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Out of the Blue

Happy Valentine's Day! I am actually a bachelor for the occasion for the first time in a long time. MrsBlue's new job I mentioned yesterday began already, and she is spending a couple of days a week in Pennsylvania, which includes today. So it's me and the Gunnar-man on our own. I'm thinking we'll order a pizza and play some Rock Band. Here's hoping you enjoy your plans, even if you are flying solo.

Bachelor Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Drift Hunters.
Story: After a nudity-free year, Playboy will again run pictures of naked women.
Science: Heavy snowfall tied to higher heart attack risk for men.
The little yellow box thatís made thousands of operations safer.
Media: ANATOMICALLY CORRECT Spiderman. Thanks Ant.
Follow-up: Marathon pauses Duchenne drug launch amid price outcry.

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41 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 1.
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41. Re: On Sale Feb 17, 2017, 09:19 Kxmode
 
Sepharo wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 22:07:
Pedant (noun)
1. A person who emphasizes his/her knowledge through the use of vocabulary.
2. (slang) A person who is overly concerned with formal rules and trivial points of learning.

Go look up details on language. There's a very particular reason why I used that word instead of "communicate." Quite simply, animals are incapable of language for vocabulary and written words because at its core language is complex.
 
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40. Re: Origin Access Free Trial Feb 17, 2017, 08:19 Mr. Tact
 
jdreyer wrote on Feb 17, 2017, 03:19:
Fair enough, but the holes were much smaller, many fewer, and better integrated than those in Prometheus. I'm still pissed about that movie.
Yeah, but frankly -- that movie was just so bad overall I never even bothered noticing plot problems or inconsistencies. It is such a bad movie, why bother?

Which raises an interesting point, I guess these type of things only really bother me in a movie I like or one I at least want to like. But if the movie is just plain bad, it isn't worth the effort.
 
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39. Re: Origin Access Free Trial Feb 17, 2017, 03:19 jdreyer
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 14:16:
descender wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 14:09:
I really don't fault the movie for any of this stuff though. It's all based in scientific fact and was close enough IMO.
In general I agree, hence my "suspend my disbelief" mantra. But again, when the actors specifically talk about something and then don't manage to make the obvious, next step, logical conclusion, it is annoying.

Fair enough, but the holes were much smaller, many fewer, and better integrated than those in Prometheus. I'm still pissed about that movie.
 
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38. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 22:07 Sepharo
 
Pedant (noun)
1. A person who emphasizes his/her knowledge through the use of vocabulary.
2. (slang) A person who is overly concerned with formal rules and trivial points of learning.
 
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37. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 21:57 Kxmode
 
Sepharo wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 05:41:
But language is not unique to humans.

Language (noun) - The method of human communication, either spoken or written, consisting of the use of words in a structured and conventional way. Animals have the ability to communicate but they cannot do it with spoken vocabulary or written words. Only humans can do this.
 
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36. Re: Origin Access Free Trial Feb 16, 2017, 14:16 Mr. Tact
 
descender wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 14:09:
I really don't fault the movie for any of this stuff though. It's all based in scientific fact and was close enough IMO.
In general I agree, hence my "suspend my disbelief" mantra. But again, when the actors specifically talk about something and then don't manage to make the obvious, next step, logical conclusion, it is annoying.
 
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35. Re: Origin Access Free Trial Feb 16, 2017, 14:09 descender
 
Ah, but to an observer outside the time dilation zone those waves basically wouldn't have been moving. The bigger hole here is that the signal they were receiving from the planet would have been so distorted it would have been unrecognizable until they had collected a few years worth. It wouldn't have been "a loop" as described, it would have been unintelligible noise until they looked at enough of it to compress it back down.

I really don't fault the movie for any of this stuff though. It's all based in scientific fact and was close enough IMO. The bigger problem I had with the plot was them going to these other planets in the first place. Why do you need to physically go to the planets at all? That's what those probes and robots are for. If you have self-sustaining sealed habitats to send into space to colonize another planet... why the fuck aren't you building them on Earth and putting people in them so they stop dying? The overly elaborate plan to get people off of earth or start a new earth wasn't remotely the best solution to their problems.
 
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34. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 13:25 jdreyer
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 08:15:
jdreyer wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 02:07:
There's an even bigger hole. In order for that time dilation effect to occur, the planet itself must be traveling and near the speed of light. Which means that little landing skiff would have to approach the speed of light to catch it. And then escape the massive gravitational pull of a black hole that accelerates a planet to nearly the speed of light to return to the mothership.
While that might be a bigger hole, it is far less "offensive" because they don't specifically talk about it in the film. Like I said, I do my best to suspend my disbelief, it is a movie after all and the purpose is entertainment. But when you actually have the actors saying things which amount to "Gee, aren't we idiots!"... kind of hard to forgive.

Fair enough. My plot hole also requires practical knowledge of Einstein's relativity theories, which many audience members may not have. But, yeah, being scientists, they should have been able to understand that Dr. Miller would have only landed a few minutes before them *before* they went down to the planet. Also should have been able to see those giant waves from space.
 
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33. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 08:43 Mr. Tact
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 04:47:

Super secret:

The point of the film is that aliens through their complex non-linear language were able to teach Dr. Louise Banks how to "think" non-linearly. And by doing so, she could, in principle, live a non-linear life. As explained the alien said their race would need the human's help in 3,000 years. This non-linear language was the first step towards that eventuality. Although I will say this plot device creates a sizeable hole in the sense of asking why non-linear beings would need human's help in precisely 3,000 years? Meh... whatever. Great movie!

Super secret:

There are plenty of scenarios you could think up where even being able to change your past actions wouldn't be enough to avoid a problem. Maybe they have foreseen a human scientist will be responsible for curing a disease, or they need human help in a war which is unavoidable. *shrug* I didn't really find the "we will need your help in 3,000 years" that bad.
 
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32. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 08:15 Mr. Tact
 
jdreyer wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 02:07:
There's an even bigger hole. In order for that time dilation effect to occur, the planet itself must be traveling and near the speed of light. Which means that little landing skiff would have to approach the speed of light to catch it. And then escape the massive gravitational pull of a black hole that accelerates a planet to nearly the speed of light to return to the mothership.
While that might be a bigger hole, it is far less "offensive" because they don't specifically talk about it in the film. Like I said, I do my best to suspend my disbelief, it is a movie after all and the purpose is entertainment. But when you actually have the actors saying things which amount to "Gee, aren't we idiots!"... kind of hard to forgive.
 
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31. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 05:41 Sepharo
 
But language is not unique to humans.  
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30. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 04:47 Kxmode
 
VaranDragon wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 04:13:
The Arrival was pretty cool.

I thought we established "The Arrival" is a cheesy Charlie Sheen sci-fi flick from 1996, no thanks to me for starting that.

VaranDragon wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 04:13:
Non-linear existence in time is pretty fascinating although it seems more like metaphysical conjecture than anything that "might" be in the realm of possibility.

Super secret reply:

The point of the film is that aliens through their complex non-linear language were able to teach Dr. Louise Banks how to "think" non-linearly. And by doing so, she could, in principle, live a non-linear life. As explained the alien said their race would need the human's help in 3,000 years. This non-linear language was the first step towards that eventuality. Although I will say this plot device creates a sizeable hole in the sense of asking why non-linear beings would need human's help in precisely 3,000 years? Meh... whatever. Great movie!

1: Those ridiculous soldiers somehow smuggling a bunch of explosives onto an alien starship, without anyone noticing. Jesus what an eyeroll.

Super secret reply:

I think it was their shift and it was a plot executed during their shift. Earlier there was that scene where they were watching a television broadcast with someone preaching violence towards the aliens. The soldiers responded.

2: The lead character's final contact with the aliens when she enters a pod and for some reason suddenly has the ability to share their atmosphere and living environment. This was put in the film for purely for sentimental reasons, so that the audience has a nice touchy feel ET moment. The film definitely doesn't need it, and is weaker for it. Truly /facepalm inducing. I swear I facepalmed in the theater.

Super secret reply:

It was established early on that the aliens had the ability to manipulate the atmosphere and likely that's how she was able to share their environment, and effectively she was doing the reverse with earth's environment. But I think the real reason it was possible was that by that point she had learned how to think like them and effectively became them: the first non-linear human. Perhaps that ability is what sustained the aliens in that environment. Or not. Here's how the film's director Denis Villeneuve explains the scene:

"By that point, Louise has been studying the aliensí language for weeks, immersing herself and even dreaming about it. She has also begun to experience flash forwards to the future, so itís conceivable that sheís drawing on knowledge of the language that she will have in addition to what she already knows. Plus, sheís the Chosen One, so there may also be a little bit of telepathy going on. Iím speculating here."

The only thing about learning a non-linear orthographic language (like the alien one) is that it cannot rewire a brain, according to many scientists. The reason, language is unique to humans, and all languages share a common structure. Not to get Bible on you guys (cause I know how you feel about it) but the biblical aspect for why all languages share a common structure comes from the Tower of Babel. Before that period, all humans spoke a single language (most likely an ancient form of Aramaic or Hebrew). Then, in an instant of time, all of them were given new languages by God primarily to stop them from working on their tower project. All those languages were effectively subsets of the main Aramaic language.


I honestly love talking about this kind of stuff. Totally cerebral stuff.
 
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29. Re: On Sale Feb 16, 2017, 04:16 Kxmode
 
jdreyer wrote on Feb 16, 2017, 02:07:
There's an even bigger hole. In order for that time dilation effect to occur, the planet itself must be traveling and near the speed of light. Which means that little landing skiff would have to approach the speed of light to catch it. And then escape the massive gravitational pull of a black hole that accelerates a planet to nearly the speed of light to return to the mothership.

And I thought the BS Dr. Mann pulled was actually pretty realistic, given his circumstances. Some people, alone for a decade, might do the same thing just to be rescued. There are some fantastical elements to the movie and a few problems with the ending, but I've seen it a couple of times and always enjoy it.

Still, that wave sequence was freaking awesome, and I love Chris Nolan's movies. I can't wait for Dunkirk.

I think you're looking way too much into the flawed details. The executive producer is Caltech theoretical physicist Kip Thorne who also served as the film's consultant being the world's expert on Einstein's general theory of relativity (no big deal, right?). Under Thorne's guidance, the team used Albert Einstein's equations on general relativity to help build what many call the most accurate depiction of a black hole ever committed to film and the look of which specifically to help the team understand how light could be affected by a black hole. However, all those details aside, Nolan still needed to tell a story. Some of the facts would need to be distorted. Mark Twain once said, which Neil deGrasse Tyson repeated when discussing the science of Interstellar, "First, get your facts straight, then distort them at your leisure." I'm just saying accept the science stuff like "Yes! Real science!" but don't get too bent out of shape on the other things otherwise you won't enjoy what an amazing film it is.
 
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28. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 04:13 VaranDragon
 
The Arrival was pretty cool. Non-linear existence in time is pretty fascinating although it seems more like metaphysical conjecture than anything that "might" be in the realm of possibility. Still the film worked quite well, and would have become a cult classics if it had refrained from hollywood tropes, like: *spoilers in secret text*

1: Those ridiculous soldiers somehow smuggling a bunch of explosives onto an alien starship, without anyone noticing. Jesus what an eyeroll. Rolleyes

2: The lead character's final contact with the aliens when she enters a pod and for some reason suddenly has the ability to share their atmosphere and living environment. This was put in the film for purely sentimental reasons, so that the audience has a nice touchy feel ET moment. The film definitely doesn't need it, and is weaker for it. Truly /facepalm inducing. I swear I facepalmed in the theater.
 
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27. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 02:07 jdreyer
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 20:07:
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 19:38:
I don't know. I think the last few years have been good for sci-fi, especial cerebral. Interstellar, The Martian, Arrival, Looper, and Predestination. Then there's Moon, Ex Machina, District 9, Source Code, and others that I'm forgetting. Of course, there have been some real stickers like Jupiter Ascending.
Interstellar, Looper, Predestination and Source Code all have time travel components and hence have similar problems. I loved the first two thirds of Interstellar and the last third much less. I recently watched it again since it was on the movie channels and noticed a really bad plot problem I missed in the original viewing. Although, in my defense, I do try my best to "suspend my disbelief" when watching films the first time through.

Specifically, when they are planning on going down to the first planet near the black hole -- they actually discuss how time dilation is going to be a problem. That one hour on the planet will be seven years to the ship in orbit. Yet, they fail to realize that means the data they have been getting for the past decade came from someone who had been on the planet less than two hours. And they never notice the data being sent was exactly the same every time? Terrible hole...

There's an even bigger hole. In order for that time dilation effect to occur, the planet itself must be traveling and near the speed of light. Which means that little landing skiff would have to approach the speed of light to catch it. And then escape the massive gravitational pull of a black hole that accelerates a planet to nearly the speed of light to return to the mothership.

And I thought the BS Dr. Mann pulled was actually pretty realistic, given his circumstances. Some people, alone for a decade, might do the same thing just to be rescued. There are some fantastical elements to the movie and a few problems with the ending, but I've seen it a couple of times and always enjoy it.

Still, that wave sequence was freaking awesome, and I love Chris Nolan's movies. I can't wait for Dunkirk.
 
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26. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 01:58 jdreyer
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 19:38:

I don't know. I think the last few years have been good for sci-fi, especial cerebral. Interstellar, The Martian, Arrival, Looper, and Predestination. Then there's Moon, Ex Machina, District 9, Source Code, and others that I'm forgetting. Of course, there have been some real stickers like Jupiter Ascending.

Calling Jupiter Ascending sci fi is like calling Star Wars or John Carter or Edge of Tomorrow sci fi. None of those is sci fi. That being said, Jupiter Ascending was awesome.

Yeah, your list is pretty good. And you had the sense not to include Prometheus in there.
 
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25. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 16, 2017, 01:54 jdreyer
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 18:25:
jdreyer wrote on Feb 14, 2017, 11:48:
TFA should have told a unique story, but chose to be an imitation.
Rogue One should have been an imitation, but chose to tell a unique story.

Interesting analysis. Have yet to see Rogue One. Waiting for its release on DVD.

On a side note saw The Arrival. Excellent, cerebral sci-fi! I didn't think it was Oscar "Best Picture" worthy, but it was excellent. The real star of the film is the alien language. It's a unique aspect of the movie that I've not seen in any form elsewhere.

Did you see nine better films than Arrival last year?
 
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24. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 15, 2017, 20:07 Mr. Tact
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 19:38:
I don't know. I think the last few years have been good for sci-fi, especial cerebral. Interstellar, The Martian, Arrival, Looper, and Predestination. Then there's Moon, Ex Machina, District 9, Source Code, and others that I'm forgetting. Of course, there have been some real stickers like Jupiter Ascending.
Interstellar, Looper, Predestination and Source Code all have time travel components and hence have similar problems. I loved the first two thirds of Interstellar and the last third much less. I recently watched it again since it was on the movie channels and noticed a really bad plot problem I missed in the original viewing. Although, in my defense, I do try my best to "suspend my disbelief" when watching films the first time through.

Specifically, when they are planning on going down to the first planet near the black hole -- they actually discuss how time dilation is going to be a problem. That one hour on the planet will be seven years to the ship in orbit. Yet, they fail to realize that means the data they have been getting for the past decade came from someone who had been on the planet less than two hours. And they never notice the data being sent was exactly the same every time? Terrible hole...

I thought Ex Machina was also very good. Had forgotten about it.. movies always get bonus points in my book for not having "Hollywood" endings. Moon was interesting and it was 2009 so, kind of out of my couple of years range. As is District 9 which I didn't particularly care for anyway. And yeah, while mildly entertaining, Jupiter Ascending was sci-fi fluff.
 
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23. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 15, 2017, 19:38 Kxmode
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 18:32:
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 18:25:
On a side note saw The Arrival. Excellent, cerebral sci-fi! I didn't think it was Oscar "Best Picture" worthy but it was extremely good. The real star of the film is the alien language. It's the most unique aspect of the film that I've not seen in any form elsewhere.
First, it is just "Arrival" -- "The Arrival" is a pretty bad Charlie Sheen movie from 1996. ;P

LOL! Totally forgot about that.

Mr. Tact wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 18:32:
That aside, I really liked it too, I thought it was the best sci-fi movie of the last couple of years. However, it hasn't gotten broad praise from the sci-fi community. Some people dislike any story involving time manipulations, which I have some sympathy for but it didn't bother me in this film.

I don't know. I think the last few years have been good for sci-fi, especial cerebral. Interstellar, The Martian, Arrival, Looper, and Predestination. Then there's Moon, Ex Machina, District 9, Source Code, and others that I'm forgetting. Of course, there have been some real stickers like Jupiter Ascending.
 
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22. Re: Out of the Blue Feb 15, 2017, 18:32 Mr. Tact
 
Kxmode wrote on Feb 15, 2017, 18:25:
On a side note saw The Arrival. Excellent, cerebral sci-fi! I didn't think it was Oscar "Best Picture" worthy but it was extremely good. The real star of the film is the alien language. It's the most unique aspect of the film that I've not seen in any form elsewhere.
First, it is just "Arrival" -- "The Arrival" is a pretty bad Charlie Sheen movie from 1996.

That aside, I really liked it too, I thought it was the best sci-fi movie of the last couple of years. However, it hasn't gotten broad praise from the sci-fi community. Some people dislike any story involving time manipulations, which I have some sympathy for but it didn't bother me in this film.
 
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