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Then there's gravity. It's a known fact that the human body doesn't take kindly to long periods of low gravity, so most space operas contend with that in a number of ways. The use of centrifugal force to simulate gravity is canon – apart from anything else, it's true. So the space station in 2001: A Space Odyssey is good science. So is the cabin steward, who walks carefully along the aisle of the shuttle in velcro-clad shoes, with her hair tucked away in the weightless conditions. But most of us emulate the movie makers who don't want to deal with weightlessness in their spaceship corridors and use artificial gravity in our spaceships. The purists might not like it, but those of us who grew up on Asimov and Star Wars are fine with that.
Sometimes, though, there's a tendency for readers of science fiction to accept a particular author's version of technology and question another author's interpretation. Take matter transfer, as used in Star Trek (as in 'Beam me up, Scotty'). I, for one, wasn't too impressed with that as something real when I saw it on TV all those years ago. But I've now had to accept it's possible. The same with cloaking devices. We're on the brink of having technology which can hide an object from radar emissions.
Which leads me to spaceship 'shields'. It's generally understood that exposure to cosmic radiation would quickly kill a human. Our atmosphere protects us from harm on the planet's surface, but what we would use for spaceships is unclear. But let's say we have such a shield. The canon is that the shield protects a ship from bombardment, as well as cosmic rays. Can one fire through the shield? Some authors say yes, others say no, and yet others avoid the issue. If the answer is no, then the shields must be dropped to fire at the enemy. Or maybe only a certain amount of the shield needs to be dropped. Jack McDevitt uses that weakness in his book A Talent for War. McDevitt also speculates that the oft-mentioned scanner which can see through a hull and establish who/what is in a ship isn't as simple as other authors suggest. Makes sense to me. If you have to shield your ship from cosmic rays, would that not also shield the ship from external scanning? Linnea Sinclair in Hope's Folly suggests such scanning is possible. Jack McDevitt in Slow Lightning says it's not. Most especially if the ship is alien.
I don't know the answers. Nobody does. All I'm really saying is that in any science fiction story the tech has only to be true to itself in its own universe. If the reader doesn't believe the technology, isn't convinced by the author's argument, then so be it. But that doesn't make the technology wrong, and comparing it to another writer's universe simply shows the reader's own bias.
What do you think? Is there any 'technology' that you simply will not accept in a novel?