すみません、この伝言は日本語有りません English だけ有ります。
Yesterday I was feeling lazy, having not done much beside doing my shopping, laundry and swimming a little bit – the complex I’m in has a small swimming pool. So I decided to go to the movies, second time in a week, this has not happened to me for years. I went to see Iron Man.
The only Iron man comic book I have read was the one written by Adam Warren, which was interesting. The plot felt a little to artificial, with reversals every x pages. Reading that book, I was mostly wondering why they went to the trouble of having somebody redrawing everything in a more normal comic book style, as this felt like an Adam Warren thing anyway. As expected, this was hardly canonical stuff. In short, I did not really know what to expect of the whole Iron Man franchise, what I expected was just a summer movie with larger plot holes and even larger explosions and special effects. In the end I liked Iron Man more than the fourth Indiana Jones, probably because in the second case, I did not have any expectations.
The movie itself is centered around Johnny Stark, a billionaire playboy selling high-tech weapons. He gets captured by some bad guys, who force him to build a weapon. Instead he builds a iron suit to escape. In the process he realizes that his creations are also used by the bad guys, and tries to do something about it, mayhem ensues (with of course, impressive special effects). The fact I liked in the movie is that main character is self centered and megalomaniac, this means he spends little time in the movie brooding and instead builds stuff, and although he realizes some things during the movie, he basically stays the same. So in the end, this was a good “pop-corn movie”.
When leaving for a trip, I always forget stuff. As this seems unavoidable, I just concentrate on not forgetting the critical stuff and make do for the rest. The thing I forgot when I left for the United States was a book given to me by a friend. A Iain Banks book. Upon receiving it, I thought “That will be a nice read during the trip” and forgot to take it with me. This was kind of frustrating beside the fact that I had forgotten something, people kept on saying good things about Iain Banks, so I wanted to read one of his books. Luckily there is a nice used books store in Mountain View, so bought “Excession” for cheap and read it.
Excession is set in The Culture, a galatic environnement where technology is sufficiently advanced to have solved most material problems. The Culture is host to both human beings, extra-terrestrial creatures, but also drones and AI, in particular ships. The story thus resolve around humans and ship interacting with entities outside of “The Culture”. Excession in particular describes the conspiracies surrounding the appearance of an Outside Context Problem, an object which shows mysterious capacities beyond the technological capacities of the Culture.
Excession’s narrative is quite classical for science fiction, with many parallel stories running in parallel, each describing one protagonist, either a human or a AI ship. Par of the narrative is the exchange of messages between the sentient vessels. I found the story interesting and the writing quite good, although I must admit that I found the electronic format tiring (the fixed width font used in the book is horrible). In conclusion quite a good book, certainly not as ground-breaking as Adam Robert’s Stone, but a good classic.