Saturday September 24, 2005
Note: DCI engineers and technicians insist that inertiics (In-ur-shiks) is an applied science. Those interested in "pure" research, elitist jerks that they are, demean inertiics, insisting that it's "only" an art. It has been described as the art of bribing Einstein to steal the shirt from Newton's back, and to then sell it back to him after emptying the pockets.

A good DCI technician will, over the course of his or her career, save thousands of lives by preventing DCI failures in the ships upon which he or she works, and will be rewarded with a comfortable salary, stock options, and free travel vouchers on participating starlines.

A good pure researcher will, over the course of his/her/its career, get published a few times, see his/her/its work plagiarized, stolen, or otherwise borrowed by the commercial sector, and will be rewarded with an increasing sense of bitterness as he/she/it watches the Universe continue to spin down entropically in several senses of the word. We should not, therefore, blame the pure researcher for being an elitist jerk. It's some of the only pleasure he/she/it will derive from the quest for discoveries untainted by practical application.

Book 7: Emperor Pius Dei
Part I: Big Schlock, Little Schlock, What Begins With Schlock?

Transcript

Daysun Tingo 'Bot:It's worse than just the tankage breaches. DamCon shows failure of the DCI. . . The drivetide compensation inertics are down.
Captain Tagon:No wonder they abandoned ship. They'd never have been able to fight past planetary forces without jellying half the crew.
Daysun Tingo 'Bot:We can get her into orbit, but we'll have to take it very slowly. If you've got a deadline, we probably ought to leave now.
Captain Tagon:Fine. We lift now. Bottoms up.
Daysun Tingo 'Bot:Your drinking expression is apt, because the "bottom" to which the water has settled will become the side, and all the -
Captain Tagon:I know that. That's why I said it.