2.11.2016

PSA: Google's giving away 2 extra gigs of storage for doing a security check on your Google account

Google did this last year and it's a ridiculously easy way of adding extra space if you use Drive, Picasa, or Photos. Basically, all you need to do is go to your account, scroll down to Security Checkup and click on Get Started. Once you finish the checkup (which takes all of a few seconds), the 2 gigs are added automatically.

https://googleblog.blogspot.com/2015/02/take-security-checkup-on-safer-internet.html

http://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-get-2gb-free-on-google-drive/

On a related note, I just checked to see how much space I have now and I'm currently using all of 118 megabytes (or 0.61%) out of 19 gigabytes. Clearly, I needed that extra 2 gigabytes. :P

2.07.2016

Fortune's Pawn by Rachel Bach: An interesting premise that never gets off the ground

Fortune's Pawn is the first book in Rachel Bach's (real name, Rachel Aaron) Paradox Trilogy.
Devi Morris isn’t your average mercenary. She has plans. Big ones. And a ton of ambition. It’s a combination that’s going to get her killed one day - but not just yet.

That is, until she just gets a job on a tiny trade ship with a nasty reputation for surprises. The Glorious Fool isn’t misnamed: it likes to get into trouble, so much so that one year of security work under its captain is equal to five years everywhere else. With odds like that, Devi knows she’s found the perfect way to get the jump on the next part of her Plan. But the Fool doesn’t give up its secrets without a fight, and one year on this ship might be more than even Devi can handle.
This premise caught my interest because I've never read a military sci-fi novel about a merc serving on a ship before, cargo or otherwise. Typically, when I do read mil SF, its about soldiers or naval officers, so I was willing to give this book a read and before I even finished it, I wish I hadn't. While the idea of a tough female merc serving as a guard on a cargo ship that acts as a magnet for trouble was intriguing, the plot itself was a major letdown.

1.31.2016

This is one beat to hell book

Gotta admire how libraries will hold on to books longer than they probably should.

Not a bad book, by the way. There's plenty of cheese here and there, but so far it's better than the lackluster Fortune's Pawn. I picked it up because I'm planning on buying Andromeda's Fall later this year, so I figured I may as well dip into the series proper.

1.27.2016

Just finished Fortune's Pawn

I'll write a longer post about it later, but as it stands, it was average at best. The romance bits of the plot between the main character, Devi, and Rupert, the ship's cook dragged the story down and the ending was meh. I'd probably rate it a 5 or 6 out of 10.

1.17.2016

2015 in reading and plans for 2016

I meant to do this sooner, but hey, better late than never. 2015 was a pretty good year for me in terms of reading (and given the way Grim Reaper was cutting through beloved celebrities like Leonard Nimoy, it was the only good thing about that year!). I managed to pack away twelve books which in of itself is great, but it was pretty dismal on the sci-fi front, as only four of the twelve were science fiction:



Four books and half of them were Star Trek. I wasn't joking when I said Treklit is my crack. Anyways, I was tempted to count This Is Not a Game by Walter Jon Williams, since I found it in the SFF section of the local library, but I think it was only shelved there because the rest of the Dagmar Shaw series does veer into sci-fi territory, while this one doesn't. I was also tempted to count Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro because it features human cloning, but otherwise lacks any other elements of science fiction.

And that makes 100,000 hits


Thanks, everybody!

1.12.2016

The twelve actors who might play a young Han Solo + one who should

The Guardian (and several other websites) has an article out about the dozen young actors shortlisted to be Han Solo in one of the myriad of Star Wars spin-offs. Let's go now to Disapproving Otter for my take on this.

Well put, Disapproving Otter. Anyways, I had to google all of the names because I'm not a teenage girl and I wasn't familiar with any of them, except for Dave Franco and Logan Lerman's. The problem is that almost all of these guys look like wimps! I'm not talking about some hyper-masculine macho "alpha male/beta-male" bullshit that parts of the internet go on and on about. I mean they look about as intimidating as Haley Joel-Osment. I grok that they'll be playing a younger version of the scruffy looking nerf-herder, but they should cast someone who at least looks like they've met puberty. The only ones on that list that don't look like they're still in high school are Franco, Scott Eastwood, and Jack Reynor.

So who do I think should be cast? Anthony Ingruber. Honestly, I never even heard of the guy until today, but he's certainly a better choice than most of the others.

He even has a passing resemblance to Harrison Ford and speaking of which, he even co-starred in a movie last year with our favorite scoundrel, playing a younger version of Ford's character.


And yet, this guy isn't even in the running to play Han? Hollywood logic: Don't cast the guy who played a younger version of Han Solo in a movie about a young Han Solo.

1.08.2016

U.S. Postal Service is releasing Star Trek stamps this year!

(via Space.com)

No idea if they're out now or what, because even the USPS website is mum on it. I'll go to the local post office tomorrow or Monday to check.

Like Tears in Rain: Happy Birthday, Roy Batty

According to Blade Runner, Roy Batty was "born" on January 8, 2016, so of course I'm going to post his famous "Tears in Rain" speech, because it is so good.



A person's memories, their entire life experience ceasing to exist when they die is actually a horrifying realization and is an inevitability for us all and that's what makes the monologue so haunting and timeless.

12.30.2015

Video: The original intro to Star Trek's 2nd pilot, "Where No Man Has Gone Before"


Enterprise Log: James Kirk, Commanding

We are leaving that vast cloud of stars and planets which we call our galaxy. Behind us, Earth, Mars, Venus, even our Sun, are specks of dust. The question: What is out there in the black void beyond.
I confess that I have never seen the beginning of "Where No Man Has Gone Before". I've seen almost the entire episode (look, I'm more of a TOS movie and TNG fan, okay?), so I noticed several interesting bits:

1. The Enterprise being a law enforcement/patrol ship that's sent out of the galaxy to see what's out there. I like the idea of it being repurposed for the task, rather than being built specifically for extra-galactic exploration because it gives the impression that the Federation or Earth or whoever doesn't is wary of building a brand new ship for a mission that might not pan out.

2. Spock having human ancestry rather than being half-human. I actually like that more than him being half and half because it's a better explanation for why he was never as coldly logical as other Vulcans and moments of emotion, as well as explain why he lacks human features. B'lanna from Voyager, for example, is half-human and half-Klingon and it shows as her forehead ridges aren't as prominent. With Spock, you'd think that his ears wouldn't be as pointed as a full-blooded Vulcan and his eyebrows would look more like a human's if he was only half-Vulcan.

3. The transporter being called a materializer. I thought it was dumb the first time I heard Scotty say it, but the name's growing on me. Transporter is still a better name, but materializer has the charm of sounding old school scifi.

4. The corridor set looks cool, especially with that ladder. They should have kept the ladders. That part of the set has a nice nautical feel, which fits with ship-based scifi.

(h/t File 770)
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