Noon: 22nd Century
Noon: 22nd Century is a 1961 science fiction book by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky, expanded in 1962 and further in 1967, translated into English in 1978. It is sometimes considered an episodic novel, collection of linked short stories or a fix-up as some parts had been published as independent short stories, it relates several stories of the 22nd century, while providing the background "feel" for the style of life which gave birth to the Noon Universe. The title was chosen by the authors as a polemic of the postapocalyptic Daybreak: 2250 AD by Andre Norton; the Noon Universe has been given its name by the fans after this book. The book is a collection of short stories describing various aspects of human life on Earth in the 22nd century; the plots of the stories are not connected, but they feature a shared set of characters. The most recurring characters are Evgeny Slavin and Sergei Kondratev, who, as a result of a lengthy journey through interstellar space at near the speed of light, are thrown over a century into the future and must re-integrate into the society of their great-grandchildren.
The book includes the following stories: "Night on Mars" - Two doctors walk on foot on Mars after their vehicle was lost in quicksand. They must avoid an encounter with a local wild beast, while hurrying to assist in the delivery of Evgeny Slavin, the first human born on Mars. "Almost the Same" - Sergei Kondratev as a young man in flight school. "Old-timer" - The photon engine-driven spaceship Taimyr mysteriously returns to Earth after having disappeared a century earlier. Kondratev and Slavin are the only survivors. "The Conspirator" - Schoolchildren Pol Gnedykh, Aleksandr "Lin" Kostylin, Mikhail Sidorov, Gennady Komov plan and dream about their futures. "Chronicle" - A scientific report giving an analysis of the disappearance and reappearance of the Taimyr. "Two from the Taimyr" - Kondratev and Slavin recuperate from their wounds after the crash of the Taimyr, begin to investigate the Earth of the future to which they have returned. "The Moving Roads" - Kondratev explores Earth on a global system of moving roadways.
"Cornucopia" - Slavin attempts to adjust to the domestic technology of the future. "Homecoming" - Kondratev encounters Leonid Gorbovsky, decides to take a job in oceanography. "Langour of the Spirit" - Gnedykh and Kostylin reconnect after many years apart. "The Assaultmen" - Gorbovsky tours the artificial satellites of Vladislava, journeys to the surface with Sidorov and Ryu Waseda. "Deep Search" - Kondratev and oceanographer Akiko Okada hunt giant squid on a deep sea expedition. "The Mystery of the Hind Leg" - Slavin encounters the Collector of Dispersed Data project. "Candles Before the Control Board" - Okada tries to visit her dying father, the subject of the Great Encoding "Natural Science in the Spirit World" - Espers assist the Institute of Space Physics in an effort to explain the Taimyr disappearance and reappearance. "Pilgrims and Wayfarers" - Gorbovsky discusses the "Voice of the Void" and other mysteries, the philosophy of space exploration. "The Planet with all the Conveniences" - Komov and others explore the planet Leonida and make brief contact with the Leoniders.
"Defeat" - Sidorov tests prototype colonization devices in a remote area on Earth. "The Meeting" - Gnedykh and Kostylin again meet after a long separation, Gnedykh regrets his accidental killing of an alien creature who may have been sentient. "What You Will Be Like" - Kondratev and Gorbovsky explore Tagora. Kondratev and Slavin discuss the progress and stagnation of humanity over their long lifespan, Gorbovsky tells a fantastic story about his encounter with a visitor from the future. Comments to the traversed, 1960-1962. Note to internet readers about copyright issues Noon: 22nd Century has been published several times, with different contents, it was first published in Russian in 1961 in the literary magazine Ural as "chapters from the novel Return, contained only 10 of the 20 stories: Old-timer Chronicle Two from the Taimyr The Moving Roads Cornucopia Homecoming The Assaultmen The Meeting The Planet with all the Conveniences What You Will Be Like The next edition was published in Russian in 1962, reprinted in 1963.
This edition contained 16 of the 20 stories: Old-timer The Conspirators Chronicle Two from the Taimyr The Moving Roads Cornucopia Homecoming Langour of the Spirit The Assaultmen The Meeting Deep Search Candles Before the Control Board The Mystery of the Hind Leg Natural Science in the Spirit World The Planet with all the Conveniences What You Will Be Like The 1967 Russian edition was the first to include all 20 stories. All subsequent editions and translations followed the format of the 1967 edition. Noon: 22nd Century title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
Heavy metals are defined as metals with high densities, atomic weights, or atomic numbers. The criteria used, whether metalloids are included, vary depending on the author and context. In metallurgy, for example, a heavy metal may be defined on the basis of density, whereas in physics the distinguishing criterion might be atomic number, while a chemist would be more concerned with chemical behaviour. More specific definitions have been published, but none of these have been accepted; the definitions surveyed in this article encompass up to 96 out of the 118 known chemical elements. Despite this lack of agreement, the term is used in science. A density of more than 5 g/cm3 is sometimes quoted as a used criterion and is used in the body of this article; the earliest known metals—common metals such as iron and tin, precious metals such as silver and platinum—are heavy metals. From 1809 onwards, light metals, such as magnesium and titanium, were discovered, as well as less well-known heavy metals including gallium and hafnium.
Some heavy metals are either essential nutrients, or harmless, but can be toxic in larger amounts or certain forms. Other heavy metals, such as cadmium and lead, are poisonous. Potential sources of heavy metal poisoning include mining, industrial wastes, agricultural runoff, occupational exposure and treated timber. Physical and chemical characterisations of heavy metals need to be treated with caution, as the metals involved are not always defined; as well as being dense, heavy metals tend to be less reactive than lighter metals and have much less soluble sulfides and hydroxides. While it is easy to distinguish a heavy metal such as tungsten from a lighter metal such as sodium, a few heavy metals, such as zinc and lead, have some of the characteristics of lighter metals, lighter metals such as beryllium and titanium, have some of the characteristics of heavier metals. Heavy metals are scarce in the Earth's crust but are present in many aspects of modern life, they are used in, for example, golf clubs, antiseptics, self-cleaning ovens, solar panels, mobile phones, particle accelerators.
There is no agreed criterion-based definition of a heavy metal. Different meanings may be attached depending on the context. In metallurgy, for example, a heavy metal may be defined on the basis of density, whereas in physics the distinguishing criterion might be atomic number, a chemist would be more concerned with chemical behaviour. Density criteria range from above 3.5 g/cm3 to above 7 g/cm3. Atomic weight definitions can range from greater than sodium. Atomic numbers of heavy metals are given as greater than 20. Definitions based on atomic number have been criticised for including metals with low densities. For example, rubidium in group 1 of the periodic table has an atomic number of 37 but a density of only 1.532 g/cm3, below the threshold figure used by other authors. The same problem may occur with atomic weight based definitions; the United States Pharmacopeia includes a test for heavy metals that involves precipitating metallic impurities as their coloured sulfides." In 1997, Stephen Hawkes, a chemistry professor writing in the context of fifty years' experience with the term, said it applied to "metals with insoluble sulfides and hydroxides, whose salts produce colored solutions in water and whose complexes are colored".
On the basis of the metals he had seen referred to as heavy metals, he suggested it would useful to define them as all the metals in periodic table columns 3 to 16 that are in row 4 or greater, in other words, the transition metals and post-transition metals. The lanthanides satisfy Hawkes' three-part description. In biochemistry, heavy metals are sometimes defined—on the basis of the Lewis acid behaviour of their ions in aqueous solution—as class B and borderline metals. In this scheme, class A metal ions prefer oxygen donors. Class A metals, which tend to have low electronegativity and form bonds with large ionic character, are the alkali and alkaline earths, the group 3 metals, the lanthanides and actinides. Class B metals, which tend to have higher electronegativity and form bonds with considerable covalent character, are the heavier transition and post-transition metals. Borderline metals comprise the lighter transition and post-transition metals; the distinction between the class A metals and the other two categories is sharp.
A cited proposal to use these classification categories instead of the more evocative name heavy metal has not been adopted. A density of more than 5 g/cm3 is sometimes mentioned as a common heavy metal defining factor and, in the absence of a unanimous definition, is used to populate this list and guide the remainder of the article. Metalloids meeting the applicable criteria–arsenic and antimony for example—are sometimes counted as heavy metals in environmental chemistry, as is the case here. Selenium is include
Hard to Be a God (2013 film)
Hard to Be a God is a 2013 Russian science fiction film directed by Aleksei German, based on the novel of the same name by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. The film was ranked 17th in Taste of Cinema's 25 most beautiful films of the 21st century. A group of 30 scientists travel from Earth to a nearly-identical alien planet, culturally and technologically centuries behind; the inhabitants of this planet have brutally suppressed a renaissance movement, murdering anybody they consider to be an intellectual, thus the planet is stuck in the middle ages. Anton, one of the scientists from Earth, is sent to infiltrate the local populace of the Kingdom of Arkanar and help them progress as a society, although he is forbidden from getting involved with local politics or forcibly interfering with the advancement of technology or culture, he assumes the identity of Don Rumata, a nobleman who resides in a large castle surrounded by poverty. There, he lives with Ari, a young woman whom he has taken as his bride, the juvenile prince of Arkanar.
Rumata's presence divides local opinion. Don Rumata tasks himself with finding Budakh, a doctor, kidnapped by Don Reba, the tyrannical prime minister of Arkanar. Reba's militia, referred to as "the Greys", are responsible for the murder of many intellectuals, including scientists and writers. During his travels, Rumata witnesses the backward ways of the locals and becomes frustrated with them. Slavery is rife, the influence of Reba's Greys turns Arkanar into a police state. One night, while guarding the prince, the Greys besiege the attempt to arrest Rumata. Rumata is ambushed and taken before his rival, Don Reba. Reba claims he is an impostor. Rumata is freed, along with Budakh. Rumata meets his friend Pampa, a drunken and washed-up baron. Rumata teaches Pampa his famed signature sword-fighting technique; when Rumata returns to his castle, he finds the local area has been taken over by religious zealots in his absence, called "the Blacks", who prove to be just as oppressive as the Greys. Rumata discovers that Budakh is an impostor, that the real Budakh is still imprisoned at Don Reba's castle.
He searches the sewers of the castle for Budakh. He finds him, as well as Baron Pampa, tortured by Reba's men. Rumata and Budakh escape Reba's castle, but Pampa is shot by archers and killed. Upon returning to his village, Rumata becomes annoyed when he discovers that Budakh a great doctor and intellectual, is a bumbling fool, unable to urinate properly, he retires to his castle. The next day, the Greys kill Ari. Enraged, Rumata butchers their leader; the next morning, a group of travelers investigates the aftermath of the ensuing battle, which has cost the lives of most of Arkanar's inhabitants. Among the dead civilians and soldiers, they find Don Rumata; the leader of the travelers, another incognito scientist from Earth, offers to take Rumata back to Earth, but Rumata refuses. He instead gives the fellow scientist advice - that it is "hard to be a God". Months during the winter, Rumata is shown traveling away from Arkanar. Leonid Yarmolnik – Don Rumata Dmitri Vladimirov Laura Pitskhelauri Aleksandr Ilyin – Arata Yuri Tsurilo – Don Pampa Yevgeni Gerchakov – Budakh Aleksandr Chutko – Don Reba Oleg Botin – Bucher Pyotr Merkuryev Filming began in the autumn of 2000 in the Czech Republic and continued off-and-on for a period of several years, ending in August 2006 at the Lenfilm studios in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
After the lengthy editing and post-production stage, the film was premiered at the 2013 Rome Film Festival. The film was reported have been renamed to The History of the Arkanar Massacre; the press has mentioned the alternative title The Carnage in Arkanare, a film script published under the title "What said the tobacconist from Tobacco Street". The title was reverted to Hard to Be a God. Reception in the Russian media was mixed. However, Hard to Be a God received universal acclaim from English-language critics. Review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes reports that 95% of critics gave the film a positive review, based on 37 reviews with an average rating of 9.11/10. Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, reports the film has a score of 90 based on 13 reviews. Peter Bradshaw in The Guardian newspaper gave it five stars out of five, calling it: "awe-inspiring in its own monumentally mad way" and "beautiful and bizarre". Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of The A.
V. Club likened it to Orson Welles' Chimes at Midnight, naming German as "probably the most important Russian filmmaker to remain more or less unknown in the United States." He praised the "grotesque and deranged" medieval sci-fi film as "first and foremost a vision of human misery and ignorance." List of films shot over three or more years German, Aleksei. "Что сказал табачник с Табачной улицы" и другие киносценарии. St. Peterburg: Amfora. P. 720. ISBN 5-367-00232-3. Hard to Be a God on IMDb Hard to Be a God at Rotten Tomatoes 18 frames of the film A fragment of the director's screenplay The Village Voice review Electric Sheep review
The Ugly Swans
The Ugly Swans is a science fiction novel by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. In the USSR, it was published in 1987, in the Latvian magazine Daugava, with the title "The Time of Rains"; the novel was written in 1966-1967 to be published in the Soviet literary magazine Molodaya Gvardiya, but the publication was rejected by censor due to prominent political and free-thought overtones in the novel. It circulated in samizdat, in 1972 was published without the authors' permission abroad, in the Federal Republic of Germany. In 2006, a loose film adaptation of the novel was made by Konstantin Lopushansky; the action takes place in an uncertain mildly-authoritarian country, in an unnamed town. Famous writer Victor Banev, a middle-aged heavy drinker, comes from the capital city to the town of his childhood where the rain never stops. Banev finds himself in the middle of strange events linked to slimies or four-eyes - strange leper people suffering from disfiguring "yellow leprosy" manifesting itself as yellow circles around the eyes.
These slimies live in a former leper colony. The town's adult population is terrified by their existence, considering them to be the cause of all the bad and odd things in the town; the town's teenagers adore slimies, that including Banev's daughter Irma. A boy named Bol-Kunats, Irma's friend, invites the writer to a meeting with the town school's students. Banev is shocked by teenagers' high intelligence and disullusioned point of view, they appear as superhuman geniuses despising the dirty and corrupt human world and having no pity for the adults. Banev makes acquaintance with Diana, discusses slimies in dinner conversations with the chief doctor of the leprosarium Yul Golem, a drunken artist Ram Quadriga and sanitary inspector Pavor Summan. Banev dislikes the mayor, a patron of local fascist thugs, the military who guard the slimies. Golem mentions that the genetic disease of slimies represents the future of humanity, a new genetic type of people and morally superior to ordinary people. Events begin to unfold dramatically.
Banev discovers that Pavor Summan works for counterintelligence, learning he's guilty of kidnapping and killing of a slimy, notifies the military out of spite. The town's children move into the leper colony. Adults of the town are gripped with a sudden overpowering feeling of terror, exodus begins; as soon as all the residents have left town, the rain stops. Golem leaves the last. Banev and Diana enter the city, now disappearing under the rays of Sun, they see Irma and Bol-Kunats all grown up in a day and happy, Banev's saying to himself: "All this is nice and fine, but I mustn't forget to return." The novel shares some ideas with works like The Second Invasion from Mars, Roadside Picnic, The Time Wanderers. The prototype of Victor Banev is, according to Boris Strugatsky, "a generalized image of the Bard." Among those included in this image, Strugatsky named Alexander Galich, Yuliy Kim, Bulat Okudzhava and Vladimir Vysotsky. With the permission of Vladimir Vysotsky, a modified version of his song "I'm fed up to the neck, chin up.... " is used in the story.
Boris Strugatsky explained that the original story ended with the Golem's words, "... poor beautiful duckling", that the ending with a happy ending, writers came up with while trying to prepare the story for publication. In an off-line interview, Boris Strugatsky confirmed, but this future is a terrible thing and they returned to the past, trying to change it. The success of the operation destroyed slimies; the names of many characters in the story are borrowed from the classical mythologies and reflect the essence of their carriers. For example: Pavor Summan, "medical officer", but a counter-intelligence officer Pavor - Greek god of fear, moon god of war Mars. Flamen Juventa, the nephew of the chief of police, "a member of the Legion of liberty", "the young Goliath in a sports jacket, sparkling with numerous logos, our simple home Sturmführer, faithful to support the nation with a rubber truncheon in his back pocket, storm Left and moderates Flamen - priests in ancient Rome. Juventas - the Roman goddess of youth.
Yule Golem - head doctor leprosarium, playing the role of mediator between slimies and the outside world Golem - from Jewish mythology, artificial person, created out of clay and execute the instructions of its creator. Arkadii Natanovich Strugatskii, The Ugly Swans translated by Alice Stone Nakhimovsky and Alexander Nakhimovsky, New York: MacMillan, ISBN 0-02-615190-1 Arkady Strugatsky, The Ugly Swans, New York: Collier Books, 1980, 234pp, ISBN 0-02-007240-6 The Ugly Duckling Б. Стругацкий «Комментарии к пройденному. 1979—1984 гг.» Ugly Swans as part of Limping Destiny on authors site Full text of «Гадкие лебеди» in Russian
In navigation, a radio beacon is a kind of beacon, a device which marks a fixed location and allows direction finding equipment to find relative bearing. Radio beacons transmit a radio signal, picked up by radio direction finding systems on ships and vehicles to determine the direction to the beacon. A radio beacon is a transmitter at a known location, which transmits a continuous or periodic radio signal with limited information content, on a specified radio frequency; the beacon function is combined with some other transmission, like telemetry data or meteorological information. Radio beacons have many applications, including air and sea navigation, propagation research, robotic mapping, radio-frequency identification / Near Field Communication and indoor guidance, as with real-time locating systems like Syledis or simultaneous localization and mapping. A most basic aviation radio navigational aid is the Non-directional Beacon; these are simple low frequency and medium frequency transmitters and they are used to locate airways intersections, airports and to conduct instrument approaches, with the use of a radio direction finder located on the aircraft.
The aviation NDBs the ones marking airways intersections, are decommissioned, as they are replaced with other navigational aids based on newer technologies. Due to low purchase and calibration cost, they are still used to mark locations of smaller aerodromes and important helicopter landing sites. There were marine beacons, based on the same technology and installed at coastal areas, for use by ships at sea. Most of them in the western world, are no longer in service, while some have been converted to telemetry transmitters for differential GPS. In addition to dedicated radio beacons, any AM, VHF, or UHF radio station at a known location can be used as a beacon with direction finding equipment. A marker beacon is a specialized beacon used in aviation in conjunction with an instrument landing system, to give pilots a means to determine distance to the runway. Marker beacons transmit on the dedicated frequency of 75 MHz; this type of beacon is being phased-out and most new ILS installations have no marker beacons.
An amateur radio propagation beacon is used to study the propagation of radio signals. Nearly all of them are part of the amateur radio service. A group of radio beacons with single-letter identifiers transmitting in morse code have been reported on various HF frequencies. There is no official information available about these transmitters and they are not registered with the ITU; some investigators suggest that some of these beacons are radio propagation beacons for naval use. Beacons are used in both geostationary and inclined orbit satellites. Any satellite will emit one or more beacons. A beacon was left on the moon by the last Apollo mission, transmitting FSK telemetry on 2276.0 MHz Driftnet radio buoys are extensively used by fishing boats operating in open seas and oceans. They are useful for collecting long fishing lines or fishing nets, with the assistance of a radio direction finder. According to product information released by manufacturer Kato Electronics Co, Ltd. these buoys transmit on 1600–2850 kHz with a power of 4-15 W.
Some types of driftnet buoys, called "SelCall buoys", answer only when they are called by their own ships. Using this technique the buoy prevents nets and fishing gears from being carried away by other ships, while the battery power consumption remains low. Distress radiobeacons collectively known as distress beacons, emergency beacons, or beacons, are those tracking transmitters that operate as part of the international Cospas-Sarsat Search and Rescue satellite system; when activated, these beacons send out a distress signal that, when detected by non-geostationary satellites, can be located by triangulation. In the case of 406 MHz beacons which transmit digital signals, the beacons can be uniquely identified instantly, furthermore, a GPS position can be encoded into the signal Distress signals from the beacons are homed by Search and Rescue aircraft and ground search parties who can in turn come to the aid of the concerned boat, and/or persons. There are three kinds of distress radiobeacons: EPIRBs signal maritime distress, ELTs signal aircraft distress PLBs are for personal use and are intended to indicate a person in distress, away from normal emergency response capabilities The basic purpose of distress radiobeacons is to get people rescued within the so-called "golden day" when the majority of survivors can still be saved.
In the field of Wi-Fi, the term beacon signifies a specific data transmission from the wireless access point, which carries the SSID, the channel number and security protocols such as Wired Equivalent Privacy or Wi-Fi Protected Access. This transmission does not contain the link layer address of another Wi-Fi device, therefore it can be received by any LAN client. Stations participating in packet radio networks based on the AX.25 link layer
Charodei is a 1982 Soviet romantic fantasy musical film directed by Konstantin Bromberg. Ivan Puhov is in love with a kind and friendly girl, Alyona. Alyona works as a witch in a research institution that researches magic called NUINU; the couple are about to get married when Alyona's jealous and scheming co-worker, tricks Alyona's boss, Kira Shemahanskaya, the institute director, into putting a spell on Alyona. The spell makes Alyona undergo a severe personality change, become unable to control her actions, forget about Ivan. Ivan and Alyona's friends must figure out a way to break the curse while protecting the institution's latest research development, a magic wand. Aleksandra Yakovleva as Alyona Igorevna Sanina Aleksandr Abdulov as Ivan Sergeevich Puhov Yekaterina Vasilyeva as Kira Anatolyevna Shemahanskaya Valentin Gaft as Apollon Mitrofanovich Sataneev Yevgeny Vesnik Valery Zolotukhin as Ivan Kivrin Emmanuil Vitorgan as Kovrov Mikhail Svetin as Foma Ostapych Bryl Roman Filippov as Modest Matveevich Kamneyedov Anna Ashimova as Nina Puhova Semyon Farada as The Guest from South Leonid Kharitonov as Amatin The film was written by brothers Boris and Arkady Strugatsky as adaptation of their science fantasy novel Monday Begins on Saturday.
But Bromberg turned down the script due to its serious tone and social commentary, the Strugatskys had to rewrite their script as a light-hearted romantic comedy. As a result, the movie bore no resemblance to the book besides the setting and several characters' names. History repeated itself with another film by Sokurov "Days of Eclipse"; the film became a classic Soviet New Year's Eve romantic comedy, similar to Irony of Fate and The Carnival Night. Film soundtrack includes many classical Soviet songs, written by Yevgeni Krylatov and Leonid Derbenyov, including: "A woman's enigma" performed by Irina Otieva "Three white horses" performed by Larisa Dolina "A song about a snowflake" performed by Olga Rozhdestvenskaya and Dobrie Molodtsy band "Witch-river" performed by Irina Otieva "A Song About a Suit" performed by Emmanuil Vitorgan and Mikhail Svetin "Imagine That" performed by Aleksandr Abdulov "Time to Sleep" performed by Mikhail Svetin "Serenade" performed by original cast members "Centaurs" performed by Dobrie Molodtsy "By The Mirror" performed by Zhanna Rozhdestvenskaya "You Can't Command Your Heart" performed by Zhanna Rozhdestvenskaya and Vladislav Lynkovskiy "Don't believe what they say" performed by original cast membersMusic performance by State Symphony Orchestra of Cinematography of the USSR.
Charodei on IMDb
Monday Begins on Saturday
Monday Begins on Saturday is a 1965 science fantasy novel by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky with illustrations by Yevgeniy Migunov. Set in a fictional town in northern Russia, where research in magic occurs, the novel is a satire of Soviet scientific research institutes, it offers an idealistic view of the scientific work ethic, as reflected in the title which suggests that the scientists' weekends are nonexistent. Their idealism is contrasted by a dishonest, show-horse professor; the "Scientific Research Institute of Sorcery and Wizardry", located in the fictional Northern Russian town of Solovets, is portrayed as a place where everyone either work diligently, or else their loss of honesty is symbolized by their ears becoming more and more hairy. These hairy-eared people are viewed with disdain by the idealistic scientists; the more morally backward specimen are the most self-aggrandizing and sure of their own significance, while conducting the more ridiculous and nonsensical pseudo-research, to justify their position.
Tale of the Troika, which describes Soviet bureaucracy at its worst, is a sequel, featuring many of the same characters. The novel is written from the point of view of Aleksandr Ivanovich Privalov, a young programmer from Leningrad, who picks up two hitchhikers during a road trip north through Karelia. After the two find out that he is a programmer, they convince him to stay in Solovets and work together with them in the Scientific Research Institute of Sorcery and Wizardry; the book contains a large number of references to well-known Russian fairy tales and children's stories: Baba Yaga makes an appearance as does Zmey Gorynych and the Learned Cat from Pushkin's "Ruslan and Lyudmila", who turns out to be a demented bard. Some figures from mythology appear, such as genies and Cain; the authors portray these persons and concepts either as objects of scientific inquiry or members of the Institute. Merlin, for example, is described as an incompetent boaster and is in charge of the Institute's Department of Predictions.
The Technical Helpdesk is headed by one Sabaoth Baalovich Odin described as the most powerful wizard in the universe, while the vivarium is staffed by Alfred, a vampire. The novel is remarkable for its colorful characters. For example, Cristóbal Josevich Junta was a Grand Inquisitor, is now the head of the Department of the Meaning of Life, he is a talented taxidermist. It is rumored that his collection includes a Standartenführer of the SS, an erstwhile friend of Junta's and a taxidermist. Cristóbal Josevich, so goes the rumor, was skilled, only faster. Fyodor Simeonovich Kivrin, the head of the Department of Linear Happiness, is a stuttering big guy, an eternal optimist, an apprentice programmer, a fan of Erle Stanley Gardner, a mentor of sorts to Privalov. Modest Matveevich Kamnoedov is an archetypal administrator and bureaucrat who does not understand the "Monday begins on Saturday" work ethic. On New Year's Eve, he directs Privalov to turn off the lights and lock all doors, but Privalov soon finds out that everyone is still at the Institute and research continues.
For example, the archetypically rude Viktor Korneev claims to have left his clone to work in his lab, which Privalov recognizes to be Korneev himself, because clones never sing or show any emotion. Much of the action centers on the laboratory of Amvrosiy Ambroisovich Vybegallo, a professor whose gargantuan experiments are spectacularly wasteful and crowd-pleasing but utterly unscientific. In his quest for an "ideal man" he creates a model of "partially satisfied man" which eats inordinate amounts of raw offal achieving shortening periods of lethargic "full satisfaction", until it begins eating without stopping and bursts, literally. On a New Year's Day Vybegallo hatches up his ultimate creation, a "model of a satisfied man" who can satisfy all of his wants. Upon hatching the model attempts to consume the whole universe, but Roman Oyra-Oyra manages to stop him by throwing him a genie in a bottle. Vybegallo is modeled in large part on Trofim Lysenko, the charlatan and politico responsible for many setbacks in the science of genetics in USSR.
The final part of the book concerns the mystery of Janus Poluektovich Nevstruev, the director of the institute, known to be one man in two personas, called A-Janus and U-Janus. While the events of the novel are fantastic and are unlike most science fiction in that they are not explained, this work is traditionally considered one of science fiction, rather than fantasy for a number of reasons: the genre of fantasy did not exist in Soviet Union, rare exceptions were formally classified as sci-fi by publishers; the first English translation was published by DAW Books in 1977. In August 2005, Seagull Publishing, published a translation by Andrew Bromfield titled Monday Starts on Saturday; the publisher described it as "the Russian equivalent of Harry Potter, written 40 years earlier". The book features illustrations by Evgeny Migunov, one of the best illustrators of the works of the Strugatsky brothers; the Russian language abbrevi