Monstrous Regiment

Do you think it’s possible for an entire nation to be insane?



We become Grimnoir in order to become heroes, to sacrifice our lives in the pursuit of a higher cause, to defend the defenseless … I’ve found that means attending a lot of funerals.

Hard Magic was a magical detective / spy story. It was a lot of fun, but there were only a few hints of the bigger story behind the story.

Deep Dreams with Fish and Docker

DeepDream is a research project originally from Google that gives you a look into how neural networks see the world. They’re fascinating, bizarre, and a lot of fun to play with. A bit of work getting them to work on your own machine though.

Luckily, GitHub user saturnism has put together a lovely Docker-based tool that will do just that for us: deepdream-cli-docker. Unfortunately, the commands are still a bit long. Let’s clean it up a bit and add the ability to dream about non-JPGs (animated GIFs especially!).

The Blinding Knife

The Blinding Knife is what a sequel should be. It takes the action and magic that made The Black Prism good and made it better while toning down a lot of the exposition and over-characterization that made it a bit of a drag at times.

On the plus side, the magic system has a lot more depth than it did in the first book while at the same time not spending quite as much time hitting us over the head with terms we don’t quite understand yet. Even if I don’t necessarily like some of the choices (like why you can’t draft green from white light by default), it’s still a well done system. Otherwise, the worldbuilding has gotten bigger. Magical trading cards. Seers. Old Gods.


Spellbound takes the straightforward noir/spy/magic Hard Magic and makes it bigger.

This is America. The government doesn’t own the people. The people own the government.

Eagle Creek

Wonderful day for an outing. Almost like Spring… Soon. Flickr Galleries require JavaScript to view View on Flickr

Generating zone files from Route53

Recently I found myself wanting to do some analysis on all of our DNS entires stored in AWS’s Route53 for security reasons (specifically to prevent subdomain takeover attacks, I’ll probably write that up soon). In doing so, I realized that while Route53 has the ability to import a zone file, it’s not possible to export one.

To some extent, this makes sense. Since Route53 supports ALIAS records (which can automatically determine their values based on other AWS products, such as an ELB changing its public IP) and those aren’t actually ‘real’ DNS entries, things will get confused. But I don’t currently intend to re-import these zone files, just use them. So let’s see what we can do.

Hard Magic

One general law, leading to the advancement of all organic beings, namely, multiply, vary, let the strongest live and the weakest die. The appearance of esoteric and etheral abiliites, magical fires and feats of strength, in recent decades are the purest demonstration of natural selection. Surely, in time, that general law will require the extinction of traditional man.

—Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Man and Selection of Human Magical Abilities, 1879

The Truth

There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who, when presented with a glass that is exactly half full, say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty.

The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What’s up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don’t think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass! Who’s been pinching my beer?

And at the other end of the bar the world is full of the other type of person, who has a broken glass, or a glass that has been carelessly knocked over (usually by one of the people calling for a larger glass) or who had no glass at all, because he was at the back of the crowd and had failed to catch the barman’s eye.

Moving Pictures

Discworld goes Hollywood. Or perhaps Hollywood comes to Discworld?

Basically, Hollywood is a manifestation of a ‘Great Old Ones’ esque cult where the final cultist keeping the Holy Wood from arising once again dies. One thing leads to another, trolls get dressed up as elephants, and a movie hero has to save the day.