With one thing and another it has been a very sad time. Perhaps the saddest news is that I found one of my cats, ‘Rufus the Poofus’ dead in my garden just outside the backdoor under the decking. He died suddenly and up until that point he had been a very healthy active cat.
Rufus’s antics had provided some of the inspirations for C.A.T. – though I have yet to include the twitching of the upright tail as he walks out of the room gesture in one of my stories. If you want to buy the C.A.T. story, or just read the first part – go here.
Clearly I haven’t had the heart to be up to much. I have managed to keep an eye on the science, which continues to gather pace…
There’s been an article about super-DNA that protects people from hereditary diseases. Unfortunately because the evaluation was done from anonymous donors, further work with the people concerned cannot be done – they are trying to track them down, but whether they succeed remains to be seen. See here for more details. In one way, this should not come as a surprise. If bad DNA can produce horrible hereditary diseases, why not have good DNA that can prevent them? Sometimes postulating the opposite can be the basis for a good science fiction story.
Then there’s the recent announcement that a billionaire wants to invest in the development of wafersats to go to our nearest star, Alpha Centauri. These wafersats will be propelled by laser from close to Earth. See here for details. This has engineering challenges, and may not succeed. But there are other projects including we should not forget the rival project the Icarus project with its Firefly spacecraft. See here for details. Either of these could find out more about Alpha Centauri and whether there are any habitable planets there. Again this could be an interesting area to explore through science fiction asking the crucial what ifs.
Further news on Planet IX – more evidence has been found that it could exist. A seventh Kuiper Belt object also shows signs of having been perturbed by the a mysterious gravitational tug out there – which could be Planet IX. They are actively looking for it. And they have put together soem ideas on what it would look like… See here for details. Picture below from the article, just to whet your appetites.
But given the recent results from the New Horizons about Pluto, this diagram might be rather too conventional in its make-up. Yes, it’s all too possible, but given the highly eccentric orbit Planet IX should be taken I would expect expect some strange cyclic effects to change the composition in ways that we have not yet thought about. Again another area for the science fiction exploration.
There are so many opportunities for good stories here for science fiction… go write…