Silly Europeans always have such a skewed sense of geography. Newark to Tampa is 1,000 miles, exactly. It's a two and a half hour flight and a 20 hour train ride.
Not sure how this was modded insightful. I mean, yeah, that's a long train ride, but the poster who was describing trains in an overly elaborate manner was making a quite accurate reference to the "missing" distance between London and Paris on the travel itinerary (a distance equating to roughly 212 miles - or 342 km since they use the painfully logical metric system across the pond). The "Silly European" was clearly not suggesting that the traveler took a train from Newark to Tampa.
One boss of mine from years ago liked to name our system passwords after words which he thought should be familiar to us like "endurance" and "diligance".
Clearly he must have been mistaken regarding your familiarity with "diligence".
So sci-fi has to have crappy pseudo-science explanations for all of the vaporware contained therein? I guess that also disqualifies a book like Neuromancer from being sci-fi, since Gibson pretty much gives the explanation of "at some point in the future people figure out how to [implant cybernetics/write Turing Test passing AI/perfect human cloning/build sustainable space colonies/develop a full-immersion global VR network/defy the normal laws of electro-magnetic physics/create devices which allow the creation of full audio-visual illusions through the use of high powered and mind controlled lasers/work around human physiological operation to devise new forms of drug use/dozens of other non-trivial technological challenges] in some way... now quit asking useless questions and read the $%#@ing book!". So much for there being anything worth reading in THAT genre.
Seriously, have you never just taken it for granted that certain technology "just works"? the car flies because that's something cars can do... the characters don't care how, in fact they barely care that it does at all; it's just a car, and their main concern is using it to get from point A to point B. I for one have absolutely no interest in sitting through a BS explanation every time something not currently possible happens on screen, but I would LOVE to just get on with the fucking movie.
I could not agree more. What points you've made illustrate exactly why I love reading William Gibson's books, and why I've always liked Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and the like better than Star Trek. I don't care about why their technology does what it does. I'll accept that it works and get on with it. It's why the whole demystifying The Force with the bullshit about midichlorians was one of the things that really fucked with Star Wars - The Force especially is something we don't need an explanation for - at least, enough has already been given in A New Hope, shortly after the introduction of Kenobi.
ie:"Well, the Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us. It binds the galaxy together."
That's enough for me. I don't care how it works, it does, clearly, as the power to destroy a planet is insignificant to its power, and to me, that is plenty of qualification to be "working". And really, I cannot agree more with the Gibson argument. One of the things that I liked most about reading his books was that he'd introduce a technology without giving any real explanation of its function or how or why it worked, and once you saw it working, he'd consider it explained. Hell yes.
Stinginess with privileges is kindness in disguise. -- Guide to VAX/VMS Security, Sep. 1984