"John Scully's" comic strip that has a farewell every day (drawn and written by Ruben Bolling)

"John Scully's" comic strip that has a farewell every day (drawn and written by Ruben Bolling)
"John Scully's" comic strip that has a farewell every day (drawn and written by Ruben Bolling)
September 19 is the last post for this blog. Thanks to all my readers!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

23 May 2013

James Blish b. 1921 died 29 July 1975
(won 1959 Hugo for A Case Of Conscience)

Doing a little digging, Mr. Blish also wrote some near future histories and though out of print, they are available at my local public library (yay, socialism!), so his predictions will start showing up on the blog in the next few weeks.

There are several pictures of Blish on the Internet, most of them taken when he was older. He shaved off the pencil thin mustache, which is a damned dirty shame. A man in a sharp suit with a pencil thin mustache is a man who is going places.

Prediction: 2010: The Chinese land on Jupiter’s moon Europa with plans to claim it, the first nation to claim part of space as their own, planning to export massive amounts of water from it.

Predictor: Arthur C. Clarke in 2010: Odyssey Two, published 1982

Reality: If Clarke gets any points for this one, it's that he sees China will be a major player about thirty years into the future. Writing in 1982, the shuttle program is boosting interest in space exploration, so he can be somewhat forgiven for assuming things were going to start moving again in a big damned hurry.

Even with excuses, he was wrong about the future of space exploration. And as for the reason, water is still plentiful enough that we don’t have to import it from off-world. Let’s hope it stays that way.

Looking one day ahead... INTO THE FUTURE!

A French postcard foresees the future of education... in the year 2000!

Join us then... IN THE FUTURE!


  1. My admittedly-vague memory is that the Chinese weren't going to Europa to export its water. They were going to it because (1) it had water, =which they could use to refuel= and (2) because it could support life.

    As Mr. Spock said near the end of Journey to Babel, their fuel utilization didn't make sense except as a one-way mission.

    In the Chinese--non-suicide--case, they used all their fuel getting to the planet because they expected they could refuel using Europa's water resources. (The indigenous lifeforms were another matter.)

    As I say, it's a vague recollection, but I'm 99.44% certain they were not going to Europa to export water to Earth.

  2. Hi, Ken. I'm going to the library today to check out Blish and I'll look at 2010 again. I think what I wrote is the official explanation by the Chinese instead of the real reason.

    Thanks for asking for a fact check.

  3. Of course, Blish's cash cow was the novelizations of the TOS Star Trek episodes, and the very first ST Universe novel, "Spock Must Die!"

    1. Hey, ZR. It was interesting to read Disch's take on the history of SF and the general irritation that writers had about the changing financial situation when TOS came along.

  4. Came across this a couple days ago, and just remembered to read. Some kinda hits, some serious misses. Thought you'd enjoy. "Nikola Tesla’s amazing predictions for the 21st Century" http://myscienceacademy.org/2013/05/17/nikola-teslas-amazing-predictions-for-the-21st-century/

    1. Lockwood, you are a dream come true. Batches of predictions are a dream come true, from a source as nerd famous as Tesla.

      I do not think we have met face to face, but if we do, the first round is on me.


Traveler! Have you news... FROM THE FUTURE?