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Subject: "AINA: Extremely Belated Review"     Previous Topic | Next Topic
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Conferences The Legacy of Korra Topic #78
Reading Topic #78, reply 3
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Aug-13-14, 12:17 PM (EST)
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3. "RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review"
In response to message #0
>>five foot seven, 142 pounds - he could believe that; she was a sturdy-
>That actually seems incredibly light for someone of Korra's size,
>build, and athleticism. I'm 5'10 and weigh about the same, and I'm a
>pile of skin and bones and ridiculously out of shape. Korra seems like

You'd be amazed how quick that fat adds up. Also, you'd be amazed at how much muscle you actually have on you, even as a skinny guy. You just can't see it because you have a layer of fat over the top that hides it. Heck, 5'10 is a good height for welterweight fighters and that's 147 pounds...

>>The first thing that struck Korra about the New Avalon Knights
>>was that their tickets were very reasonably priced. The second was that
>>they had a charming (if rather small) ballpark, full of appealing old-
>>fashioned touches and cleverly designed to fit in its peculiarly-shaped
>I have to be honest, this seemed a little bit off to me. Korra's
>familiarity with the sport is, as the text itself notes, based
>entirely on cultural contact with Zipang, and given Zipang's own
>cultural context probably all their stadiums are going to be even more
>old-fashioned than Puckett's Field is.

Mmm, yes and no. For one, she's been walking around in what's obviously a very technically advanced city, and so if the ticket takers rip the ticket in half, as opposed to doing the little scanning thing they do now, or have an actual dude walking around selling hotdogs instead of filling out a card and giving it to the user and having it delivered, those would be obvious anachronisms. Two, I always pictured Zipang as a fully modern colony with spaceport and everything. So their baseball stadium (if they have one) is probably on the smaller side with as many labor saving (if soul killing) labor saving tricks as they can get away with.

>Also, I don't know what things are like in other peoples necks of the
>woods, but around here, when you go to see the local baseball team get
>absolutely destroyed, there's some serious, serious drinking going on.

And this is how you can tell that you/your friends aren't actual fans of the game. I go to MARINERS games (mariners!) all the time, and rarely have more than one beer.

>(Really, it's the only thing that makes watching baseball tolerable if
>you aren't a giant stats nerd; ... )

Bite me, english major. ;-)

>Given New Avalon's staggeringly high incidence of high-powered
>criminals and it being the target of repeated and destructive
>terrorist attacks (although I suppose the latter isn't really a thing
>yet) one can only imagine just how hard Jim Gordon has to work to keep
>the police from going full-militarization.

I wonder if having the IPO/Experts lying around helps with that? Like, defining a general patrol cops job as "get the civilians to safety, call in backup" as opposed to "you're all part time members of the SWAT team so we can get extra federal funding to spend on 'team building' drinking outings"

>I'll have more to say about this at the tail end, but I do have to
>note that it seems like Korra really ought to be in possession of a
>smartphone or at the very least a camera.

?? I'm failing to see relevance here.

>>Korra rose early by her standards, meditated for half an hour,
>>had a nice breakfast in the hotel's miniature café, then spent much of
>>the morning with her guidebooks and maps, working some more on her plan
>>(such as it was) for the week.
>This also seems odd to me. I guess she hasn't bought a tablet yet? We
>know she's web-conversant, that's established later.

Sure. But here's the thing: I own a tablet. I'm quite web-conversant (I write and test tablet/smartphone software for a living. I use the things all the TIME) and yet there are many things (like looking at a map of a city that you don't know, and are trying to figure out) that having all that info spread out on the bed is useful. Maps are also like newspapers: seeing what editorial choices they make can show you what's important to a society.

>>"If you are, let me just save you some time and tell you straight up:
>>The Internet lied about your chances."
>Style quibble: by the late 2300s "internet" should probably be a
>generic term and no longer a proper noun. It's no longer capitalized
>by many publications right now in the early 2000s, and the movement in
>that direction is only accelerating.

I've typically seen "The Internet" as a general noun to both the information found on it (typically via crowdsourced information) or the denizens of the internet, whereas when talking about the network itself, it's generally non-capitalized. Which actually fits into the usage I typically see here.

>This also seems weird. That information should all be online, and even
>if it weren't, it seems off that the library itself wouldn't look at
>Korra strangely and gently point her towards a local terminal in which
>all that information was available. There'd be no need for her to go
>into a special archive room to access it or get a special pass to do
>so; these days, that sort of thing only really happens if you have a

I assume the pass is less a special pass and more a "you don't have a library card here, so here's the temporary." Also note that they never specify HOW she looks at the info. 'The Stacks' may actually be mostly a giant row of terminals with droids that can bring you physical copies if you REALLY need them.

>This isn't wrong, per se (and I always lose the usage arguments
>anyway) but "high" is an extraordinarily archaic way to refer to
>getting buzzed off alcohol; I don't think it's been in widespread use
>that way since the 60s and 70s. I was listening to the Nixon tapes
>recently and he uses the term that way, in fact; but these days "high"
>is almost exclusively reserved for drugs rather than booze.

"You know that when your mouth is getting dry/you're plenty high". To me, this feels like you're being picky for the sake of being picky. I knew exactly what the author meant here, without having to strain to figure it out.

>>With his mix of high-power electronic house music and his collection of
>>antique computing equipment (not only from Earth, but from Salusia and
>>Vulcan as well),
>It is now part of my headcanon that Zuse owns a fully-functional
>DECstation that would be entirely capable of compiling CLULESS... and
>that none of the people who would be interested in that fact have any
>idea at all or are in fact even aware of his hobby.

...and even Zuze doesn't realize what he's got there, he just thinks he has an antique piece of kit.

>The only other thing I have to say about the fight at Zuse is that the
>NAPD is falling down on the job if Korra wasn't ID'd as being
>involved. I have a hard time believing nobody got the start of
>the fight on either their smartphone or hardwired recording device of
>choice, and likewise that nobody slammed their "emergency in progress,
>autodial the cops" one-button apps as soon as they hit the sidewalk,
>if not before.

Yeah, this I can see, but I let it go because having that stuff changes the tone of the story from one where the whole city is basically one big SCA event to something a little more post-cyberpunky. Which is fine, cstross is among my favorite authors, but that's not why I read EPU.

>Or, given what we'll later discover, that Zuse had time to wipe his
>security cams before the fuzz descended.

Who says his security cams record?

<Cut more whinging about how people don't use tech the way Merc wants>

>May I express the hope that this is Teen Titans-the-tv-show Slade, who
>is actually a competently used and moderately scary villain, and not
>comic-book Deathstroke, who DC has been trying, and failing, to make
>into an a-lister for going on fifteen years now?

Slade from Arrow is possibly my favorite tv character in the last five years.

>Yes. I think about this kind of thing. Because I care!

FSVO 'care' ;-)

>>"Oh, y'know, the usual," Skuld replied lightly. "Except every
>>eight or ten minutes I have a tendency to sort of try and stop time.
>>It's not deliberate, but I can't seem to not do it."
>I know I said this already when we hit the flipside of this awhile
>back, but I love it when weird freaky stuff happens around the gods. I
>know that The Management is big on the various universal
>movers-and-shakers being jes' folks, but the cosmic stuff just does it
>for me and I'll take what I can get.

I sometimes wonder if they're 'just folks' so that weird stuff doesn't happen all the time around them. Perhaps part of the limiting process? Sort of a mental exercise that goes with it that allows them to do things like walk on a station filled with warriors without them all going apeshit and killing each other or something. Like Tyr interacting with Chad (little scene. AWESOME worldbuilding)

>I hit on this a number of times in my play-by-play, and I'm trying to
>be diplomatic rather than blunt, because I don't like to sound
>blame-y. But New Avalon seems like... a very un-futuristic version of
>the future. It has that kind of "this is a very dated version of what
>people thought the future would be like" feel that you often get when,
>say, watching old episodes of Star Trek or if you've ever walked
>through Tommorrowland at a Disney park. And that's okay, you give it a
>pass because that stuff was written a long time ago, but this was, you
>know, written three months ago, not three decades.

Meh. For all you know that map she had spread out on the bedspread? hi-rez color paper with auto updating marks, etc. The reason nobody hit their 'call the cops now' button is that getting their smartphone out of their purse when RUNNING FROM THE FIREFIGHT wasn't their first goal. And again, NA always felt (to me) like the SCA from 2400 viewing the 20th century. They're slamming about a hundred and fifty years together, and keeping all the 'good' bits (airships, awesome clubs, networked computing) around and ignoring that the bad bits (institutionalized -ism of choice, everyone face first in their phones, shitty public transportation) ever existed in the same way that nobody at an SCA event is a serf. There are PEASANTS, but not serfs. because it's Hobbsian to be a serf.

>This is something that I feel is only ever really a problem with the
>"civilian" settings in UF. The military sci-fi bits of it never suffer
>from it at all; even the older parts of the canon, stuff written back

...really? Because if I were to apply your rubrick, the fact that we have meat pilots in fighter jets (there are fighter jets in space! That look like late 1960s fighter jets! And fly like airplanes!) at all would bug the HELL outta me. The fact that there are giant robots (if you have the materials science to build them, build tanks out of those materials. It'll be a better tank), infantry troops that field what we recognize as 'guns' etc. Think of picking up a 17th century soldier (just figuring out line infantry) and dropped them off into say, the ISIS/Kurdistan lines (which is about as low a TL of conflict as exists between states or statelike organizations on the planet right now) and they'd be UTTERLY BAFFLED.

It's less that there aren't anacronisms in the warfare sections and more that you don't think about them in context, so don't give a shit.

"Don't change the subject"
"Too slow, already did."

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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
 AINA: Extremely Belated Review [View All] Mercutio Aug-13-14 TOP
   RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Nova Floresca Aug-13-14 1
   RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Gryphonadmin Aug-13-14 2
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Nova Floresca Aug-13-14 6
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Mercutio Aug-14-14 9
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Gryphonadmin Aug-14-14 10
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review BobSchroeck Aug-14-14 14
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Mercutio Aug-15-14 17
                  RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Gryphonadmin Aug-15-14 19
  RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Pasha Aug-13-14 3
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review pjmoyermoderator Aug-13-14 4
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review eriktown Aug-13-14 5
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Matrix Dragon Aug-13-14 7
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Mercutio Aug-15-14 18
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Gryphonadmin Aug-15-14 20
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Matrix Dragon Aug-15-14 21
                  RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Blackbird Aug-15-14 24
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Pasha Aug-15-14 22
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Gryphonadmin Aug-16-14 26
                  RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Peter Eng Aug-17-14 28
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review McFortner Aug-16-14 25
   RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Matrix Dragon Aug-13-14 8
   RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review drakensis Aug-14-14 11
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Mercutio Aug-14-14 12
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review SpottedKitty Aug-14-14 15
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review drakensis Aug-15-14 16
              RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review SneakyPete Aug-18-14 29
   RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Peter Eng Aug-14-14 13
      RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review Terminus Est Aug-15-14 23
          RE: AINA: Extremely Belated Review SpottedKitty Aug-16-14 27

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