User:Tprouty93/Humn 4472 Journal

From Students
Jump to navigation Jump to search


August 25, 2019: Science Fiction

Science Fiction is a genre of fiction where the author or creator imagines fantastical concepts that are rooted in science. Examples of this could be things like time travel, aliens, space, and futuristic technology. It is fictional work, but depends on reality and non-fiction to exist most times. It can mean things like robots or aliens, but it can also tap into concepts of the super natural and after life, or even ones own consciousness.

August 25, 2019: Science Fiction

There are a few things that I picked up from the research I completed, the reading of material provided, and digesting of the video "The Truth About Science Fiction"[1]. Science Fiction in it's modern form came around in the 1700s. However, there is evidence of many of the elements in the w:history of science fiction that date back well before this time, such as throughout epics. A very common epic that is referenced when you start to research precursors of sci-fi is the ancient Epic of Gilgamesh. It is interesting to see also how much science fiction has predicted things to really happen in the future. For example, in the video "The Truth About Science Fiction" the book Around the Moon is mentioned. In this story, the author actually mentions the concept of weightlessness, which was at the time something they did not know. Inventors also, as well as scientist, use and used concepts and ideas that science fiction presented to inspire their own endeavors, as note in "The Truth About Science Fiction", such as helpful robots around the household, as well as the combination of robots and humans, like the w:cyborg, which was introduced to the world by Raymond F. Jones in his novel The Cybernetic Brains.

@Tprouty93: Hello, I enjoyed reading your post. I remember reading the Epic of Gilgamesh in World literature. I did not think to mention that or tie it in with this class. Your post is well written and free of errors. I have one question about your links. How do you get the reference section links to look how they do?--TSmith2020 (talk) 01:14, 7 September 2019 (EDT)

September 22, 2019: The Inevitable

John Cheever's "The Swimmer" is a surreal story that follows Neddy Merrill through a journey from pool to pool as he tries to get home after a few drinks with friends under the warm midsummer's sun. Though it may not be evident to the main character Neddy throughout the story line that he is continuing from pool to pool to exit different points in his life and entering new ones, the reader can begin to slowly recognize that it is the actual passage of time that is occurring, one w:theme of the short story. Neddy's physical well being and resilience changes as he goes through each checkpoint; a symbol of what is happening in his life. Though he is physically aging with each and every pool and as the season progresses from Summer to Winter, it seems as though his mind does not follow the same progression. He remains childish and unaware of the reality of the situation. [2]

Neddy feels that his journey is just a Sunday evening and just his path home, without realizing that it is actually a much longer span of time that is encompassed in this short adventure. The supporting characters' responses to his arrival allude to the fact that years pass by between each encounter, as well as the state of each property he steps on to. Time passing by is inevitable, whether we choose to acknowledge it or not. Neddy chose for the majority of the story to ignore the reality that is life passing us by, and the aging that happens as a result. While he may of tried to escape it, the fact is that there is no escaping what is natural.

September 22, 2019: Time in La Jetee and "The Swimmer"

The Swimmer and La Jetée both focus very heavily on the concept of time travel, though more literal in La Jetée versus in "The Swimmer". In La Jetée, the main character is greeted in the end with the aging process and passage of time just as the main character in "The Swimmer" is. However, in "The Swimmer", the main character Neddy does not exactly know that it is time that is passing him by and his mortality that he has to accept. In La Jetée, the main character does not know that it is his mortality he must greet in the end, either. The main character of La Jetée does not deny the passage of time nor man's mortality as his childhood is marred by the image of a man he saw being killed, but did not know it was his own decisions and choices that would lead to the child version of himself witnessing a man's death, that of his own. Neddy in "The Swimmer" also is unaware of how his decisions lead him to where we leave him at the end of the short story also, being his own downfall as well, though it is that of a social death more so than his literal death. Both stories show the inevitability of the passage of time, the reality of what being a mortal human entails, and how denial can blind one from the truth. [3]

September 25, 2019: Titular Meaning

"The Gernsback Continuum" is set in the 1980s, parallel to a alternate universe that begins as merely a concept of a Utopian 1980s that never existed, but was fantasized by Americans in the 1930s; something that can be seen in the futuristic architecture from the time. The main character, a photographer enlisted by two London figures named Cohen and Dialta Downes to capture the architecture, begins to dive into the world and become a part of the collective unconscious, as the main character's US agent Kihn calls it, and starts to see semiotic ghosts. The title of the short story when further broken down can point one into the direction of just what is happening.

Hugo Gernsback

Hugo Gernsback was born in 1884 and died in 1967. He is best known for his publications, one of which is considered the first science fiction magazine. Because of his contributions to the genre as a publisher, the title of "The Father of Science Fiction" has many times appeared beside his name sake. Therefore, the title "The Gernsback Continuum" alludes to one of the biggest names in science fiction, reminding the reader that this work is pulling in concepts of science fiction.


A continuum is defined in the dictionary as "a continuous extent, series, or whole". [4] The continuum being referenced in the title and that occurs in the story itself is that of an alternate universe that coexist with that of the main character, a continuous extent of the universe.[5] The main character of the story visits this continuum, the alternate universe of a theorized 1980s utopia, as a result of a mental breakdown and psychosis that is lead on by the use of diet pills, or amphetamines. The semiotic phantoms in this universe have broken off and taken a life of their own. Though the past is the past and has been mostly forgotten, a part of it still exist and the protagonist in the story line has discovered them via the Gernsback Continuum. Something that may seem as if it was simply science fiction before, but the photographer has found to truly exist parallel with his own existence.

September 25, 2019: "The Gernsback Continuum" vs "Blink"

"The Gernsback Continuum" and the episode of w: Doctor Who titled "Blink" both capture an essence of the past with the help of alternate timelines and characters interested in discovering the truth. Both characters that the plots center around are photographers looking for subjects to photograph. In "The Gernsback Continuum", the protagonist cannot help but go back to explore and figure out just what is happening, eventually discovering the continuum that exist. Sally, the protagonist in the episode "Blink" also digs a bit deeper into what she finds to be a continuum in itself, but one that eventually collides into one universe as she closes the paradox at the end of the episode by ensuring that the Doctor does in fact stay on track to be a part of her timeline, though he must travel into the past to be a part of the present. In "The Gernsback Continuum", the main character discovers that a utopia exist right beside his less than ideal world and that the future did in fact end up how those in the past imagined it. In "Blink", Sally's friend Kathy ended up in her own perfect world parallel to Sally from the past, but instead of it being a world theorized by those in the past it is her own world that she found herself residing in by being sent back to the past herself. [6]

September 25, 2019: Philip K. Dick vs. Quail

In "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale", the main character falls into a category that many of the protagonist in Philip K. Dick's writings. He lives a lackluster life, caught in a job he finds meaningless with a want and need to escape. Here, the main character named Quail wishes to find himself on a journey to Mars.[7] Further research on the write of this short story, Philip K. Dick brings up an interesting past for the author, that in a way tangles with his fictional character. Dick wrote a letter to the FBI in the 1970s, and is known to of led a life that was plagued by drug usage and hallucinations.

Philip K. Dick

Philip K. Dick had many friends who suffered from drug addition, and he himself would not be safe from the disease. Not only did he suffer from drug addiction, but the hallucinations that Dick would experience covered a wide range of experiences, with experience being that of a woman shooting him with a beam of light that would divulge religious secrets to him. Philip K. Dick wrote an 8,000 page journal over his visions. The author also contacted authorities, such as the FBI, over other authors, accusing them of having connections to communists or enemy forces. He also experienced a string of not so great marriages, and in one of the marriages made friends with an FBI agent after a visit from the bureau.[8]

Philip K. Dick and Quail

It seems as though Phillip K. Dick infused his life into his characters, whether knowingly or not. Douglas Quail was in a not so happy marriage in the beginning of the story. Whether Philip K. Dick's visions were real or just a product of mental disease, one thing is true, there were a few that showed an underlying need to be a grander than life individual. Like Quail, Dick also seemed to find himself intertwined with agents and the government, and a want to be a part of something bigger than himself, which he ended up being, just like Quail. Both characters experienced bouts of paranoia and being unsure of what is real or not, and both seemed to of bitten off more than they could chew at times.

September 27, 2019: Repressed Memories, Men in Black, and Trustworthy Accounts

The short story "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" brings into question the reliability of one's memory, as does the episode from The X-Files titled "Jose Chung's From Outer Space". Both also bring up the ideas of repressed memories, as well as the subconscious oozing out into reality from our own desires, thoughts, and fears. Not only are repressed thoughts a concept that is shown in both, but so is the men in black, aliens, and the question of whether or not we can trust our own thoughts or eye witness accounts.

Repressed memory

The use of outside methods, hypnosis in "Jose Chung's From Outer Space" and accidentally a serum in "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale", to bring up repressed memories is put to use in both story lines. In "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" the memories are repressed for the main character, Quail, as a result of his experiences by 3rd parties. Contrarily, in "Jose Chung's From Outer Space the memories are repressed as a result of possible trauma, which is often the case with repressed memories. With repressed memories, it is still theorized that the individual may not remember the incident, but that it still can affect the individual. Quail in "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" is affected by his repressed memories by having a need to experience exactly the same experience as repressed, as well as having a secret want for the world to be saved simply by his being alive, something that also comes up as being possibly true. The young woman in The X-Files episode also has her own repressed memories as a result of her trauma. Both make the viewer or reader question the validity of what is going on, bringing up the dependability of eye witness accounts.

Rashomon effect

The Rashomon Effect is a concept that is named after the 1950 movie, Rashomon. It is seen in both stories, especially in "Jose Chung's From Outer Space". The effect refers to the concept of the unreliability of eye witnesses and situations where more than one account or interpretation of something contradict each other. [9]The viewer and reader for both story lines are left wondering what is the truth, as the conflicting accounts and writers' choices to let the one digesting the material decide ultimately what is real answers some, but not all, of the questions raised as a result.

Men in Black

The "men in black", as well as government officials in general, are both brought into the picture for "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale" and "Jose Chung' From Outer Space". Interference by the government and other questionable figures, as is classically accompanied with alien abduction accounts, play major roles. For Quail in "We Can Remember It For You Wholesale", the government is the reason for why he does not remember one of his experiences and his past job, as the government tries to hide the truth of what has happened just like in the episode of The X-Files.

September 28, 2019: Fear Driven Inference in "The Entire History of You"

In "The Entire History of You", the main character Liam Foxwell searches high and low for evidence of a core instinct that his wife has done something wrong or still retains feelings for another, an individual that he finds played a bigger role in his wife's romantic history than he previously thought. Liam's "gut overreaction", as David Nussbaum and Paul Thagard refer to it, causes him to go off the deep end, resulting in over drinking, violence, and arguments between himself, his wife Ffion and the man he believes his wife likes, Jonas. Fear driven inference is the result of a feedback loop between judgement and emotional reactions, a combination of cognitive thinking and intense emotions. Liam obsesses over the idea that his wife is being unfaithful. At first he thinks that she may just have a crush on him, and this slowly builds up into him suspecting, and finding, much more with the assistance of modern technology; devices implanted in people's bodies to allow for easier memory recall, and repression. [10]

When we think on negative things, it makes us feel negatively. As a result, we begin to think even harder about what is making us feel bad and become more suspicious or begin to expect more bad things to happen. This results in heightened levels of anxiety and anger. Liam exhibits this exact cycle, going from slightly annoyed with his wife's behavior, to increasingly suspicious of her behavior and actions. In the end, he finds what he is looking for and what his gut told him, landing himself in a failed marriage and empty home without his son. [11]

Today's society's over dependence on social media can result in the same outcome, and technology has made it increasingly easier, like in this episode, to not only keep memories closer, but also discover thing within them that may not always make us feel great or comfortable. The technology can have wonderful advantages, but it can also increase suspicion and be used to make our lives, relationships, and first encounters more difficult.

@Tprouty93: I agree with your remarks. I think some people would use the grain to obsess over their past because of what their present is or isn’t. I also fear that if someone goes through a traumatic experience that they might play that memory over and over causing them not to be able to move past the trauma. I know that may sound weird, but its like looking at something that is displeasing to you, yet you cannot stop watching it.--Daisja30 (talk) 23:31, 28 September 2019 (EDT)
@Daisja30: I agree. We tend to obsess as is over traumatic events and cannot help but replay them in our mind, reread sad text messages or email, and more, so why would we not as humans take advantage of the ability to replay traumatic events? Liam uses his grain to replay an interview he felt went poorly, and though this is not traumatic as an event as say, losing a loved one, it is still an example of how we would misuse this technology to only emotionally hurt ourselves more in the long run. Tprouty93 (talk) 15:14, 29 September 2019 (EDT)
@Tprouty93: The grain’s abilities were showcased perfectly at the end of the episode. The technology can be used to bring back good times and it can be used to bring destruction to the present. Having access to this database of information blurs what is truly important as people begin to obsess over the past. -Atallent (talk) 12:18, 29 September 2019 (EDT)
@Atallent: Definitely true. I know that if I personally had this technology there are certain things that I myself would go back and relive over and over again. Some would be positive times, others would be sad ones that had positive notes in them, or maybe even just last moments I saw loved ones alive. It would hinder a lot of people from moving forward in their lives, as it did Liam, and could be one reason besides a moment of retribution for why he chose to cut the grain out. Tprouty93 (talk) 15:14, 29 September 2019 (EDT)

@Tprouty93: You make a great point about technology's impact on relationships. Technology is often used as a barrier between communication. In both scenarios, there is no open communication of how each of the main protagonists were feeling. P. Burke knew that she was really not Delphi when she had met Paul. She just went along with the illusion that she was Delphi. He also was under the illusion that the girl he loved is really a human and not a robot. P. Burke could have told him who she really is and how she is connected to a machine. Technology gives her the false reality that she could live out her days living a normal life as Delphi. Liam has suspicions that his wife is unfaithful to him. I do not think they have been married for so long as he referenced a span of 18 months. His obsession with his wife's past relationships has always been in his mind, but instead of speaking of his concerns with his wife he uses technology to confront her. Liam hides behind technology to find out the answers that bother him without being upfront with his wife and Jonas. Ffi herself hides behind technology. She knew she was having an affair with Jonas while being married to Liam. She knew there is a possibility that Jonas is their child's father. I think that Ffi is living in a fantasy where everything will go on like normal with no problems. I think the connection in both along with technology is trust issues. No one can trust the other about anything in either story. MarinChristina (talk) 22:07, 29 September 2019 (EDT)

@MarinChristina: I think Liam mentions 18 months because it is around when his wife would of conceived their little one rather than how long they have been together, but it does not seem like they have been together a very long length of time, especially since they do not seem that old and we can infer they did not go to college together since the dinner party is Ffi's friends from university. Because of their age and because of the fact that they had past issues, I would agree that a big down fall there for them, as well as with P. Burke and Paul, would be the lack of communication, and secrets in general. Technology not only creates a barrier between communication, but it helps us do so ourselves also. However, as it is with most things, the truth will eventually get out. Tprouty93 (talk) 20:26, 30 September 2019 (EDT)

September 28, 2019: Finding the Truth

In "The Girl Who Was Plugged In" and "The Entire History of You", we get a clear example of the phrase curiosity killed the cat in action, but not the additional part of the phrase that says satisfaction brought it back, since in both stories the discovery of the truth resulted in the end of the "dream" life both main characters were leading. [12] Questioning situations and having the need to dig deeper ended the married life Liam led in "The Entire History of You", and the literal life of P. Burke.

Both stories held a massive effort by outside parties to help keep the truth concealed. Liam could not help but dig deeper out of an increased growth in his anxiety. For P. Burke, the tables were flipped as she knew the truth, but the curiosity of her new found significant other brought the full and honest truth to light, resulting in her dream life not only being lost, but her actual life. Though it is not exactly stated in the episode of Black Mirror that Liam regretted his decision, it can be inferred at the end when he decides to cut the grain out of his neck after watching replays of memories from when his life was happier. In "The Girl Who Was Plugged In", Paul, P. Burke's partner, is more than likely standing more in Liam's shoes with his regret.

@Tprouty93: This is journal entry is true especially in the History of You episode. the man was very concerned and worried about his wife and the other guy thats all he could thing about. He even decided to involve the nanny in the whole situation which was an ass of a move to make in my eyes. Curiosity is a crazy thing that can hurt anybody. --JShepp912 (talk)
@JShepp912: Curiosity and obsession really can lead us to violent and hurtful places. Intense emotions can deteriorate our judgement in general and cause us to forget everything we know about logic and patience. Tprouty93 (talk) 20:45, 30 September 2019 (EDT)
@Tprouty93: I will agree that Liam and the other guy were so concerned about their partners lives. The other guy might have been regretful but in Liam's case it seemed more like validation instead of regret. I think he might regret not finding out sooner about the affair. -- Tami Marie (talk)
@Tami Marie: I think even though Liam is happy to have his suspicions validated so that he knows he is not crazy, he is still regretful. If he had not done this digging, or had been calmer and more willing to fix and mend his relationship, maybe he would still have the happy memories he replays at the end. Plus, we all tend to regret the truths we find that hurt us, even if they are things we really should know about. Tprouty93 (talk) 20:45, 30 September 2019 (EDT)
@Tprouty93: You make some good points. Do not quote anything unless you are quoting; placing quotation marks for emphasis is incorrect. Your links to Wikipedia re incorrect; do you not see this? You need to work on the accuracy of your references. —Grlucas (talk) 11:57, 30 September 2019 (EDT)
@Grlucas: I have fixed the Wikipedia links, however I am not sure how to exactly fix the quoting of the phrase curiosity killed the cat. I did delete the quotes around the phrase and reword my sentence in an effort to make it up to par. If you would, what else do I need to work on when it comes to the accuracy of my references? Thank you! Tprouty93 (talk) 20:45, 30 September 2019 (EDT)
@Tprouty93: You might avoid clichés all together. However, if you do use them, just use them. No need to quote. —Grlucas (talk) 06:58, 4 October 2019 (EDT)

October 6, 2019: Child Birth and " Bloodchild

In Bloodchild, we are greeted with a place that is very different than the reality we ourselves know of. Within this world, males from the Terran species are used as host for the Tlic young. While this may seen as bizarre and dark for the reader, Octavia E. Butler's imaginary world is not so far off from our own. It is viewed as a great honor to be the one who sacrifices their body for the sake of their family's protection and the birth of the Tlic young. The child is almost viewed as a type of parasite to the Terran, but it is a part of life that must continue in order for both species to exist. When we look at it through the eyes of our own existence, maybe we can see just how this compares with our human species' experience of child birth.

Women and the Demand of Child Birth

Women in our own society are biologically built to grow and birth children. When we strip away the romanticized aspect of child birth, it becomes something not as far off from that of the relationship between the Terran and the Tlic in "Bloodchild". The Tlic are the dominate and physically overpower the Terran, but without the Terran their species will not continue to thrive. In comparison, men in the real world are physically stronger than women, and throughout history have had more rights and been the dominate, but without women a child can not be born, fed, and many times cared for as women end up being the ones expected to handle all of it, even after going through the insane process that is labor, without being given much, if any, help or understanding.

In "Bloodchild", the main character witnesses what is basically a cesarean section, making him fear what may come for himself. This is something that in all reality, many women must experience to have their child come out alive and to save their own lives, and yet they still are expected to take the risk and care for the newborns almost instantly. They are given little to no time to bounce back unless they want to fall behind in the world, with all but 6 weeks being the medical minimum, and to many the maximum, amount of time they should spend healing. In both the story and the real world, the one who carries the young is expected to be grateful for what they receive from their physical, mental, and emotional sacrifice, or else risk losing who they care for. [13]

October 7, 2019: Minorities in " Far Beyond the Stars and "Bloodchild"

In "Far Beyond the Stars", the character Benny Russell struggles with the ongoing issues of racism and prejudice thriving in the 1950s. In "Bloodchild", the character Gan lives in a world where his race is dominated by another and must abide by the rules, and where one gender has to give up their bodies and risk their lives for the survival of their species. Both worlds that the characters live in requires that they abide by the status quo and does not let them have much of a final say. The social commentary in both stories combats issues that thrive and have thrived in American culture. From a feminist perspective, the issues that are addressed concerning gender roles in "Bloodchild" are loud and clear. Women have been seen as a lesser part of society just as African Americans and other minorities have been, something that we see in "Far Beyond the Stars". Though it is the men who have to sacrifice themselves in "Bloodchild", the roles of pregnancy and promising their life to another who has more of a prestigious standing better equate to the experience of women in society. In "Far Beyond the Stars", Benny Russell is expected to accept that his story cannot be heard so long as an African American plays such a dominate role, as the men in "Bloodchild" are supposed to accept and understand the role they are to play, showing the lack of power both groups of minorities in the stories have. [14]

October 13, 2019: Sacrifice and Acceptance in "The Cold Equations"

In "The Cold Equations", Marilyn is met with a fate that no girl at 17 typically thinks about. Death itself is a concept that many do not fully grasp at such a young age, and yet in her final moments Marilyn accepts what must happen for the greater good of 7 other humans.

Facing Mortality

When told that she has broken a law and has to die so that others will live, she is at first reluctant and hoping that something can be done to save her. The Terror Management Theory seeks out to explain a connection that is made between a person's fear of death and their behavior. From this unconscious fear, people begin to be protective over their own cultures and ideals while trying to create a security blanket that will keep us safe from what is inevitable. While it can bring about a defensive persona, it can also produce positive side affects. Here, being aware of her own death allowed Marilyn to calmly step into the unknown with a smile across her face and willing to do what is best for others rather than try to fight it for her own well being. Evidence has shown that by knowing about death and being aware of what we cannot accept, we can turn our fear of the unknown into a positive perspective on what we cannot control. Marilyn does not let what she cannot control have control over her, and instead elegantly takes the hand she has been given. [15]

October 13, 2019: Sacrifice and Concerns in Battlestar Galactica and "The Cold Equations"

The episode "33" from Battlestar Galactica and "The Cold Equations" both take place in the new frontier of space. The need to sacrifice to survive in the harsh universe happens in both fantasy worlds. In "The Cold Equations" not only does the character Marilyn accept the need to sacrifice her own life so that many others can live, but so does the man who has to follow through with killing stowaways on the ship. The man must accept his duty and do what is best for all, risking and losing the life of many ones to protect the well being of the colonies. There is a concern of the well being of many others and keeping the transports secured, as well as concern over the ability of the ships to work with what little they have to get to where it needs to go. The crew in "33" suffers from extreme sleep deprivation but has to continue forward to effectively complete their job so that they can protect innocent lives. Risky decisions are also made in the hopes that enough lives are saved over all in comparison to what is potentially lost.

Both stories pull at the feelings of concern and fear as sacrifices are constantly made, ones that require a mature acceptance with not only what is happening but as well as mistakes that are made that may affect those they care for and love. As a result, self-sacrifice becomes a reoccurring experience, where many people choose to give up pieces of themselves for the sake of another or others. [16]

October 20, 2019: Opposites attract in "Impossible Dreams"

In "Impossible Dreams", the main character finds himself in a video store developing a relationship with a woman as a result of a connection that is formed through a mutual appreciation for films. Both characters seem to be rather similar, yet are quite literally from other universes. Ally, the store clerk that Pete, the main character, gets to know while visiting the video store from another world. He thinks that she is attractive, but not in the way he usually goes for. Pete is a cautious character. He speaks his mind like Ally, but also meditates a little on his actions and how he chooses to demonstrate his thoughts. Ally on the other hand jumps when she needs to and knows it is necessary.

Though Pete finds Ally interesting, he does not consider a way that they can continue to get to know each other once the portal to the other universe that lies parallel to his own disappears. While we do not know much about Pete and his history, we find out that Ally does not deem her life in her own universe worthy of keeping. Pete must, other wise maybe he would of jumped the same way Ally does. Pete has extra cash to spend, while Ally is struggling to do things as simple as eat. Both characters love the same things and enjoy the same past times, but are very different at the core. Those vital differences are why the two may have a future to uncover, as they are the reason that Ally jumps head first into a new life in a new world with Pete. We are more likely to go after a relationship with somebody who share our similar interest and are like us, but vital differences are what balance out a relationship in the long run. [17]

October 20, 2019: Parallels Between Parallel Universes in "The City on the Edge of Forever" and "Impossible Dreams"

In the Star Trek episode "The City on the Edge of Forever and the short story "Impossible Dreams", both characters have a run in with existing in places that are not that of their own. As a result, people who do not belong to the same point in time or same universe fall in love and experience unique experiences.

By exploring different places, the characters of both stories discover how small changes on a time line can alter the bigger picture in many ways. The butterfly effect gets to come into full effect. In "The City on the Edge of Forever", Spock and Kirk find that there is a change that causes nuclear weapons to be developed by Nazis and allowing them to take over the world. Oddly enough, in "Impossible Dreams" we learn through Pete's examination of the different films that exist in this parallel universe that something happens to change the way WW2 happened also. This time the change also has to do with nuclear weapons as it seems that the atomic bomb was not dropped on Japan. Both protagonist fall in love through their experiences, also.

One difference for the two characters are the way they experience different time lines. For Pete, he experiences a different universe all together. His actions would not alter the past. However, for Kirk this is different as he goes back in time in his own universe. We see what device Kirk uses to travel through the door that lets him explore the timeline, but we never see how Pete gets to travel to a place other than his own timeline. [18]

October 27, 2019: Consciousness, Technology, and Forever in Black Mirror's "San Junipero"

In the Black Mirror episode "San Junipero", we see two women with ideas of where they plan to spend eternity. In typical Black Mirror fashion, this episode connects the philosophical with the technological. Consciousness has been noted as an electrochemical process. After evaluating the physical equation pertaining to this process, there seems to be an indication that it may be a result of a quantum mechanical process occurring within the mind. [19] San Junipero as we discover at the end of the series is essentially a hard disk drive, with peoples' consciousness being a part of the virtual memory until they choose to pass over. Virtual memory is the memory on a hard disk drive that seems to be a part of the main storage, but is actually information that is supported by data held on a secondary device. It is the temporary transfer of information and data from the RAM. RAM stands for random access memory" and is where information is randomly accessed.

In "San Junipero", a device connects the person temporarily to a place that they can possibly spend eternity in. One woman we find chooses this as her resting place and hopes to pass over, while the other woman in the new found relationship wishes to not pass over to San Junipero, but rather to pass over where everyone did before the existence of such a place. The episode and the characters insinuate and make note that they do not think there is anywhere to go after you die unless you go to San Junipero. Human consciousness can be seen as nothing more than boiling down to electrical currents, and if our body stops working and giving energy to these currents then our consciousness may do so with it and the energy then transferred else where as energy is neither created nor destroyed.

October 28, 2019: Death in "Staying Behind" and "San Junipero"

In "Staying Behind" and "San Junipero", there are both instances of a virtual eternity, and questions on whether that is the only chance at eternity, or simply our only way of verifying that there is one. Both worlds allow for individuals to upload their consciousness to a system and offer sweet promises of forever. "Staying Behind" questions this opportunity and whether or not the uploaded consciousness is nothing more than a recording and simulation of someone who once was, while "San Junipero" answers these questions without even asking them by letting the individuals who are uploaded do a trial run of the place they can choose to spend eternity in.

In "San Junipero" the option of staying behind is deemed as giving up and allowing yourself to melt away with your physical death. In "Staying Behind", however, the question of whether there is a promised eternal land that has been the ideal vision for humans for so long is brought up often, as many people have not decided nor discovered that dying necessarily means just dying. The mother of the main character actually states that choosing to be virtually uploaded is worse than the type of death that humans have already known for generations. Once the main character's mother, however, is forced to cross over she sends out an email saying she was wrong and to join her. He still does not believe it though, and decides that it is her consciousness that has just been copied and now the copy over her speaks to them rather than the true essence of her being. The characters in "San Junipero" find that their true essence, feelings, senses and feelings have crossed over with their consciousness. This may show that the pure energy of their own consciousness is not simply recreated but actually transferred over. [20]

November 3, 2019: Social Norms and Relationships in "Hang the Dj"

In the Black Mirror episode "Hang the Dj", the two main characters, Amy and Frank, deny the social norm and code of ethics and choose to exit the walled-off society to live their lives together. However, in the end we find that they are simulation 998 of 1000 on a cellphone application for the real life versions of Amy and Frank. 998 of the 1000 simulations chose to go rogue and choose to try and escape what is expected of them by living within the walls of society, which results in a 99.8 percent chance of the two characters ending up in a happy and successful relationship.

Denying Social Norms and Creating Expectations

By equating going rogue with the likely hood of being compatible, the show more or less could be hinting to the concept that going against the social norms results in a happier life. When we strictly bar our lives by what is considered normal, we then also hold ourselves to an expectation that can result in a lower level of happiness. Happiness does not depend on what is going on in our lives all the time, but rather how we respond to what is going on in our lives. If we do not expect too much, then we cannot be disappointed by something not happening if we do not expect it to happen. By setting expectations to the lowest setting necessary and not demanding ourselves to do as society says, we give ourselves more room to creating meaningful and productive lives. [21]

@Tprouty93: I would like to add that Amy and Frank went against being pressured by technology. They took the decision to be together in their own hands and broke out of the system. Technology does not define their character like it did the other unnamed characters in the story. MarinChristina (talk) 21:00, 3 November 2019 (EST)

November 3, 2019: With or Against Social Norms

In Bruce Sterling's "Maneki Neko" , we find a couple that finds their happiness deeply rooted in the network or system, contrary to the couple in "Hang the DJ" who find their happiness by going against the grain and going rogue. The contrast of going with or against societal norms resulting in happiness is seen between these two pieces.

Happiness With the Norms

Going with the flow and following the status quo results in a well oiled machine in "Maneki Neko". While it causes issues for some later, initially it works well for the main characters relationship. By sticking to what is expected of them and by helping others without question, they too are helped without question and receive gifts from strangers. Deviation from the social norms in this society proves to create a rift in the individuals relationship with the networks. [22]

Happiness Against the Norms

In contrast, true happiness is found in the Black Mirror episode of "Hang the DJ" by not going with the flow of things and going rogue. It insinuates that the willingness to go against what is expected in order to find happiness and to not care what is considered socially appropriate results in a higher degree of satisfaction.

December 6, 2019: Reflective Essay

This class has resulted in a further understanding in Wikipedia than I realized it would initially. When the class began, I had no idea how intricate and elaborate the process of editing a Wikipedia article just was. Critiquing the article, find proper sources and information, and everything else that goes into editing an article is much more time consuming than I thought and involved a lot more work for just a little, though enriching, bit of information.


For my project, I chose to edit Ken Liu under the impression that finding reliable sources and information for an individual would be a simpler process than particular novels, which I found to be false. Regardless of the topic, information required a large amount of digging due to what is and is not allowed to be used and the living person rule which required that everything I wrote or added be of neutral wording. I chose to dig through all of the awards that Ken Liu won and go one by one and ensure that everything was listed. I then went through works he translated and found one work that was published this year that was not listed. This led me to editing the paragraph in the article about his work as an English-to-Chinese translator. Ken Liu is a well accomplished individual, having not only edited, authored, and translated science fiction works, but also obtaining such accomplishments as being an IT professional and lawyer. Despite all this, finding any information on him outside of his own author page and Q & As proved to be difficult. I also had a hard time finding images of his work and himself, finally choosing to add one of him at the Hugo Awards in 2017 to the Awards section of his Wikipedia page.

Wikipedia Experience Summarized

Overall, it was an enriching experience to work so much with Wikipedia. Not only will I now be able to edit things on Wikipedia now, but I also will be more efficient at it. The experience will also translate well over to working on school research papers, in future research that I may have to do for work, and more. As an Interdisciplinary major with a concentration in IT and Cyber Forensics, I found it incredibly interesting and useful, and found that the class itself was wonderfully intertwined with my degree. I have a new found respect for individuals who choose to go out of their way and spend valuable personal time editing and researching for articles so that the general public can easily access the information all in one place, and will try to do so myself in the future.


  1. The Truth About Science Fiction '' Retrieved 25 August 2019.
  2. "The Swimmer".
  4. "continuum".
  5. "Making Sense of the Gernsback Continuum".
  6. "Doctor Who: "Bink"/"Utopia"".
  7. "Time an Gnosis in the Writings of Philip K. Dick".
  8. "Just because you're paranoid... Philip K. Dick's trouble life".
  9. Anderson 2016, p. 249-269.
  10. Chakrabrati & March 28, 2018.
  11. Paul & July 17 2014.
  12. Martin 2019.
  13. Axtell 2012.
  14. staff 2014.
  15. Taylor 2014.
  16. Tessman 2017.
  17. Mehta 2014.
  18. Vernon 2017.
  19. Walker 1970.
  20. Maarten 2016.
  21. Sherman 2014.
  22. Reese, Rosenmann, Cameron 2019.


  • Anderson, R (2016). "The Rashomon Effect and Communication". Canadian Journal of COmmunication. pp. 249–269.
  • Canaan, Howard (Fall 2008). "Time and Gnosis in the Writing of Philip K. Dick.". Centre for Arts, Humanities and Sciences (CAHS), acting on behalf of the University of Debrecen CAHS. pp. 335–355.
  • Reese, Rosenmann, Cameron (2019). "The Psychology of Globalization". Elsevier Inc.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)