Friday, January 16, 2015

2015 is come to pass

taking a day off work today. using some of the banked overtime from the death march project that ended 2014. nice relaxing day here.

so 2015 is well begun. for new years I was feeling pretty crummy and sick for over a week before I went back to work. bummer being sick during my time off. oh well darn. so I didn't have much energy. I went to a movie for new years, something I've never done before. I went to see the Hobbit. It was pretty good. I'm not really into the lord of the rings stuff but it was fine. stayed up long enough for the countdown and to bed shortly after.

and 2014 is now in the books. 2015, like 2014 and every previous year, is come to pass. to use the Bible term. it's an important and powerful concept. whatever 2015 brings will end. good or bad, expected or unexpected, good fortune or bad luck. I was told on very good authority to expect change in 2015. so whatever happens will happen. change can be bad but can also be very good. and then there will be a reset and another at least calendar fresh start.

a lot happened in 2014. in the year up to Christmas time, I owned four cars. I had two cars destroyed in accidents by reckless and irresponsible drivers in June and July 2014. driving is still pretty skittish but this current 2010 Corolla I got in July has fortunately been running well. I'm hoping it will get me through 2015 safely and with minimal drama. I'm pleased to be a Corolla driver, that car suits me and my personality.

I also lost my job in 2014. In June my time at RIM was terminated after 6 years there. It's never a true surprise to anyone to get laid off from RIM, still it was an unplanned and abrupt and disruptive life change. Luckily I found work a little over a month later with CGI so it was a relief to get back to work and resume the flow of paycheques. So who would have known in January I'd be working at the site of the former Zellers Bayers Road as December wound down. and so it goes, so much happens during a year and ends up being important that you may have been unaware of or only very vaguely even aware of.

Finally my mother died in December. She had been sick for a long time so it wasn't a shocking or sudden thing. Still back in new years January 2014 I would not have thought at the time this would be Mom's final year.

so all in all I'm glad 2014 ended and now 2015 is begun. and better or worse or in between 2015 will also inescapably come to an end. who knows what this year will bring? what will end up being central this time next year that I'm not even aware of at this time. only time will tell. I can just try to do the right things based on my knowledge and experience, try to be a good person, and hope that positive results will flow from consistently making good life decisions and having a positive attitude.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Mutated by Joe McKinney

I've got through a few books of late. I finished another Joe McKinney Deadworld book. Mutated is pretty good. This picks up the story eight years after Apocalypse of the Dead. He picks up with the Apocalypse characters Nate and Ben. Nate is somehow immune to the zombie infection. As long as they don't tear him to pieces he can take some bites and scratches.

There are some new characters introduced Sylvia, Avery and Niki. At this point 8 years on some survivor settlements have been established. There's also some trade among the settlements along the Mississippi river. Which makes sense since the McKinney zombies drown in deep enough water so that would more likely emerge in the post apocalypse.

A new sinister force has emerged among the zombies. A terrifying Red Man who gets both the zombies and some human black shirt soldiers to work for him. He's overrun 4 of the 5 major survivor compounds. In the story Niki and Nate want to reach a mysterious Dr. Fisher who may be able to turn the tide on the zombies. The Red Man wants to find and eliminate the doctor and wants to use Niki to get to him.

It's a pretty good book. Not as great as Apocalypse of the Dead, but it was satisfying to see Nate again. The new characters are pretty solid. McKinney still captures the terror of the undead well. It's a fast paced read I got through most of it when home sick for a weekend over new years.

I think I have two more Deadworld books to read to complete this series. I'll look for them at the library.

Friday, January 02, 2015

Influx by Daniel Suarez

I've finished another book. It was Influx by Daniel Suarez. It was pretty good. The author is back in form after a disappointing Kill Decision. It's not quite as good as the Daemon, but a fast paced and satisfying read.

The author tackles the question of why there has been so little innovation since the moon landing in 1969. Suarez angle is that there has been plenty of innovation, it's just almost all been suppressed. There is a super secretive Bureau of Technology Control (BTC) that has been controlling the introduction of fantastic innovations such as cold fusion, cure for cancer, human cloning, strong AI, quantum computers. Their justification is that these innovations would be so disruptive that they would cause more harm than good.

The book is about an inventor Jon Grady who invents a device to deflect the force of gravity. a gravity mirror. so the familiar notion of "down" can be inverted within some area and objects will "fall up". Working in a startup, this invention is seized by the BTC and they blow up Grady's lab under the cover of an extremist anti-techology group the winnowers.

Grady is invited to join the BTC as a researcher to continue to work on his gravity mirror for BTC use only. Jon declines and the BTC sends him to a prison known as Hibernity along with other dissenting inventors.

From there lots of things happen and it's a fast paced read as Jon joins some dissenters in BTC to attempt to release the Hibernity prisoners and make their fantastic discoveries public and bring down the BTC. All the while in the crisis the BTC leadership becomes increasingly heavy handed and militant to protect the inventions they have seized.

I could see this being made into a movie. The book was written in a way that would be adaptable to a movie treatment. Such as the golem monster and some fantastic scenes at the climax that would translate very smoothly to a big special effects film.

All in all a good effort by Suarez. I'll continue to watch for this author's titles.