Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.

11/30/2018

Passenger Rights

Filed under: Fun,Red Herrings — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:05 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is a Third Quarter Moon

You have rights as an air traveler.

During the holidays, a lot of people travel. I avoid it as much as possible, mainly because I used to travel a lot and get pretty irritated with air travel these days. For one thing, since 9/11, security measures have gotten pretty onerous, which is too bad because most of them don’t really do anything to address actual safety. But, before I go off on a rant about my favorite subject (ie. Security theater), let me say that the worst thing about flying these days is the flying and the airline companies themselves. I know it’s a business and that we should be thrilled to get so far as quickly as we do, but they really play fast and loose with things like passenger comfort, over-booking and taking little to no responsibility when things go wrong.
Good news, though, you do, in fact have rights! Did you know that you may be entitled to compensation for delayed flights or missed connections? It’s true! You can read more about your air passenger rights, and get help if you feel like you’re due something from the airlines who lost or damaged your luggage or forcibly booted you off your flight due to over booking, at AirHelp. I have to admit, as of this writing, I haven’t used them, so I can’t speak to their actual effectiveness, and I don’t get anything from them to link to their site, but just having your actual rights laid out may be of significant enough benefit that I felt it was worth sharing.  Oh, also, their fee for helping you is 25% of whatever you’re due, but I still think it’s worth it, as otherwise travelers would just be out the whole amount.

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words!

8/24/2018

Sci-Fi Shorts

Filed under: Art,Fun,Movies — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:12 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

I can’t get enough short sci-fi movies.

Seriously.
I mean, I know I’ve posted links to short science-fiction videos before, but I really think short, lower-budget film has come into its own lately. Oddly, I think it’s the opposite of what’s happened with the publishing industry, where short-stories have become less and less profitable, and therefore less interesting to writers. But, these days, with the low cost of hardware, video capture and editing tools, as well as distribution methods, independent creators are, thankfully, more and more willing to take risks on pretty experimental films. The intersection of sci-fi and fantasy creative ideas with very inexpensive and easy-to-use special effects tools can make for really interesting and fun short films.
And, today, I have several really great ones for you from IO9.com, in a post titled 10 Excellent New Sci-Fi and Fantasy Shorts You Need to Check Out. Really, the title says everything, but, if you follow that link, you’ll get everything from interstellar lawyers to samurai zombies to technology gone a little bit wrong.
All of which are totally worth seeing, especially if you’re bored enough to be reading this blog on a Friday!
Enjoy!

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words!

4/20/2018

Hyperlight

Filed under: Art,Fun,Movies — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:30 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Crescent

A short film about a classic sci-fi problem.

It’s another Friday, and, as usual, my poor, little brain has been cooked pretty well this week. If you’re feeling the same way, we’re both in luck because I have the perfect 20 minute distraction from your week. I don’t want to spoil anything, but this very well done science-fiction short takes a fresh look at a classic paradox. The production values are high, as are the stakes. It’s thoroughly engaging and doesn’t talk down to the hard-core, old-school fans of science-fiction. If that sounds like a great way to take a break today, check out Hyperlight by Nguyen-Anh Nguyen on Vimeo via IO9.com.

And, hopefully, you’ll come back next week for something else cool for your Friday afternoon!

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words.

3/30/2018

Prospect

Filed under: Art,Fun,Movies — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:20 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

A brilliant sci-fi short film.

You all know how I love free stuff and that I love science-fiction. This is both. And, it’s a film which debuted just recently at South by Southwest in Austin. It’s about prospectors on an alien planet, though exactly what they’re prospecting for is somewhat questionable. The risks they’re taking, however, are not questionable. Like all good science-fiction, Prospect explains nothing and just jumps right in and immerses you in the world the filmmakers have created.
It’s fun, definitely worth checking out and, frankly, if you’re reading my blog on a Friday, you don’t have anything better to do anyway.

 

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words by J K Hoffman.

11/10/2017

Another Short Film Break

Filed under: Fun,NaNoWriMo — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Snake which is mid-morning or 10:00 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

Last week I shared a short sci-fi film, and I’ve got another one for you this week.

This is National Novel Writing Month and, while I’ve elected to not participate again this year, I thought it’s be nice if I gave those of you who are trying to crank out a novel a little break from writing. So, just like last week, I’m bringing you a short, science-fiction film to enjoy and, hopefully, distract you briefly from your writing grind. Worrying too much about those daily word-counts can really get you down, but a creative movie short seems like a great, if brief, change of pace.
This week, it’s a short film called PROXiMITY, an updated, sci-fi spin on an old story idea, brought to us via SlashFilm. It’s really pretty good, too, which is why I’m sharing it.
Besides, as I recall, the second week is where I really hit the wall, so to speak, writing my last attempt at a NaNoWriMo novel.
But, once you’ve had your break, get right back to it! Don’t give up!

And, come back next week for yet another distraction from your great writing experiment!

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words.

9/29/2017

Cold Fish

Filed under: By Bread Alone,Fun,Red Herrings — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Horse which is around lunchtime or 1:00 pm for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

Sushi. That’s what my ex-wife used to call me. “Cold Fish.”

That’s a quote from Blade Runner, my favorite movie, possibly of all time, and it’s about one of my favorite foods; sushi, the most science-fictional food of all when Blade Runner came out. Next week Friday, the new one, Blade Runner 2049, is coming out. But, I’m sharing this today not because of the new release, but rather because yesterday was my fourth anniversary. And, not to my ex-wife, but my new wife. And, not because my blushing bride calls me “cold fish”, but because I proposed to her in a sushi restaurant.

And, what am I sharing?
The Mental Floss Visual Guide to Eating Sushi! They specifically reference “eating sushi in Japan”, but the rules are about the same here in the States, too. Or anywhere, really. Sushi, as it turns out, is sushi. My first sushi experience was in suburban Mississippi, which seemed a very brave thing to eat, considering the location, but sushi, and Japanese culture always seemed so perfectly alien and futuristic to me. I think for a Westerner, it’s the closest we can come to experiencing an alien civilization. Also, sushi was a featured food in all the most futuristic anime I watched as a young adult that it just came to represent the ultimate in exotic experiences.
Anyway, if you have been wanting to try it but a little intimidated by the idea, this guide should help ease your fears.
And, if you’re in Houston, check out Sushi Choo Choo, which is a sushi bar that features a brilliant conveyor belt that’s a very popular feature in Japan.

And come back next week when I babble about something else that may, or may not, relate to Blade Runner!

This post originally appeared on Use Your Words!

10/30/2015

Halloween Movies For Free

Filed under: Art,Fun,Movies — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Snake which is just before lunchtime or 11:00 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

Staying in this year? Why not watch a movie?!

No, seriously, why not watch a scary movie on Halloween?
Honestly, I’m not usually into scary movies, because, well, they mostly aren’t actually scary.  But, I do dig some of the classics, like George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, which is often cited as the true genesis of the current zombie craze.  And, the other classic, black and white film Nosferatu terrified me when I was a kid, even though it was…
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