May 2022

And All the Stars a Stage by James Blish

The novel “And All the Stars a Stage” by James Blish was published for the first time in 1960 serialized in the magazine “Amazing Science Fiction” and in 1971 as a book.

Jorn Birn does not have many prospects in a world where there’s a strong predominance of men and an equally strong competition for the favors of the small minority of women. One possibility comes from a space program that aims to test faster-than-light propulsion. Jorn is selected to be trained as a navigator and accepts knowing that the mission will be experimental and very risky.

Everything changes when the study of anomalies detected in solar activity leads to the conclusion that the Sun will explode within a few years. Even by concentrating all the efforts of the world, only a small percentage of human beings can survive and the selection of the crews of the available spaceships is very strict. Jorn Birn will fly one of them in search of a habitable planet.

Hock E. Tan (Photo courtesy Broadcom)

Semiconductor giant Broadcom Inc. announced that it has reached an agreement to buy virtualization and cloud software maker VMware in a deal worth approximately $61 billion that will be paid partly in cash and partly in shares. Broadcom takes over VMware’s debts, which amount to approximately $8 billion. Broadcom Software Group, the software subsidiary, will be integrated into VMware. With this acquisition, Broadcom can extend its business solutions offering.

The Menace from Farside by Ian McDonald

The novella “The Menace from Farside” by Ian McDonald was published for the first time in 2019. It’s part of the Luna series.

Cariad Corcoran was born and raised within a ring family, a complex social structure that can change over time. A new bond brings Sidibe, a new sister to Cariad, who feels threatened by the arrival of another teenager who shows off thanks to her wings. She decides to involve her in an adventure out of the ordinary together with her brothers Jair and Kobe in search of the first footprint left on the Moon by Neil Armstrong.

Stargazer: The Ultimate Artefact by Ivan Ertlov

The novel “Stargazer: The Ultimate Artefact” (“Stargazer: Das letzte Artefakt”) by Ivan Ertlov was published for the first time in 2021 and translated from German by Marly Gram. It’s the first book in the After Terra series.

Frank Gazer is a prospector who has worked hard to get command of a spaceship. For a human, it’s not easy to get high positions, even among prospectors, because his species’ reputation is still negative two thousand years after the war in which an interstellar alliance almost wiped out humanity. A mission that targets a comet takes Frank and his crew in an unexpected direction.

The relationship between the Plachtharr Alliance and the Protectorate are decidedly tense and the situation worsens due to the possibility of finding technologically advanced remains of an ancient civilization that could change the balance of power between the two coalitions. A war could be inevitable.

Views of the molar TNH2-1

An article published in the journal “Nature Communications” reports the discovery in today’s Laos of a tooth that was attributed to a little girl that belonged to the Denisovan species, an archaic human species still mysterious in many ways. The molar was dated between 164,000 and 131,000 years ago from the analysis of the sediments in which it was found in the Cobra Cave (Tam Ngu Hao 2), in the Annamite Chain, in Laos. The warm and humid conditions in that area offer little hope of still finding pieces of DNA but the proteins and appearance of the molar, very similar to that of a jawbone discovered in Tibet and attributed to a Denisovan, led the researchers to that conclusion.