Saturday, June 14, 2008

The "Force" is not equal to ma

Lileks on The Science of Star Wars at the Science Museum of Minnesota:

I love "Star Wars," I can tell you why making the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs doesn't mistake units of distance for units of time, so back off, fanboy. I have every intention of joining the geek queue for a chance to see actual real genuine props.

But let us not confuse the show with actual science. It's like the "Science of Lord of the Rings." Which would be ... metallurgy. And weaving. Gandalf wore a lovely white formal gown in the second one. You can imagine the ads: "Are the Orc factories that turned out legions of hellish warriors similar to our own attempts to genetically engineer better people?"

Well, inasmuch as we're not doing it in the service of rapacious evil bent on possessing a single piece of jewelry, no. That's what cosmetic surgery is for.

Suggested upcoming exhibits: "The Science of 'Sex In The City'," which explains the engineering principles behind Carrie Bradshaw's enormous dress-flower things. "How does she stay standing on heels in stiff winds wearing that thing? Learn the science behind the fashion!"
Then there's "The Science of Boosting Attendance Figures with Pop-Culture Tie-Ins." But like "Star Wars," that's more of an art.


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