Thursday, August 28, 2008


The new season hasn't even started yet, and NBC has already announced they are picking up the "back 9" to give Chuck a full season order.

Blythe Danner will be guest starring on Medium this season.

Someone has scanned and put the entire first year of Astounding Stories magazine online. Now if only the navigation and image quality were a little better.

Videohound is listing 10 Underrated Sci-Fi Movies. Talk about a mixed bag. They include the wonderful Gattaca and Enemy Mine, some I thought were good, a few I haven't watched that I might track down, but there are also some weird ones listed I just didn't like.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


SciFi Wire has an interview with the writers of Fringe about how they came up with the show.

SciFi Wire also has a look at the Sookie Stackhouse TV show True Blood and why they think it will be good.

i09 has and interview and gallery of Bob Eggleton's amazing artwork.

To promote the new season of Pushing Daisies, ABC is bringing free pie to 10 cities - including SF.

CNet has a slideshow look at IE8. Some of the new features actually look pretty good (but I'll stick with Firefox).

Anticipation (next year's Worldcon) has announced they will have a special Hugo award for Best Graphic Story. And, while you're thinking of Graphic Novels, the Washington Post has an article on their history. (Although they lose points for not mentioning ElfQuest.)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Torchwood season 3 has begun filming. Check out the article at Futon Critic for recurring characters who will appear.

Researchers using Google Earth images from around the world have found that cows tend to rest in a north/south orientation, showing they have an internal compass that nobody noticed before. Sources: Yahoo article, CNet article, LA Times story.

Wallace & Gromit are the new fashion models for British department store Harvey Nichols. It is amusing to see Wallace wearing something other than the same old sweater vests, but I hope this doesn't delay the next movie too much.

Cat story of the day: A German cat survived being walled in beneath a bathtub for 7 weeks. She lost 9 pounds, but has now (18 days later) recovered almost completely.

ABC has picked up 5 new shows for midseason. I don't know if any of them will be watchable, but they all have good cast/crew people. The shows are: "Cupid" (Rob Thomas is remaking his show from the 90s), "Castle" (with Nathan Fillion), "Single with Parents" (with Alyssa Milano, Annie Potts, and Beau Bridges), "The Unusuals" (with Amber Tamblyn, Harold Perrineau, and Adam Goldberg), and "Better off Ted" (with Jay Harrington and a writer from My Name is Earl).

It sounds like they might be building a carbon-neutral ziggurat in Dubai that could house up to 1.1 million people.

The script for Transformers 2 has been modified to include Shia LaBeouf's hand injury (which he got in a car accident last month) so he doesn't further injure himself completing the movie.

Looking for a reading list? Books that have had at least one nomination so far for the 2008 Nebula Awards are listed at This is not the preliminary ballot, but it is likely the books making the preliminary ballot will be a subset of this list.

DVR for tonight:
Greek (2nd season premiere)

Monday, August 25, 2008


The US version of Eleventh Hour is switching their pilot episode. I actually think this is a good decision this time, since it sounds like they are going for an original script instead of an adaptation of one of the weakest scripts from the UK version.

Modern Rosetta Stones (containing 8 languages and 13,500 pages of text) meant to be readable for 2,000-10,000 years have been created and distributed.

MSNBC has an article about an exoskeleton in clinical trials in Israel which allows paraplegics to walk.

In honor of Ray Bradbury's 88th birthday last Friday, SF Signal had a funny vintage TV commercial in which he makes an appearance.

Cute Overload today has some great pictures today showing that some people have way too much fun playing with food presentation.

John Scalzi has released a deleted chapter from The Last Colony (some parts were changed and put in other parts of The Last Colony and some moved into Zoe's Tale, so not all of it was deleted) as part of Subterranean's Summer magazine.

DVR for tonight:
The Closer
The Middleman
Daily Show

Friday, August 22, 2008


One day after announcing the ending of Stargate Atlantis (which producer Joseph Mallozzi comments on in his blog), SciFi is announcing the launching of a 3rd Stargate show. Stargate Universe will premier next summer, beginning with a 2-hour movie. SciFi Wire announcement.

The earlier discussion of the Top 20 SF Novels of the Past 20 Years, has led to an attempt to make a similar list for Fantasy. I'm sure I'll disagree with any list they come up with, but I find the discussion interesting. (Tastes really vary, but there are some great books and authors listed.)

There is a great interview with Michael Chabon (Yiddish Policemen's Union) at the LA Times.

DVRs for tonight:
Stargate Atlantis

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Stargate Atlantis will end with this season (5th) and continue as movies.

Hayao Miyazaki (Howl's Moving Castle, Princesss Mononoke, Spirited Away, etc.) has a new movie, "Ponyo on the Cliff," which is getting raves in Japan. It sounds like a variation on The Little Mermaid. I wonder when we'll get a chance to see it here.

The Australian Museum Eureka Prize for scientific research has been awarded to a PhD student who found a way to make solar cells cheaply in a pizza oven.

Dave Langford has published his Top 20 SF books (although he cheated and also included other "Top" lists in boxes).

F&SF has a discussion about online short fiction.

InfoWorld has an article claiming that the standardization of JavaScript was a mistake. I'm not sure if I agree, but it was interesting.

DVRs for tonight:
Burn Notice

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Guillermo del Toro, Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh, and Philippa Boyens will be writing The Hobbit screenplays.

Grasping for the Wind has an article about the popularity of Urban Fantasy and predictions for the next big subgenre.

SciFi Wire lists the 9 Best Star Wars Spoofs. How is it that I've only seen 3 or 4 of these?

SciFi Wire also has a look at the characters of Virtuality.

It looks like IE is contemplating adding a privacy mode for version 8. Firefox discussed this option earlier this year, and ended up pushing it off to a future version. I wonder if IE will do the same.

i09 has an article on Space Construction in scifi and in real life.

Truthout has an article on the progress of Adult Stem Cell Treatments.

DVR for tonight:

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Today is the release date for John Scalzi's newest Old Man's War book, Zoe's Tale. He discusses the chronology of the series (including short stories) on his blog.

SciFi Wire has Behind the Scenes featurettes for Coraline.

Mark Sheppard, British "oh him" actor most recently seen in Battlestar Galactica, will appear in Dollhouse.

CNet has an article about the e-book discussions from Worldcon.

Fox has moved to block the release of the Watchmen movie, claiming that they still maintain the rights, not the person Warner Brothers paid. Waiting until the movie was in the can seems like a low and sneaky way to go.

There may actually be a possibility of a Veronica Mars movie.

DVR for tonight:

Monday, August 18, 2008


Researchers have found an early warning sign for heart disease in the eyes. People with eye damage known as retinopathy are apparently showing the first stages of heart disease.

60 baby sea turtles got confused and walked into an Italian restaurant. A conservation group got them back into the ocean.

After returning from our national park tour, I found 2 articles about the parks we visited: An arch fell in Arches (apparently the day we went), and rain forced evacuations in the Grand Canyon (considering the rain and hail on the day we visited, I'm not surprised).

Joseph Mallozzi (Stargate producer) has a Q&A with Lois McMaster Bujold on his blog.

Since I ended up missing the Denvention panel 20 Essential SF Novels of the Past 20 Years, I was interested to see that Cheryl Morgan lists the books mentioned during the panel and Niall Harrison provides comments. (Thanks to SF Signal for the links.)

i09 has coverage of a side trip to NORAD that 20 SF authors & editors took during Worldcon.

Neil Gaiman
will be in Palo Alto on October 4th, and SF on the 5th.

A huge comet (without a tail since it hasn't come close enough to the sun) has been discovered inside the orbit of Neptune.

CBS is now confirming that Laurence Fishburne will be replacing William Peterson on CSI in the 9th episode of the season.

A large solar power plant is being planned for California.

DVRs for tonight:
The Closer
The Middleman

Thursday, August 14, 2008


First, sorry for all of the fascinating news I missed. I didn't spend more than a few minutes online in the 10 days I was gone, and some news sources don't display that long in their feeds.

I'm back from Worldcon. It was lots of fun. Photos (not mine) can be found at or
SF Signal has a great list of Worldcon reports and other photo collections.

The Hugo awards were announced. Most of the awards went to either my 1st or 2nd choices, so I'm pretty pleased. Here is the list of winners with a link to the voting results.

Locus has a listing of the other awards presented at Worldcon (Sidewise, Golden Duck, etc.)

Lois McMaster Bujold has posted her Guest of Honor speech on her MySpace blog.

NPR has a 4.5 minute interview with Michael Chabon about The Yiddish Policemen's Union.

RIP Bernie Mac, Isaac Hayes, and Bernie Brillstein.

BBC America has renewed Robin Hood for a 3rd season, and Jonas Armstrong (who plays Robin Hood) has announced it will be his last.

Sara Gilbert is moving from guest star to series regular on Big Bang Theory this fall.

Michael Shanks will have a recurring role on Burn Notice starting with tonight's episode.

Christopher Lloyd has joined the cast of the upcoming SciFi mini-series Mirabilis.

Next year, after the conclusion of Battlestar Galactica, SciFi will air a 2-hour Battlestar Galactica movie that takes place just before the 2003 miniseries.

Harry Potter 6 is changing its release date from November 2008 to July 2009.

JJ Abrams is planning his next movie, an earthquake disaster film.

In other movie news, Lionsgate is planning a new Conan movie, and Universal has acquired the rights to The Wheel of Time (I don't envy the scriptwriter who has to turn 12 thick books into a coherent story).

A German study shows that Methadone kills Leukemia cells without damaging healthy cells.

A new cell-mixing technique may eliminate the need for anti-rejection drugs for transplant patients.

DVR for tonight:
Burn Notice

Friday, August 1, 2008


J.K. Rowling's book The Tales of Beedle the Bard (which had an original release of 7 hand-drawn copies) will be released on December 4th in 2 editions: standard and collector's. Net proceeds will go to charity. Sources: Omnivoracious and Yahoo!

The List Universe has the Top 10 Fantasy Worlds in Literature. I think you need to include more than 10 to get many real surprises.

The European Space Agency has great new photos of Phobos.

Blue Tea has some great Retro SF travel posters.

SF Signal has a discussion of the 20 Essential SF Novels of the Last 20 Years (preparing for the Worldcon panel on the subject). I think it will be hard to pin down and get people to agree, but it could make for an interesting argument. has pictures from today's solar eclipse.

DVRs for tonight:
530 or 8pm Doctor Who (90 minute season finale)
7 or 930pm Stargate Atlantis
6 or 9pm Monk
7 or 10pm Psych