Connections among Vernor Vinge's sf novel A Deepness in the Sky, the film Jean de Florette, and Joe Sacco's graphic novel/documentary Safe Area Gorazde, for anyone else who was wondering: In Deepness the podmaster (bad guy) has a limited amount of water, organic chemicals, and human laborers in his space hideout, so he must fastidiously conserve all these elements as he waits out several decades for the planetbound alien culture to mature and become ripe for exploitation. In Florette the Depardieu character fights like a Trojan to save a business that is carefully and scientifically worked out but dying for lack of water. In Gorazde, the Bosnian Muslims hoard food and equipment, rotate military duty, and rig generators on rafts in the river so they can have electricity, all for a semblance of a decent life in a city under siege. The common thread is players improvising like mad in the face of scarce resources and a ticking clock. That's more of a plot arc than a theme in the sense of "innovation is good and ennobles mankind." If the podmaster had been successful a race would have been enslaved, and in the other two examples people "did what they felt they had to do" in the face of conscious or institutional villainy, so not sure if there are any uplifiting conclusions of the Heritage Foundation persuasion to be reached. Not that anyone said that.
The conservation of resources is a fascinating theme, which appears often in literature. But I dunno if I would say that this connexion is the unifying thread in the works cited.
Ah, I see the source of the confusion--we're not talking about the same Vinge book. Work with me here, Von Bark. I don't just say this stuff.
Yes, confused. I could play the prequel card: which book is first? Okay, I was referring to 'Fire in The Deep', and you were referring to 'A Deepness in the Sky'. Sigh. This too deep. Conservation of resources is a big deal in the latter. Or the former?
Since we're on the topic of limited resources in space you should know that the new Battlestar Galactica is brilliant. I've only seen the miniseries that kicked off the new show so I'm assuming it continues in the same vein.
I have to admit I skimmed (okay skipped) BG the first time around, but always stopped to listen to the Cylons' synthesized voices when passing through the TV room, because I thought they sounded cool. I probably watched more minutes of the '70s Buck Rogers (the other big hair show) and have been revisiting it with horrified fascination on the SF (I mean Sci Fi) channel. Five minute segments is all I can take, or until the little robot says "B-d-B-d-B-d-Buck..." which cracks me up. Is the new BG on that channel, too?
Yeah, I think so. BG was way better than b-b-Buck, darker but not completely dissimilar.
off topic - you guys should read Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood. excellent near-future distopia. Also there are scarce resources.