"After posting my little memoir about working on Dune
, a lot of people asked to see more of the pre-production art. I have a couple of hundred images, far more than I could post here, so I decided on a selection that showed how the look of the movie evolved from conception to completion
"I can envision no more perfect visual representation of my Dune world than John Schoenherr’s careful and accurate illustrations
." –Frank Herbert
Unicef Sweden have developed a machine that turns sweat into drinking water
. They are asking participants in the Gothia Cup
to hand in their sweaty clothes to produce water and are hoping they will "drink some sweat to support clean drinking water. The expectation is to gather sweat from more than 70 different nations".
The goal is to raise awareness about the lack of clean water in the world, with the main purpose of raising money for water purification tablets for children. 780 million people still lack access to clean drinking water. [more inside]
"my interest in a lot of old game music now has very little to do with "nostalgia" or any associations i had with the games, and much more to do with the way the different kinds of hardware used created interesting compromises for composers that led them [to] making some really interesting sounds,
" Liz Ryerson
collects sounds from the abyss
. In her blog post here
she details the history and appeal of five (mostly forgotten) game soundtracks which push the limits of the both the genre and the hardware. [more inside]
COLBERT: I suppose fear is like a drug. A little bit isn’t that bad, but you can get addicted to the consumption and distribution of it. What’s evil is the purposeful distribution of fear. As Paul said when he was faced with the gom jabbar, “Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration.”
PLAYBOY: Did you just make a Dune reference?
COLBERT: I did! [laughs] If you’re injecting fear into other people, then you’re trying to kill their minds. You’re trying to get them to stop thinking.
A thoughtful interview with Stephen Colbert in Playboy
(NSFW ads)(Non-Playboy copy
is blog dedicated to "map-illustrated analyses of current events and geographical issues", run by Martin W. Lewis, a Stanford senior lecturer. For the past week, they've been posting a series of articles on imaginary geography
. See below for a list of the posts so far: [more inside]
has been the subject of quite a few games, all with varying interpretations of the setting material. [more inside]
Insane, inscrutable, and angelic, Montreal artist Grimes
's vocal melodies float on a barely subdued monster beat that threatens to uproot buildings and put holes in the ground. [more inside]
In 1979, gaming company Avalon Hill (since bought by Hasbro) released a board game based on the popular science fiction novel Dune. Regarded by many as a masterpiece of the form, it is an asymmetrical wargame designed by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge and Peter Olotka, the people who created Cosmic Encounter
. Six different factions vie for control of the desert planet Arrakis. As WickerNipple notes in his Everything node on the game
, “Instead of giving subtle differences to the various factions like most games, Dune gives huge differences and advantages, that don't over-balance things only because every faction receives them.” The thing is, each player has special rules that give them very different options and abilities compared to the other sides, and yet the game remains balanced (especially when played by a full six players). The game has been long out of print due to the Frank Herbert estate refusing to re-license. Fantasy Flight Games is rumored to be working on a release of the game without the Dune license. Importantly, all the necessary files are available on the game's BoardGameGeek page
to construct a copy of the game. (Homebrew game board
- Rules, cards, counters and extras
- Windows freeware game client and server
) [more inside]
Snippets of poetry from the Imperium; a sample folk tale from the Oral History; brief biographies of over a dozen Duncan Idahos; two differing approaches to Paul Muad'Dib himself and to his son Leto II; Fremen recipes; Fremen history; secrets of the Bene Gesserit; the songs of Gurney Halleck -- these are just some of the treasures found when an earthmover fell into the God Emperor's no-room at Dar-es-Balat.
Out of print for more than two decades, disavowed by Frank Herbert's estate, and highly sought-after by fans, the legendary Dune Encyclopedia
is now available online as a fully illustrated and searchable PDF [direct link]
. [more inside]
In 1957, Frank Herbert
was a journalist and writer of short stories, on his way to Florence, Oregon
to do an article about the U. S. Department of Agriculture's attempts to control sand dunes that were shifting. The USDA was searching for something to stabilize the dunes, and they came upon European beach grass
. Herbert's research was for an article tentatively titled "They Stopped The Moving Sands." The article was never completed, but his research of dune stabilization lead to larger ecological matters
, and eventually the novel Dune
. This year marks the 45th anniversary that novel
. The world of dunes, both fictional and real, has changed quite a bit in the years. [more inside]
Chris Foss concept art for Dune
, with bonus Nostromo. The images were produced for Alejandro Jodorowsky's 1974 attempt at filming the story
, with other artists involved including Moebius
and HR Giger
. Though the project failed Jodorowsky collaborated further with Moebius to lay the groundwork for his own Dune-like comicbook universe
(and a trailer for an animated version of it
was even created). More visions of Arrakis can be seen on this page of Dune cover artwork through the ages
, with bonus midi Toto.
are busy writing fan fiction
, it’s nice to see that someone has discovered the TRUTH
has written, among other things, a book
on Frank Herbert
which is freely available on the web.
Frank Herbert's Dune
is premiering Sunday December 3 on the Sci Fi channel. Should be a trip.