[FoRK] A comment on Avatar

Reese howell.r at inkworkswell.com
Mon Dec 21 21:13:28 PST 2009

On 21-Dec-09 10:05, Russell Turpin wrote:
> To anyone familiar with biology, the world in Avatar is unnatural, not
> in the sense of being alien, but in the sense of violating how life
> works. There is no evolutionary path for the kind of coordination it
> depicts between species. It draws a biological order that, quite
> unlike our own, would need a god or designer. Perhaps that works as
> fantasy. It fails as science fiction, providing not even a hint of
> explanation for it. Putting on my hat as gray-beard science educator,
> I worry how many young people today won't even sense the weirdness.
> Fun to watch in 3d. The kids will love it.

I'm reminded of a Henry Ford story I was told as a youngster. His
engineers all told him, a v-8 block could not be cast in one piece.
So he fired them and hired a new crop, fresh out of college, and
charged them with designing a one-piece v-8 engine block. Not knowing
that it was impossible, they designed it and made it work. Of course
we think there's nothing to making a one-piece v-8 engine block
today, but back then?

I wonder how true that apocryphal story is.


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