Tuesday, December 30, 2008


The Doctor Who Christmas Special came in 2nd in the ratings to something I didn't even know was airing: Wallace and Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death. I want to see that.

Disney has pulled out of the Narnia trilogy, leaving Walden shopping for a partner to help them finish the 3rd movie.

SciFi Wire has an article about shows on the bubble, which may not be renewed. Unfortunately, I watch most of them. I hope the odds are better than they indicate.

It sounds like Torchwood season 3 (which is basically a mini-series in length) will be toned down a bit for US audiences. (The 2nd season had a "family friendly" version that played in the early hours, so it is possibly they just don't want to re-edit a 2nd version this year to catch some of the Doctor Who audience.)

io9 has great images of Jupiter and Ganymede and Mars.

io9 also has an interview with David Hewlett (Rodney) about the end of Stargate: Atlantis.

This is a great week for stargazing (weather permitting). Venus, Mercury and Jupiter will all be visible tomorrow night just after sunset, and the Geminid Meteor Shower will be just before dawn on Saturday.

Check out Henry Jenkin's blog for an interview with Neil Gaiman and an introduction to a lecture series featuring JMS.

The Special Space issue of National Geographic features a forward titled "My Mars" by Ray Bradbury with art by Michael Whelan. Or check out the rest in the table of contents.

There seem to be a bunch of "2008 Top" lists wrapping up the year which I'm going to group together.
* Top 10 stories of spaceflight from space.com
* Top 10 scientific breakthroughs from ars technica (per Science magazine)
* Top 9 books published in 2008 from Adventures in Reading
* 5 best sci-fi books of 2008 from Bookgasm
* 6 new web technologies from Wired
* Top 10 green tech breakthroughs from Wired
* Top 10 technology breakthroughs from Wired
* SF Signal ran a 3-part article on the best genre works of 2008: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

DVR for tonight:
7pm Leverage (TNT)

Friday, December 19, 2008


James Cameron is rumored to be interested in directing JMS's script for Forbidden Planet.

Dapperstach has as pic of the day the Periodic Table of Awesoments. Great geeky humor.

In honor of Dr. Horrible's release on dvd today, i09 lists Singing Supervillains (and provides video of several).

Several sites today have memorials for Majel Barrett-Roddenberry: SciFi Wire, Tor.com, Space.com, Zap2It, and Memory Alpha even has a wiki page.

The Spout.com blog is having a free Scifi film festival. 8 cheesy old scifi films are available online for free.

DVR for tonight:
7pm Sanctuary
8pm Ghost Whisperer
10pm Numb3rs
--for Saturday:
6pm Lost Treasure of the Grand Canyon (SCIFI - yes, a cheesy Saturday SciFi movie, but it has Michael Shanks. See here for more info.)

Thursday, December 18, 2008


RIP Majel Barrett Roddenberry. The first lady of Star Trek has died of leukemia at 76.

SyFy Portal has a 10 Best Sci-Fi TV episodes of 2008. I actually agree with several of these, but I haven't sat down and thought about what my list would be yet (that time usually comes before award nominations are due, not at the end of the year).

Jane Espenson (writer & producer for Buffy, BSG, etc.) is planning to write a 5-issue comic book series focused on Oz from Buffy.

Weburbanist has a list of 15 Geeky Gadgets (some are real and some appear to be artist concepts). A couple of these are great (as well as funny).

A working reproduction of a 2,100 year old astronomical device (dubbed the "first computer") has been unveiled and demonstrated. Sources: Network World (via Slashdot) and Tor.com (with link to Wired).

1,000 new (or previously thought to be extinct) species have been discovered in Vietnam.

Bruce Campbell has directed and starred in a self-referential spoof, and now wishes the name of his character was changed to avoid confusion about reality.

There is nothing on TV tonight. Time to catch up on the stuff piling up on the DVR.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sample picture

Posted by ShoZu

I decided to test sending a picture from my phone to the blog. Turned out to be pretty easy.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


BBC America is picking up Ashes to Ashes, the 80s-era sequel the BBC did to Life on Mars. It will begin airing in March.

The New Mexico Spaceport just received FAA clearance for vertical and horizontal launches, and the carrier for Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo is planning a test flight before the end of the year.

Harrison Ford has signed on to star in a comedy movie with JJ Abrams for Paramount.

2 new actresses have been signed on for season 2 of True Blood.

A previously unknown city that provides a link between ancient cultures has been unearthed in Peru.

The Dr. Horrible dvd (coming this week) will have application videos from fans trying to join the Evil League of Evil. Check out 3 at i09.

DVR for tonight:
8pm Pushing Daisies
9pm Private Practice & Life
10pm CSI:NY

Monday, December 15, 2008


The year-end lists are arriving early. Network World has The Wackiest Stories of 2008.

Robert Carlyle (Full Monty) has been cast as the lead in Stargate: Universe. Sources: Zap2It, SciFi Wire, EW.

The Fall 2008 issue of Subterranean Online is now available with stories by Alastair Reynolds, Chris Roberson, and Mary Robinette Kowal (among others).

Ronald Moore's (BSG) new show, Virtuality, will be delayed or completely rewritten (probably because the people at FOX just didn't get it). More info at io9.

The Writer's Guild Nominations (for TV) have been announced. 3 of the 5 shows nominated for best new series are ones I actually like. Who'd have guessed it? Most of the other categories have barely one nominee I've even seen.

The actor who played House's PI this season will have an arc as a con man on CSI.

Although not confirmed, it sounds like Lost season 5 may air uninterrupted.

Geek toys I felt the need to share: celestial globe, R2D2 aquarium

DVRs for tonight:
8pm Chuck, Big Bang Theory, & Sarah Connor Chronicles
830 How I Met Your Mother
9pm Heroes & 2.5 Men

Friday, December 12, 2008


RIP Van Johnson. He died today at 92. I feel the need to go rewatch one of his movies (Brigadoon, A Guy Named Joe, Three Guys Named Mike, The Last Time I Saw Paris, etc....)

Tonight will have the largest full moon in 15 years. Remember to look up.

Happy Birthday to the radio. Marconi first demonstrated it on this day in 1896.

A Lifetime Achievement award has been given to cat videos. Check out the tribute montage.

Used coffee grounds apparently are a good source of biodiesel fuel.

Darpa (with partners) is planning to make algae into jet fuel.

Hugh Jackman will be hosting the Oscars this year. Is he the first non-comedian to host?

Lauren Graham (Gilmore Girls) is coming back to TV comedy.

SciFi Wire has the creator of Fast Forward discussing how they will do the show.

Scientists have found a 2,000 year old brain (the oldest yet discovered in Britain).

Google has taken Chrome out of beta after only 100 days.

CNet has a slideshow with commentary on electric cars.

And, in the seriously disturbing category, an inventor has made himself a robot wife.

DVR for tonight:
Stargate: Atlantis

Thursday, December 11, 2008


The Golden Globe nominations have been announced. I usually like their choices better than other awards, but they seem more mainstream this year. I've only seen 5 of the TV shows (True Blood, House, Monk, The Closer, and How I Met Your Mother), and I'm not sure there are even 5 of the movies I was tempted to watch (and a lot more than 5 that I haven't even heard of before).

EW.com has an interview with Bryan Fuller about his plans for Heroes.

Majel Barrett-Roddenberry will once again play the voice of the computer in Star Trek.

DVR for tonight:
8pm My Name is Earl
9pm CSI (part 1 of 2-part goodbye ep for William Peterson)
10pm Eleventh Hour

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


io9 has 7 pages of a comic book that comes after Farscape: Peacekeeper Wars.

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog comes out on dvd next week, and i09 has comments from Joss Whedon about why it is worth the money (although the price now is less than when the post was made).

The Watchmen preview that was only shown at Comic Con is now available for free at iTunes.

Sarah Jane Adventures renewed for another season. No idea when it might play in the US though.

Tim Burton's next project after Alice in Wonderland is going to be a remake of Dark Shadows with Johnny Depp. Sources: Collider and io9

An implant in the brain and a voice synthesizer are allowing a man whose paralysis has made him mute to speak again.

Studying ants may lead to better artificial limbs.

Paul McCartney is releasing his new album as a DRM-free download. You can listen to every song before deciding to buy, and you can buy just the MP3 version or a physical (CD, vinyl, or deluxe) copy that comes with the MP3 version.

DVRs for tonight:
8pm Pushing Daisies
9pm Private Practice & Life
10pm CSI:NY

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Happy 40th anniversary to the computer mouse. The BBC has an article with videos (including some of the original demo). CNet has a photo gallery. Wired has a photo gallery and an article about the demo and the Stanford event today to celebrate it. (Check out the Wired gallery for great trivia - like the trackball being 16 years older than the mouse.) Last week Logitech celebrated the creation of their 1 billionth mouse, and they've come a long way since the original piece of wood with one button.

Google is going to have complete catalogs of several magazines available online.

Wired.com is having a photo contest for animal pictures. Check out some of the pics submitted so far.

Wired also has a new picture of the Swan Nebula taken by the Spitzer Space Telescope.

NBC is going to move Jay Leno to 10pm every night. With "reality" already taking up the 8pm hour of most nights, this will significantly reduce the amount of scripted programming they air.

SciFi Wire has an interview with Charlaine Harris about True Blood, her next Sookie Stackhouse book, and some of her mysteries.

Treehugger.com's Design and Architecture page has a cool expanding bookcase.

Preliminary studies show that cord blood transplants engraft faster than bone marrow transplants, reducing the risk for patients.

DVRs for tonight:
8pm House
9pm Leverage (pilot at 9, new ep at 10)

Monday, December 8, 2008


If you're like me and completely missed the season premiere of Robot Chicken last night, i09 has pictures and a link to the entire episode online. See why Ronald Moore and Joss Whedon want to kill Seth Green.

RIP Forrest J Ackerman. The man who came up with the term "sci-fi" and became the most famous fan ever has died at the age of 92. Sources: LA Times, SFWA, SF Scope, SciFi Wire list of 25 things to miss about Forry, and SF Signal.

SF Gate has an article about tomorrow's 40th anniversary event for computer history fans.

HP and Arizona State University have developed a better flexible display, although it will be years before we see it available commercially.

Researchers have found a link between Herpes cold sores and Alzheimer's Disease. This may lead to antiviral treatments or a vaccine.

If you are still using Firefox 2.0, upgrade to 3.0 instead of installing the final security patch, which will remove the anti-phishing features.

TVShowsonDVD has information on the Direct to DVD Dead Like Me movie coming out in February.

Hawaii is planning to set up an electric car charging network, hoping to replace gas cars (which causes most of their pollution and is expensive to get on the islands) with electric from renewable energy sources by 2030.

Wired has an article about a comic book designed to teach science.

DVRs for tonight:
8pm Big Bang Theory, Chuck, & Sarah Connor Chronicles
830 How I Met Your Mother
9pm Heroes & 2.5 Men

Friday, December 5, 2008


Joseph Fiennes and John Cho are in negotiations to join the cast of Fast Forward.

SF Signal lists a huge batch of free SF short stories that are now available online (including stories by Jack McDevitt and Nina Kiriki Hoffman).

Neil Gaiman lists his favorite 3 books for Barnes & Noble. How is it that I've only read one of these?

The Well Medicated blog has 45 vintage illustrations from Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, or similar showing how people imagined the space age would look.

SF Signal links to discussions on what your bookshelves say about you. However, in the 2 schools of thought they mention, they don't seem to consider the combination. My bookshelf is very much a combination of books I've read and liked and books I intend to read at some point (and I do periodically chip away at those).

The BBC is planning yet another version of The Day of the Triffids. Haven't they told this story enough?

MTV Movies blog has an interview with JMS about his World War Z movie adaptation.

Crystals found in Australian rocks have made scientists completely rethink the way the Earth would have looked 4.2 million years ago.

This week the New York Times had an article filled with chestnut recipes. I like chestnuts, but tend to serve them the same couple ways all the time. I might try some of these.

SciFi Wire has an article about the 3rd Librarian movie, playing this Sunday on TNT.

DVRs for tonight:
Stargate: Atlantis
Ghost Whisperer
--for Saturday:
Legend of the Seeker
--for Sunday:
Librarian 3: Curse of the Judas Chalice (TNT)

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Bryan Fuller (creator or co-creator of Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls, and Pushing Daisies) is returning to the writing staff at Heroes (he wrote 2 episodes in 1st season). This is part of a 2-year deal with Universal where he will develop new projects as well.

The Big Picture has a Hubble Telescope advent calendar - 25 beautiful pictures, revealed one day at a time, from the Hubble Telescope. Along similar lines, hubblesite has printable holiday cards featuring Hubble photos.

Research in energy harvesting looks like it may lead to cell phones that are powered by talking.

Stupid law example of the day: In Australia, a company owns a copyright on a gene (or at least testing and treatment related to having the gene). As a result, sick babies can't be diagnosed or treated in time to help them.

Stupid invention example: Expanded usage of an invention designed to annoy people.

DVRs for tonight:
8pm My Name is Earl
9pm CSI & Grey's Anatomy
10pm Eleventh Hour

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


British researchers have found a way to use a patient's own stem cells to repair their hearts. They should be ready for human trials within 3 years. This could eliminate the need for heart transplants.

The new issue of Lone Star Stories (free online) has a story by Nina Kiriki Hoffman.

Craig T. Nelson will be playing a villain in a 3-episode arc of CSI:NY.

Fred Thompson will guest star on Life on Mars as the chief of detectives.

The Telegraph has an article about a mechanical glove being used to restore dexterity in a musician's hand after a stroke.

CNet has an article about companies that will pay you for your old (but working) electronics.

The Book Design Review blog lists their favorite book covers of 2008. Note: these are their best in terms of cover design, not artwork. There are very few with what I would consider artwork even included, but several of the designs are impressive.

DVRs for tonight:
8pm Pushing Daisies
9pm Private Practice & Life

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


A sad day for the theater: the American Musical Theater of San Jose has closed its doors and is filing for bankruptcy. I've seen several great plays there and was looking forward to another in a few months. :(

An accidental discovery during solar cell research may lead to better digital cameras.

CBS has ordered 5 more episodes of Eleventh Hour (not the full back-9, but still a pickup).

Courtney B. Vance (The Last Supper, etc.) and Jack Davenport (Coupling, Pirates of the Caribbean) have been cast in a new SF show for ABC called Fast Forward. It is based on a book by Robert J. Sawyer that I haven't read yet.

SciFi Channel gave the BSG prequel Caprica a green light.

Circlet Press is offering free SF/F erotica like an advent calendar - one story per day for 23 days (stories only available for one day each).

Amazon is sponsoring the 2nd year of the Give-1-get-1 program for the One Laptop Per Child laptops.

CNet has an article on the latest improvements Google Maps have made with their Street View.

Wired has an amusing article and slideshow about geek hotels around the world.

iTunes will start selling ebooks which have a reader bundled with the book download, so an installed reader isn't necessary.

The International Space Station is celebrating a decade in orbit, and CNet has a slideshow.

The makers of Slingbox have started a video site at sling.com which is similar to Hulu.com but has some tempting features.

DVR for tonight:
8pm House
9pm Fringe