Gorgeous Oblivion Concept Art Showcases The Future Earth

While Star Trek Into Darkness is easily the most talked-about science fiction film on the horizon in 2013, there are several promising non-franchise flicks hitting next year as well. You’ve got M. Night Shyamalan’s hopefully-a-comeback movie After Earth. You’ve got Neill Blomkamp’s follow-up to District 9, the Matt Damon flick Elysium. And you’ve got Oblivion, starring everyone’s favorite Scientologist, Tom Cruise. It was only last week that we got a glimpse at Oblivion courtesy of the first poster and trailer. If those left you wanting to see more of the film’s desolate future Earth, check a full gallery of gorgeous concept art from Oblivion below.

Before you scroll down there, however, we want to highlight a few of the individual pictures. We’ll be offering some speculation and observation below this first image, so don’t scroll down if you want to remain unspoiled.


OMG! A Dana Scully X-Files Supercut!

The X-Files was one of those shows that, even during its most frustrating seasons and storylines, mostly retained the mysterious intrigue that got fans hooked in the first place. It’s not a show that people watched for its repetitive catchphrases, although it certainly promoted quite a few. Throughout the many years we were able to peek in on the very complicated life of one Dana Scully, and she went through some pretty dramatic situations. Kidnapping? Yep. Alien cancer? Yep. Pregnancy? Yep. Boring movie? She’s been through two of them. And though she doesn’t really have a catchphrase, Scully is guilty of repetitious reactions to all manner of stimuli, as combined in this fan-made video which seems hilarious at face value, but is taxing to take in all at once.


Silent Star Wars Still Packs Emotional Arm Sever

Sure, we all know the densest thing in the universe is a black hole, or maybe Jabba the Hutt’s colon. But I’m of the impression the Earth’s most dense object is the Star Wars universe, with so strong a gravitational pull that I couldn’t even introduce this paragraph without making a reference. In this century, the franchise hasn’t done well to please me outside of video games and parodies, and the faith of the Force hasn’t truly developed in me over all the newness coming this decade. So, with all this Lucas-xaustion I’ve been having, never would I have expected a years-old fan-made silent film treatment of the series’ most pivotal scene to completely whitewash my negativity, replacing it with the awestruck enthusiasm of my youth.


AI Software Can Write a Story All By Itself

Though it may seem like Hollywood’s more awful films were written completely by an electronic brain’s whimsy, it’s always been humans behind those screenplays, and perhaps a few hairier primates. Artificial intelligence hasn’t yet reached a point where its input is easily recognizable as a human’s thought. The Turing Test, regardless of its effectiveness, exists solely to test a computer’s ability to communicate as a person would. From ELIZA to Jabberwacky to Cleverbot, there are several examples of programs which at one time or another have successfully fooled people in conversation, but a few intentional non sequiturs and logical fallacies later and the jig is up. Linked to these chatbots are programs meant to tell stories that resemble human-crafted fiction. A new approach has led a computer scientist to a possible solution.

Lotzi Bölöni is an associate professor for the University of Central Florida’s Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, with many years of computer experience behind him. Since 2008, Bölöni has been working with Xapagy, an artificial storyteller, to put it simply. For the program to work, Bölöni translates literature into Xapi, a mixture of English and computer language, which allows for easier communication.


Drink 30 Beers And Ward Off A Virus

A wise man once said, “Beer. Now there’s a temporary solution.” That man has had a solid job for over 23 years now, so he must be onto something. Sure, beer usually gets a bad rap for being caloric and consumed in large amounts, but Rome wasn’t built in a day. Or something. It’s hard to chug, type, and be relevant all at the same time.

In a study that may draw a few wary glances, Sapporo Medical University has found that a chemical contained in beer hops is a proven opponent of the respiratory syncytial (RS) virus. Humulone is the compound that gives beer its distinct bitter flavor, but also gives it the powers of anti-inflammation, albeit on a minuscule level. RS is a particularly serious virus in infants and toddlers, causing pneumonia and breathing problems, while appearing as just a common cold in adults. So obviously the best way to keep your children from getting the virus is to get shithoused at home while the grandparents do some babysitting.


This Mass Effect Asari Cosplay Looks Good Enough For The Movie

We’ve seen a lot of genuinely impressive cosplay over the years here at GFR. The amount of effort and talent fans pour into recreating characters and props from their favorite science fiction properties is frequently mind-blowing, especially given that my own arts-and-crafts talents both begin and end at first-grade macaroni art. But every once in a while a bit of cosplay comes along that literally makes my jaw drop, such as this abso-freakng-stunning Asari getup. Seriously: wow.