Blog Archives

Crossing The Digital Faultline

Crossing the Digital Faultline is an informative and engaging book. Anyone working in an upstart company or established business organization needs to read this book. The author digs deep into the corporate culture, change in digital trends, and why companies need to move with the times. The author’s tone when addressing missteps companies partake in is both firm and calm. When reading through the discussions, one gets to understand where the author comes from and why he makes the points that are written in the book. Sri Manchala tries to make his book as compelling to read as possible. The paragraphs are not long and the sentences easy to comprehend. Whenever the author fuses in a story, he ensures that he gives the reader a back story to avoid confusion.

Sri Manchala brings the future to the present. By talking about ways in which a company can win in the age of digitalization, the author gives solutions to businesses that perhaps are not familiar with the digitalization process. The advice given is solid and the examples given are real. Sri Manchala tries to be practical with all the examples he gives in the book. He modestly illustrates different aspects of digitalization and gives the reader a clear picture of how businesses are supposed to be run. A single example given in the book is enough to open one’s eyes regarding the subjects discussed. The author also suggests methods that companies can apply as they embrace digitalization patterns.

Sri Manchala is not just a great narrator, but also an amazing instructor. While reading the book, one gets the impression of attending a master class as the author particularly arranged related topics, and how modern trends impact the development of businesses. To understand the concepts in the book, one has to read keenly as sometimes the author uses technical words that may not be understood by the average reader who is not familiar with digitalization and related trends. The explanation the author gives is however enough to make a newbie master the jargon and key lessons.  Some of the most impactful discussions in the book talked about customer behavior and disruptive technologies, global markets, a leader’s role in handling a crisis, digital transformation and evolution, and encroachment by the tech industry.

The author is insightful, unbiased, and informed. The beauty of reading a book whose author is neutral in the subject matter is that you are able to form your own unbiased opinion. The author focused on informing people about the importance of digitalization and the rules to follow for a company to advance. There are immense lessons that leaders can take from the book and share with their subordinates and fellow leaders in similar positions.

Pages: 331 | ASIN: B089D9DLSS

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The One Singularity

The One Singularity by [RD Palmer]

Artificial Intelligence is the technology behind things like search algorithms, virtual assistants such as Siri, and self-driving cars. However, scientists are working towards Artificial General Intelligence, which will allow the creation of systems that are more intelligent than human beings. Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and the late Stephen Hawking warn of the dangers of this technology, such as autonomous weapons, social grading (for example, China’s social credit system), and more systems that invade your privacy. Perhaps the greatest danger is when the machines get so intelligent that they take over. See, an AGI’s solution to problems such as climate change, food shortage, and poverty might mean the annihilation of the whole world.

The One Singularity, by RD Palmer, is a futuristic thriller whose antagonist is an Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) called The One. The protagonist is a scientist who hoped the AGI would be the last human invention. However, soon after he creates the first AGI in human history, he discovers its solution to problems in the world is not what he expected. Now he has to kill his creation to prevent it from wiping away the world’s population.

The book is written with vivid imagery, alluring diction, and excellent pacing. It provides a relatively clear view of what the world would become if we are not careful to regulate artificial intelligence and related technologies.

In the book, Palmer portrays how scientists are eager to make the world a better place through technology, how the military will always try to use such technology to their advantage, how there will always be a group who see the dangers of advanced technology, and how somehow religious sects like the Amish are on the right side by shunning technology.

What I liked most about the book is the unpredictability. I was consistently surprised with the twists and turns in the plot. RD Palmer doesn’t follow the familiar plot of other futuristic thrillers. There are lots of things you will not see coming, such as most human beings embracing the AGI, albeit without knowing its agenda.

I also liked how each chapter starts with a quote from a famous philosopher such as Galileo Galilei, Plato, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Aristotle.

The One Singularity is a riveting novel that has a cliff hanger of an ending that begs you to read the follow up novel. It leaves you wondering what happens to the characters. However, The One Singularity is by far the best futuristic thriller I have read this year, and one whose predictions I hope do not come true.

Pages: 387 | ASIN: B08DK8YJPX

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An Argument Inside My Head

Tilmer Wright Author Interview

Tilmer Wright Author Interview

The Bit Dance follows a teen genius who must outwit an ex-KGB agent who uses a cutting edge toy for nefarious purposes. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling story?

I have spent 30 years as an IT professional. That provided the technical facet to the story. The fascination with bees and their built-in intelligence comes from my uncle, Fred Ingram. He kept bees to support his fruit trees. He knew a lot about bees and spent time talking to me about them. That has always been in the back of my mind stewing among my technology-oriented thoughts. It all kind of emerged as a complete stew in this book.

Kayla is a intriguing and well developed character. What were some ideas that guided her development?

Thank you for the kind words about Kayla. I lean hard on my characters to drive my stories. They are of utmost importance and their internal drive, motives, and personalities have to take precedence over my own. Sometimes, that ends up in an argument inside my head. It’s one I have to let the character win. Kayla started out in early drafts as a male of the same age. I have two daughters, both older than Kayla. The struggles I have had trying to drive my girls to be the most they can be in a world that isn’t always easy for females while simultaneously being a loving father that allows them to be themselves drove me to change that character to a female. The whole father-daughter challenge is complex and can be even more so if a father is a driven personality and the daughter has skills of her own that may lead her in multiple directions. I think it added a lot to the story.

I enjoyed the technological explanations you provided for the eBots. What kind of research did you undertake for this book to get these as accurate as possible?

I did a lot of reading about the Bees Algorithm to understand how it is being used for real-life applications today. I also had to dig into a lot about how communication technologies like Bluetooth work. Other things like the technology borrowed from robotic vacuum cleaners and file-sharing technology used by social media is pretty easy to research, but it does take time to get it right. I also made sure that the history around the KGB and other Soviet-era topics was right. Koslov’s back-story had to be convincing. The car he drove is real. The explosives he used were thoroughly researched. The history of the KGB and the crumbling of the old Soviet Union is all accurate. The sniper rifle mentioned in the story is real and accurately described as well. When you write stories that might attract sci-fi fans, you have to realize that they are picky people when it comes to realism – or at least the suspension of disbelief.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

I am working on a young adult-oriented fantasy novel set in 1976. The protagonists are 11-year-olds (a boy and a girl). It centers around the concept of multiple universes and a means to travel between them. It’s slow going because my day job still dominates my life. If I could earn enough from writing to pay the bills, I could change all of that. That story is probably around 40% of the way to first draft. I’m hoping to have it out before the end of this year. The working title is Talisgate. I wrote one book before The Bit Dance. It’s called Motes. It’s a first-contact kind of story with an unusual twist. You can find it on Amazon.

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Website

What happens when millions of tiny minds find a way to work together? At what point do they become one? At what point are they no longer merely machinery, but actually alive? Kayla Henry is a genius. She has a grasp of technology that far surpasses that of people three times her tender age of fourteen. She has mastered every skill she has attempted to acquire – except the ability to impress her father and appease his overbearing perfectionism. The eBot is the newest offering from her father’s employer that will set the company’s course for as much as a decade. It is a revolutionary toy endowed with groundbreaking technology and an online community that will encourage consumers to share their experiences. Kayla is fascinated by it and longs to be a part of it in any way she can. When an ex-KGB officer appropriates the technology for his own nefarious purposes, it responds in ways no one could predict – or even imagine.

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Progenie

Progenie is an interesting book that is slow to start but definitely captures the readers attention as the story progresses into one of the most fascinating plots I’ve read this year. The story is a whirlwind of emotions written that takes place in the past and present. The writing style is uniqeue and the descriptions are vivid and provide details for all of your senses.

The story takes place in both the present day and the ancient past. Each place seemed exotic and realistic as the world building in this story was superb. It seemed as if I was transported to this other world where all these events and story lines were taking place. One of my favorite things is how the story starts off in the present, then goes back in history to clarify certain details.

I wasn’t too crazy about the beginning of the book, mostly because it was slow to build, and compared to the rest of this exciting novel, this felt flat. Once you get past the beginning, the story picks up and things start to fall into place. If you’re confused when reading this book, don’t worry, the author does an excellent job of clearing up the confusion in later parts of the story. And the revelations are satisfying.

There’s very few things I dislike about this book. Even the cover art grabs your attention. I call attention to the title of the book. It’s very clever and unusual. Yet, you can’t help but remember it. Several parts of the book make you feel as if you’re watching a movie rather than reading because the detail and world building are meticulous.

I love Zenobia Grant’s character. I always enjoy a strong female lead in sci-fi stories. Her journey is one of self discovery and that is masterfully shown through the slow development of her character throughout this surreal story. This is a book like no other that I’ve read. Filled with different creatures, in different times, and in different dimensions. This is a surreal adventure that you won’t soon forget.

Pages: 450 | ISBN: 1941637566

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Global Dawn

Global Dawn by [Thompson, Wesley Boydd]

I had not prepared myself for the thrill that would come in chapter three. I, of course, enjoyed reading about the USS Benjamin Stoddert, Auguste, and Jacques Piccard and all the sea missions. I love being introduced to new jargon and chapters one and two had me learn about different sea vessels and everything that happens at the sea. Chapter three was however different. The reader gets introduced to Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O); a secret global council promulgated in 1904, founded to watch over and defend mankind from powerful and unknown enemies.

The O.T.O being in war with the New World Order (N.W.O) made the story exciting to read. To contain the situation, a meeting had to be set. The exchange between the president of the United States and Colonel Fisher as the latter brought the president up to speed with the history on the modern day battle with the N.W.O and the kidnapping of Henry Boder. I could visualize the two men as they discussed the issues at hand. Larry taking the spot from the president and hurting his ego was thrilling. I enjoyed how the most powerful man was made to listen to what a mere colonel had to say.

Reading Global Dawn was a pleasant experience because the plot gets more interesting with every chapter. I appreciate the effort the author puts in character selection. Each character  seemed real and authentic. My favorite character was colonel Larry. The man spoke with authority and knew his facts. I admired the guts he had. Dr. Henry Boder was another important character in the book that helped build a good part of the plot.

The inclusion of Benjamin Rothschild and Hitler and their relation to the New World Order in the book was surprising yet fascinating. Rothschild’s epiphany; that there were too many people on the planet and fewer resources for what he referred to as ‘the worth’ would make for a lively debate. The thinking pattern of the two men were extreme but still logical, and I appreciated how I could follow their different ways of seeing things.

Global Dawn is an amazing book that you don’t want to miss. W. B. Thompson is an excellent writer. Each chapter is succinct and makes the reading fun and easy. Organizational wars, envy, respect for authority, family, warfare, technology, and global influence are among the themes the author covered, and most of the them can be compared to issues in the real world. Global Dawn is an exciting book that I recommend to readers who enjoy post-apocalyptic science fiction and techno-thriller genres.

Pages: 436 | ASIN: B07QL8GT58

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Will we get arrested for this?

Nick James Author Interview

Nick James Author Interview

The Misplaced Man follows Sam who becomes the target of the company he works for as he tries to uncover the truth behind their technology. What was the inspiration for the setup to this intriguing novel?

Technology is moving at such a fast rate, and I remembered an old English space comedy called Red Dwarf, where they used Dream recorders. And with Mobile improving year on year, it has to be only a few years away till you can down load your dreams.

Sam is a memorable character that was both witty and interesting. What were some driving ideals behind his character?

Sam Blades is a mixture of myself and my brothers qualities. Good and bad.

I find that, while writing, writers sometimes ask questions and have the characters answer them. Do you find that to be true? What questions did you ask yourself while writing this story?

Will we get arrested for this?

What is the next novel that you are working on and when will it be available?​

Trying to finish the Misplaced Man Trilogy, hopefully by August 2019.

Author Links: GoodReadsTwitterFacebookWebsite

The Misplaced Man: Who is in charge of his destiny? by [James, Nick]

When Sam Blades starts work at Shimmering Dreams, he hopes to climb the promotional ladder and bring security for himself and his girlfriend. Hailed as the greatest invention of its age, he would be working on new technology that downloads your dreams to your phone.

But, unbeknown to him, somebody behind the scenes is pulling the strings.

What lengths will someone go to when they are forced to repay a debt? Is Sam being set up as the fall guy to take the blame for dreams being used for nefarious activities? Who ends up taking matters into their own hands with drastic consequences?

Follow Sam’s tongue-in-cheek journey through a world of industrial espionage where he blindly battles against an alcohol-fuelled boss, a corrupt copper, a revenge-seeking hitman and a tone-deaf busker.

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Greater Things Than Thou

Greater Things Than Thou (Blood of the Prince Book 1) by [Dean, R.L.]

His first memories were of his town burning to the ground. He doesn’t remember his parents or where he lived, only flames, death, and fear. Baler, a mentally unstable ‘king’ to his community of bandits, takes him to raise as his own son. In this bandit camp he is known only as boy. On a raid several years later Galin and Garret save him and give him a real home, hone his skills and give him a name, Patrin. A mix of medieval style living and culture with an alien technology thrown in to add a unique twist to the tale of an exiled king recovering his thrown.

Greater Things than Thou by R. L. Dean is well written with each chapter starting out with a sort of monologue / overview from his perspective as an old man. On the surface the setting and time period is that of medieval style though not from standard Europe. There are clear class systems from farmers to royalty. Most technology, for the non-Gifted, is what you would find in Medieval times, horses, carts and crossbows. The world that R. L. Dean has created involves the addition of an alien technology. This technology allows them to heal at remarkable levels and see things within their mind that no one else can see. It increases their intelligence and augments their bodies based on their individual packages and their jobs. Patrin is trying to destroy all remaining tech to prevent further use of it by anyone. The remainder of the story is his life from a small boy to young adult. I really liked the detail that went into Patrin’s thoughts and how he processed everything. How he adapted to each new situation life throws at him, and the technology that is implanted into his body. He is genuinely a character that wants to see the good and morality in all people and do the right thing. He eludes to his oath to Galin as being the cause of his moral missteps and failings later in life. The reader can get a real feel for the people he develops emotions for, Garret, Serin, Xadik and especially Lena. His relationship with Lena is one of young love, the awkwardness of first loves, and highlights the complications of his life thanks to his oath of loyalty to Galin.

As the first book in the series, Blood of the Prince, it is a great introduction to the main characters and how Patrin gets his start in life. Based on the monologues at the beginning of the chapters, I can tell the rest of this series is going to be full of adventures, plot twists, and action. It is a story about loyalty even to a fault, finding your way, and redemption of character. This is going to be an exciting series to follow.

Pages: 283 | ASIN: B077BVF5HT

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The Misplaced Man

The Misplaced Man: Who is in charge of his destiny? by [James, Nick]

Sam Blades is not your ordinary twenty-something. He has a girlfriend whose abuse he relishes, a job with company whose name could and should be attributed to that of a lingerie label, and an almost absurd fixation with The Matrix. Sam is, on the other hand, a curiosity to more than one person of interest. His job with Shimmering Dreams has made him a target, and poor Sam is none the wiser. Shimmering Dreams capitalizes on the technology that makes it possible to download one’s dreams and store them on mobile devices. Sam, caught in the middle of the “greatest invention its age” and the conspiracy surrounding its misuse, is about to meet face to face with those who want him out of the picture once and for all.

The Misplaced Man by Nick James is a short story/novella centering around Sam Blades, a young man newly-employed and eager to please his beyond demanding girlfriend, Bunny. Nick James is a master at humor, and his main character is his chosen vessel. Not meant entirely as a work of comedy, James provides several laugh-out-loud moments as Sam struggles in his day-to-day life with Bunny. It is rare for me to find the written word comical enough to emit an audible guffaw, but James definitely delivers. Sam’s personality more than makes the book; he is a memorable character in his own right and is well-developed in first-person accounts.

James’s choice to alternate chapters with varying first-person accounts is quite effective. The story, though brief, is packed full of descriptive and revealing scenarios which serve well to differentiate each character. As the reader, I was easily able to discern which character was taking his turn at bat without having to rely on the chapter title–James is just that good at character development.

It is worth noting that The Misplaced Man is a combination of realistic fiction and science fiction but leans heavily on the realistic fiction element. The book is much more about each character’s own personal conflicts than the underlying component of groundbreaking technology. As interesting as the concept of capturing dreams is, it is explored and detailed much less than some science fiction fans will likely expect.

Sam Blades is ruthlessly humorous and has the makings of a fantastic central character for his ensuing series. I recommend Nick James’s short story to anyone looking for a quick science fiction piece with strong characters laced with humor.

Pages: 155 | ASIN: B07K3Q6QRD

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