May 30 2007

Applied Phlebotinum

Rating: ★★★★★

Next time you want to kill a day or two sitting at your computer, check out the TV Tropes site. It’s a wiki collection of all the common tropes in TV shows and other entertainment, with lots of examples of most of them. (A trope is a device or convention that writers use repeatedly in stories. Sometimes a trope gets used so often that it becomes a joke, like red-shirt characters on Star Trek, or bomb timers that take a minute to count down from 10 seconds.) It’s a pretty fun site; just don’t go there if you’ve got important work to do!

(Phlebotinum, by the way, is the term for any sort of “magical” substance that’s used in a story to save the day. A very common trope in sci-fi, often accompanied by techno-babble.)

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