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Showing posts from July, 2016

Non-lethal Weapons of the Science Fiction Future

Inspired by a Facebook comment by Jessi Roberts (thanks Jessi!), I've decided to comment on non-lethal weapons. The most famous of which would be the Star Trek phaser, set on stun: The general problem is that it is harder to disable someone than to kill them. Recall the case of the terrorist attack in Moscow in 2002, when terrorists from Chechnya took over a theater. In the end, the Russians pumped an anesthesia gas into the place, which killed about 130 innocent people, but allowed all 40 terrorists to be killed and allowed some 700 other people to be rescued. The problem with gas is an overdose is very easy. And people who fall asleep may involuntarily vomit and choke to death on their own emesis. So you could say the Russian solution worked--unless you were one of the 130 killed on accident. Or related to them. Other disabling systems have the same problem. Too little of whatever you want to use and the person you intended to stun is still on his feet, ready to hurt you. To

An Open Letter to the Alien Invaders of Earth (Independence Day Resurgence)

(Without discussing the entire story, this post commits numerous movie SPOILERS for "Independence Day Resurgence")                      (The alien queen, in action, mentioned below: Independence Day Resurgence) Dear Alien Invaders of Earth, I offer my most sincere condolences on your total failure to once again defeat what must surely be one of the weakest space powers in your known universe, what you must think of as the obscure and little-known Planet Earth. I would like to kindly offer you a small bit of tactical advice for your next attack, since you clearly need it. I'm saying this as a resident of Earth myself, even though my planet occupies an alternate timeline from the one in the film I recently watched, since we have never been literally invaded before and united as a planet to build a space defense force after the fact. Please note that the documentary film of the climatic events which occurred in your alternate universe has been released in many Earth l