Wednesday, November 10, 2004
Even more, the characters are so well made, that I fell in love with everyone of the protagonist, the good guys and the bad guys alike -If you could qualify any of these characters as such- I could even understand the aliens’ point of view!
The story builds up slowly, but steadily- I could hardly put the book down in the last couple of hundreds pages- but all the strands of the tale are most interesting and entertaining, furthermore they give an abundance of background info on the societies, culture and humans of that universe.
Once more, Mr. Hamilton has constructed a magnificent space opera, with many believable scientific contraption, entrancing characters and thrilling plot lines. I can’t wait for the next installment.
Pandora's Star is a Science Fiction novel by PETER F. HAMILTON
Thursday, November 04, 2004
PSPA 201 Introduction to Political Science: It is a general introduction course that covers concepts such as power, authority, state, and so on. This course is quite interesting, and if it wasn’t at 9:00 in the morning it would have been more enjoyable. However the professor (Karim Makdisi) is interesting and all in all I feel I am learning a lot from him.
PSPA 203 Research Methodology: This course focus on research methods and theories. It a bit boring and the professor does no effort to lighten it up. However it is not a total waste, the strict methodology of research we are learning cannot but be helpful in any future project.
PSPA 210 Survey of Political Philosophy: This course is my favorite. It covers the great political thinkers from Plato to Marx. We discuss each thinker political theories, and compare him to the other. The professor (Shafik Masri) is really good and interesting, without being boring .
All in all my course are quiet informative and enjoyable, and most importantly I am learning a lot.
Link to AUB web site: WWW.AUB.EDU.LB
Sunday, October 17, 2004
However nothing new happened. I am searching for a new car to buy, so I would appreciate any advice on that. I am looking for a 15000$ new car.
I just enrolled in with Aramex for what they call a Shop & Ship program. In short I pay a one time fee for a Po Box in the States and the UK. And they handle the shipping from there to here. Compared to Amazon fees it is a lot cheaper, specially on paperback books.
Thursday, September 23, 2004
It is quiet a nice drive; the highway runs parallel to the sea shore. It is a very nice highway, from one side you have the azure blue Mediterranean Sea and on the other side the once-green hills of Lebanon. Nowadays these verdant hills have become a concrete jungle.
Before getting on the highway, I have to stop at a Lebanese army road block. It is really just a hindrance , compared to 10 years ago when any traveler to Beirut had to stop at 10 or more roadblocks, manned by 3 or 4 foreign armies ( from Syrian, to Palestinian )
The highway looks quite modern, but for the stalls of fruit and vegetable vendors that litter the emergency lane (on average there is around 10 or more throughout that stretch of the highway) They are quite harmless -usually illegal Syrian workers- unless you had an emergency and need to pull over, or when the vendors try to cross the highway to say hello to their friends and relatives on the other side.
Add to that, the different bumps and missing parts of the security rails that divide the two opposed lanes of the highway; even though the highway was built by international contractors with modern standards, no one cares to maintain it. So day after day, with each accident (we Lebanese are quiet famous for our crazy driving) the gap widen, till the point where the security rails is completely missing for over a mile
Well believe it or not but this daily ordeal is far from over, I still have to tell you about the dogs, the cyclist, the hookers, and the infamous Service drivers but all that will need to wait till my next post.
Monday, September 20, 2004
I would appreciate it if anyone has any advice or insight on that major. I am fairly excited about going back to the university.
It has been a while since I wrote anything; even my critiquing is drying up. I should start transforming my script into a short story.
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
Very easy and simple to use, i do not know how anyone who has an iPOD can live without it. Because believe me entangling the earphones while driving is not a fun matter!
Its range is quiet good, but i fear it consumes a lot of power, however i am still not sure i will need to experiment more with it.
Now all what i need is to change my car's speakers. It is a good thing that i was planning to change my car soon.
On another subject i am still reading Hamilton Pandora's Star, and it is getting really good.
I am planning to start writing articles in my blog, we will see...
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
It is pretty weird, specially when you are fully aware that this is a dream, and then you can - to a certain degree- control or affect what is happening.
However at times my control fails or something stops it , and I feel trapped in my dreams, not knowing if it is a dream or reality.
anybody else has those kind of dreams ?
Friday, September 10, 2004
1984 (George Orwell): 9
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card) : 9
The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant (Stephen Donaldson): 8
The Seconde Chronicles of Thomas Covenant (Stephen Donaldson): 7
The wheel of time-the whole series-(Robert Jordan): 7
The song of ice and fire-the whole series-(George Martin): 9
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
The rating will be on a scale on ten with 1 being an unreadable book, and 10 being a perfect book, which is pretty rare if not impossible.
I will begin with rating several books.
Maybe later I will put all of the books in alphabetical order in a table…
Dune (Frank Herbert): 9
Lord of the rings ( Tolkien): 9
Legend (David Gemmell): 9
White Wolf (David Gemmell): 8
The Swords of night and day (David Gemmell): 7
Naked Empire (Terry Goodkind ): 3
Friday, September 03, 2004
U3T version 0.11
(added chart and some corrections)
the Unified Theory of Time Travel
First time travel as is, can be divided into two main branches: possible or impossible.
Defining the two terms, Time travel is possible: means that by any means or methods a sentient entity can travel back in time (whether the entity travels corporally or incorporeally or if it can interact or just witness the past, will be left for discussion in the next levels of the theory) this branch of the theory will be referred to as ( I ) :(number one in roman symbols)
The second term, time travel is impossible: means that no sentient entity can travel back in time, no matter what means or methods it uses. This branch of the theory will be referred to as ( II ) :number two in roman symbols)
The second level:
Moreover traveling back in time refers to the act of traveling to a time that precedes the present, whether it is by a second or a million years. Next I will deal with the next level of the theory in the ( I ) branch.
The fact that it is possible to perform time travel via robots or cameras, as opposed to time travel in person causes the theory to diverge in two possible branches: The first referred to as ( I-A ): states that time travelers can go back in time in person or corporally. The second referred to as ( I-B): states that time travelers cannot go back in time in person or corporally. Rather they go incorporeally ( in spirit/mind or via robot or cameras, the different ways of incorporate time travel will be explored in the next level of the theory)
NB: Of course this theory is still under study so it can (and it will most probably) undertake many modifications and changes. Therefore each time a change or edit some already published parts. I will amend it with a version number.
Now let’s forget this sticking affaire and concentrate on tomorrow beach party! I am very excited and I am sure we will have a lot of fun. I just need a great idea about how to disguise myself like a star. Because it is theme party, where everyone should look and act like some obnoxious super star. So if anyone has any bright ideas, please don’t hesitate to share them.
Thursday, September 02, 2004
Pandora's Star is the beginning of a trilogy, in a space opera setting. It comes with all the perks of a setting like that, wormholes, spaceships, loads of planets and of course some invisible meanacing aliens. All woven with Hamilton great style.
I started it a few days ago, and believe me it can be hard some night to out the book down. Even though I usual go to the gym after work, then I come back home exhausted, wanting nothing more than to go to sleep.
I am around page 100 or so and the pace it already picking up. I will try to regularly post my impressions on this book.
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
Saturday, August 28, 2004
What saddens me, however, is not the fact that the Syrian are the only ones calling the shots in Lebanon, but the fact that not one politicians that wield powers effective botching their planes, dared stand against them. All cowered down and nodded their acceptance, relinquishing their ideals, the trust put in them, and their country.…
However I shouldn't feel betrayed, for it is the Syrian who appointed these so called Lebanese government officials (ministers, MP and the rest) and it is quit natural for them to follow their masters blindly. Yet for several of them I still harbored some sliver of hope, that they will revolt and shed their cloaks of servitude and grasped freedom, no matter what the cost will be to them or their personnel interests. But I was wrong, and no matter what they say or will say, I will never again vote for them or support them!…
Wednesday, August 25, 2004
But Gemmell writing is so entrancing and his imagination is so vivid that one forgets about these and enjoys the ride. Just like a roller coaster ride, which one have already rode several times. Yet each time the thrill is present. Or as I compared it earlier, it is just like a home made cookie. And no matter how many times you eat it, it is still yummy!
Now that I have finished all David Gemmell’s novel I had, there no more cookies.
Monday, August 23, 2004
“How on earth do we get by, living as we do, amid the exhausted projects of modernity?
However, you can’t really satirize life, because there is no norm by which it can be judged, no perspective from which it can be seen. It’s all we have, it’s where we live. You can’t make it better by laughing at it; you can only make it more bearable. These shows aren’t satire; they are, in the highest sense of the word, consolations. They trash life as it has become the one true corrupter.”
Wow ... this quote so capture how I feel...
Saturday, August 21, 2004
I don’t know how other person finds it, but for me it exasperating to sit down, and keystroke by bloody keystroke write a work of fiction.
For in my mind it is crystal clear, it is perfect. Yet once it comes out it slowly degrade, until it is unrecognizable from the ideal I had in mind. In a way it is a perfect example of Plato’s perfect ideas theory. Everything in our material world is but pale reflection of an invisible perfection.
However once I have written what I planned to. Once I applied all my effort and skill, the result is so fulfilling. Although it may be bad or inadequate compared to other literary work or standards, yet for me it is a culmination of an agonizing effort, and that in itself the achievement. The feeling that I finished something, that I built an edifice, no matter how it looks, the feeling of achievement is magnificent. It is in the end what drives me thru the hard process of writing.
Friday, August 20, 2004
My work on U3T has lagged behind, but I should at least write at least two more posts on it from now till next week. Maybe finishing my analysis of the corporal time travel branch of the theory.
Meanwhile don't hesitate to throw in your comment and ideas
Tuesday, August 17, 2004
First time travel as is, can be divvied into two main branches: possible or impossible.
Defining the two terms, Time travel is possible: means that by any means or methods a sentient entity can travel back in time (whether the entity travels corporally or incorporeally or if it can interact or just witness the past, will be left for discussion in the next levels of the theory) this branch of the theory will be referred to as ( I ) : ( number one in roman symbols)
The second term, time travel is impossible: means that no sentient entity can travel back in time, no matter what means or methods it uses. This branch of the theory will be referred to as ( II ) : ( number two in roman symbols)
The second level:
Moreover traveling back in time refers to the act of traveling to a time that precedes the present, whether it is by a second or a million years.
Next I will deal with the next level of the theory in the ( I ) branch.
The fact that it is possible to perform time travel via robots or cameras, as opposed to time travel in person causes the theory to diverge in two possible branches:
The first referred to as ( I-A ): states that time travelers can go back in time in person or corporally
The second referred to as ( I-B): states that time travelers cannot go back in time in person or corporally. Rather they go incorporeally ( in spirit/mind or via robot or cameras, the different ways of incorporate time travel will be explored in the next level of the theory)
NB: Of course this theory is still under study so it can (and it will most probably) undertake many modifications and changes. Therefore each time a change or edit some already published parts I will amend it with a version number.
U3T Version: 0.10
Next post about U3T I will try to include schematics to better illustrate the different levels of the theory.
Monday, August 16, 2004
I should start thinking about what is the manuscript I am going to send to the online writing workshop.
As usually I have done nothing I planed on the weekend, or almost. My library is still in dire need of organization. For I have spent all my spare time on a very interesting and enthralling PC game, called Star Wars: Knights of the old republic. Anyone out there who like or want to discover PC RPG this is the game! (I realize it is an old game but I only managed to get a few weeks ago)
Friday, August 13, 2004
Monday Rim (my girlfriend, who also has a blog: http://roumi.blogspot.com/) and I should start going to the Gym. The gym, called Lifestyles is really great, it has almost everything.
I guess that is it for today but hopefully next week I will try to tackle two subjects in more details: the first is what I talked about in my previous post on Democracy and if there is any better form of government, the second is the beginning of a small project I had in mind for along time. It is a kind of a paper about the different theories on time travel (some I read about in SCI-FI books and others I thought about). Hopefully i would be able in the end to combine the different posts on Time travel to form a single article.
Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Meanwhile I am searching for a good, because I am gaining kilos like crazy, especially sitting all day in the office…
Yesterday I was supposed to write a new post in the afternoon, however I got busy.
I was thinking of starting a discussion about democracy, its failings, and whether there is another form of government that is better. For in my opinion the perfect form of government is the one where each vote is crucial yet equal to all others. A little paradox all in itself.
More on this subject to come.
Tuesday, August 10, 2004
Monday, August 09, 2004
Meanwhile I am waiting for my book order from Amazon to arrive. I have ordered several books, including Peter Hamilton’s latest: Pandora’s Box and David Gemmell latest the swords of night and day. And if someone could help me decide which one to read first that would be great. I will tell you what the rest of my book order is when it get here (hopefully tomorrow)