Some Tech for the Girls

Or, being an equal opportunities blog, maybe for some of the boys too.

I just noticed Caroline putting on some nail varnish, which she acquired via Amazon. One coat goes on thinly and is allowed to dry, then next coat goes on thick and you hold the magnet over it.

I was reminded of a scene in Total Recall when a receptionist, in the office of the company selling those holiday experiences, was touching some kind of stylus to her nails and instantly changing their colour. I wonder how long it will be before that is a reality? See, advancing technology (well, innovation) is not all about I-phones, E-readers and and how big your RAM happens to be.

Line War Cover

And here’s the new Jon Sullivan cover for Line War:

The Polity is under attack from melded AI entity controlling the lethal Jain technology, but the attack seems to have no coherence. When one of Erebus’s wormships kills millions on the world of Klurhammon, a high-tech agricultural world of no real tactical significance, Cormac is sent to investigate, though he is struggling to control an ability no human being should possess, and beginning to question the motives of his AI masters.

Further attacks and seemingly indiscriminate slaughter ensue, but only serve to bring some of the most dangerous individuals in the Polity into the war. Mr Crane, the indefatigable brass killing machine sets out for vengeance. Orlandine, a vastly-augmented haiman who herself controls Jain technology, seeks a weapon of appalling power and finds allies from an ancient war.

Meanwhile Mika, scientist and Dragon expert, is again kidnapped by that alien entity and dragged to the heart of things; to wake the makers of Jain technology from their five million year slumber.

But Erebus’s attacks are not indiscriminate, and could spell the end of the Polity…

Line War on Amazon, Kindle and the Book Depository (free international shipping).

Hilldiggers Cover

Here’s the new cover produced by Jon Sullivan for Hilldiggers:

A terrible war once raged between the two rival planets within a distant solar system. Over the centuries their human inhabitants had ‘adapted’ themselves to the extremely different conditions of their new homes, far outside Polity influence.

In the midst of this merciless conflict, one side encountered a bizarre object suspected of being a cosmic superstring employed as a new weapon by the rival side. Their attack on it caused the object to collapse into four parts, each found to be packed either with alien technology or some unknown form of life. Pending further study, these were quickly encased inside four separate Ozark cylinders, and stored in a massively secure space station in orbit.

Sometime later, while conducting research on this alien entity they now call ‘the Worm’, a female scientist falls pregnant and subsequently gives birth to quads. She then inexplicably commits suicide by walking directly out into space…

The war was finally brought to an end by use of new weapons arising as a result of research of the Worm. These were employed by giant space dreadnoughts nicknamed ‘hilldiggers’ –– and their destructive power created new mountain ranges out of the vanquished planet’s terrain. Twenty years after the dust has settled, those four exceptionally talented orphans have grown up to assume varying degrees of power and influence within a post-war society.

And one of this exceptional breed now seems determined to gain total control over the deadly hilldiggers. 

Hilldiggers on Amazon, Kindle and at the Book Depository (international free shipping).

The Departure Cover.

Here is the cover of The Departure along with a couple of blurbs:

Like Wellsian war machines the shepherds stride into riots to grab up the ringleaders and drag them off to Inspectorate HQ for adjustment, unless they are in shredding mode, in which case their captives visit community digesters, or rather whatever of them has not been washed down the street drains.

Pain inducers are used for adjustment, and soon the Committee will have the power to edit human minds, but not yet, twelve billion human beings need to die before Earth can be stabilized, but by turning large portions of Earth into concentration camps this is achievable, especially when the Argus satellite laser network comes fully online…

Alan Saul has taken a different route to disposal, waking as he does inside a crate on the conveyor into the Calais incinerator. How he got there he does not know, but he does remember the pain and the face of his interrogator. Janus speaks to Saul through the hardware implanted in his skull, sketching the nightmare world for him. And Saul decides to bring it all crashing down…

There are no more wars, just police actions, though sometimes the truncheon used weighs in at about a kilotonne and the undertakers have to wear hazmat suits. Nobody goes hungry, so there certainly aren’t any food riots – just ‘dissident actions’ which end abruptly when the Inspectorate reduces the crowd to a writhing screaming mess using pain inducers.

And didn’t Chairman Alessandro Messina himself say that we are more free than ever before; community political officers conducted a survey only last year to prove this point. The Press has greater freedom too, now being government run and unburdened by financial concerns. People don’t disappear, see, they always come back from Inspectorate cells, ready to sing the praises of the Committee.

But Alan Saul knows that twelve billion are due to die, that the Committee has decided the Safe Departure clinics, the ‘sectoring’ of zero asset communities, the reader guns, razor birds and nightmarish shepherds will not be enough. The Argus satellite laser network is their answer, and he intends to take it away from them.

Who Reads My Books: Andy Plumbly

Andy Plumbly / Fader 209

Hey, my name is Andy and I’m a geek. I’m 26 and living in Norwich where I have been since forever. Reading sci-fi books, watching sci-fi movies and playing games takes up most of my free time when I’m not doing arty bits and pieces or writing.

Which leads me to when I first contacted Neal years back with a picture I did of some Frogwhelks after being inspired greatly by The Skinner. The lines were wobbly and it was a cartoon design but Neal kindly put it up on his blog and Myspace page which made me super happy.

Art and design was more of a hobby back then but over the years (after gradually gaining more skills & confidence) I realised I wanted to go into art and design as a job.

So here I am, trying to start up as an artist/graphic designer! It’s tough finding work (as it is in general for all unemployed at the moment) but I’m building up a portfolio in this spare time and doing work for free if friends need something done.

As mentioned at the beginning of this I would consider myself to be a geek. Been gaming since I was 3 when I first played Pac-Man on the Atari 2600. Chewing on the controller was also fun.

I have recently bought Pac-Man Championship Edition DX on the 360.…so yeah, full circle.

Chewing on the controller still sometimes happens.

Pics of my face, bookshelf and arty stuff included for your visual digestion!