Lacking Natural Simplicity

Random musings on books, code, and tabletop games.

Recent Reading

  • Dies the Fire, by S.M. Stirling, copyright 2004; Roc/New American Library/Penguin Group (USA) Inc, September 2005. My copy is the 7th printing. This is an enjoyable post-apocalyptic novel, dealing with the efforts of various characters to survive and rebuild after a mysterious failure of post Industrial Revolution technology.

Recent Reading

  • Grimbold's Other World, by Nicholas Stuart Gray, copyright 1963; Ace Fantasy/The Berkley Publishing Group; May, 1986. I've been reading this to my daughter at bed-time on-and-off for a while now, probably enjoying it more than she has; it's one of my favorite children's fantasy books. I'm pretty sure I borrowed a version from the library when I was younger.

Recent Reading

  • The Devil Inside, by Jenna Black, copyright 2007; Dell Spectra/Bantam Dell/Random House, Inc., December 2007. Another “Paranormal Romance”, this one about Morgan Kingsley, a professional exorcist who ends up possessed.

  • Lost and Found, by Alan Dean Foster; Del Rey, May 31, 2005. Oddly enough, this is not the book I thought it was. (So, what other book about a human abducted to be a pet have I read?)

Recent Reading

  • To Hell and Back, by Lilith Saintcrow, copyright 2008; Orbit/Hachette Book Group USA, January, 2008. The final Dante Valentine book.

  • Kitty and the Silver Bullet, by Carrie Vaughn, copyright 2008; Grand Central Publishing/Hachette Book Group USA, January, 2008.

Recent Reading

  • Saint City Sinners, by Lilith Saintcrow, copyright 2007; Orbit/Hachette Book Group USA, November 2007.

  • Snake Agent, A Detective Inspector Chen Novel, by Liz Williams, copyright 2005; Nightshade Books, copyright 2008. As far as I can tell, this is the first Inspector Chen novel.

Recent Reading

  • Finding Serenity, edited by Jane Espenson; BenBella Books, 2005.

    • “The Reward, the Details, the Devils, the Due”, copyright 2004 by Larry Dixon.

    • “The Heirs of Sawney Beane”, copyright 2004 by Lawrence Watt-Evans.

    • “Asian Objects in Space”, copyright 2004 by Leah Wilson.

    • “The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of Firefly”, copyright 2004 by Glenn Yeffeth.

    • “Who Killed Firefly?”, copyright 2004 by Ginjer Buchanan.

    • The Train Job Didn't Do the Job”, copyright 2004 by Albé-Shiloh, Inc.

    • “Serenity and Bobby McGee”, copyright 2004 by Mercedes Lackey.

    • “Firefly vs. The Tick”, copyright 2004 by Don DeBrandt.

    • “We're All Just Floating in Space”, copyright 2004 by Lyle Zynda.

    • “More Than a Marriage of Convenience”, copyright 2004 by Michelle Sagara West.

    • “Zoe: Updating the Woman Warrior”, copyrigth 2004 by Tanya Huff.

    • “Whores and Goddesses”, copyright 2004 by Joy Davidson.

    • “The Captain May Wear the Tight Pants”, copyright 2004 by Robert B. Taylor.

    • “I Want Your Sex”, copyright 2004 by Nancy Holder.

    • “Just Shove Him in the Engine”, copyright 2004 by John C. Wright.

    • “Mirror/Mirror”, copyright 2004 by Roxanne Longstreet Conrad.

    • “Star Truck”, copyright 2004 by David Gerrold.

    • “Chinese Words in the Fireflyverse”, copyright 2004 by Kevin M. Sullivan.

    • “Listening to Firefly”, copyright 2004 by Jennifer Goltz

    • “Kaylee Speaks”, copyright 2004 by Jewel Staite.

    • “Unofficial Glossary of Firefly Chinese”, copyright 2004 by Kevin M. Sullivan.

    • Additional materials copyright 2004 by Jane Espenson.

  • Cloud Castles, by Michael Scott Rohan, copyright 1993; AvoNova/Avon Books/The Hearst Corporation, August 1995. The 3rd in Rohan's Core and Spiral series, featuring Stephen Fisher. More of Fisher's destiny is revealed.

Building my website with cook

I'm trying to switch to cook to build this website. I have been using GNU make, but unfortunately there are some files that need rebuilt (normally) only when new source files are added, not when they're modified, and I haven't been able to figure out how to do that in GNU make, and this unfortunately causes everything to be rebuilt. Cook, on the other hand, can use file fingerprints to check if the contents of the file have actually changed, so I ought to be able to do what I want in cook. I not quite sure I've completely succeeded yet, however.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Eventually I abandoned Docbook for building my site enirely, switching over to Sphinx It builds faster, doesn't need arcane make/cook hackery, and has a modern but still simpler appearance.

Recent Reading

  • Halfway to the Grave, A Night Huntress Novel by Jeaniene Frost, copyright 2007; Avon Books/HarperCollinsPublishers, November 2007. This book announces on the spine that it is a catagory “Paranormal Romance”. It's probably a little more to the romance side of things than I prefer, but still enjoyable.

  • Usage Yojimbo, Book 1: The Ronin, by Stan Sakai, copyright 1987, 2007; Fantagraphics Books, eighth edition, March 2007. I'd long heard that Stan Sakai's Usagi Yojimbo series, featuring the eponymous rabbit bodyguard in an alternate Nippon of anthropomorphic animals, was a classic in the field. Having read the first collection of those stories I have to agree. I'll definitely be reading the rest.

Recent Reading

  • The Gates of Noon, by Michael Scott Rohan, copyright 1992; AvoNova/Avon Books/The Hearst Corporation, May 1994. This is the second book in Rohan's Spiral series about Stephen Fisher. Interesting mixture of modern day, exotic east, seafaring, and fantastical creatures, places, and magic.

Recent Reading

  • Chase the Morning, by Michael Scott Rohan, copyright 1990; AvoNova/Avon Books/The Hearst Corporation, May 1992. This is the first of Rohan's Spiral books about Steve Fisher, a modern export executive who finds out that there is more to the world than he has hitherto encountered in his empty life.

  • The Diary of a Napoleonic Foot Soldier, by Jakob Walter; edited and with an introduction by Marc Raeff; copyright Doubleday, 1991; Penguin Books/Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 1993. (If I've understood the copyright page correctly, it's the 21st printing.) Fascinating account of three Napoleonic-era campaigns by a conscripted foot soldier of a Germanic vassal-state, including the Moscow campaign.