E-m@ilion Nation - Alien Nation Internet News

By Dennis Maciuszek

Sjambo! I'm writing this column on 14th May, the day Alien Nation has once again returned to German TV. VOX is airing Body & Soul today, the same movie as last year. Well, Pete informed me this issue is Connie Colvin's final "Other Side" column. Hey Connie, it would sound a little strange, if I thanked you for all the work you've done for the ANAS, I've only been a member for the last few years. You have been around since the very beginning. In fact, I had already known your name, when I still had no idea there was an Alien Nation fandom. Then, I had found a copy of Starlog #168 (July '91) - in there three deeply moving letters about AN's cancellation, the first one written by you. You're certainly one of AN's greatest fans, we can be glad you're carrying on as the U.S. co-ordinator.

theSmile

There is so much to see on Jonathan's M. Scarabelli homepage! At the new http://www.thesmile.org you will find many more of his episode synopses: Michele in her Star Trek, several Airwolf, feature films etc. And did you know she starred in two computer games, as well? These are "Buried in Time" and "Legacy of Time". Of particular interest to AN fans is theSmile's "Alien Nation Storyboard", a re-telling of the pilot's school scene (Matt's speech) with many pictures. You can read thoughts and news by Michele herself + the fans' wishes for her recent birthday. I think, Jonathan's being in contact with Michele Scarabelli now and her officially licensing the website + his fan club shows how people can realize their dreams, if they only work hard enough. Oops, I nearly forgot: theSmile now offers, for the first time ever, access to "theBark", the official Boo Homepage.

Universal Translator?

You may know the device from Star Trek. It translates any alien tongue to any other and is the official explanation why even the most obscure aliens are talking English on TV. The Univeral Translator is omnipresent (though not always visible). Its invention may still take until the 23rd century, but machine translation is already being researched on very actively. I've heard of a project translating spoken appointments from Japanese to English to German which 40 universities are taking part in. I'm thinking of Matt's Tenctonese translator in "The First Cigar" - another detail where AN took a realistic look into the future. On a much smaller level, we have Joel Anderson's "Universal Translator Assistant". From http://hometown.aol.com/JPKlingon/uta/index.htmll you can download the program + several alien language data files: Klingon, Vulcan, Romulan + Tenctonese! It does roughly the same as Tim Gathercole's "TencTran" (see http://www.timg.demon.co.uk/an/anas.htm), translating text based on a word-to-word vocabulary. The creator of UTA has also developed a version for the old Commodore 64 and, even weirder, is involved in translating the Bible into Klingon.

Interesting Websites

As announced last issue, Pete, with the help of Tony Heald, has put up his own homepage, http://aliennation.homepage.nu/. Well, you can guess the subject. Read and view the ultimate AN collector's guide, what items were produced, and how rare are they? Furthermore, there's the Episode Trivia Guide, articles on the language and Pete's experience 'in the head'. Another 'must see' is Marina Bailey's beautiful "Tencton Portal", incl. her AN quotes list + a guide to the characters with personality description and photo, http://www3.fast.co.za/~tmar/ci5/anation.htm. Tony Heald has now taken care of Pat Barry's AN Frequently Asked Questions, read the answers on http://freespace.virgin.net/faq/faq.htm. Michael Bennet is working on a new AN page, have a look at http://members.aol.com/tencton/Alien_Nation/home.html. My own "Dennis' AN Fanpage" is closed now. However, I have transfered the articles to my main page, http://www.tu-bs.de/~y0003231. I decided to have a more personal homepage on which I can publish various things I am writing. Any members who'd like to have their private homepage addresses published? E-mail me with the details, even if you have no AN-related content, it's a nice way of getting to know each other. What I haven't quit from is of course the AN Museum website. http://www.tu-bs.de/~y0003231/alien_nation/museum.html has been updated with a long inventory listing of Pete's collection. I've discovered the Museum site is listed in the online directory of British museums http://www.museums.co.uk/cen.htm. Toucus, best wishes to all + keep on supporting Alien Nation - with Kevin Burns interested in producing new episodes, there seems to be a realistic hope for a return! Finally, two more addresses dealing with AN, http://www.infinitefrontiers.mcmail.com/Future.htm and http://home.t-online.de/home/Ekmar.Brand/2.htm.

Have you created a website or know of a good one ? I want to know about it. Please send your messages (comments, questions...) to D.Maciuszek@tu-bs.de (subject: TENCTON PLANET).