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Returning to a Future 25 January 2013

Posted by Dr Moose in Life, Ponderings, Recommendations, Technology, Time.
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One of my New Year’s Irresolutions was to read more, and so far I have re-read two books from my past. Both are significant in their own ways, as like the soundtrack of my life they were memorable, if not as turning points then at least as milestones. The first was The Hobbit, a book read upon the cusp of my teenage years. The most recent has been David Brin’s novel, Earth, a weighty tome of speculative fiction with melodramatic tendencies, dating from 1990 – all 750 odd pages of it! It carries with it the many memories of my year at Nottingham University, studying for my MSc in Geographic Information Systems, a time that to this day I still think of as being one of the most trying time of my life, academically, emotionally and in terms of my Christian faith.

If you haven’t read the book I’d recommend it. It’s a speculative science fiction romp set 50 years ahead of the writing date combining space flight, physics, technology and environmental awareness. While I cannot comment too much about the physics some of it has worn extremely well, predicting (in passing) such devices as the one I am struggling to write this post upon, referred to as a ‘plaque’. Not bad for a book that’s over 20 years old. Of course it’s way out in some areas, being deliberatly pessimistic about climate change, although that still might turn out to be closer to the truth than Brin ever anticipated, and rather hopelessly optimistic when it comes to the extent of the maned space programs of our time.

I suppose that I really should turn my attention to reading something I haven’t tried before, or at least one I haven’t finished, but we’ll see. In the mean time I will leave hanging the question about quite why I enjoy the whole proces of re-reading, rather than exploring new works. Even if it’s something as simple as needing to go to bed each night to sleep, rather than read into the small hours… which is why I must stop, now, and do the same (and to avoid the creeping RSI of the tablet touchscreen keyboard!)

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