Sunday, 17 November 2013
Connections With Fiction II
The Technic Civilization History
(i) "It may be possible to make a very large number of small quantum jumps per second." (p. 166)
This is the kind of "hyperspace" used in the Technic History, thus it is not a fourth spatial dimension.
(ii) "[Interstellar] Commerce will deal mostly in luxuries and curiosa." (p. 168)
Hence, Nicholas van Rijn's Solar Spice & Liquors Company.
(iii) "...hydrogen and oxygen breathers can have little to trade with each other and perhaps little to say to each other once some scientific questions have been answered." (p. 168)
Thus, the Dispersal of Ymir (hydrogen breathers, colonizing Jovoid planets) occupies the same space as the Terran Empire and the Merseian Rhoidunate (oxygen breathers, colonizing terrestroid planets).
(iv) "Joint colonization is not unthinkable, and could lead to some extraordinarily interesting societies." (p. 188)
This one sentence makes me want to reread the two short stories and one novel set on the joint human-Ythrian colony planet Avalon. Anderson systematically presents colonization of the islands, colonization of the continent and resistance to Terran imperialism.
(v) "Alternatively, the gas of space might be scooped up and used as fuel and ram jet reaction mass.This would permit...velocities very close indeed to c." (p. 198)
This is the Bussard ram jet, used in Tau Zero and in some other works of sf. In Tau Zero, the spaceship approaches c with spectacular results. Unfortunately, Anderson adds, "...I am not sure that it is really feasible." (ibid.)
(vi) "Interstellar navigation will be difficult." (p. 199)
Anderson mentions the Doppler effect, aberration and imprecise location of destination. In Tau Zero, the ship at near light speed must navigate in the dark between clusters of galaxies. New sciences must effectively be created for this purpose.
(To be continued.)