BBC ONE (TV): The Sky At Night – Bases On The Moon – a 1963 interview with Arthur C. Clarke

SFFaudio News

The Sky At NightThe Sky At Night is a monthly documentary television programme on astronomy produced by the BBC. The show has had the same presenter, Sir Patrick Moore, from its first airing on 24 April 1957. This is the longest-running programme, with the same host, in television history. I discovered it only recently, via torrent, and have become utterly smitten with its sciencey goodness. Here’s the latest broadcast, actually a repeat from 1963 with Arthur C. Clarke!

Here’s the official description:

Many of the early Sky at Night programmes were destroyed or lost from the BBC library. Recently this early and very rare programme from 1963 with Arthur C Clarke, was discovered in an African TV station. Patrick and Arthur were both members of the British Interplanetary Society and here they discuss bases on the Moon and Mars. Arthur C Clarke made very few interviews, so this really is a broadcasting gem- once lost, but now found.

The programme is also available via |TORRENT|.

[Thanks African TV station!]

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: Pioneers Of Science by Sir Oliver Lodge

SFFaudio Online Audio

LibriVoxMe? I like my Science Fiction hard and I like my SCIENCE easy. If you do too, take it easy, have a listen to some of these handy lectures about the hardest of the sciences (circa 1890), we’re talking old school pre-Einsteinian astronomy and physics!

And, to make it even easier be sure to check out the Project Gutenberg etext |HTML| edition too. It has plenty of associated charts, photographs and illustrations!

LIBRIVOX - Pioneers Of Science by Sir Oliver LodgePioneers Of Science
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by various
19 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 11 Hours 14 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010
This book takes its origin in a course of lectures on the history and progress of Astronomy arranged for Sir Oliver Lodge in the year 1887. The first part of this book is devoted to the biographies and discoveries of well known astronomers like Copernicus, Brahe, Kepler, Galileo and Newton. In the second part, the biographies take a back seat, while scientific discoveries are discussed more extensively, like the discovery of Asteroids and Neptune, a treatise on the tides and others.

Podcast feed: http://librivox.org/rss/3766

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

Preface
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Availle
1 |MP3| – Approx. 2 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture I: Copernicus And The Motion Of The Earth
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Kathleen Nelson
1 |MP3| – Approx. 42 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture II: Tycho Brahe And The Earliest Observatory
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by James Christopher
1 |MP3| – Approx. 32 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture III: Kepler And The Laws Of Planetary Motion
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Utek
1 |MP3| – Approx. 51 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture IV: Galileo And The Invention Of The Telescope
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Megan Argo
1 |MP3| – Approx. 40 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture V: Galileo And The Inquisition
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Megan Argo
1 |MP3| – Approx. 42 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture VI: Descartes and his Theory of Vortices
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Availle
1 |MP3| – Approx. 47 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture VII: Sir Isaac Newton
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Amy Gramour
1 |MP3| – Approx. 38 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture VIII: Newton And The Law Of Gravitation
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Edward W. LaBonte
1 |MP3| – Approx. 37 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture IX: Newton’s “Principia”
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by John Kooz
1 |MP3| – Approx. 55 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture X: Roemer & Bradley And The Velocity Of Light
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Mark F. Smith
1 |MP3| – Approx. 39 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XI: Lagrange And Laplace – The Stability Of The Solar System, And The Nebular Hypothesis
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Michael Lipschultz
1 |MP3| – Approx. 33 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XII: Herschel And The Motion Of The Fixed Stars
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Kathleen Nelson
1 |MP3| – Approx. 32 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XIII: The Discovery Of The Asteroids
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Ali Kazerani
1 |MP3| – Approx. 16 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XIV: Bessel – The Distance Of The Stars, And The Discovery Of Stellar Planets
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Availle
1 |MP3| – Approx. 29 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XV: The Discovery Of Neptune
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Ali Kazerani
1 |MP3| – Approx. 23 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XVI: Comets And Meteors
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by John Kooz
1 |MP3| – Approx. 34 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XVII: The Tides
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by J. M. Smallheer
1 |MP3| – Approx. 38 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

Lecture XVIII: The Tides, And Planetary Evolution
By Sir Oliver Lodge; Read by Simon Dexter
1 |MP3| – Approx. 42 Minutes [LECTURE]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Publisher: August 31, 2010

[Thanks also to Availle, [email protected], J. M. Smallheer]

Posted by Jesse Willis

New Releases: City Of Dragons, The Eerie Silence, Beautiful Assassin

New Releases

Tantor MediaWhen I compiled this list of the latest new releases from Tantor Media I discovered that there was a very companionable video for nearly every one.

First up is City Of Dragons, a book we’ve decided we’re going to be doing a readalong for. That is a bunch of podcasty bloggy friends will (hopefully) read and/or be listening to this book/audiobook for discussion on an upcoming SFFaudio Podcast! An exciting prospect eh?


TANTOR MEDIA - City Of Dragons by Kelli StanleyCity Of Dragons
By Kelli Stanley; Read by Cynthia Holloway
11 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – Approx. 13 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: April 5, 2010
ISBN: 9781400116645 (cd), 9781400166640 (mp3-cd)
February, 1940. In San Francisco’s Chinatown, fireworks explode as the city celebrates Chinese New Year with a Rice Bowl Party, a three-day-and-night carnival designed to raise money and support for China war relief. Miranda Corbie is a thirty-three-year-old private investigator who stumbles upon the fatally shot body of Eddie Takahashi. The Chamber of Commerce wants it covered up. The cops acquiesce. All Miranda wants is justice—whatever it costs. From Chinatown tenements, to a tattered tailor’s shop in Little Osaka, to a high-class bordello draped in Southern Gothic, she shakes down the city—her city—seeking the truth.

Here’s a science audiobook that’s got Scott pretty excited. Myself I thought the question of whether we are alone in the universe was answered rather definitely by that Charlie Sheen/Ron Silver documentary called The Arrival

TANTOR MEDIA - The Eerie Silence: Renewing Our Search for Alien Intelligence by Paul DaviesThe Eerie Silence: Renewing Our Search for Alien Intelligence
By Paul Davies; Read by George K. Wilson
9 CDs or 1 MP3-CD – Approx. 10 Hours 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: April 13, 2010
ISBN: 9781400115518 (cd), 9781400165513 (mp3-cd)
Fifty years ago, a young astronomer named Frank Drake pointed a radio telescope at nearby stars in the hope of picking up a signal from an alien civilization. Thus began one of the boldest scientific projects in history, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI). But after a half century of scanning the skies, astronomers have little to report but an eerie silence—eerie because many scientists are convinced that the universe is teeming with life. The problem, argues leading physicist and astrobiologist Paul Davies, is that we’ve been looking in the wrong place, at the wrong time, and in the wrong way. Davies should know. For more than three decades, he has been closely involved with SETI and now chairs the SETI Post-Detection Taskgroup, charged with deciding what to do if we’re confronted with evidence of alien intelligence. In this extraordinary book, he shows how SETI has lost its edge, then offers a new and exciting road map for the future. Davies believes that our search so far has been overly anthropocentric: we tend to assume an alien species will look, think, and behave like us. He argues that we need to be far more expansive in our efforts, and in this book he completely redefines the search, challenging existing ideas of what form an alien intelligence might take, how it might try to communicate with us, and how we should respond if we ever do make contact. A provocative and mind-expanding journey, The Eerie Silence will thrill fans of science and science fiction alike.

Here’s a new twist on an War Of The Rats (which was turned into a movie called Enemy At The Gates)…

TANTOR MEDIA - Beautiful Assassin by Michael WhiteBeautiful Assassin
By Michael White; Read by Anne Flosnik
14 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – Approx. 18 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 30, 2010
ISBN: 9781400114306 (cd), 9781400164301 (mp3-cd)
Sevastopol, 1942. As the might of the German army threatens to engulf the Soviet Union, a brave, young Red Army sniper named Tat’yana Levchenko becomes a national hero. But who is this beautiful assassin? To the Soviets, she is a refined poet and weapon of destruction with three hundred enemy kills to her name—a dedicated soldier whose skill and courage have rallied a motherland on the brink of despair. To the Americans, she is a Red Communist with movie-star good looks who is championed by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt—a reminder of Soviet suffering and a symbol of the vital need to defeat the Nazis. Invited to the United States at the behest of the White House, Tat’yana sets off on a whirlwind tour with the first lady. Amid the curious crowds, rumors begin to swirl that Tat’yana is a spy, a pawn of politicians and propagandists battling for power and control. But before suspicions can be confirmed, the Soviet soldier vanishes. It will be more than fifty years before a resourceful correspondent uncovers the truth and the full story of the beautiful assassin is finally told.

I’m a huge fan of Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe. This new edition features the talented Simon Prebble, who I’ve really enjoyed listening to since I first heard his reading of The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton. This new edition of Ivanhoe, as with many of Tantor Media public domain sourced audiobooks, features a eBook of the full novel as well.

TANTOR MEDIA - Ivanhoe by Sir Walter ScottIvanhoe
By Sir Walter Scott; Read by Simon Prebble
15 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – Approx. 18. Hours 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 30, 2010
ISBN: 9781400116065 (cd), 9781400166060 (mp3-cd)
The epitome of the chivalric novel, Ivanhoe sweeps listeners into Medieval England and the lives of a memorable cast of characters. Ivanhoe, a trusted ally of Richard the Lion Hearted, returns from the Crusades to reclaim the inheritance his father denied him. Rebecca, a vibrant, beautiful Jewish woman, is defended by Ivanhoe against a charge of witchcraft—but it is Lady Rowena who is Ivanhoe’s true love. The wicked Prince John plots to usurp England’s throne, but two of the most popular heroes in all of English literature—Richard the Lion Hearted and the well-loved, famous outlaw Robin Hoo—team up to defeat the Normans and regain the castle. The success of this novel lies with Sir Walter Scott’s skillful blend of historic reality, chivalric romance, and high adventure.

Methinks the teen doth protest too much!

TANTOR MEDIA - I Am Not A Serial Killer by Dan WellsI Am Not A Serial Killer (Book 1 in the John Cleaver series)
By Dan Wells; Read by John Allen Nelson
6 CDs or 1 MP3-CD – Approx. 7 Hours 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 30, 2010
ISBN: 9781400115792 (cd), 9781400165797 (mp3-cd)
John works in his family’s mortuary and has an obsession with serial killers. He wants to be a good person but fears he is a sociopath, and for years he has suppressed his dark side through a strict system of rules designed to mimic “normal” behavior. Then a demon begins stalking his small town and killing people one by one, and John is forced to give in to his darker nature in order to save them. As he struggles to understand the demon and find a way to kill it, his own mind begins to unravel until he fears he may never regain control. Faced with the reality that he is, perhaps, more monstrous than the monster he is fighting, John must make a final stand against the horrors of both the demon and himself.

TANTOR MEDIA - Beowulf by anonymousBeowulf
By anonymous; Read by Rosalyn Landor
3 CDs or 1 MP3-CD – Approx. 3 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 29, 2010
ISBN: 9781400115990 (cd), 9781400165995 (mp3-cd)
When sleep was at its deepest, night at its blackest, up from the mist-filled marsh came Grendel stalking… Thus begins the battle between good and evil, for lying in wait and anxious to challenge the ogre Grendel is a young man, strong-willed and fire-hearted. This man is Beowulf, whose heroic dragon-slaying deeds were sung in the courts of Anglo-Saxon England more than a thousand years ago. Beowulf is our only native English heroic epic. In the figure of Beowulf, the Scandinavian warrior, and his struggles against monsters, the unknown author depicts the life and outlook of a pagan age. The poem is a subtle blending of themes—the conflict of good and evil, and an examination of heroism. Its skillful arrangement of incidents and use of contrast and parallel show it to be the product of a highly sophisticated culture.

This new collection of Robert E. Howard Horror fiction includes more than one story that freaked me out when I read them in paperback. Howard is of course best known for famous character Conan of Cimmeria. But some of his best writing was in the horror genre. One story, Pigeons From Hell, was adapted for television for an episode of an anthology series called Thiller (hosted by Boris Karloff). Like most of Howard’s work, it translates well, when in capable hands.

TANTOR MEDIA - The Horror Stories Of Robert E. HowardThe Horror Stories Of Robert E. Howard
By Robert E. Howard; Read by Robertson Dean
19 Audio CDs or 2 MP3-CD – Approx. 24 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 30, 2010
ISBN: 9781400112296 (cd), 9781400162291 (mp3-cd)
Robert E. Howard, renowned creator of Conan the barbarian, was also a master at conjuring tales of hair-raising horror. In a career spanning only twelve years, Howard wrote more than a hundred stories, with his most celebrated work appearing in Weird Tales, the preeminent pulp magazine of the era. In this collection of Howard’s greatest horror tales, some of the author’s best-known characters—Solomon Kane, Bran Mak Morn, and sailor Steve Costigan among them—roam the forbidding locales of Howard’s fevered imagination, from the swamps and bayous of the Deep South to the fiend-haunted woods outside Paris to remote jungles in Africa. Included in this collection is Howard’s masterpiece “Pigeons From Hell,” a tale of two travelers who stumble upon the ruins of a Southern plantation—and into the maw of its fatal secret. In “Black Canaan,” even the best warrior has little chance of taking down the evil voodoo man with unholy powers—and none at all against his wily mistress, the diabolical High Priestess of Damballah. Also included is the classic revenge nightmare “Worms Of The Earth” as well as “The Cairn On The Headland.”

TANTOR MEDIA - Journey To The Center Of The Earth by Jules VerneJourney To The Center Of The Earth
By Jules Verne; Read by Ed Sala
9 CDs or 1 MP3-CD – Approx. 10 Hours 30 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: Tantor Media
Published: March 30, 2010
An eccentric geology professor acquires an old book and finds an ancient parchment hidden within its pages. On it is a coded message that reveals directions to a secret passageway that leads deep within the earth’s interior. The professor immediately sets off on a daring journey to Iceland, where he and his companions enter into an extinct volcano and make their way to the center of the earth. They soon find a strange underground world where the laws of science are turned upside down. They discover huge caverns, luminous rocks, a subterranean sea, primitive forests, and fearsome prehistoric creatures that time had forgot. The travelers encounter one stirring adventure after another as they explore deep within the bowels of the earth.

Based on the big RPG Fantasy game I didn’t play last year Dragon Age: Origins

Tantor Media - Dragon Age: The Stolen Dragon Throne by David GaiderDragon Age: The Stolen Throne (Book 1 in the Dragon Age series)
By David Gaider; Read by Stephen Hoye
11 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – Approx. 13 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Published: Tantor Media
Published: March 23, 2010
ISBN: 9781400116218 (cd), 9781400166213 (mp3-cd)
After his mother, the beloved Rebel Queen, is betrayed and murdered by her own faithless lords, young Maric becomes the leader of a rebel army attempting to free his nation from the control of a foreign tyrant. His countrymen live in fear; his commanders consider him untested; and his only allies are Loghain, a brash young outlaw who saved his life, and Rowan, the beautiful warrior maiden promised to him since birth. Surrounded by spies and traitors, Maric must find a way to not only survive but achieve his ultimate destiny: Ferelden’s freedom and the return of his line to the stolen throne.

Despite its having William Dufris as a narrator, and its having airships, I’m still not 100% convinced I want to listen to…

TANTOR MEDIA - The Dream Of Perpetual Motion by Dexter PalmerThe Dream Of Perpetual Motion
By Dexter Palmer; Read by William Dufris
11 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – Approx. 14 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: March 16, 2010
ISBN: 9781400114962 (cd), 9781400164967 (mp3-cd)
Imprisoned aboard a zeppelin that floats above a city reminiscent of those of the classic films Metropolis and Brazil, the greeting card writer Harold Winslow is composing his memoirs. His companions are the only woman he has ever loved, who has gone insane, and the cryogenically frozen body of her father, the devilish genius who drove her mad. The tale of Harold’s decades-long thwarted love is also one in which he watches technology transform his childhood home from a mere burgeoning metropolis to a waking dream, in which the well-heeled have mechanical men for servants, deserted islands can exist within skyscrapers, and the worlds of fairy tales can be built from scratch. And as he heads toward a final, desperate confrontation with the mad inventor, he discovers that he is an unwitting participant in the creation of the greatest invention of them all—the perpetual motion machine.

Posted by Jesse Willis

Review of Timescape By Gregory Benford

Science Fiction Audiobook - Timescape by Gregory BenfordTimescape
By Gregory Benford; Read by Simon Prebble and Peter Bradbury
11 Cassettes – 15.75 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Recorded Books LLC
Published: 2001
ISBN: 0788763180
Themes: / Science Fiction / Hard SF / Time Travel / Alternate History / Quantum Physics / Science / Ecology / Philosophy / Astronomy / Britain / USA /

Winner of both the Nebula Award and the John W. Campbell Awards for best science fiction novel, Timescape is an enduring classic that examines the ways that science interacts with everyday life to create the many strange worlds in which we live. In a future wracked by environmental catastrophe and social instability, physicist John Renfrew devises a longshot plan to use tachyons–strange, time-traveling particles–to send a warning to the past. In 1962, Gordon Bernstein, a California researcher, gets Renfrew’s message as a strange pattern of interference in an experiment he’s conducting. As the two men struggle to overcome both the limitations of scientific knowledge and the politics of scientific research, a larger question looms: can a new future arise from the paradox of a forewarned past? With multiple plot lines and diverse characters, Timescape offers something for all lovers of fascinating science and great fiction. Simon Prebble and Peter Bradbury combine for a narration that skillfully uncovers the mysteries beneath our understanding of the universe.

Timescape is a deep novel that explores characters, causal paradoxes, politics, history and physics over time all with equal skill. And despite the serious nature of the narrative there are even a few laughs in there! This isn’t just science fiction it is scientist fiction, that is it is fiction that shows how scientific experimentation in the modern university setting works. Benford, is himself a scientist and he doesnt dumb down the book for us amateurs. I was very surprised that I hadn’t heard how good this novel was previously. I count myself as a fairly knowledgeable fan of science fiction and yet somehow the certain fame of this novel slipped under my radar. I was pleased and surprised as Timescape approaches greatness in it’s chosen domain.

Appropriately Simon Prebble, with his English accent, reads the 1990s chapters of the novel, which are primarily set in England, while Peter Bradbury with his American accent reads the 1960s chapters, set mostly in California. This is the kind of book that was a natural for dual narration. Bradbury and Prebble are both excellent, pronouncing nearly every technical term correctly, in this hard science heavy novel that is no small feat! Recorded Books’ original cover art for this audiobook is even more evocative than the paperback and hardcover editions. Nice work RB! But it’s not all praise. First is an attribution mistake on the front cover of the audiobook, the copy reads “narrated by Simon Prebble and Peter Bradley” (it should read “Bradbury” not “Bradley”). There was also a problem plaguing my copy of Recorded Books cassette audiobooks – the sound level. It may have been only a problem with my copy, but in order to hear this audiobook I had to crank up the stereo to its maximum output level. Recorded Books does however offer to replace defective cassettes, and if the recording level were any lower I’d have to seriously consider taking them up on it. Likely this wouldnt be a factor at all with the CD version but there isn’t a CD version available at this time.

Posted by Jesse Willis