Author Topic: EP433: That Other Sea  (Read 15169 times)

Fenrix

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Reply #25 on: March 12, 2014, 08:06:03 PM

Was anyone else thinking of the story of the spaceship Tsien in the book 2010 by Arthur C. Clarke while reading this story?


I was actually thinking about the seeding of Europa and lobster mechanists in Schismatrix.

All cat stories start with this statement: “My mother, who was the first cat, told me this...”


Unblinking

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Reply #26 on: March 13, 2014, 11:32:01 AM
Thought about this story as I watched Europa Report last week, in which a manned expedition visits Europa to look for life.  Among other things they bring a remote control probe to look around under the ice.  (Awesome movie btw)



Myrealana

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Reply #27 on: March 13, 2014, 04:07:36 PM
It was Europa all along?

I kept thinking it would turn out to be some long-forgotten underwater evolution beneath the sea ice in the Arctic or something, so when he broke through and flew into space, I was a little lost.

In spite of my misconceptions, I really liked this story. Catat was all about the exploration - not for the sake of riches or glory but simply for the sake of *knowing.*

Even in a sentient alien crayfish, that is an admirable trait.

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Max e^{i pi}

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Reply #28 on: April 07, 2014, 11:20:59 AM
Well, I don't have anything to add that hasn't already been said.
I liked this one a lot, and immediately thought about Europa and Arthur C. Clark.

The only gripe I have is a technical one.
The audio of the story was about 20 db softer than the endcaps. In fact, I was only able to hear the story because I have a custom ROM on my MP3 player that allowed me to boost the sound beyond what should have been safe levels. And that of course caused interference in my less-than-expensive headphones, but that's a small price to pay for such quality fiction.
The price that I didn't like paying was getting my eardrums assaulted by the outro music that was turned up way too high.
I appreciate all of the effort that goes into making an episode of EP. From finding a story, buying its rights, finding a reader, getting the recording, editing it, getting the intros and outros, adding music, removing profanity, perhaps getting Mat to include a disclaimer and so on and so forth (that's my way of saying "there's probably more stuff going on behind the scenes that I don't know about and I didn't even mention Paul"). Anyway, what I'm saying is, this is a great podcast. It truly is. But what frustrates me is that all it takes is a single mouse click in Audacity to normalize the sound levels, and that tiny effort will take this from being "great" to "the best in the known universe". Usually the staff at EA pay attention to these little details, and it only goes to show the high quality of their work that when they miss it, it's noticeable.
So, not exactly a complaint. More of a "hey! You missed this." kind of comment.

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Wolfe

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Reply #29 on: April 07, 2014, 02:01:37 PM
By pure chance I first watched the movie Europa Report (2013) two days ago and then listened to That Other Sea the very next day.

The main message in both stories is well captured in the final words of Rosa Dasque, the end of her personal Europa Report:

Quote from: Rosa Dasque
"Compared to the breadth of knowledge yet to be known... what does your life actually matter?"

In both stories, all the explorers ultimately sacrifice their lives in the pursuit of knowledge.
Personalities and relationships are present, and relevant, but for these explorers nothing eclipses the drive to discover.

With only a few adjustments of minor story elements these could easily be the same story of first contact as told from each side.  The movie would be the natural place to start, as it is the creatures from beyond the "ice ceiling" that initiate contact.

The parallels in theme, style and plot elements are striking, and unusual for a motion picture - probably why Europa Report never had a wide theatrical distribution ($125,475 in box office revenues, according to IMDB).

Europa Report seems ideal for an Escape Pod audience.

I've contacted Start Motion Pictures <motionpictures@start-media.com> to suggest a movie adaptation of That Other Sea.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2014, 04:10:07 PM by Wolfe »



matweller

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Reply #30 on: April 07, 2014, 03:08:16 PM
The only gripe I have is a technical one.
The audio of the story was about 20 db softer than the endcaps. In fact, I was only able to hear the story because I have a custom ROM on my MP3 player that allowed me to boost the sound beyond what should have been safe levels. And that of course caused interference in my less-than-expensive headphones, but that's a small price to pay for such quality fiction.
Thanks for the heads-up, I'll have a look at it tonight and upload a more even file if possible.

But what frustrates me is that all it takes is a single mouse click in Audacity to normalize the sound levels, and that tiny effort will take this from being "great" to "the best in the known universe".
I know you're not a jerk, so I'm taking this in the right spirit, don't worry about that. But you do realize that this is a little like saying "anybody can use a needle and thread, so whenever stitching a wound results in a visible scar, you can assume the doctor's completely incompetent." Sometimes while you sleep the doctor opens you up and finds an something that saves you from losing an appendage and the scar is nothing to what you could have awakened to see. ;)








(and yes...sometimes the doctor leaves his scissors inside because he was in a hurry to get out of the O.R. for a golf game... ;)



Max e^{i pi}

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Reply #31 on: April 07, 2014, 08:00:14 PM
Thanks for taking it the right way Mat. I realize that could have gone either way...
It's just, well, a personal pet peeve of mine is when somebody (usually myself) does a half-assed job of it. Or even the appearance of a half-assed job.
I'm a programmer, and part of my job is looking for the extreme cases, the end cases. The weird probably-won't-happen-but-we-need-to-take-care-of-it-anyway cases. And that means paying attention to the details. And when I look at some code I wrote and it works, but it could be so much better if only I'd done this which is really simple, it frustrates me. Because the added effort required is so minimal and the payoff is so great and why the hell didn't I just do it right to begin with?
I'm sure that there was a good reason for this minor oversight, and I'm sure that you were sub-par on the game (or whatever a good golf score is, Do they even keep score in golf?).

Ugh, I realize that I spent a lot of words trying to say this: I found a minor technical glitch in this episode which bothered me a little and is probably easy to fix. Just thought you should know. Also, you guys do a great job and the report of this minor glitch is in no way or form some sort of complaint or criticism but is merely a simple bug report.

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Unblinking

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Reply #32 on: April 16, 2014, 02:42:57 PM
By pure chance I first watched the movie Europa Report (2013) two days ago and then listened to That Other Sea the very next day.

The main message in both stories is well captured in the final words of Rosa Dasque, the end of her personal Europa Report:

Quote from: Rosa Dasque
"Compared to the breadth of knowledge yet to be known... what does your life actually matter?"

In both stories, all the explorers ultimately sacrifice their lives in the pursuit of knowledge.
Personalities and relationships are present, and relevant, but for these explorers nothing eclipses the drive to discover.

With only a few adjustments of minor story elements these could easily be the same story of first contact as told from each side.  The movie would be the natural place to start, as it is the creatures from beyond the "ice ceiling" that initiate contact.

The parallels in theme, style and plot elements are striking, and unusual for a motion picture - probably why Europa Report never had a wide theatrical distribution ($125,475 in box office revenues, according to IMDB).

Europa Report seems ideal for an Escape Pod audience.

I've contacted Start Motion Pictures <motionpictures@start-media.com> to suggest a movie adaptation of That Other Sea.

Yes!  Awesome movie, I saw it after I saw the Ray Bradbury nominees list.

Thanks for taking it the right way Mat. I realize that could have gone either way...
It's just, well, a personal pet peeve of mine is when somebody (usually myself) does a half-assed job of it. Or even the appearance of a half-assed job.
I'm a programmer, and part of my job is looking for the extreme cases, the end cases. The weird probably-won't-happen-but-we-need-to-take-care-of-it-anyway cases. And that means paying attention to the details. And when I look at some code I wrote and it works, but it could be so much better if only I'd done this which is really simple, it frustrates me. Because the added effort required is so minimal and the payoff is so great and why the hell didn't I just do it right to begin with?
I'm sure that there was a good reason for this minor oversight, and I'm sure that you were sub-par on the game (or whatever a good golf score is, Do they even keep score in golf?).

Ugh, I realize that I spent a lot of words trying to say this: I found a minor technical glitch in this episode which bothered me a little and is probably easy to fix. Just thought you should know. Also, you guys do a great job and the report of this minor glitch is in no way or form some sort of complaint or criticism but is merely a simple bug report.


I don't think it's easy as hitting the equalize sound button, though, right?  Doesn't that equalize everything, even the pauses between words, so that the staticky noise is multiplied at that point?  It might work better for music where there's probably some kind of sound almost all the time.




matweller

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Reply #33 on: April 16, 2014, 05:47:53 PM
I don't think it's easy as hitting the equalize sound button, though, right?  Doesn't that equalize everything, even the pauses between words, so that the staticky noise is multiplied at that point?  It might work better for music where there's probably some kind of sound almost all the time.

First, let me apologize for not getting to this already. When I went to do it, the drive with the files on it wasn't playing nice with my computer, and then I got tangled in everything for Eater of Bone. I'll try to look at this again this week.

You're right, of course, Unblinking. It's not that easy, but there may or may not be something more I can do. It would be very unusual for me to not bring the levels up on a part without a reason, so I'm not venturing any guess before I look at the file.

Sometimes I may leave a part quieter because I've already done so much processing to a file to get it where it is that running it through one more filter is going to ruin it in some way that I can't tolerate. Sometimes it's because a person's voice hits the exact wrong spot in the MP3 compression algorithm and the export of the file kills it. Sometimes it's because there's a dead space in the range of the listeners' speakers/headphones that happens to be right where the narrator's voice hits -- I can't do anything about that.

There are a variety of possibilities. I'll look for what I can, enhance a bit if I can, update the file if necessary and walk away. If there's nothing I can do, I'll assume Max was the only one and thank him for trying to help and ask him to let me know when it happens again. We'll see. But I thank you for the reminder.



doctornemo

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Reply #34 on: May 01, 2014, 12:05:58 AM
A powerful, clever tale.  I was impressed at the world(let)building, and the realization of the civilization.  The finale moved me deeply in its mixture of realization and sacrifice.

I listened to this while driving through a chilly upper New England night, which perhaps made the cold resonate extra well.



CryptoMe

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Reply #35 on: May 22, 2014, 06:03:12 PM

Okay, I can buy this. They did end up realizing after towing the submersible that it came through a thin part of the ice. The narration conveyed enough surprise to suggest that they might not have looked for thin spots in the ice before. So, I do buy that the race might not have had the ability to probe the environment beyond the ice. It still leaves me with Catat's recklessness, which still seems counterproductive to his scientific mission. He did mention earlier that he would likely survive the damage to his body incurred from capturing the submersible. It would have required surgery and he wouldn't have had the same capabilities as before, but I didn't get the sense that his life was at an end. So that couldn't been the motivation. Maybe he just trusted that he understood his own ability to survive better than he should have.

See I got the exact opposite towards the end. I think that Catat was more worried about being so broken, being useless, being unable to explore anymore, so he goes out on what he expects to be his final mission and if it isn't, then all the better. He has the tether to relay all the information, so he doesn't necessarily need to report everything in person. He has that scientist/explorer archetypal attitude where if he isn't actively adding to the collection of knowledge by being out in the world, he has lost his purpose to life and eventually commits to a form of suicide by saying, "Either I come back or I don't. As long as I don't die old, alone, and unwanted."

Also, I thought there was a selfless motivation involved. He thought his mate would never leave him, especially in his current crippled condition, so he wanted a way to set her free. If he died, she could find someone else who could procreate with with her (which I understand Catat could no longer do with his thickened carapace, even after surgery).

And by the way, I really liked this story. Crustaceans under the ice of Europa is a great premise, and the characters were interesting too.



hardware

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Reply #36 on: June 11, 2014, 08:40:24 AM
I am always in favor of stories where aliens are allowed to be alien, and humans do not necessarily make an appearance. This was well done in swiftly establishing the alien morphology, society and motivations in a non-infodumping manner. It worked well as a celebration of curiosity and explorer spirit, without trying too hard to manipulate us emotionally. Solid!



Ocicat

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Reply #37 on: March 31, 2015, 06:53:06 PM
Congratulations to William Ledbetter and Shaelyn Grey on EP433: That Other Sea winning the award for Best Escape Pod of 2015!