Meeting # 4070, 8/13/2015 PDF Print E-mail

Minutes of the LASFS

Meeting # 4070, 8/13/2015

Matthew Tepper presiding

Nick Smith, Scribe

Patron Saints: Mark Bilan and Bjo Trimble

President Matthew Tepper called the meeting out of the primordial chaos at: 8:00 pm

Special Orders of Business:

John Henry Holland, a pioneer in the mathematical basis for artificial intelligence, died on August 9th. With a Bachelor’s degree in physics from MIT, and a Master’s degree in psychology, and in 1959 he became the first student at the University of Michigan to get a doctorate in computer science. He went on to be a professor in the fields of psychology, electrical engineering and computer science. His 1975 book Adaptation in Natural and Artificial Systems is a classic still in print 40 years later, and his 1959 article describing a multi-processing supercomputer was far ahead of its time.

Minutes of the last meeting: named “Eat hot gamma rays, Centaurian dog.”


Three guests, two of them not wanting to be introduced.

Kelly Wands, sister of Krystal Rains, was visiting from afar.

Saints and things said about them:

Mark Bilan: Greg Bilan's brother, was honored by Greg with sainthood. {The following was not read out at the meeting, but turned up in scribish research during the week: Mark Bilan was a Navy veteran born in Panama City. Before his death in Hawaii in 2010 [in a town named after Captain Cook—no, really, the town is called Captain Cook], he was also a woodworker and president of an organization that made ukuleles for under-privileged children.}

Bjo Trimble:

Larry: Following her is entertaining. She led a bunch of folks out into the desert to see the flowers. Jack Harness ended up going to sleep outside his sleeping bag, and woke up freezing.

Ed Hooper: Had heard of Bjo long before he had heard of LASFS

Scratch: Bjo is a great organizer...ask her husband. She began a letter-writing campaign to get one of the shuttles named Enterprise, but NASA used the name for the non-flying model. Bjo wasn't invited to the rollout initially, but Jerry got her invited.

Jerry says she was the recording secretary at the Reagan-called meeting of SF writers where the Star Wars Defense idea was created.

David: Bjo's “Save Star Trek” campaign generated over a million pieces of mail to NBC. NBC had assumed it was run by Roddenberry, and asked him to quit the campaign. After the renewal, fans also sent thank-you mail in vast quantities.

Nick: Bjo was a great fan artist and cartoonist, and lured Ctein into fandom via the Save Star Trek march.

Larry: “Oh, it's just another goddam spectacular view of Saturn.”

Eric: Saw a short fan film with Fritz Leiber, Forry Ackerman and Bjo as a dancing girl.

June: Back in 1969, not satisfied with the bids for the 1970 Westercon, put together her own bid, with Len and June. Bjo forgot the slides that Len and June had taken of the potential site.

Eric: Bjo was the one who tracked down Scott Shaw in the infamous peanut butter incident.

Jerry: Back in the 70s she won many awards for costuming.

[Three cheers and a concordance!]

Time-Bound Announcements:

David Gerrold: A Method for Madness is finished, and will be officially announced at Sasquan. $30 for a special flash drive e-book of material he has written.

David Okamura: D23 convention begins this coming weekend, for fans of Disney Corporation. Official Disney convention, where upcoming plans are revealed.

Blastoff Comics is having a 1-day sale on Saturday, August 15th. Big discounts on graphic novels and a bunch of comics. The store is at 5118 Lankershim, a few blocks from the old clubhouse site.

Cathy Beckstead: Production of Flower for Algernon in Camarillo the next two weekends.

Treasurer’s Report:  $28,873.33.

Committee Reports:

The Committee to Gouge ran a small auction.

Tom Safer’s TSPC will present Peter O'Toole in My Favorite Year, Aug. 15th.

For 3rd Saturdays in September and October, Star Trek Continues, 2 episodes each day. Larry Nemecek will be here in September, the actor portraying Dr. McCoy. He will take questions.

Upcoming Programs:

Tonight, we have the Stan Freberg Video Surprise, by Eric Hoffman [try doing THAT on radio]. The program will include excerpts from various things, including encounters with Ray Bradbury.

Next week, there may be an auction somewhere, but not here.

A Moment of Science, with David Okamura

The universe is fading. The universe is only producing about half as much light as it did 2 billion years ago, across the spectrum. Our sun will probably swallow up the Earth in 5 billion years, so we won't be able to see the lights go out from where we are now. We may want to conserve energy.

One way would be the results of the Solar Decathlon, where universities and other groups compete to design energy-efficient homes. Early October of this year.

Follow up to last week's discussion of nukes in Japan: they are restarting the nuclear power plants near Fukushima, after four years of shutdown. One has been restarted, because it's a major energy source for Japan. Four years of shutdown has affected their balance of trade.

Expanded polystyrene foam is used for packing in places needing insulation and for other uses. At Yellowstone it is being used for roadbeds in areas geothermally active, because of its insulating abilities. It protects asphalt, and prevents spot-melting of snow, allowing safer snowmobile use.

Old Business: none

New Business: none

Aetna warning at 8:50 pm

Reviews and Miscellaneous:

Hare Hobbs: Chris Squires, bass player for Yes--Performer and composer of “Starship Troopers” died earlier this summer. Jon Anderson of Yes is also in very poor health.

Eric Hoffman— reviewed the movie “Descendants” about the children of major evil characters from Disney movies. Characters are wonderfully evil.

Tom Safer—He and his wife watched The Pink Panther Strikes Again, which is unusual in the series because it does not include “The Jewel.” Very funny.

Jerry Pournelle asked to be reminded of why he brought champagne, but Joe explained the line he was celebrating.

Motion to motion seconded and passed unanimously.

Adjourn to the program at: 8:58 pm

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