Monday, May 31, 2010

Premium Select Links

Today is a day for writing and revising, being the last holiday before school starts up again. (Only 73 days until my Masters Degree is completed!) So let me do a quick link round-up before getting down to work here.

  • My critique (NOT a review, I think) of Paolo Bacigalupi's The Windup Girl generated some good comments on SFSignal and a thoughtful post on the Apex Blog by John Ginsberg-Stevens. Apropos of that, Paul Raven at Futurismic points out that Windup Girl is looking depressingly predictive (although more in terms of genetically modified monoculture food crops than super-ninja geisha).
  • SF's favorite photographer, Kyle Cassidy, has been roaming around my old stomping grounds in central/northern Arizona. He's got an online photo-book up showing what he was able to do there using only his iPhone.
  • In the cool-science end of things, i09 has an article on tattoos that could help diabetics track their blood sugar. Very neat concept in the wearable/permanent body computing category.
  • I was very sad to hear news of Martin Gardner's passing. If it weren't for his writing, I'd be a very different person today, I think. I loved his math-puzzle book The Incredible Dr. Matrix when I was growing up. His skeptical books, along with Carl Sagan's The Demon Haunted World were instrumental in shaping my world-view.
  • Over at Torque Control, I'm a little behind on the non-fiction reading for the Masterclass (I'm reading-along-at-home, since I won't be able to get there this year). I've been particularly interested in the non-fiction articles: the one on how the sounds of railroads may have influenced the development of music and how technology has affected the practice of ethnomusicology have struck me as more sfnal than some sf. The ethnomusicology one is particularly insightful; I agree with Niall that the railroads article is a bit of a stretch and goes on a bit long.
  • Jonathan McCalmont's column on the video game Dead Space makes me much more interested in something that I'll never play than I have any right to be.
  • I've been grabbing sf/f desktop wallpapers from CreativeFan and Tor has wallpapers from each of this year's Best Artist Hugo nominees.
  • And the podcast conversations between Gary K. Wolfe and Jonathan Strahan continue to be very interesting. Podcast #4 sees them explains exactly my philosophy on 'cannons' and 'reading lists' (which is how I approached my 'classics reading' project).

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