Monthly Archives: August 2006


Rockoons: Rockets lifted by balloons to the stratosphere where they then take off. They save about 50% of their fuel cost and can handle a larger payload because the balloon lifts them for free. I read about this in an article about Van Allen, who died recently at the age of 91. He discovered the […]

My Magic number sites getting hits

I am not a sports guy, but the math surrounding baseball has always interested me. The magic number is the number of wins that a team must have to guarantee a spot in the playoffs. I wrote a php program the recalculates the magic number every hour based on public stats. I have several urls, […]

ScienceFictional/freenameastar Crash

Warning: intense geek/nerd speak follows: The IDIOTS at (never use this hosting company) have fiddled with something that killed the geeklog installation and as a result ScienceFictional is down. I tried installing a fresh copy of the software and it behaved the same way. It seems to be escaping quotes all over the place […]

On Submitting Speculative FIction

I wrote a little discussion of my submissions stats to elucidate the comment thread from a few posts back. Jim seemed surprised that I had over 100 rejections. I checked and I had over 150. I think that Jim should get in synch with Heinlein’s rules and start submitting until somebody has a lapse of […]

Whichness of What

Heinlein uses the phrase the whichness of what in The Door Into Summer, Podkayne of Mars, and Red Planet. It is a description of the nothings that we sometimes delve into at great depth and deep satisfaction when friends stay up talking to the wee hours. (Or create deep discussions in blog comments that go […]

Dead PCs

I have four PCs in the fortress of solitude in the basement. I recently bought a 60 gig hard drive at a garage sale ($3), so I wanted to test it. I tried booting up one machine after another. I hadn’t used the basement machines in a few months. My main machine was totally dead. […]

NASA Names New Crew Exploration Vehicle Orion

NASA is replacing the shuttle. The Orion Spacecraft was announced by accident today. They were originally going to announce it August 31, but an astronaut used a non-secure feed when he made the pre-recorded announcement. I have never thought the shuttle a good idea. It’s too big and too fragile. I think a smaller vehicle, […]

FLURB, a Webzine of Astonishing Tales.

Rudy Rucker is one of my favorite writers. I have read his books Software and Wetware several times each. I actually read Wetware first, and I still think it is the better novel in spite of being a sequel. Rudy is an award winning big-name SF writer. Recently, when putting together a collection of short […]