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  1. #11
    Wannabe genius Splittet's Avatar
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    What is the purpose of something is always a context thing. For you Uber, the purpose seems to be special effects. For the creator the purpose might be to present some kind of vision, for example some doubts, or to push technology, just entertain people, a combination or whatever. To me the purpose depends a little bit upon what sci-fi I am watching. There is typically an element of visual enjoyment, I love to watch stunning scenes. But I also love good stories that make me wonder and think. I think what is so great about Battlestar Galactica is the enormous depth of the show, and how it touches so many themes, it's the most philosophical show on TV. The characters are also wonderful.

  2. #12
    Lallygag Moderator Geoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uberfuhrer View Post

    I've never watched movies for that purpose. I watch movies to expand my own vision. My mind is inspired by the visual poetry of them. The characters are just a footnote for me. People are the most mundane part of a story. The worlds that the story progresses through are what count.
    Fortunately for those of us who get a kick out of character interactions and human drama, we get movies made that we enjoy (Firefly), and you get the non-human stuff you like (aliens vs predator: requiem?)

  3. #13

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    I don't think sci-fi is about technology. I also don't think it's about characters. I think it's about ideas.

    The best science fiction encourages us to think about a new idea, or to consider an old idea in a new way. The technology is just a device. It's easier to consider an idea abstractly when it's removed from our current time and place, which is why so many science fiction stories take place in the future world of outer space. Advanced technology also makes it easier to introduce story elements that can be introduced in no other way.

    Look at one of the most famous and beloved science fiction works of all time, Star Trek. Yeah, it's in the future and yeah, they have phasers and spaceships. But the stories are the same morality plays that have worked in drama for centuries. They just get a fresh coat of paint by being staged in the future. Look at perhaps THE most famous science fiction film of all time, 2001: A Space Odyssey. The idea is the thing. The story is about the evolution of man over many thousands of years and the help mankind may have gotten along the way. Now, with such a long timeline, you have to go into the future. And to go into the future, you need technology. So we have the spaceships and the computer with advanced AI. And we have human characters that propel the story. But the tech isn't the thing; the wooden characters aren't the thing; they're the coat of paint on the car, not the engine. The engine is a philosophical idea.
    Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight.

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    /Nohari

  4. #14
    The Destroyer Colors's Avatar
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    There is an element of imagining new technology in science-fiction (Example Brave New World: genetic engineering, medicated happiness), but a big part of that is also how humans fit into the new technology (restlessness from lack of free will) and somewhat how it evolves naturally (need for menial labor, human quest for happiness).

    Of course the sci-fi elements can be also be merely plot devices. Or sometimes metaphors.

  5. #15
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    What "science-fiction" are you talking about? Hard-core? Soft-core? Cyberpunk? Space opera? Science fantasy? Science-fiction romance? All those genres fall under the umbrella of "science-fiction", and yet they could hardly be more different.

    Obviously, Uber's type of SF is hardcore SF. That's not the most popular type of SF, though, especially when compared to, say, space opera. Personally, I'm much more into softcore SF, and into science fantasy (quite frankly, hardcore SF bores me to tears). To each their own.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering View Post
    What "science-fiction" are you talking about? Hard-core? Soft-core? Cyberpunk? Space opera? Science fantasy? Science-fiction romance? All those genres fall under the umbrella of "science-fiction", and yet they could hardly be more different.

    Obviously, Uber's type of SF is hardcore SF. That's not the most popular type of SF, though, especially when compared to, say, space opera. Personally, I'm much more into softcore SF, and into science fantasy (quite frankly, hardcore SF bores me to tears). To each their own.
    I'm into hard-core space operas technically!

    And I'd wish Peter Jackson would make a 3-hour space opera...

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Fortunately for those of us who get a kick out of character interactions and human drama, we get movies made that we enjoy (Firefly), and you get the non-human stuff you like (aliens vs predator: requiem?)
    First of all, I enjoy Firefly a great deal, mostly because it's such a creative idea. However, I'm still not interested in the character interaction, despite that they are often bad-ass.

    Second of all, I did not see Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem.

    Third of all, I personally thought Transformers was close to a perfect sci-fi action movie. (In case anyone brings it up.)

  7. #17
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uberfuhrer View Post
    I'm into hard-core space operas technically!
    Such a sentence would make the grandfathers of hardcore SF, those who published in the 30s and 40s and saw the first true emergence of space opera, roll in their tombs: they coined the term "space opera" as a derogatory term to distinguish those scientifically implausible, adventure-driven stories, from their own scientifically rigorous, technology-driven books

    But of course, the mix IS possible - though it's not a slice of SF I'd be particularly interested in

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering View Post
    Such a sentence would make the grandfathers of hardcore SF, those who published in the 30s and 40s and saw the first true emergence of space opera, roll in their tombs: they coined the term "space opera" as a derogatory term to distinguish those scientifically implausible, adventure-driven stories, from their own scientifically rigorous, technology-driven books

    But of course, the mix IS possible - though it's not a slice of SF I'd be particularly interested in
    Scientific plausibility should not be an issue in sci-fi, that's why it's science fiction, not science fact.

    So I guess I'm interested in fantasy sci-fi space operas. I'm interested in not what is theoretically possible, but the idea of making the impossible possible.

  9. #19
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uberfuhrer View Post
    Scientific plausibility should not be an issue in sci-fi, that's why it's science fiction, not science fact.
    Yes, but it's science fiction, not just fiction If it was just a matter of setting the story in the future, it would be called future fiction, or something like that. Science fiction, originally, carried the implication that true (or potentially true) science and technology were at the center of the story. The most hardcore of hardcore SF works (books, mostly) were/are almost nothing more than a novelisation of a scientific principle, whether already applied or just theoretical, with the characters existing only to explain the science and the technology, and the plot being designed to expose their effects.

    It's the "Joe, Jim and Jane get stranded on a planet whose atmosphere is slowly poisoning them, let's observe in minute details how they die" kind of story.

    Or the scientific exploration of the "what if..." scenario: what if we took artificial intelligence to the level where robots become sentient? What would be the ethical, ethnological and whatever-al implications? And so on.

    So I guess I'm interested in fantasy sci-fi space operas.
    I like that too. Anything that blows my mind and makes me think BIG

    I'm interested in what is theoretically possible, but the idea of making the impossible possible.
    (Is there a "not" missing in that sentence ?) But anyway: "making the impossible possible": I like the way you put it

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering View Post
    (Is there a "not" missing in that sentence ?) But anyway: "making the impossible possible": I like the way you put it
    Nope.

    (Not anymore.)

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