Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Star Trek Discovery - Is it Canon?

I love Star Trek. Following it since its first franchise later known as The Original Series (TOS) with Kirk, Spock and Co. in the 60s. Although I have been too young to really understand the idea behind Gene Roddenberry mind.

After that and a few Star Trek movies The Next Generation (TNG), the second franchise, started to air 1987. First I didn't liked it. Picard wasn't Kirk and I expected the old crew when there is something called Star Trek on the screen. It took a few episodes to also like TNG.

1993 the next franchise (Deep Space Nine) DS9 came along, with the first African American captain. I like the first few episodes but soon it became so dull I stopped watching it. Suppose the producers also noticed that and when the 3rd season kicked off they introduced the Dominion and put a lot of action in, which hooked me again.

In 1995 Voyager (VOY) was aired with the first female captain. I fell in love - with the series - right from the beginning. Probably still my favorite part of the franchise.

After the Enterprise (ENT) franchise came out, which played even before Kirk & Co. Loved it from the beginning although I couldn't really agree to make huge story arcs like the one with the Xindi.

It took more than a decade until in 2017 Star Trek Discovery (DIS) launched. Set between what happened between ENT and TOS it seems to play in an alternate reality and is not really Canon. The Federation is in war with the Klingons. They themselves have huge heads, looking much different than any Klingon dipicted in any other franchise. And hold long and boring monologues, trying to bore the others to death I suppose. There is lots of fighting, blood and gore effects all over the place. It was also the first time in the franchise as far as I recall the f-word was said. And the another first showing female breasts, albeit from a Klingon being all over a human.

In my opinion both (f-word and showing breasts) were not necessary for the plot. Call me prudent here, but I do not approve this in Star Trek. Same reason I wouldn't like it in Doctor Who. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind nudity. But please not in long running series starting before the 70s.

But may be Discovery isn't meant to be Canon. Like the Star Trek movies J. J. Abrams, which I think killed the spirit of Star Trek already. Then DIS might be forgiven. But it's not Star Trek for me...

Monday, January 29, 2018

What to buy - iPhone or Android?

What should you buy, an iPhone or iPad, or an Android phone?

In my opinion that is about the same question whether to buy a Cadillac or a Chevrolet, like a Cruze for example. Both will get you to the grocery store, bring your kids to school and can be used to go on holiday. But a Chevrolet of course is cheaper than a Cadillac. As is it usually the case with an Android being cheaper than an iPhone. What's the point then to buy an iPhone then?

Although both might have the same functions like surfing the web, send text and chat, use Facebook, Twitter and other Social Media platforms, play games or hundred other things, an iPhone is made by Apple, and only by Apple - to be precise, the iOS operating system running on them. While Android is more like an umbrella term describing an operating system running on these phones which can be manufactured and hundreds of manufacturers around the world, with the Samsung brand being the most successful at the time of this writing (2018). This competition of many manufacturers might also explain they they are generally cheaper than their Apple counterparts.

So what to purchase? In my opinion, taking that under the hood both Apple and Android devices have very similar functions, the only reason of buying an Apple product is prestige. Buyers might have a good feeling of having an Apple logo on their phones and show it to others. Similar to people driving a Cadillac instead of a Chevrolet.

Of course I might be wrong. Please comment!

Monday, January 8, 2018

Hard Sun

Hard Sun reminds me on crime investigation series like X-Files or Lucifer, where you have an overall story of some supernatural level, which in almost every episode peeks through. And "ordinary" crime scene investigation. But it's very dark and bloody.

The premise of the BBC TV drama Hard Sun is that Governments know a mass extinction event will happen in five years and everything on earth is going to die. Before that the crime rate will increase, crops fail and a lot more natural disasters happen. But the Government (here) of the UK does everything to keep it under the lid for reasons not explained. The murderers in the investigation part are all psychopaths, and their behavior tied to events predicted to happen because of Black Sun.

DCI Charlie Hicks, played by Jim Sturgess and his new female partner DI Elaine Renko, played by Agyness Deyn, do not get along well and suspect each others to work for the Government. Plus have private problems themselves, like DI Elaine Renko has a son in a funny farm.

The BBC aired all six episodes of the first season on the 6th January 2018 for binge-watching.


© BBC

There are rumors that season 2 is in the making. But how would you have a second season when the last episode of the first season ended with a black hole feasting on our sun?


[Update]

Indeed the series has been canceled in August 2018. Not that the black hole nibbling on the sun ended the show. The station canceled the series because of poor ratings and confused viewers. Too bad, I liked it.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Lucifer - City of Angels? - Recap

Lucifer in 2018 kicks off with the episode City of Angels? which entirely plays in 2011, the year Lucifer came to earth.

After getting acquainted to a lifestyle in luxury and leisure, with "sexy babes" all around, Amenadiel shows up and gives him ten minutes to pack, as he will bring him back to hell.

To not spoil it for those who haven't seen this episode yet, it doesn't quite work out as Amenadiel would want. And after Lucifer could stall him Amenadiel becomes victim of a crime, and asks Lucifer to help him. And Lucifer strikes a deal.

Enjoyable episode, fresh and funny. Also nice to see how it began, how Lucifer acquired LUX and other things you never knew.

Intel processor kernel bug

A fundamental design flaw in Intel's processor chips dealing with speculative execution ("KASLR") was found and forced an extensive redesign of the kernels of at least Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. It was also noted that an otherwise simple microcode update is not sufficient.

Interestingly, these patches KPTI patches to move the kernel to a separated address space of the operating system, no matter if Linux or Windows, will incur a performance hit on Intel products of possible 30%. It now reminds me of the time when DMA (Direct Memory Access) came around and did quite a performance boots. The imagine it's taken away from you again.

It is speculated that it might be enough for users of Intel based computers to run in the open arms of AMD. It will sure cost Intel dearly.

In the meantime two flaw were uncovered and nicknamed Meltdown and Spectre.