Jim Baen

Several SF blogs are reporting that Baen Books publisher Jim Baen has had a stroke and is now in the hospital. Most of them have gotten it from Steve Barnes; I’ve seen the general story confirmed elsewhere by someone who would be in a position to know. Apparently there may be a further announcement regarding his condition later tonight.

This is all I know personally at the moment. Needless to say, I’m thinking good thoughts for him, his family, friends and employees.

Update, 9pm: This was just posted in Baen’s Bar by Baen author Julie Cochrane:

Okay, people, here’s what’s going on.

Jim Baen is in the ICU after a stroke, it is serious, Toni and a relative are there with him. Now you know as much as we do about his condition.

Baen Books is functioning under the very detailed emergency plans that Jim has in place.

Please don’t send cards or flowers. Please do send whatever prayers are appropriate to your faith.

When we know more, we’ll let you know.

Thanks,

Julie

Update 11:21pm: Another message from Baen’s Bar, this time from Baen editor Toni Weisskopf:

Dear Barflies

I’m sorry to have to announce that Jim Baen suffered a stroke on Monday, and has been in the hospital ever since. His condition is serious, but it’s too early for any prognosis as to how he’ll fare from here on in.

His family has arrived in NC, and are with him in the hospital. I’ve been to see him, as have other members of Baen’s staff and his friend David Drake. In the meantime, so far as Baen Books is concerned, our plans continue on schedule.

The business is fine, we’re all simply very concerned about Jim.

Preserve This

Here’s another feather in Bush’s cap, in my humble opinion:

Bush creates world’s biggest ocean preserve:

President Bush on Thursday created the world’s largest marine protected area — a group of remote Hawaiian islands that cover 84 million acres and are home to 7,000 species of birds, fish and marine mammals, at least a quarter of which are unique to Hawaii.

At a White House ceremony, the president designated the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands the United States’ 75th national monument. The islands have been described as “America’s Galapagos” and as the most intact tropical marine region under U.S. jurisdiction.

“To put this area in context, this national monument is more than 100 times larger than Yosemite National Park,” Bush said. “It’s larger than 46 of our 50 states, and more than seven times larger than all our national marine sanctuaries combined. This is a big deal.”

Excellent. Hey, I spend enough time banging on the man when he does something I think is bad. I don’t mind spending a moment or two noting when I think he’s done something good.

Nanoarmor!

Dude, I so totally thought of this first for Old Man’s War:

A new “liquid armor” could be the solution for protecting the parts of the body that aren’t currently covered by standard-issue ballistic vests – arms and legs, where many of these devastating and life-threatening injuries occur. Co-developed by two research teams – one led by Norman Wagner at the University of Delaware, and the other led by Eric Wetzel at the U.S. Army Research Lab in Aberdeen, MD – the liquid technology will soon lead to light, flexible full-body armor.

The liquid – called shear thickening fluid is actually a mixture of hard nanoparticles and nonevaporating liquid. It flows normally under low-energy conditions, but when agitated or hit with an impact it stiffens and behaves like a solid. This temporary stiffening occurs less than a millisecond after impact, and is caused by the nanoparticles forming tiny clusters inside the fluid. “The particles jam up forming a log jam structure that prevents things from penetrating through them,” Wagner explains.

Wagner and Wetzel developed a way to specially treat ballistic fabrics, such as Kevlar, with the liquid, making them dramatically more resistant to puncture and much better at reducing blunt trauma.

Will I see a dime from this? No! Damn, I knew I should have filed that patent.

Girl on a Swing

And all is well with the world.

athenaswing061406.jpg