Posts in Science
The Good, the Bad, the Ugly--and the New Shiny!

Social media. Is it bringing the world together, or tearing us apart? I can’t say, and this post definitely isn’t about trying to figure out the answer; you can decide for yourselves.

The reasons why some of you may be considering leaving Facebook or Twitter (or have already done so) would take the rest of this post to list, so I’ll spare you. Google+ is dead come the end of April. Tumblr is in the middle of a cringe-worthy identity crisis that may well kill it. Instagram was comparatively unscathed by 2018, but it’s always one bad redesign away from disaster.

The point is, social media platforms come and go (raise your hand if you had a MySpace page). They change their design and their rules and inevitably rise and fall. As omnipresent as Facebook feels today, it’s transient like all the rest.

So, what to do? I plan to continue being present and active on the most popular sites of the day, whatever those are, so don’t worry - I’m not going anywhere. But if you are, it shouldn’t mean we have to stop sharing our enthusiasm about space and tech and sci-fi with each other. This is why I’m creating a place where I will always be sharing my enthusiasm about those topics - a place I will always control, and where you are always welcome.

I give you SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLES: Breaking News & Random Musings On Space, Technology, Sci-Fi & The View From A Writer’s Window. At SMBH, I’ll be cross-posting all my Facebook posts, as well as notable posts of mine from Twitter, Instagram and other platforms. At SMBH, you can not just comment but join and follow the conversation, without worrying about Mark Zuckerberg mining your data for an army of ad bots or Twitter shadow-banning you. It’ll be fun!

If you’re an RSS feed person, you can add the blog to your reader of choice: https://www.gsjennsen.com/supermassive-black-holes?format=rss. If you’re an email person, subscribe to the blog here. Note: this is completely separate from my primary author newsletter, as I don’t want to be spamming people who only want to hear about book news. So subscribe to SMBH if you want to get email digests of new posts 2-3 times a week, and never miss a conversation.

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Would You Give Up Everything To Step Foot on a New World?

Last year Mars One announced an ambitious plan to establish the first human colony on Mars by 2024. Though the website is quite detailed and professional, I have no idea whether they will accomplish their goal, in 2024 or a later date—that's not what this post will focus on.

Though in the news recently for somewhat dubious reasons, the initiative has sparked the imagination of scientists, researchers, adventurers and dreamers. More than 200,000 people signed up for the chance to go to Mars—and never return.

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My Kingdom For A Crystal Ball

Predictions for the future—near and far—are all the rage each new year. Tech, sports and celebrity sites all scramble over one another to announce how the corner of the world they cover will change in the next year, decade and for a few brave souls, longer—usually in dramatically phrased but utterly predictable ways.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to grandly pronounce my own set of predictions, so you can stick around. But the overabundance of prediction lists did send me on a thought train, one related to an issue I mentioned in my previous post "Daring to Dream," to which this post could be considered a sequel.

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Daring to Dream: Why the World Needs Science Fiction

While researching the theory behind the Alcubierre Drive, which forms the scientific basis for faster-than-light travel in Aurora Rising, I again came face-to-face with an issue which annoyed me immensely back during my aspiring-astrophysicist days.

Fully half the Wikipedia entry for the drive is taken up with all the reasons why it is impossible; the latter half of nearly all “serious” articles on the concept the same. Now, I readily admit that currently, not only are we not capable of producing the technology required for such a drive, we don’t even possess the theoretical scientific knowledge necessary to do so.

So. What.

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