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Yeager Broke The Sound Barrier And Wells Defied Gravity: Today In Science And Science Fiction

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YeagerChuck Yeager Breaks the Sound Barrier
There are plenty of ways you could make a name for yourself in this world, some positive and all too many negative. Maybe you become a scientist and cure cancer. Maybe you drink and get behind the wheel, resulting in tragic circumstances. Maybe you’re just a really nice person who makes a positive difference in the lives of all those around you. But if you had “climb into a metal tube and fly faster than the speed of sound” on your list, I’m afraid you’re too late. Chuck Yeager beat you to it, on this very day in 1947.

Having flown 64 missions over Europe during World War II, after the war Yeager volunteered to fly the experimental X-1 planes, built by Bell Aircraft Company to see if it was possible to achieve supersonic flight. It was previously theorized that any craft trying to cross that barrier would be destroyed in the attempt. Thumbing his nose at such namby-pamby talk, on October 14, 1947, Yeager and the X-1 were hauled into the air by a B-29. There, in the skies above Rogers Dry Lake in southern California, Yeager pushed the X-1 to 40,000 feet and faster than 662 miles per hour, an act so manly it created shockwave that sprouted a thick, luxurious beard on the chin of every man, woman, and child within a 50-mile radius. He later bested his 1947 record, hitting 1,650 mph inside an X-1A in 1953.

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Sci-Fi Assassin: How Lost Snuck Into The Mainstream And Why We Should Stop Looking For A Replacement

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It’s time to put away the notion that there will ever be another Lost. The series ended in 2010, and even before the castaways walked into the light, networks were trying to recapture the magic. There’s never a new anything when it comes to television shows; something we sci-fi geeks should accept.

Seinfeld left, and was replaced by nothing. But we can find solace that eventually there was The Office, Modern Family, Community, among other great network comedies. Someday there will be a huge network hit that delves deep into sci-fi mysteries.

It could be said that Lost was the next X-Files.This is because we’re not talking about a show full of mysteries as the harbinger of TV greatness. There are scores of those shows each year; all vying for your attention with sound bites that vaguely remind you of a program about some interesting people who survived a plane crash. What people really mean by “the next Lost” is a science fiction based network program that garners attention from everyone, including the CSI and Law & Order watchers. The networks aren’t looking to find the next engaging sci-fi program; they’re looking for the mega ratings.

We already have the next Lost in spirit with Fringe. But where Lost was a stealthy assassin, coming upon you slowly from behind with its crazy science and hoodoo; Fringe let its freak flag fly from the start. What Lost proved about the general public is that you have to sneak sci-fi into the mainstream audience’s blood.