Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

V-GER heads off December 18, 2010

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:32 am
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Do you remember Star Trek: the Motion Picture? (aka Star Trick: The Motionless Picture according to some SAIT nerds 20 years ago). V-Ger was a giant, living machine tracing through the universe trying to learn all that was learnable and return the information to its creator. Who? 20th Century humans from NASA, of course. V-Ger was actually a Voyager space probe, which had been travelling for 300 years collecting data.

This week, the real Voyager hits the edge of our galaxy and heads off into the universe. 30 years ago when they made the movie they were imagining this day.  I remember it seeming impossibly distant, and yet, here it is.  Science fiction being made real. I remember worrying about whether we really want to draw attention to ourselves…  In 300 years will Voyager return having discovered  or become a lifeform?  or will some life forms have come to see what Earth is all about for better or worse?

What an amazing time we live in.  Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner have been a strange part of it, as the visionary inventions of the tv show and movies are now part of our lives- from automatic doors to flip phones.  Now V-Ger is off to places no human has been. 

Bon Voyage…r


Hawking & me: Birdbrains think alike! May 4, 2010

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 8:14 am
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I don’t want to say I told you so, but when none other than brilliant physicist Stephen Hawkings says something I’ve been saying for years, well, “I TOLD YOU SO!” Remember back in the 70s when Voyager headed off with drawings of humans, copies of our music and a map to find Earth? At the time, I wondered whether it was a good idea to draw the attention of some potentially evil alien race that we’re out here.

Remember what happened in Star Trek: The Motion Picture (aka Star Trick: the Motionless Picture) when V’ger (aka Voyager) came back to our solar system hauling back all the wisdom of the universe in its hunt for The Creator? It was BAD! Back as far as War of the Worlds in the 30s people have known that an alien invasion is not likely to be a good thing. Hawking was right, it didn’t go well for any of the indigenous populations anywhere on Earth to welcome aliens to their places, why would we want to invite aliens to Earth itself?

My only consolation is that by the time aliens arrive, the human population will probably be extinct.


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