What If Mao Failed in 1949?

Alternate history is always an exciting mind game for me. The Economist magazine has written an interesting piece on what could have happened if the Nationalists had won the Chinese Civil War after World War Two. Read it here — link >>>

Hint: China would probably have been a better place for the common people without Mao’s mass-murders, man-made disasters and ideological obsessions.

Welcome to the dream worlds

By chance I recently heard of the late illustrator Peter Elson, when someone (thanks Alexander) directed me to a site with his works, mainly book covers. Top-notch craftsmanship — link >>>

To me, this dreamy landscape by Peter Elson depicts Leigh Brackett’s Mars with canals and cities older than Uruk. (Click on the picture to get a larger version.)

Atomretro Mars: Peter Elson’s depiction of a car chase on Mars in Robert A. Heinlein’s novel “Double Star”. If I remember correctly (it was years since I read that book), the car is a Rolls-Royce. (Click on the picture to get a larger version.)

The Orion Space Craft — Nuclear Bomb Propulsion

During the Cold War, top-notch scientists and engineers in the United States developed plans for a interplanetary spacecraft, called the Orion, which was to be propelled by a string of nuclear explosions, hundreds or thousands of them. Project Orion’s first target was — unsurprisingly — Mars. BBC has made a documentary on the story.