Thursday, September 24, 2020

I Don't Like the Borg Queen

I know, I'm not supposed to like the Borg Queen. She's a villain. But that's not what I mean. I don't like that there is a Borg Queen. I don't like the concept of a Borg Queen.

I was reminded of the Borg Queen (who first showed up the Star Trek: First Contact) as I was watching Picard (no spoilers). Then I recently watched the "Q-Who" episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. That's when the Borg are first introduced. And Data describes their cube-like ship as: "The ship is strangely generalized in design. There's no specific bridge, no command center, there's no engineering section." And a Borg Queen would be in a command center.

Now what they did with the Borg Queen in First Contact was pretty good, I'll agree. As she did to Data, an android, the opposite of what the Borg do to humanoids. That is, she took a robot and added human parts where as the Borg usually take humans and add robot parts. And somehow she managed to be scary and sexy at the same time.

But I still don't like the concept of a Borg Queen. A queen would be a leader. And to me, the Borg are a hive mind without specific leadership. Such as a queen.

How do you feel about the Borg Queen. Or am I just taking Star Trek too seriously? Let me know in the comments below.

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Radio Interview

Today at 4:00 PM EDT (1:00 PM PDT) I will be on "Anything Goes" with Bennet Pomerantz. We'll be talking books and writing and other fun things. It's going to be a blast. Tune in and see! Follow this link. The interview will be available at that link after the live show, so if you miss it live, you can still listen.

The Smugglers of Mars

Now Available: Chumba of the Intelligence Corps Book 1: The Smugglers of Mars.

Treachery stalks the red planet...

Before he was Rick Bailey, before he hunted for the Treasure of the Black Hole, he was Titus Chumba of the Core Empire Intelligence Corps.

Sent to Mars to investigate water smuggling, First Lieutenant Chumba finds a criminal conspiracy that spans from the red planet to the asteroid belt. Will Chumba discover the deadly secrets of the smugglers of Mars, learn the identity of the mysterious woman embroiled in the conspiracy, and prevent a cold war with the reptile-like Malvalkians from turning blazing hot?

Available in Kindle, KU, and Paperback.

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Damn My Luck

If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all.

Here is the saga of me and technology:

My computer wanted to reboot. So I did. It wouldn't boot up then. I forgot it was still under warranty, so I contacted a local guy to fix it. It took him two weeks. He had to reinstall Windows 10. So then I had to reinstall:

  • Office 2010
  • iTunes
  • The PDF reader that came with the computer
  • Norton Anti-virus
  • Norton Utilities
  • Malwarebytes
And set up Outlook 2010 to work with my Exchange service.

Then I had to upload my user files from backup. And set up a bunch of stuff and configure the computer how I like it. For details, see here.

And since the Dell Windows 10 image was out of date, I had to do major updates to my computer, one that took two days because it failed. It got stuck at 90%. Under advice of my son and google, I turned off the computer, waited 30 seconds, and turned it back on. But I had to do that update again the next day. That cost me two days of productivity.

Then my iPhone died. I was using it and it just went to the Apple logo. It looked like it was trying to boot but it wouldn't. I had an iPhone Xs and was planning to update when the new iPhone came out in September (it's now coming out in October). So I bought a used iPhone 7 to get me through. I remember loving my iPhone 7 when I had one. But stepping down, I hate it. Plus, I usually get white iPhones but this one is black and I keep picking it up and expecting the back to be the front since they are both black. Annoying.

Then I broke my glasses. The optical shop fixed them.

Then my computer died again. This time I remembered it was under warranty (three day on-site service). So I called Dell. They (eventually) sent someone to fix it. In the meantime, I broke my glasses again. And I couldn't get them fixed because I had to be home from 8am to 6pm to wait for the Dell subcontractor service tech. And he didn't even bother to show up that first day. That's a whole 'nother story.

Eventually I got a new hard drive and Windows 10 installed. Again, I needed to run numerous updates and reinstall everything. Now I'm sort of holding my breath that nothing else blows up. My car is still under warranty for about 3,500 miles. So if it does blow up, it'll wait until that's expired.

Have you had bad luck like this? Or do you think the gods are against me. Let me know in the comments below.

Sunday, September 6, 2020

No College Football in the Pac-12

Normally at this time, I'd be writing about last night's University of Washington Huskies game. They probably would have won considering they were scheduled to play Sacramento State.

But, first the Pac-12 decided no out-of-conference games. Then they redid the entire schedule (I have no idea why). Then finally they said, "Maybe in the spring we can play football." Yeah, maybe.

This year the Huskies have a new coach in Jimmy Lake, the former Defensive Coordinator. He took over when Chris Petersen surprised everyone by stepping down last fall. Lake was a good DC, but I have no idea what he'd be like at a head coach. But I wanted to learn.

But I guess I'll have to wait, perhaps until spring. Perhaps until next fall. I don't know. I just know that I am going to miss college football... a lot.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Flat Earth Questions

For some reason I've been getting a lot of anti-flat earth videos on YouTube lately, ones where the video debunks other videos about flat earth. So I've been thinking about the whole "flat earth" movement (which apparently there is a movement) and questions I'd like to ask. These are all based on things even a flat-earther should admit exist. They say look at the world through your own eyes and other senses. That works for all of these. Except maybe #8.

1) If the earth is flat, what causes day and night?
2) If the earth is flat, what causes the seasons?
3) If the earth is flat, what causes the moon to have phases?
4) If the earth is flat, why can't I see some stars in winter, and others in summer (e.g., Orion).
5) If the earth is flat, what is gravity?
6) If the earth is flat, why can I see with binoculars or a small telescope, moons orbiting Jupiter?
7) If the earth is flat, what causes tides?
8) If the earth is flat, why hasn't anyone found the edge?
9) What causes sunsets and sunrises to be colored.
10) Why is the sky blue?
11) If the moon is "it's own light," why can I (and you) with binoculars or a small telescope see craters and mountains (this works best when the moon isn't full)?

So, if you know a flat-earther, you could pass these questions along for me. Or if you are a flat-earther, please tell me  your answers in the comments below.

Anyone, anyone?