Monday, September 17, 2018

John DeChancie - Castle Perilous / Castle for Rent / Castle Kidnapped / ...

Review.

If you don't mind how DeChancie treats bunnies, then, well, this is great light reading. Fluffy, too!

There is this castle, somewhere in the multiverse, where visitors and the regular guests from different realities mingle. At their own risk, of course. Especially when the host is away...


Thursday, September 13, 2018

Archer C7

Review.

I've been struggling with Wifi reception in my house in the past. We all have been there I guess 😀

I have been using different routers over time. At the moment I'm using the Archer C7 which goes for 80 bucks or so.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Roger Zelazny - The Dream Master / Dreamscape

Review.

In this novel a successful therapists accepts the challenge of his life: teach a blind wannabe therapist to deal with the visions of her (seeing) (future) clients.

Which leads to weird stuff.


Monday, September 3, 2018

Roger MacBride Allen - Farside Cannon

Review.

Scientist wants to save the world, gets caught in a web of intrigue and finally uses his exile to the far side of the moon as an advantage to stop an incoming meteorite.

Yes. MacBride Allen actually did write other stuff besides churning out Star Wars novels...

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Wasmachine voor nerds (Dutch)

Dutch.

Als je toch al een domotica systeem hebt met een led display, dan kun je dat net zo goed gebruiken om te melden wanneer de wasmachine klaar is...

Echt nuttig? Nee, maar wel leuk voor de uber-geek 😎

Monday, August 27, 2018

Witchblade 41

Review.

Are comics books? I don't know. They might be. They are printed, have letters and words, and you can read them. At least they are some kind of books.

I scored a 100+ Witchblade books...

Thursday, August 23, 2018

PS4 NAT Type 3 problemen met een Ziggo TC7210 (Dutch)

Dutch.

De combinatie van een Ziggo TC7210 en PS4 gaf problemen (NAT3 ipv. NAT2).

Ik heb dit opgelost door de TC7210 in 'bridge' mode te laten zetten.

Monday, August 20, 2018

The 4400

Review.

Cult craving guilt... Season 3 of any show is the most important season. Or so I think.

Let's have a look at the final two seasons of 4400 and see if my theory holds up... to anything 😁

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Musk versus the shorts

Column.

After Musk his little tweet about 'taking the company private' the pitchforks came out. On Ars Technica someone stated that 'short sellers' are also 'shareholders', thus they have the right (?) to sue Musk for any communication that would affect their position.

A big mistake? A deliberate action? Not even my goldfish knows...

Monday, August 13, 2018

One bad movie - League of Gods

Review.

Of course NetFlix can't get it right all the time.

I remember my first encounter with Netflix, way back when I visited the USA, a long, long time ago... The friends we stayed with had Netflix. Wow. I was impressed.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Homematic controlled (floor)heating (update)


I've updated some of the programs in my Homematic system, to add some additional error checking (and work my way around some of the bugs)...

I added a display unit, but otherwise the hardware and concept didn't change. The code did.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Naomi Novik - His Majesty's Dragon / Throne of Jade / ...

Review.

An alternative timeline where dragons actually exist, but not because they are magic. In fact, thus far there hasn't been any magic at all and probably never will. Napoleon wouldn't want it any other way....

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Power shortcuts and rebuilding the icon cache

I think every version of Windows since XP (XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10) suffers from an 'icon cache' glitch, leaving some icons missing or 'broken'.

I've tried different solutions, but this one seems to do the job every time.

In addition I've added some icons and batch files to quickly add power related shortcuts on your desktop.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Alison Sinclair - Darkborn

Review.

Darkborn was an interesting read. I was expecting an ‘interleaved’ book, where half the adventure would take place on the light side,  the other half on the dark side, but no.

Ah, more would be spoiling 😁

Monday, June 11, 2018

Getting Windows 10 settings right (what a mess)

Take Windows 8, remove Privacy and add enforced updates... that's Windows 10. I'm especially worried about Windows 10 screwing up older systems by involuntary driver replacements. Microsoft should at least allow us to block driver updates, please!

Anyway, if you want to run Windows it's the only game left in town.. And things can get very, very interesting if you're trying to run Windows 10 as the OS on a home server...

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Sleepy raid controllers and drilling holes

One of my hard drives started to misbehave seriously (and Harddisk Sentinel pretty much confirmed it is about to die).

I immediately picked up a new one, and was about to copy data from the old to the new drive when I realized I was running out of SATA ports. When I build my homeserver I picked a cheap case (actually: the cheapest I could find 😅) and somewhere in the back of my mind I convinced myself I could always add some drives later on.

Well, that turned out to be possible, but there were some unforeseen limitations...

Friday, June 8, 2018

Steven Brust - The Phoenix Guards

Review.

In the afterword Brust admits he likes the style of Alexandre Dumas and company

Brust himself called it "a blatant ripoff of The Three Musketeers" but I think he deserves a little more credit than that.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Van 1200ES naar 2400ES naar 2800ES naar SR6011 naar SR7011 (Dutch)

Dutch. Review.

Wat doe je wanneer je versterker kuren begint te vertonen? Je koopt een nieuwe. Nou ben ik niet echt een 'audiofiel' maar ik hou wel van een lekker stukje geluid...

De vraag is natuurlijk: wat en waarom?
 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Alan Dean Foster - Catalyst

Review.

Catalyst, or Cat-a-lyst, stayed on the shelf for two years before I read it. I was reading quite a bit at the time. (You wouldn't be able to tell, now would you?)

Eager for adventure, movie star Jason Carter tags along on a treasure hunt in Peru where he and his friend discover a lost civilization intent on conquering the world

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Mel Gilden - Surfing Samurai Robots / Hawaian Ufo Aliens

Review.

In Surfing Samurai Robots and Hawaiian Ufo Aliens there's a five feet two sleuth with a big nose and a mission... to become the next Philip Marlowe.

Oh yes, I almost forgot. He calls himself Zoot and he's actually an alien beneath that long trenchcoat.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Ziggo's prijsverhoging (Dutch)

Dutch. Column.

Ziggo heeft zojuist (opnieuw) haar prijzen verhoogd. Om 'meer en betere' diensten te kunnen aanbieden.

Op zich niet onredelijk.Alleen is het niet helemaal waar.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Lawrence Watt Evans - The Lure of the Basilisk / The Seven Altars of Dusarra / ...

Review.

Just plain heroic fantasy, the hero Garth fits right between Elric and Conan. Well, you have to be in the mood for these, and then it's okay though not exceptional.

One note: Garth is a hero whose stomach aches and whose feet hurt. Quite an uncommon feature in this category.

Christopher Nuttall - The Oncoming Storm / Falcone Strike / Cursed Command / ...

Review

And yes, another Christopher Nuttall series. Well, he is productive. This time it's the younger sister of Honor Harrington. There's no treecat even though the main character is called 'Kat'. Yeah, unrelated, I know.

Anyway, this is space opera, as the book covers clearly illustrate.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Dudeism

There is nothing wrong with me that a little reincarnation cannot fix...

If you're a dude (M/F) then visit this website:

www.dudeism.com

I am so tempted to buy that book...

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Top 5 'never give up' inspriational books, movies, songs

What makes you tick?

Monika’s Dapper contribution triggered some soul searching, and I discovered I cannot help myself: I’m motivated to a fault... And not always towards the proper goals as my employers can attest 😌

For those moments I'm not motivated I always have some ‘uppers’ at hand… Obviously, they had to be SF / SciFi / Music related… so here is my top 5 (and a bit)... 

Pamela Dean - The Secret Country / The Hidden Land / Whim of the Dragon


Review.

A group of kids strands (more or less) in a parallel world where they turn out to be the characters they liked to play on 'our'. But once in, there's not much of a way out...

Interesting fantasy read. Not yet another six volumes four-thousand pages Tolkien rip-off. These days it would probably be released as a single large paperback, and it would still be worth your while.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Geluid over HDMI (Dutch)

Dutch.

Alle nieuwere TV's gebruiken HDMI. Dat werkt erg gemakkelijk, een enkele kabel, maar soms stelt het je voor verrassingen.

Hier een korte uitleg over kwaliteit, soorten verbindingen, beperkingen, en geluid via HDMI, en een reden om NIET iets nieuws te kopen...

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Elizabeth Moon – Remnant Population

Review.

A relaxed read, a good book. You know it's going to be all right in the end, and yet you won't mind.

And I needed something relaxed after all the hard (military) SF I've been reading the last year(s)...

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Amber DRPG

Column.

I must have been talking about role-playing games, and especially the Amber Diceless RPG, in the past.

For years I planned to go and play again, but I just never got to it. But I'm old and if I don't start playing again, I probably never will…

Why this sudden realization?

Monday, March 19, 2018

Lindsay Buroker - The Emperor's Edge

Review.

I like my eBooks good, and my audiobooks cheap. Finding a decent title cheap is sometimes a challenge though, so The Emperor’s Edge was a nice discovery. I’ve listened to the first 5 books thus far, and they are quite enjoyable.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Airflow (a new PC build in an old case)

Let me start by saying I do NOT like to build my own PC. Once upon a time, long, long ago, I considered it fun. These days I just may build one myself for cost reasons.

Regardless if you use a new or an old case (as I did) it still is a good idea to pay attention to the airflow in your case...

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Alastair Reynolds - Revenger

Review.

Ye' ol' pirate, matey! This one isn't marked as a 'young adult' novel, but perhaps it should be. Two young girls travel into space, get into a fight with a pirate, and then (obviously) one of them gets taken. Away. Scifi style.

I liked this one, even if I (in general) dislike pirate stories.


Saturday, March 10, 2018

Homematic controlled (floor)heating

This post describes my Homematic heating control system.

I live in a place with four floors (it's not as big as you'd suspect) with the two lowest levels having floorheating. I am using a Homematic domotics system to save energy by only running the pumps when needed.

Mounting a Tab3 7" tablet in a kitchen

With all the recent security scares you may want to carefully consider what you want to do with it.

But... if you decide you still want to put a tablet in your kitchen, then here's an example with a Samsung Tab 3 7".

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Dominion Tank Police


Review.

First time I saw this was in 1995, but this anime series was actually released in 1989. That's almost 30 years ago...

Concept: in the future criminals have become too powerful, so the Police Force has opted for the deployment of tanks.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Akasa USB3 card reader

Review.

There could be a reason you want an USB3 card reader in your PC. In general, you'd better opt for an external unit, regardless if it is USB2 or 3, and simply plug it in an available USB port.

But let's assume you want one...

Raymond E Feist - Riftwars

Review.

Dark Fantasy, sometimes a bit predictable with a so so ending, but overall enjoyable and worth a re-visit.

The majority of Feist's works are part of The Riftwar Cycle, and feature the worlds of Midkemia and Kelewan. Human magicians and other creatures on the two planets are able to create rifts between these worlds and end up fighting each other. Yeah. That happens

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Diana Wynne Jones - Archer's Goon / Fire and Hemlock

Review.

Next one please! That would be, ehm... Archer's Goon by Diana Wynn Jones.

Somebody once told me it's a parody on Zelazny's Amber series, but I do not entirely agree. Well, there were some similarities, like all those ultra-powerful brothers and sisters quarreling and plotting all the time. There's also the main character who lost his memory, but that is where the similarity ends. And there are enough other things in the book make you smile. Not bad... not bad at all.


Sunday, February 25, 2018

Horizon Zero Dawn

If you have a PS4 then why are you reading this?

Stop immediately, boot up your PS4 and start playing Horizon Zero Dawn. It's fantastic. It reminds a little of Enslaved and Heavenly Sword, but throws in the apocalypse and fighting robot dinosaurs with bow and arrow.

Why are you still reading this?

Urotsukidoji - Legend of the Overfiend

Review.

I watched this one ages ago when I first discovered anime. And it's sub-genres... Bishounen... Ecchi... Mecha... Shounen... Shoujo... Don't worry, I don't know the exact meaning either ☺ Most of it is cute, action oriented, romantic. Most if it...

Urotsukidoji, also known as Legend of the overfiend, is different. A rather sick mongrel of porn and horror. At least not my cup of tea.

Adult supervision strongly advised!

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tweaking Windows 10

Windows 10 might be the best Windows ever (at least according to Microsoft) but there are some issues...

Let's ignore horrible Windows 8 Metro leftovers, doubtful respect for the user's privacy, lack of control over updates and (driver) replacements, and focus on one of the biggest annoyances (IMHO that is): the coloring of drag bars in the GUI... (and then some)

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Ann Aguirre - Blue diablo / Hell fire / Shady lady / Devil's puch...


Review.

I tried this after her Sirantha Jax books, which were fine.

Not SF this time, but demons, demigods, and love affairs. Perhaps a little too 'shippy' for my taste, just like Sirantha Jax but if you can stand that these provide some light reading that isn't all too bad.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Travelers - Season 2 - Ave Machina / Protocol 4 / Jacob / 11:27 / ...

Review.

Ah, Travelers is back.

The long gap between season 1 and 2 (at least here on Netflix) made me somewhat forget about this series. I needed a quick recap of season 1 before diving in.

And I wonder if there ever will be a season 3...

Monday, January 22, 2018

Christopher Nuttall - Schooled in magic / Lessons in etiquette / Study in Slaghter / ...

Review.

Regardless if you admire (the quality of) his work, you will have to admit Nuttall is a very productive writer. He's juggling a few different series, and seems to write more than he proofreads... There's also a hint of plagiarism, too many pop culture references, and too much repeating. But does that make him a bad writer?

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Disc rot

Do you still have CD's or DVD's laying around containing backups? Images, documents, music, or other stuff that you like to (re)use some day?

How reliable are those discs?