Bog on February 22, 2007, 05:17:36 pm
As what might be referred to as "A Libertarian In Exile", it's a compliment to be called "A really decent guy" - especially in a venue such as this.  Thank you.   I was actually born in DC, spent my first couple of years in New Hampshire then came to the Uck at the age of 2.   Still a US passport holder - and whilst I may be "Legally Disarmed", they can take my US Citizenship when they pry it from my... well, you know the rest.   You can take the boy out of America, but you can't take America out of the boy.  Not the America I love.

The shot I'm referring to is Page 81 of the online comic - Win's first look at the Old Town cityscape, including the stepped pyramid of the LaPorte Paratronics Building.   It's exactly the sort of crowd-pleaser of a shot that'd sell well to the execs, and would merely require dozens of man-hours of effort, rather than hundreds or thousands ;) 

CADCAM is indeed a kindred circle.  We who grok the Euler Angle also grok the chamfer ;)   My schtick is far more "Build for the Shot" rather than "Build for the Build", but it's the same basic tech - it's a pleasure to swap thoughts with you.

It would be important to me to take this effort ahead.   If I have to do it in my own time - that is, time people aren't paying me for, or at least giving me a futured incentive for (I've run effects teams before, so even the promise of a lead role would be hard coin in my schedule) - then so be it.   But it would become a matter of catch an hour as catch can.    Either way, though - it's all steps on the road.

Ah, and yes - location.  A town called Reading, about 35 miles west of London.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2007, 05:21:06 pm by Bog »

Rocketman on February 25, 2007, 05:02:33 am
Being a "Libertarian in exile" must be pretty difficult considering where you are.  Nearly a quarter century ago ("Has it really been that long?" I ask myself) I lived in Connecticut for about 11 months.  That was enough for me.  Being "legally disarmed" for the first time in my life (okay, truth be told, since the age of six) I almost couldn't stand it.  Considering the increasing crime problem in the UK that I've read about and the fact that I've heard that even swords and long bladed knives are outlawed, I'de say that the UK is in desperate need of a Libertarian Party to start to set things right.  A lot has changed in merry old England since the time of Lord Acton, and definitely not for the better.  :P

Rocketman on February 25, 2007, 02:56:32 pm
Bog, I had a thought a few minutes ago.  No one said that TPB had to be done for the USA Sci-fi channel.  There are a number of british imports over the years to Hollywood including one of my 80's favorites "Three's
company" which was originally called "Man about the house" in England if I remember correctly.  Do you know any one from say Pinewood studios or some other movie studio that would be willing to talk to L. Neil?  ;D

Bog on February 26, 2007, 03:01:53 am
Yes, poor old Blighty seems to have reached Heinlein's Crazy Years somewhat ahead of schedule - so, to be honest, trying to re-shape my life to provide myself with the working wherewithal to return home is something of a priority for me.  As a productive, law-abiding citizen, I've got the urban critters biting from below and the gubment mooching off me from above.    It's not a smashing situation.  However, relocating back to the US isn't an overnight proposition, so if I can do a bit of good along the way, so much the better.

Back on topic, from the Sci-Fi channel FAQ:

Quote
I have a great idea for a show. How do I submit ideas?

SCI FI does not accept unsolicited material. We only accept submissions/pitches from distributors, producers, agents, talent with representation, etc. This is to protect both the Channel and the individual with the idea.

So the Sci-Fi channel itself isn't the entity to approach directly.   Either a producer needs to be attracted, or L.Neil's agent would need to get in touch with the channel's comissioning editors.  The "protect both parties" thing is to have an independant intermediary to prove who originated the ideas, y'see.   Again, this circles back around to having a decent pitch set up.  It occours to me that some of my previous comments weren't abundantly clear on my position - I'd take some example shots on as a job-of-work for, f'rexample, a commitment to hire my own self for effects if the project went to production.   In terms of short-circuiting the "Going Through Channels" route to getting TPB made, such as talking directly to some high mucketty-muck, that tends not to happen - particularly with the Sci-Fi channel, who're quite notably straight-laced.

Which brings us back to me trying to get out of the UK, y'see ;)

Rocketman on February 26, 2007, 06:34:49 pm
Well I hope that I get to run into you if you get back over onto this side of the pond.  Your comment of how the Sci-Fi channel bigwigs are kind of straight laced is interesting.  I would have guessed that they would have been a little more loose considering what kind of channel they're running.  I guess that imaginative thinking doesn't neccessarily rub off just because they're in charge
or maybe it's just because they're like everyone else is afraid of being sued. :-*

Bog on February 27, 2007, 03:55:31 am
Thanks for that, Rocketman - if you're anywhere around San Diego in August, drop me a line :)

Regarding the Sci-Fi Channel... Universal (their owners) would have picked people who're good at extracting money from niche markets to run it.   This means the channel gets run to a fairly "safe" formula.   Witness if you will, the line-up.   Galactica - which has been a rip-snorting success despite a groundswell of folk who were entirely prepared to despite it.   Admittedly, I was one of 'em, but I was A Bit Impressed despite myself.  Based, however, on Classic Sci-Fi. And Stargate and it's spin-off, both of which have been around for so long (and spawned by an already well-loved movie) that they're practically institutions in their own right.  Their new miniseries?   Based on the Wizard of Oz - and try to find someone who didn't like those stories as a kid!  Aside from that - mainly horror,  or "X-Files" style pseudo sci-fi with a notable dearth of spaceships.

Safe, safe, safe.  Maximising the number of viewers on a borderline market, to make the advertising timeslots worth any money.

After all, if they were sci-fi fans, they'd commission stuff Because It's Cool rather than because it'll put buttocks on seats and eyes on ads.   Which would be fun while it lasted - but probably wouldn't last for very long.  Consequently, they tend to pay for things to be made when they meet the following criteria:

1)  That the production will generate enough advertising revenue to show a healthy profit after production costs.
2)  They think that the production is covered by the Sci-Fi Channel's image and remit.
3)  They're satisfied that the people involved have the professional acumen to successfully complete the production.

There are probably other criteria as well, but those would be the biggies.   That's also why they only want to hear from either producers (preferably with a proven track-record), or agents for people.   L. Neil (if I may presume to use his firstoid name) would presumably have an agent who could act for him in this regard.   In terms of finding effects guys?  Well, we're around, and a lot of us are gun nuts freedom-minded folk.   Heck, I'm not diving straight into this 'cause I've got one human head, two ancient manuscripts and a battle-mech that people are giving me money to do!  Otherwise I'd do it just because it'd look good....

Bog on February 27, 2007, 04:01:10 am
Just had a thought, actually - the kind of folk who'd be most interested in TPB might well be Firefly fans.

Be nice to dig out that ol' brownish-coloured coat...

Rocketman on February 27, 2007, 02:12:44 pm
That's a pretty good observation.  Two science fiction shows I really liked that had a libertarian streak were Firefly and Babylon 5.  The problem that I had with Firefly was they're were no aliens at all in it and some of the firearms belonged to the 19th century for example the cut down Winchester Model 92 (probably in 44-40 caliber)  The latter problem was at least somewhat understandable since colonization of different planets would involve bringing to it only what is absolutely neccessary and then mining the ore and creating the chemicals to create weapons that are native to the planet.  The design of say an 1873 Peacemaker or a 1892 Winchester would probably be easier for the "primative" manufacturing base than say a Glock Model 21 or Styer Aug.

Rocketman on February 27, 2007, 06:15:57 pm
back to my original post... I really enjoyed Firefly but I thought that Babylon 5 was probably more realistic.  It seemed to me that the humans on that show were a little more normal.  You almost never find people that are totally good or totally bad.  Star Trek for that reason was a little unbelievable because the characters never seemed at conflict with each other.  Babylon 5 was different because they're were people on it who were certified crazy.  To some degree this is the same as the new Galactica, every character has his own agenda and the emotion shows.  On the other had I still miss the old cylons and the phase "By your command"  ;D

Bog on February 28, 2007, 05:01:57 am
Babylon 5 was incredibly good - certainly the first three seasons.   (Ironically, there was a hiccup with the effects team between seasons 3 and 4, but that's another story), and it's willingness to have the principal characters whaling the tar out of one another was a large part of it's charm.   But yeah, there was growth, challenge, development, conflict.   I can't remember who it was who said that conflict was the basis of all good stories (or words to that effect), but they had a point.   And - vastly importantly - the characters by and large enjoyed their work, their setting, their challenges and opportunities.  Some of them positively revelled in it from time to time.

This last point, to me, is something desperately lacking in Galactica.   Nobody's having any fun.   Nobody ever looks out a window just to look at the stars, far less donning a p-suit to go for a float.   Twice - by my count - Thrace seemed to enjoy a dogfight, but pretty much everyone else seems to see it as heavy lifting work.  In fact, it's all heavy lifting work.   Well, yeah - things suck for them.   But really, which do you think is more likely in that circumstance?   People drearily reading Baltar's treatise off the sheets of loo roll it's printed on during their off-hours?   Or cobbling together a transmitter to blast the fleet with decent music and the occasional skit comedy from Talky Toaster the Friendly Cylon?  (The name's not my fault, it came up in a discussion on the same topic elsewhere ;) )   I know which one I'd be doing....

Come to that, there'd be a copy of that book in the pilot's ready room head.   With about half the pages missing. 

Sorry, Rocketman - I think you just pushed one of my buttons.

Rocketman on February 28, 2007, 09:45:02 am
It's okay, I've got a few of those myself.  People smoking nearby when I'm trying to eat and enjoy my food.  Pushy women who claim to be experts on everything but don't know anything.  People who tell me that I don't "need" an military style semi-auto.  People who claim to speak for GOD.  I could go on but you get the idea.  I won't be anywhere near San Diego in August.  It's a long story but right now I'm basically stuck in
north central Indiana.

Frank Bieser on February 28, 2007, 05:43:25 pm
That's a pretty good observation.  Two science fiction shows I really liked that had a libertarian streak were Firefly and Babylon 5.  The problem that I had with Firefly was they're were no aliens at all in it and some of the firearms belonged to the 19th century for example the cut down Winchester Model 92 (probably in 44-40 caliber)  The latter problem was at least somewhat understandable since colonization of different planets would involve bringing to it only what is absolutely neccessary and then mining the ore and creating the chemicals to create weapons that are native to the planet.  The design of say an 1873 Peacemaker or a 1892 Winchester would probably be easier for the "primative" manufacturing base than say a Glock Model 21 or Styer Aug.

B-5 was libertarian?  A damned fine yarn, I agree.  But libertarian?  How so?

I actually liked that there were no aliens in firefly.  Joss said "no bumpy foreheads".  And I think that was a good choice (though given the poor ratings, perhaps not a wise choice).  I found the firefly universe fairly believable, and the lack of aliens contributed to that.  Do you have any personal alien abduction stories you'd care to relate rocketman? ;)

Bog on February 28, 2007, 06:57:44 pm
I love my cigarettes, but I don't smoke near people eating, in elevators or other enclosed spaces, near children, or anything like that.

Bab 5 was... well... not very libertarian to be honest.   It had lots of guns - but always in the hands of folk in uniform.    Flawed folk, aye, but any gun in the hands of the civillian tended to be bad.

And there was the whole Masada Thing with the teeps.   

No, thank you.   Really.   Non.  Nein.  Niet - whatever it is in Sanskrit.  No.

I am a courteous smoker.  I don't need laws to tell me when to stub it out.  And I'll hold a door open for anyone who's behind me - if a woman has a problem with that, or if anyone else does for that matter, then it's nothing to me to let it slam in their face.   It's all good.

I strive to be courteous.    If someone has an objection to my courtesy, I'm happy to waive the protocol for the duration of it biting their gluteous maximus.

Bog on February 28, 2007, 07:02:33 pm
I don't know if it's been put this way before, but please let me share Bog's First Observation:

"Laws are designed so the majority who lack consideration can live with the minority equipped with their own moral compass"

Corollary:

"If you habitually consider what you do before you do it, laws are merely Mrs Grundy's guidelines."

The secondary corollary is left in Heinlein's strong hands.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2007, 07:04:27 pm by Bog »

Rocketman on March 01, 2007, 08:13:39 pm
Frank and Bog:
     I guess that most people wouldn't consider B5 a libertarian show and I would largely agree except for the fact that Earth at the time was going thru extreme dictatorship after the death of President Santiago. (If I remember my B5 history correctly)  Non-humans were treated about the same on earth as non Aryans were in Nazi Germany, barely tolerated at best, sub-human monsters who needed desposing of at worst.  The fact that Sheridan was willing to break from the same people who previously put him in this command showed alot of independant thinking on his part even though later in the series he suffered for it.  He was willing to work with aliens and form alliances with them using non-aggression principals and not by conquering them.  No, B5 wasn't a conventional libertarian story, but it did show that not everyone who puts on a uniform automatically obeys every command, there are limits where human decency trumps military order.