Monday, April 18, 2011

ICON SUNY Stony Brook: Science Fact & Fiction Convention (Convention and Art Show 4/2011)

We also displayed our fractal and povray prints last year at ICON 29's Art Show. That was our 5th year in the ICON Art Show. We didn't enter this year as we didn't have anything new to show off, but we are working on it for next year! I saw this year's art show and could tell they lost the great director they had last year... 'nuff said.

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This was ICON's 30th anniversary! I started going to ICON at SUNY Stony Brook in 1990. I didn't have a chance to go all 3 days this year as is my usual want. So, I missed my favorite filker of all time: Voltaire. He had a panel in the afternoon and a midnight show on Saturday, but I could only attend on Sunday. BTW, Voltaire is also a professor of stop motion animation at SVA.
First thing I did was go to the registration desk by the SAC Auditorium. They told me I had to put my real name on the back of the membership badge, but I could win a prize for the wackiest nickname on the front if it was math related. Little did they know that I am a professor of Calculus no less. So, I proceeded to draw: 2*fnint(e^(-x^2),x,0,inf) = sqrt(pi). They said I won, I still don't know what I got for my trouble except that they took a zillion pictures of my equation with their iPhones and Droids. I guess the pictures are immortalized somewhere in cyberspace. Maybe its on Facebook or Twitter or

Then I went to a talk about fusion reators and the disaster in Japan given by Dr. Takai (10 am SAC 304). After that I saw Dr. Halada speak about AI and AL and a new course for which he has NSF funding (11am SAC 304). Its a course on Science Fact vs. Science Fiction. Sounds like a stealth course in science ethics using famous scifi short stories. The students even get to write their own short fiction!

After that, I was off to Bob Greenbeger's perennial Movie Previews (12m Javitts 110). Long story, short: don't go to see "Thor," but you have to see "The Green Lantern!" I went back to SAC 311 at 1pm to see my favorite Star Trek author (Keith DeCandido) talk about "Mongols vs. Klingons" which was loads of fun. Just don't mention the "Great Tribble Hunt" in Worf's presence! Then I was off to lunch (sorry no BBQ this year), the Dealers' Room (where I got a ton Girl Scout cookies) and the Filk Guest of Honor: Heather Dale (3:30pm SAC Auditorium)! So, its official. Best filkers ever are (in no particular order): Voltaire, Tom Smith, Marc Gunn and Heather Dale.

Bear McCreary is no filker. He is an accomplished composer who does sound tracks for lots of SyFy shows, movies and games. IDK, why I mention him here other than he's is phenomenal! He composed some great music for BattleStar Galactica, I can still here the huge Japanese Kettle drums:

Of course, ICON season would never be complete without WUSB 90.1 FM's own Howard Margolin and "Destinies the Voice of Science Fiction!" So, run, don't walk to and listen to the archived "Destinies" shows. Make sure to listen to the 4 one-hour live specials for ICON 30 dated 4/1/11, 4/8/11, 4/15/11 and the up coming 4/22/11 shows. 4/15/11 is especially fun as it is recorded during the first night of ICON and features some great mystery guests from the con! One of the mystery guests was the great Keith DeCandido himself!

UPDATE: Sorry for the typo, the first of the recordings listed above was only 30 minutes and not live!

So, eternal thanks go to Capt Phil for hosting all the "Destinies" audio archives as well as a regular guest from, Chis DeFilippis, for all your great science fiction documentaries on "Destinies."

Below you will find a video from my cell phone (samsung rogue) I took during Heather Dale's concert on Sunday. I hope you can enjoy it. I really have to get my droid....
That's all folks, for now, I hope you've enjoyed our break from my usual rant!

Generally Speaking,

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