So What Are you Reading?: Generations

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by captcalhoun, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Jan 31, 2007
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    Latest recreational read (i.e. not for working reasons) was Autonomy by Daniel Blythe - a nice spot of Dr Who fun for the anniversary. Not sure what to go for next...
     
  2. Kertrats47

    Kertrats47 Commodore Commodore

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    May 3, 2010
    Location:
    Alberta, Canada
    Just posted my review of the conclusion to The Left Hand of Destiny by J.G. Hertzler and Jeffrey Lang.

    Right now I'm reading Foul Deeds Will Rise by Greg Cox.
     
  3. EnriqueH

    EnriqueH Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Miami
    Currently reading the first Trek novel: Mission to Horatius.
     
  4. Reanok

    Reanok Commodore Commodore

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    Dec 26, 2002
    I just finished reading a terrific non Star trek sci-fi novel Gravity by Tess Gerritsen it's a rollercoaster ride of a book about NASA and the I.S.S. having a major crisis.I read it in a day. I'm now reading Star Trek TOS Foul deeds will rise by Greg Cox.
     
  5. Smellincoffee

    Smellincoffee Commodore Commodore

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    Heart of Dixie
    I just read Twilight's End, in which Kirk and the Enterprise must help a planet...spin itself. The place is tidally locked and what little ecosystem there was has been destroyed by settling, so the colonists decided to fill the place with impulse engines and then make them go. For some reason, Kirk and Spock think this is a perfectly rational use of resources, and try to pitch in. Alas, there are those who think this is crazy, McCoy included, and so the spinners have to contend against saboteurs, kidnappers, and the like. Fortunately they have beer. Seriously, at one point Kirk decides to introduce the natives to beer, getting his captors good and drunk to make his escape. It's silly/fun.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Actually Twilight's End is a pretty solid hard-SF novel by Trek standards. Jerry Oltion is an author who's done a ton of stuff for Analog, the premier hard-SF story magazine, and his Trek fiction always has interesting ideas at the heart of it.

    The problem is that, since that book (and Section 31: Rogue, also dealing with a tidally locked planet) came out, new simulations have revealed that the habitable zone on a tidally locked planet would be much broader than the narrow strip around the terminator that used to be assumed, since atmospheric and oceanic convection would carry the day side's heat over a fairly wide portion of the night side. Essentially, the denser the atmosphere (particularly the carbon dioxide content), the wider the habitable band becomes.
     
  7. Ktrek

    Ktrek Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2003
    Chris,

    I always enjoy reading your science responses. The idea of a tidally locked planet is interesting and I wonder if life could really be supported on such an environment. We probably will never know. There are obviously plenty of examples of tidally locked bodies but all are moons. We have no proofs, that I am aware, of tidally locked planets in the known universe. So, wouldn't such be a hypothetical extrapolation and maybe even a leap of faith to believe such exists?

    Kevin
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Actually Mercury is tidally locked to the Sun in a 3-to-2 spin-orbit coupling, meaning that it rotates three times for every two revolutions. The only reason it isn't in a 1-to-1 tidal lock is because of the eccentricity of its orbit.

    Also, a very large percentage of the extrasolar planets we've discovered are close enough to their stars that they would have to be tidally locked. This is because exoplanets close to their stars induce more gravitational wobble in the stars' motion and are easier to detect.

    There is no "faith" in science. Faith is belief without evidence or in defiance of evidence. Scientific hypotheses are based entirely on extrapolation from evidence and from the laws of the universe. If we know the equations that govern planetary motion in general, then we can predict the behavior of planets with a given set of initial conditions. That is not "faith" at all, because we know from an overwhelming abundance of evidence that the laws of physics operate in that way throughout the observable universe and that they aren't magically going to stop working that way for no reason. It doesn't matter that we've never seen a tidally locked planet, because the way that air and water flow, the way that heat is transferred by convection, the way that carbon dioxide traps heat in an atmosphere, and so forth are basic to the chemistry and physics of those processes and are going to be the same everywhere. Only the specific context in which the laws operate is going to be different, and if we know the laws, we can plug in the specific conditions and predict the probable outcome.

    It's also not "faith" because scientists do not pretend to have absolute certainty; they only report what their models say is likely to happen. If new evidence conflicts with their models, then they will alter their models to fit the evidence. For instance, it used to be believed, based on the observations we had, that Mercury was in a 1-to-1 tidal lock, but further observations revealed that it was actually 3-to-2.

    By the same token, there is no "proof" in science either, because proof implies final, absolute certainty. Proof only exists in mathematics. Science is based on theories that make testable predictions. As long as the predictions are borne out by the evidence, the theories are followed; and if new evidence conflicts with the predictions, the theories are revised accordingly. That's why our old models about tidally locked planets having razor-thin habitable zones have given way to new models based on more sophisticated climate simulations. The scientists who arrived at the initial conclusion were making certain simplifying assumptions or failing to take certain atmospheric or thermodynamic factors into account. Today, we have more powerful computers that can model the physics more fully and give more accurate results. And when we actually do start to observe tidally locked exoplanets with sufficiently sensitive telescopes, we'll no doubt discover some surprises that will lead us to refine our models still further. But we stick with the models we have until we have reason not to, because they're better than the available alternatives.
     
  9. EnriqueH

    EnriqueH Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Location:
    Miami
    Just finished "Mission to Horatius".

    I enjoyed it. It's supposed to be a children's book, but I thought it got the characters down very well.

    I enjoyed it more than "Spock Must Die".

    The only problem I had with the story was the violation of the Prime Directive, but it still FELT like a TOS adventure.
     
  10. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Commodore Commodore

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    Jan 20, 2005
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    Woodward, OK
    Finally get around to Rise of the Federation: Tower of Babel.
     
  11. Endgame

    Endgame Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    Location:
    Burnaby, BC Canada
    I am reading the "Rebels" trilogy of DS9 novels. Only still treading water as to finishing 24 ST novels per year (just over now). Also reading an older collection of essays in "Landmarks" edited by Roberta Birks, Tomi Eng, & Julie Walchli (1998). In this, I found an interesting essay by Stephen Jay Gould (1995) called "Dinomania" which with the right change of details could be applied to the Star Trek franchise and funding for the teaching of astronomy & astrophysics perhaps. I shall try to see if I can include the link for the article by Gould:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/1993/aug/12/dinomania/?page=1

    I like hard science fiction and do subscribe to "Analog" and I am a friend to science though do not have a full undergraduate degree in a pure science and I am a Christian but am willing to entertain various forms of critical thinking about science debating "presuppositionalism" and "evidentialism" but I also do like entertaining stories and blockbuster movies (if they still exist). Perhaps the argument in "Dinomania" does not crossover to adequately serve as an analogy between space travel science and space travel entertainment.

    Also started watching "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (adolescent angst and vampires) with emphasis on the angst. "Wolfblood" is an analogous TV series which I watched some of recently. Being in BC, I might try to see genuine wolves before they become more endangered. Probably would mean a planned vacation though. Still only in Season 2 of Star Trek: The Next Generation. May get the DVDs from a local library in order to get the features and interviews.
     
  12. indianatrekker26

    indianatrekker26 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    I'm halfway through TOS: Serpents in the Garden. I went back and rewatched A Private Little War before starting this. Usually I'm not a fan of sequel-books, but of all the TOS episodes, this one really deserved a followup. I'm really enjoying it so far.
    I also jumped back into the post-series stuff in chronological order with DS9: Abyss. This one is off and running, great stuff.
    Next up will be TOS: Foul Deeds Will Rise, and DS9: Demons of Air and Darkness.
     
  13. kirk55555

    kirk55555 Commodore Commodore

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    Jul 22, 2011
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    Washington State, USA
    I read Immortal Coil (I managed to get it at a great price from Amazon) and it was very good. I'd already read the two books that continue the story, so I'm glad I was finally able to read this. Its a great story, just like the books that come from it.
     
  14. CaffeineAddict

    CaffeineAddict Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Despite never really liking Voyager, after reading praise for the novels on this board I read Full Circle - and really enjoyed it. Seemed like there was more character development in that one book than the whole of the seven seasons of the show.
     
  15. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    Washington, DC
    I know, right?

    And it just gets better from here. Full Circle and Unworthy are probably the two worst Voyager relaunch novels. Children of the Storm and Acts of Contrition are stunning.
     
  16. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

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    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    I'm rereading 'Double Helix' by various authors. I don't remember if I liked it the first time around, I assume I did because I'm enjoying the reread.
     
  17. CaffeineAddict

    CaffeineAddict Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Well if that counts as the worst, I look forward to reading the rest!
     
  18. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

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    Jun 28, 2010
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    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    After completing my Titan re-read, I just started "Avatar" a couple of days ago to go through DS9 again :)
     
  19. Relayer1

    Relayer1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2011
    Location:
    The Black Country, England
    Still on Seekers 2.

    Can't seem to get through these - just too Planet of the week' for me...
     
  20. Etoile

    Etoile Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2006
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Articles of the Federation, which is taking me a while for various reasons, but I'm enjoying it quite a bit.
     

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