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Since you've been gone

10 November 2007 21:50

Confessor - Terry Goodkind's last novel in the Sword of Truth series.


Exceptionally Brilliant.

Well worth waiting for, and the annoyance of 'Chainfire' itself which seemed to go nowhere despite its length.

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No, no, no, no.

20 February 2008 21:50

I'm going to admit up front here that I'm pushing my luck, and that I anticipate the chances of success are minimal. But that aside .. There are a lot of people who read my entries, because of syndication, and I'm optimistic that somebody here in the UK will have a copy of the following three books they could send me:

  • Flash Gordon vol 3: Crisis on Citiadel II
  • Flash Gordon vol 5: Citadels under attack
  • Flash Gordon vol 6: Citadels on Earth

(All three are cheap paperback pulp fiction novels from the 1980s written by Alex Raymond.)

If you have a copy of any of those three books, and are willing to part with them, then I'd love to hear from you. Either as a comment or via email.

I'm certainly expecting to pay for them up to around £5 for each volume.

Backstory: I read the first when I was 10-12, then mostly forgot about it.

A while back I remembered enjoying it and bought volumes 1, 2, 3, & 4 from an online store. I got screwed and volume 3 hasn't arrived, but possibly that will be rectified soon.

Here in the UK the last two volumes are either extremely rare or extremely in demand. Typically they seem to sell for £15-30 - I'm frustrated to not have the conclusion, but not desperate to spend so much money upon them, (been there, done that).

So if anybody has some or all of these books and can bear to part with them please do let me know.


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E.T. phone home

16 March 2008 21:50

I've just finished reading "Don't You Have Time to Think", a collection of letters written to and from Richard P. Feynman. A birthday present from my wishlist.

Previously I've read the collection of letters to/from Tolkien. (Several times actually. Very nice collection!)

It suddenly struck me that over my lifetime I've probably written <200 letters to people.

When I was young I had a couple of pen pals, and when I was entering university I was involved with a couple of play by mail games which involved writing random letters involving strategy & etc.

Personal letters though? I've written very few, and I think they've mostly consisted of letters to my partner/partners of the time.

(For example Megan went home for a few months at the end of a university year about two months after I initially met her. So there were many letters back and forth. Recently she spent two months working in the USA; counting eggs and avoiding alligators so again there was a flurry of written letters, maybe 20 total during the duration of her trip.)

I guess that most of my (hand)written messages to people have been in the form of postcards whilst on holiday.

A long time ago I offered to mail postcards to Debian developers. I know I sent at least two, and I received at least one back - but the thing I remember most was exchanging addresses with Amayita and getting into character set issues. Her emails, containing her Spanish address, were difficult to understand as my mutt/console refused to display the foreign character set properly.

I can't recall whether she did ultimately receive a card from me, but I'm sure she'll remind me if she did.

Anyway I have no resolution, intention, or expectation that I will suddenly start writing more physical mails to people. But I think it almost counts as something we do less of these days. The telephone and internet have become the norm.

In some ways this is fantastic. In others it less good.

On the left my handwriting is so bad that maybe this isn't necessarily a problem.

ObQuote: E.T.



Who do you think God really favors in the web?

25 August 2008 21:50

Steven Brust is a big tease.

His most recent Vlad Taltos novel is full of tease for two reasons:

  • He jumps back in the timeline so that we hear nothing of Lady Teldra.
  • The acknowledgements of the novel mention the use of some "emacs macros" with no hint of what they are, or why he uses them.

It was a fun read though, and didn't make me as hungry as the previous volume did. (Mmmmmm pies food.)

I always liked him as an author, and he rocks for publishing Dzur around the time I was telling local people "Too many people seem to write novels in which nobody really eats. Forget all that action, dialog, and exposition. Lets have a bunch of folk sit down and eat an exceptionally well described meal."

(Many things that people do are never described in books. We all know why. Still on the same subject I love the scene in Terry Pratchetts Pyramids where Teppic puts his outfit on. "And slowly falls over". Nice)

ObFilm: Blade

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A plea for books ..

3 May 2022 20:00

Recently I've been getting much more interested in the "retro" computers of my youth, partly because I've been writing crazy code in Z80 assembly-language, and partly because I've been preparing to introduce our child to his first computer:

  • An actual 1982 ZX Spectrum, cassette deck and all.
    • No internet
    • No hi-rez graphics
    • Easily available BASIC
    • And as a nice bonus the keyboard is wipe-clean!

I've got a few books, books I've hoarded for 30+ years, but I'd love to collect some more. So here's my request:

  • If you have any books covering either the Z80 processor, or the ZX Spectrum, please consider dropping me an email.

I'd be happy to pay €5-10 each for any book I don't yet own, and I'd also be more than happy to cover the cost of postage to Finland.

I'd be particularly pleased to see anything from Melbourne House, and while low-level is best, the coding-books from Usbourne (The Mystery Of Silver Mountain, etc, etc) wouldn't go amiss either.

I suspect most people who have collected and kept these wouldn't want to part with them, but just in case ..