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A collection of my longer ramblings, things that are not exactly news.  I imagine this will eventually encompass a pretty broad range of topics, but it’s early days yet.

If you want to leave comments or make suggestions relating to the website please attach them to the About This Website article.

An Unusual Proposition

Let Me Read To You[The website “Please Let Me Read To You” is no longer active, so I’m afraid we must treat this entry as no longer relevant. The article has been left here as a historical curiosity.]

Hands up all those writers that would like their story turned into a poorly read audiobook. Come on, hands up high so we can count them. Anyone? No? … But what if I told you the result could be fun?

That was the unusual proposition that Please Let Me Read To You presented to me near the start of July. Let me explain …

Shortly after the release of Vera’s Itch, Please Let Me Read To You wrote to ask if they could read it on their podcast. I knew nothing about these people, so I looked up their website and their Facebook page, which said: “We read books and short stories by independent authors in genres we’re not used to – resulting in poorly read audiobooks. So, let us read to you..”

That really didn’t sound promising. I couldn’t find any external reviews, but the email was polite and friendly, and the request seemed sincere, so I decided the only thing for it was to listen to their show. [Read more…]

Trust and Security

Liars & OutliersIt is not my intention to post regular book reviews here, but every now and then a worthy exception will appear. One such exception is “Liars & Outliers” by Bruce Schneier. Subtitled: “Enabling the Trust that Society Needs to Thrive”. (Cover image on the right from the author’s website.)

As the title probably makes obvious, this is non-fiction. The book is about the critical parts that trust and cooperation play in modern society. The ultimate thrust of the book is to suggest that a better understanding of these concepts can improve the way society operates, possibly resulting in fairer systems of justice, more effective security, and an understanding of the imperfections that will always remain – indeed, imperfections that are necessary for the health of society.

For the most part, this is not a strongly technical book, anyone could pick it up and learn a lot. Read it slowly, there are not many wasted words in the book. Take your time and consider each part as you go, and your efforts will be well repaid. [Read more…]

Book Shopping

Goanna - it was big.I went book shopping yesterday. I went to a real, enclosed-in-a-building containing lots of flammable material manufactured from wood pulp, book shop. Indeed I went to two. I went to a place that sold new books; their covers may have been sullied by the hands that placed them on the shelf, but their innermost secrets are yet to be viewed by human eyes – maybe. Then I went to a place that sold second-hand books, and it was big! It held ten times as many books as the new-book shop, probably more, I didn’t try to count.

Being Australia, it cost me just over $80 to buy three new paperback books, I got six second-hand paperback books of good quality for less than half of that. Why bother telling you about such a trivial and common excursion? Well, I can’t help thinking about, and comparing, the different ways that we buy books. [Read more…]

Is there anybody out there?

Wren1(To be read with Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” playing softly in the background; side three of the LPs for preference, that’s the first half of Disc 2 if you’re listening to the CDs, “Hey You” through “Comfortably Numb” if you’re using MP3s.)

It’s a month since I launched my website. I’ve had exactly three comments, all of them spam. According to the statistics from the service that hosts the site there have been hundreds of hits, but for all I know they may have all been from Internet search engines.

I’ve done nothing to promote the site, nor my book, in that time. This was intentional, I’ve been waiting for the book to appear on reseller sites so that when I do start getting visitors they will actually be able to buy the thing. But it still feels strange. Kind of a let down after everything I went through to get this far.

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Strange Prisoners

Dryad is prefixed with a quote from Plato’s The Republic, specifically his allegory of the cave. This is something I came across and re-read only after I was well in to writing the book. I can’t even remember what I was researching at the time, but it struck me as something that comes close to what I was thinking when I created the narun.

SunriseThe allegory in brief: In an underground cave a light source (fire, sun, good) shines past a stage (a raised way) onto a blank wall such that players on the stage have their shadows cast upon the wall. In front of the wall, constrained so that they can see only the wall, are prisoners. Socrates postulates to Glaucon that unenlightened people are like those prisoners, seeing the world only as shadows cast upon a wall. (For more detail see the Wikipedia article.)

The conversation between Socrates and Glaucon goes on (and on), descending into politics and science and many other areas of philosophy, but I like to think about the original image. I like thinking about those prisoners, as people, looking the wrong way and thinking that they are seeing the world, but in fact they are seeing only shadows of it.

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About DRM

DRM stands for Digital Rights Management. It relates to e-books, not printed editions.  You can read lots of gory details about it in the Wikipedia article, if you’re interested.  For a brief, non-technical, summary read on after the next paragraph.

Let’s get this part out of the way first:  At this point in time my e-books are sent to my distributor without DRM, and with the request that no DRM be applied. Note however that some stores may add their own DRM as a matter of standard practice, so if you are concerned about DRM you should check carefully at the time of purchase.
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About This Website

The website was created in WordPress using the Atahualpa theme (with a few minor alterations).  The majority of the photos on this website were taken by (and are copyright to) the author (G. M. Worboys) or his wife (who gave her permission for them to be used).  Exceptions will be noted.

If you have comments or suggestions for this website, or if you find errors or have any difficulties using this website I would be pleased if you could leave a comment against this post, or send me an email at: