying prehensile penis.


    Moving on...

    Youtube: PBS Space Time

    space-time-654x280.png

    There are a number of excellent sources on Youtube! I would also recommend Kurzgesagt and Crash Course Astronomy. But for writing about space ships, etc., Space Time is the best!

    One more for now...

    Science Channel's "Moon Machines"
    MV5BMTMxMTIyNDM3NF5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNzE0NzU2Mg@@._V1_SY317_CR5,0,214,317_AL_.jpg

    Back when Discover Networks actually made educational programming what I meant to say was hadn't yet discovered that it was cheaper to make reality TV shows about pawn shops... Oh forget it...

    Back in 2008 they made this awesome documentary about all the technical hurdles NASA had to overcome during the Apollo program. Its uber-nerdy, but its still a great bit of source material!

    Here's my favorite clip that's up on Youtube, Weaving software into core memory by hand.

    majanz on
    KCWiseZilla360
  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    edited December 2015
    Oooh! Oooh! Mister Koter! My recent nerd rant over on 'The Expanse' thread reminded me of another good one! The Mission Space ride at Epcot center!
    Wikipedia: Mission: Space

    The attraction is a multiple-arm centrifuge that achieves the illusion of acceleration by spinning and tilting sealed capsules during the four-minute "mission." Fans blow air gently at riders to help avoid motion sickness, and a magnified display in front of each rider simulates a window to space with high-resolution computer-generated imagery. Mission: Space comprises four separate centrifuges, each with 10 capsules holding four riders.

    The attraction exposes riders to forces up to 2.5G, more than twice the force of gravity at the Earth's surface (effectively multiplying a rider's weight by 2.5). A few months after the ride's opening, motion sickness bags were added within easy reach of riders.

    So if you want to experience 2.5g in the comfort of shorts and a wife beater - just drop by Disney World!

    Or if you don't have that kind of cash, find a nice carnival with a 'Gravitron' ride! And then pray that the minimum wage ex-hobos whom assembled it did a good job.

    gravitron.jpg
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    majanz on
    Zilla360
  • DinoFightDinoFight Registered User regular
    The Cosmos TV show is a decent source of good information, both the original and the Neil DeGrasse Tyson remake.

    There are some great hard sci-fi movies that are a good place to start if you're looking for representations of life on a spaceship, like Gravity, Interstellar, Apollo 13 (not fiction, I know), Moon, etc.

    The first book that naturally popped into my mind was Death By Black Holel, by Neil Degrasse Tyson.

    www.kendallshammer.com/posts-2
  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    DinoFight wrote: »
    There are some great hard sci-fi movies that are a good place to start if you're looking for representations of life on a spaceship, like Gravity, Interstellar, Apollo 13 (not fiction, I know), Moon, etc.

    I have issues with Interstellar. Not with the Endurance, that was good, but with the Landers. The Rangers and the Heavy Cargo Shuttles.

    Soooo... Future NASA has these awesome ships that can make multiple trips from orbit to a planet's surface and back again. Soooo... why did we need the gravity formula again?...

  • QuothQuoth the Raven Miami, FL FOR REALRegistered User regular
    I love Cosmos. It can get a little snooty at times, but if nothing else, it does a good job of showing that people outside of Europe were doing science instead of existing in some kind of "here there be dragons" hand-wavey spot in history.

    Zilla360
  • bigrickcookbigrickcook Dord of Lance? OklahomaRegistered User regular
    "Here there be Science" is now how I will outline anything scientific.

    http://panningforclouds.com
    Panning For Clouds, a writing blog dedicated to my fiction and writing columns! Updates at least twice a week.
    Quoth
  • NorgothNorgoth Registered User regular
    It's possibly the most geocities thing in the world but this site is pretty great for this kind of thing.

    majanzZilla360
  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    That is pretty sweet!

    bimodalNTR04.jpg

    This one is also fun.

    Mid-century Space Illustration

    0ckq101729rq.jpg

    Ronin356Zilla360
  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    Okay, I was skimming back over this post and I finally took a close look at those two people in the lower left. And the car. Yow...

    udyi1lzh33lr.jpg

  • QuothQuoth the Raven Miami, FL FOR REALRegistered User regular
    Speaking of images, I have a Pinterest board for my space opera novel in case anyone wants to peruse random sci-fi stuff. Pinterest can become a bit of a black hole if you're not careful, but it can also be great for visual references. I often wander over to DeviantArt and pin things for later perusal.

    majanzZilla360
  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    Norgoth wrote: »
    It's possibly the most geocities thing in the world but this site is pretty great for this kind of thing.

    Okay, finally had some time to click around in the www.projectrho.com site. This place is a gold mine! You just better be prepared to dig. And dig and dig and dig...

    And dig...

    Reminds me of TVTropes...
    Robinson's First Law of space combat
    Something hitting at 3 km/sec (kips) delivers kinetic energy broadly equal to its mass in TNT.

    So your average rifle bullet travels at half that speed - is it a linear relationship? Would an 8 gram rifle bullet be equal to 4 grams of TNT? Not like I have any clue about the explosive power of 4 grams of TNT.

    Back to digging!

  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    Quoth wrote: »
    Speaking of images, I have a Pinterest board for my space opera novel in case anyone wants to peruse random sci-fi stuff. Pinterest can become a bit of a black hole if you're not careful, but it can also be great for visual references. I often wander over to DeviantArt and pin things for later perusal.

    Okay, I've been on DeviantArt for many moons now, but I had always poopooed Pintrest. It is pretty easy way to search for concept art! I may have to give it another go!

    But it is a definite time-suck so I'll need to watch that.

  • bigrickcookbigrickcook Dord of Lance? OklahomaRegistered User regular
    majanz wrote: »

    Okay, I've been on DeviantArt for many moons now, but I had always poopooed Pintrest. It is pretty easy way to search for concept art! I may have to give it another go!

    I'm still mildly irritated that Pinterest wouldn't let me peruse without having an account.

    http://panningforclouds.com
    Panning For Clouds, a writing blog dedicated to my fiction and writing columns! Updates at least twice a week.
    majanz
  • QuothQuoth the Raven Miami, FL FOR REALRegistered User regular
    One of us...

    Seriously though, it's pretty cool. But sometimes you do have to get out into the internet and find things to pin yourself instead of just rummaging through what others have already pinned. You start to see repeats after a while.

    tapeslinger
  • Ronin356Ronin356 Nowhere MORegistered User regular
    Awesome resource. Thank you!

    Nobody sees a flower really; it is so small. We haven't time, and to see takes time - like to have a friend takes time.
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  • majanzmajanz Registered User regular
    Okay, found another one. Issac Arthur's channel on the YouTube!

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZFipeZtQM5CKUjx6grh54g

    He's got a bit of a speech impediment but his videos are top notch! From the "About" section:
    This channel focuses on exploring concepts in science with an emphasis on futurism and space exploration, along with a healthy dose of science fiction. While we explore many concepts and technologies that are far beyond us now, we try to keep everything inside the bounds of known science or major theories.

    And he's got a sense of humor about his impediment, so kudos to him on that! From the 'Space Elevator' comments:
    It is speech impediment not an accent, that's what Elmer Fudd was saying 40 seconds into the episode, and I have heard every joke about it many times :)

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  • QotkaQotka Registered User new member
    What's about driverless cars as sci-fi topic? In 50's it was a joke but now one can evolve a good story
    Qi1rM8W.jpg?1
    Some more info: https://tranio.com/world/spotlight/self-driving-mobile-homes-how-driverless-cars-will-change-the-property-market_5354/

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