Daily archives: September 14, 2010

links for 2010-09-14

  • It’s fall again, which means a new season’s worth of TV programming packed with network television promises of “original” shows and “fresh” characters. But when I flip on my 152-inch, 1080p, 120-Ghz, 3-D flat-panel display (peering through my LCD stereoscopic glasses, natch), I see… more or less the same stuff I’ve been seeing since Law & Order immemorial. That’s fine by me. After all, it’s often said (with varying degrees of seriousness) that there are only 10 stories total in the whole history of smoke-blowing, from Beowulf to Baywatch. But within those basic formulas, there are tens of thousands of tropes—familiar narrative tics, stock character traits, dialog patterns, and the like.
  • Australian resin car models and bits.
    (tags: model)
  • The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park has received its largest donation to date.

    A grant of £100,000 has been donated to the museum by Bletchley Park Capital Partners and its associates.

  • The future of Personal Manufacturing is now! Introducing the MakerBot Automated Build Platform. It’s a heated conveyor belt for your 3D personal manufacturing system! Instead of just making one thing at a time, with the MakerBot Automated Build Platform, you’ll be able to make lots of things at a time. When the MakerBot has MakerBotted something, it just rolls of the MakerBot Automated Build Platform and begins to make the next part!
    (tags: 3DPrinting)
  • If you have access to a lot of free apples, you can easily make cider from them. Any apples will do, but they should be as ripe as possible. This instructable shows you a simple method that does not require any special equipment.
    (tags: cider)

Read draft 1.1 of Tiger

The serialisation of Tiger will wrap up soon. The story presented here for the last few weeks was the first draft. I have done some light revision already and I’m on to what I’m calling draft 1.1, not a full second draft, but starting on the way there. I have uploaded, and you can read, draft 1.1. Simply right click on the link and Save As (I’m sorry Mac users, but I can’t remember how you do that, I’m sure you do). It’s in Rich Text Format, so just about everything should be able to read it.

I’d appreciate feedback so I can make the final draft as good as possible, please use the email address given in the file. I don’t have a tight deadline for publication, but it will be early October, so if you have anything to say, please say it soon.

Build yourself an island

Rishi Sowa has built himself a floating island using plastic bottles, netting and plywood, with mangrove helping to hold it all together. Find out more at spiralislanders.com.

via BoingBoing

This interests me because I’ve recently gone back to Heavensent, the propellerpunk tale I wrote a few years ago, with a view to revising and expanding it. Early in the tale some of the characters are trapped on a floating island which has evolved in a section of a vast ocean where the eddies of the current have trapped lots of flotsam. The idea was that algae had trapped seeds which had sent out roots, further binding things together, until a floating landmass had been formed. As the tale is set at a time of lower technological advancement than today it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to imagine some of the starting material being wood and other biodegradable materials. This shall feed back into the Heavensent rewrite.