January 15, 2012

Pre-order Book Dorking

Filed under: Books,Geek-ery — base2wave @ 11:13 am

I decided this ought to go in a separate post, well, just because. THought I’d share my current pre-orders and other books I’m dorked out about for 2012

From the Deep of the Dark
Stephen Hunt

I’ve been reading this particular series for a number of years now, and aside from my ire at the change in cover art (thus ruining a cohesive, and attractive look for the series on my bookshelf), I’ve really liked this series and it various cross over characters. This is definitely a steampunk, verging on pulp fantasy series, but shit it’s fun . This is is the 6th book in the series and I might be looking forward to this as much as anything else this year. HAd to order it from overseas, as there is ALWAYS a year-some-odd delay in the american publication of this series. Luckily BookDepository.com seems to keep these in stock/for pre-order, offers free shipping anywhere in the world, and allows me to pay in USD, thus not having to deal with VAT and whatnot.

Purchase Link

The Flame Alphabet
Ben Marcus

Having never read anything by Ben Marcus, I will admit, this was a bit of a gamble purchase, but the premise sounded intriguing, and I’m a sucker for a hardcover with a deckle edge binding. I read an early review of this book on io9.com [here] and essentially the book is about a virus that sweeps over the earth spread via language/words, transmitted by children. Ok, you’ve got my attention. And as I understand it, the adults/ parents have to flee their children in fear of themselves succumbing to this illness. I guess, I’ll have more to say about this AFTER it arrives on Tuesday and after I get a chance to read it (Hopefully not at the expense of my current read)

Author’s Page | Purchase Link

Nick Harkaway

This is Nick’s second novel, and if it’s any bit as good and a crazy as his first, Gone-Away World, then I’m all in. I’ll just leave this one to the cover flap:

Joe Spork spends his days fixing antique clocks. The son of infamous London criminal Mathew “Tommy Gun” Spork, he has turned his back on his family’s mobster history and aims to live a quiet life. That orderly existence is suddenly upended when Joe activates a particularly unusual clockwork mechanism. His client, Edie Banister, is more than the kindly old lady she appears to be—she’s a retired international secret agent. And the device? It’s a 1950s doomsday machine. Having triggered it, Joe now faces the wrath of both the British government and a diabolical South Asian dictator who is also Edie’s old arch-nemesis. On the upside, Joe’s got a girl: a bold receptionist named Polly whose smarts, savvy and sex appeal may be just what he needs. With Joe’s once-quiet world suddenly overrun by mad monks, psychopathic serial killers, scientific geniuses and threats to the future of conscious life in the universe, he realizes that the only way to survive is to muster the courage to fight, help Edie complete a mission she abandoned years ago and pick up his father’s old gun

Can you really go wrong with a story like that? I can’t wait for this to land on my door step in March.

Author’s Page | Purchase Link

Mr. G: A Novel about the Creation
Alan Lightman

I’m a complete sucker for stories about “the creation” being turned on ear (like with Glen Duncan’s I, Lucifer: finally the Other Side of the Story. And in a not very nice way, it’s probably me looking for the fallacy of it, but we’ll not dwell on that at this time. But anyway… Doubled with the fact that Alan Lightman’s “Einstein’s Dreams” is without reservation, one of my top 3 books of all time. This clearly was must read. Mr g is a story about creation from the point of view of God, a possibly somewhat naive character who goes about setting things in motion only to then be questioned for explanations about the inexplicable and the necessity of evil, amongst other things. I’m quite certain I’ll plow through this book in a days time as I did with much of his other work, but Alan Lightman’s prose and voice are possible some of the most beautiful, heart-wrenching, soul turning words I’ve read in the past.

Author’s Page | Purchase Link

The Great Game
Lavie Tidhar

What can I say, I have a fondness in my heart for pulp. All the better that Lavie’s works are well written, intelligent, adventurous pulp. Another Angry Robot release (Which I should add also has their shit together enough that they manage to release book in the US and overseas in a relatively close timeframe, which I have no fear in saying most publishers haven’t really managed yet). I’ve read his first two book in this series (The Bookman and Camera Obscura), which are really only tangentially related in the sense of continuing world building. But that’s ok, since that it allows his characters not to get so mired in their own backstory that nothing can ever move forward. and since someone else writes it better than I (And I’ve not yet read the book), I give you the cover blurb:

When Mycroft Holmes is murdered in London, it is up to retired shadow executive Smith to track down his killer – and stumble on the greatest conspiracy of his life. Strange forces are stirring into life around the globe, and in the shadow game of spies nothing is certain. Fresh from liberating a strange alien object in Abyssinia – which might just be the mythical Ark of the Covenant – young Lucy Westerna, Holmes’ protégé, must follow her own path to the truth while, on the other side of the world, a young Harry Houdini must face his greatest feat of escape – death itself.

As their paths converge the body count mounts up, the entire world is under threat, and in a foreboding castle in the mountains of Transylvania a mysterious old man weaves a spider’s web of secrets and lies.

Airship battles, Frankenstein monsters, alien tripods and death-defying acts: The Great Game is a cranked-up steampunk thriller in which nothing is certain – not even death.

And I loves me some well written steampunk.

SIDE NOTE:How can you not like a guy who write a Samurai retelling of the New Testament called “Jesus and the Eightfold Path

Author’s Page | Purchase Link

I’m certain there will be another post to follow this, both with thoughts on these books once I’ve read them/the arrive (Likely in reverse order of that) and also as I squander away more of my income on my bibliophanatic addiction.

Week 2 Ramblings

Filed under: Books,Geek-ery,Life through my lens,Noble Effort — base2wave @ 9:52 am

Well, I’m about 2 for 2 with resolutions at the moment. I’ve found it incredibly difficult to be able to find/make thew time to do some of these things, but I endeavor to press on.

Quiet time alone is decidedly at a premium, making my efforts to practice samadhi OR write weekly more difficult. Regarding samadhi, I’ve yet to get a chance to practice, so I’m gonna have to step up here soon and just do it. As for writing, I’ve been working at it (At the moment I have one post I started working on while at work the other day, but I’ve had to shelve for now, just until I can truly make the time to post it). Time constraints have been equally compounded by the death of my media PC earlier this week, as I’ve been focussing a good deal of effort towards data recovery from the old drive and subsequently doing my research for new components to rebuild this system (This time with better cooling).

As for reading and sobriety, I’m still chugging along. My tea consumption is quiet astronomical at present, but I’m sure my liver is thanking me. I’ve lost about 5 pounds so far and hope to lose more. As for the mental chemistry reasons for this, I don’t know if I can tell yet if there s a difference. I think that talks longer to suss itself out, so I’ll just keep pressing on.

I finished reading Adam Christopher’s debut novel, Empire State, which I thoroughly enjoyed (and by one of my favorite publishers, Angry Robot). While it’s been billed as a “Steampunk Noir” novel, I certainly found more of Noir than anything else with a detective, eccentric ex-military, and psychopathic villains, and enough of a twist to have kept me wondering about more than a few characters. All in all a great novel, and relatively quick read at 448 pages.

And I’ve finally got some foothold in Neal Stephenson’s “Reamde“. Not being a stranger to Mr. Stephenson’s style of writing, I know that this 1056 page tome was going to have it’s fair share of info dumps where it can be easy to get distracted/turned off but power through a handful of these so far as brought be about 300 or so pages in and in the story itself pretty thick. I’m really like it so far and I have not a damn clue where it will wind up.

And there we have it. A week-ish in recap. Power forward and moving on.

Oh, and the New Years day brisket turned out SPECTACULAR. I’m definitely going to keep working at that, but I’m more than please with my first smoked brisket attempt.

September 15, 2011

Higher hopes and shitty follow through

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens — base2wave @ 11:12 am

I keep meaning to update things around here – re-skin the site, mess with some other coding, oh yeah, and fucking post more than 2 times a year. But, despite the desire to do it, I can never seem to work up the motivation to devote the time and energy to it. It’s just shameful.

I’m trying to work through it all and get my shit together, but I’ve yet to succeed and i feel like it just gets worse.

I think more hours in the day and less time spent boozing and doing nothing else would probably help, but I’m yet to get there. Whatever.

November 12, 2008

I Found a Friend

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens — base2wave @ 11:15 pm

L found this little guy hopping across our living room floor. He was too small to physically pick up. After a brief modeling session, I set him free on the porch. Bye Froggy friend.

My Froggy Friend - On a Magazine

My Froggy Friend - On a Magazine

My Froggy Friend sitting in my hand

My Froggy Friend sitting in my hand

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March 3, 2008

Steampunk Badger

Filed under: Art,Geek-ery — base2wave @ 10:33 am

My good wonderfully talented friend Chris, over at The Shiny List was taking requests for art projects, and just finished this for me. You ought check out more of his work…

Steampunk Badger, originally uploaded by xtopher42.

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January 23, 2008

Better Living through Aggregation…

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens,Site News — base2wave @ 2:39 pm

It seems, that much like the road to hell, this blog is becoming paved with good intentions. Be that as it may, work is being done.

Podcast #3 is largely complete and I’m toying with the idea of both doing a weekly ShoutCAST stream, as well getting a proper microphone and a small mixer and actually APPEARING on my own damn podcast (Novel, I know…)

I’m also trying to objectively look at my time commitments before I consider adding a tLog to Living in Blue Shift [dot] com. My rational being:

  1. I have an unhealthy fascination with Micro-blogging and this seems like an interesting adaptation of it.
  2. It would allow me to post more regularly than I do currently, do to the nature of the system.
  3. Generating more content would, in turn, present me with the possibility of higher visibility on “the grid” (aka: the internet).

But, my hang up is, I struggle to maintain this site as much as I’d like due to equal parts exhaustion, more pressing responsibilities, lack of inspiration/motivation, and of course laziness. I’d rather not take the time to create a framework for more content only to let it collect dust.

With all of this, I’m also looking at diddling around with Yahoo! Pipes [wiki description]service to effectively lifestream my online activities. While it might be of some interest to others, I feel that largely this is for my own academic gratification (Which I then question, why the hell I’d need a lifestream, I’m the one living it… But I digress). Somehow the idea of a long string of aggregated RSS entries being my lasting scrawl seems fitting.

This all leads up to a series of entries I’ve been semi-writing for months now regarding the integration of so-called Web2.0 technologies into our lifestyles on and off the grid. If I get my ass in gear, part one could actually be up soon, assuming I don’t get distracted as usual.

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November 29, 2007

[Insert Explitives Here]

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens,They Don't Pay Me Enough,Work,Writing — base2wave @ 1:53 pm

Well, for those of you who might think a plumbers pipes never leak, I can assure you with all certainty that they do. And when they do, it often floods. What I am eluding to is my recent string of bad luck with electronics (i.e.: A dead iPod) and now compounded with failed sectors in my companion laptop, meaning my laptop is dead until I can get a new hard drive in it and reload EVERYTHING [Grumble]. While I am relatively sure that the majority of the data will be recoverable, and luckily my music collection was spared on an external hard drive, I am still too fucking frustrated for words. At least it happened AFTER the wedding. I am trying hard not to take this as a life sign that I ought to be doing other things.

That being said, maybe I ought to be doing other things; like writing a damn article about the end of the labor union strike on Broadway for the company webpage that the boss wanted me to write (For those of you just tuning in, I am the IT Director, not a Public Relation Manager or a Journalist…) Then again, maybe I should take that as a sign that I should also be blogging more over here…

Photo by me, taken some time back. There are more pictures over at my flickr page.

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October 19, 2007

[Insert Clever Title Here]

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens,Love,Personal,Work — base2wave @ 11:20 am

I could should be working right now. But I really just have no motivation to. I’d rather go sit outside with a cocktail and a book that I could feign reading before drifting off to sleep. Right now it’s a gorgeous “Fall” day in Houston [No comments on REAL seasons from The Other Professor Middents]. After the typical humid summer, I’m definitively enjoy this.

Two weeks from tomorrow L & I will be married in Santa Fe, NM. I’m a mix of nervous, excited, and exhausted. I didn’t think I’d get nervous; hell I’ve done this before, right? But I strangely am. It’s not cold feet, or question whether this is right, it’s just nervousness over taking that step. And obviously the excitement needs no real explanation. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to spend the rest of my life with this woman. And as for exhausted… Fuck, I am so tired of wedding planning and minutia-level details. I just want it to be done, and get back to pre-wedding planning life. I look forward to getting back to things like trying to make something interesting out of this site, the podcast and all my other stupid projects that are simmering somewhere in the back of my brain.

I’ve been working [albeit at a snails pace] on a handful of things

  • Blog research/review on mobile computing platforms
  • Blog research/review on Post WEB 2.0 gateway services and productivity enhancement
  • A handful of Steampunk design projects [both graphic, decor, and “invention”]
  • New [And regularly posted] Podcasts
  • Music Reviews
  • Redesign of the wedding-soon-to-be-married web site.
  • Stuff…

I’m just want to try to get back to whatever it was I use to call normal.

Anyway, I suppose I should think about building a mass email that needs to go out Wednesday for the office. Blarf.

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March 18, 2007

A Haiku For You

Filed under: Geek-ery,Writing — base2wave @ 3:42 pm

Corn-dogs and wine. So Tasty.
How White-trash am I?

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February 15, 2007

Themeus Absentus

Filed under: Geek-ery,Life through my lens,Music,Writing — base2wave @ 11:18 pm

Ugg, I’m fighting the sickness from hell currently. In fact, ill enough that it has taken me 3 damn days to even get this much written. I feel like someone has placed party balloons in my sinuses and inflated them to the maximum volumetric amount without bursting. My whole damn body aches and I can’t get comfortable. I took Tuesday off from work, when this first struck, but work called more times then I care to count. Basically, I’m miserable. That being said, the Goblin raised my spirits today after showing me the card she made me at school the other day. Clearly she understands how I feel as evidenced by this:

Click on the image to see why I almost peed myself with laughter.

Yes, my daughter has been pinned pretty well. Dramatics and all. Ok, I’m done…

Oh happy day for geeky little basey! The new version of ml_ipod [the ultimate non-iTunes iPod manager for WinAmp] was released quietly early this week with a feature I’ve been lusting after since it’s inception, Audioscrobbler/Last.FM support! These means all everything I play on my iPod gets ‘scrobbled too! [My Last.FM Page is here].

For those not in the know… shame on you. Audioscrobbler/Last.FM basically tracks EVERYTHING you listen to [up until now limited what one listened to AT their terminal] and uploads the information [not the song] to your personal Last.FM page. Thus you can communicate with others who might have similar music taste to your own, as well as learn about artists you may or may not have been exposed to. They also include a Radio function, that plays things it thinks you might like, that you can more or less tailor to suit your preferences, that also tags songs to your profile. Thus you can avoid that whole “I heard this really great song on the radio but I have no idea who sings it” issue. The other great feature, that I am sadly don’t have much time for, but would love to use more, is personally tagging artists with your own keyword tags like “Shoegazer, Post-Rock, Bands-I’ve-Heard-Live, etc.”

So, yeah, the ability to also catch all the things I listen to when I am driving or out and about, makes for a happy basey.

I read a wonderful post just yesterday that I stumbled upon whist looking at something completely unrelated (don’t ask me what it was, I ain’t got a clue). It was a blog entry on “Why I blog” that really made sense to me. I’ve been self-editing so much; thinking “No blog something serious and meaningful and deep and blah, blah, blah.” that I hardly get anything out.

Basically, what I’m trying to tiptoe around here without scaring you is that there’s no point to anything and then you die.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, cheer up! As oxymoronic as it sounds, sheer insignificance can be really empowering. The pressure’s off. You don’t matter and never will. So it’s time to do what you want! “Ohh, I shouldn’t be spending so much time playing solitaire/watching TV/picking my nose.” What are you feeling so guilty about? You aren’t going to cure cancer, and even if you did, you would still die, and so would everyone you cured, so unless curing cancer is fun for you (and it certainly is for some people), do something else. Whatever you want. It can even be something really stupid. Like collecting rocks. Or sitting and pretending to be a rock. Or sitting and pretending to be a rock who likes to play video games all day while eating cheese. Not because it matters, or because it means anything, but because you like doing it.

An excerpt from Why I Blog – written over at Schnozzfest

I need to accept that I don’t have to have something epic to say. My life is as thrilling as everyone else’s. And I have my moments of clarity and humour. And besides, I imagine few other people can say they were hit on my a dwarf in a bear costume… [It was a Rockettes incident, I never got around to blogging it…] I’m going to write about what I want, and maybe, just maybe, you’ll find it interesting, or think I’m funny (please god, tell me you think I’m funny…). Maybe you’ll like the podcasts. Maybe you’ll hate them. It really doesn’t matter. The end all is, I enjoy doing it. And I needed to remind myself of that.

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