How All Systems Red by Martha Wells dispelled my fear of sentient machines

Many Science fiction books and movies feature sentient robots or Artificial Intelligence that has evolved to gain consciousness. These stories often end up in a man versus machine theme. The robots may crave power and think they are superior to the fragile humans and decide to kill them off. Or they may enslave humans in a matrix to use us as a source of their power supply. They may even decide to end some humans for the sake of preserving humanity as a whole.

There is differing opinion on how close we are to Artificial Sentience or Machine Consciousness. Continue reading “How All Systems Red by Martha Wells dispelled my fear of sentient machines”

Book Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

This story is set in, as you may have guessed, a circus. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves. As the title suggests, it opens only at night and arrives without warning. Within its black-and-white striped tents is a magical and utterly unique experience. The descriptions of the setting was the main focus of this book. I thoroughly enjoyed the writing style.

Continue reading “Book Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern”

My Reading Slump in the Time of Corona

Like many others, I’ve been having a hard time reading this year. Trying to keep up with the news, being anxious about the state of the world, taking precautions like washing hands and obsessing over cleanliness in general leaves you physically and mentally drained.

Also, I just could not bring myself to read books and gush about them during a pandemic. It would be similar to Nero fiddling when Rome burned. Not that I have the power of an emperor to make a difference to the situation, but it still felt that way. Continue reading “My Reading Slump in the Time of Corona”

40 Book Recommendations over 1000 pages to get through the Quarantine

Hey there! Tired of staying at home during the lockdown/self-isolation/quarantine/whatever you want to call this situation? If you are like me, you are probably having a hard time processing strings of words longer than a blog post and finding creative ways to procrastinate your reading habit. Maybe you are reading more than usual and the act of finishing a book a day is making you realise how long you haven’t stepped out of the house.

If you fall in the latter category, then fret not. I’ve collated a list of books over 1000 pages across genres to make you forget that you are in quarantine. (Yup, I just procrastinated my reading by compiling a booklist)

Read more

Book Review: On Immunity – Eula Biss

This book is a collection of essays from the author’s perspective as a doctor’s daughter and a mother. It informs the reader about immunity, viruses, history of some diseases, clinical trials and vaccination. It also explains the concept of herd immunity and the process involved in finding a vaccine for a disease. All these are very relevant to the current crisis of coronavirus. Continue reading “Book Review: On Immunity – Eula Biss”

7 Tips to get through the Coronavirus Lockdown

Many countries are currently enforcing restrictions on mass movements to curb the spread of coronavirus. Some have a nation-wide lockdown as a preventive measure. All non-essential businesses are shut down and people who can’t work from home are to be given leave. Only the essential service workers are allowed to go out. Police monitor the streets and people who roam around unnecessarily can be imprisoned. Continue reading “7 Tips to get through the Coronavirus Lockdown”

Book Review: Ink on Paper by Vishikha

Ink on Paper is the debut book of 13-year-old author/poet Vishikha Tripathi. I say author/poet because the book contains stories and poems. Each poem is preceded by prose to set up the stage for it and I must say I found even the prose to be poetic at times. Continue reading “Book Review: Ink on Paper by Vishikha”

Revisiting the Pale Blue Dot

Today, February 14, 2020, is a very special day. It marks the 30th anniversary of the “Pale Blue Dot” image. This is a picture of Earth taken by NASA’s Voyager-1 after passing Neptune on its way out of the solar system. In this image, Earth appears as a speck of pale blue light. You could even say it looks like a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

Continue reading “Revisiting the Pale Blue Dot”

How to make your reading habit less expensive

This post is part 3 of the Reading 101 series. Say you’ve taken an interest in reading, formed a reading habit and learned to make time for reading. Sooner or later you will find that it can be pretty expensive to sustain a reading habit. Depending on whether you like to read only physical books or if you are okay with any format of books, there are ways to make your reading habit cost less or nothing at all. Continue reading “How to make your reading habit less expensive”

Book Review: Equal Rites by Sir Terry Pratchett

Equal Rites is the third book in the Discworld series and the first one in the witches series. The story starts off with a dying wizard passing on his power to the newborn Eskarina Smith without knowing that she is a girl. Continue reading “Book Review: Equal Rites by Sir Terry Pratchett”

3 Simple Tips To Make Time For Reading

It is New Year’s Eve! The time of the year when people who either don’t read much or have drifted apart from their reading habit take up a resolution to read more. It is also the time when many bibliophiles decide what reading challenges to sign up for in the upcoming year and wonder if they can read ‘X’ number of books. Whichever category you belong to, it can be difficult to find time for reading. Continue reading “3 Simple Tips To Make Time For Reading”

Common ways people fool themselves

We all lie to ourselves. We all fool ourselves. In lieu of April fool’s day, let me summarize some ways in which people fool themselves and how to get out of that. I’m not going to talk about psychology or rational theories on how cognitive biases work. This is just a layman’s view based on day to day life. Here goes:

  • Harbouring self-sabotaging thoughts

No one is perfectly capable of assessing their ability and self-worth. While some people overestimate their competence, others constantly Continue reading “Common ways people fool themselves”

Need For Diverse Fictional Role Models

When I was a child, like everyone else, I was also constantly changing my answer to “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Self-help books often claim that we are only limited by our imagination and dreams. They say that we can achieve anything we dream if we put in the required effort. The thing is, while we are limited by our dreams, our dreams are often limited by our exposure. This is the reason why career fairs are often conducted in schools to help the students choose their career path and thereby choose their college degree wisely. Continue reading “Need For Diverse Fictional Role Models”

My Resolutions for 2019 Based On 2018’s Lookback!

Hello reader! Hope you had a wonderful New Year’s Day celebration. Wishing you a very happy, healthy and successful year ahead! The WordPress Dashboard showed that I had written merely 2 posts last year. I felt like I owe an explanation to my subscribers and friends who have been checking up on me to see if I’m still alive. So this post will be about some highlights of 2018, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, and my resolutions for this year accordingly.

The Good:

  • Filing Patents

2018 was a wonderful year for me in terms of innovation. I filed 2 patent applications. Continue reading “My Resolutions for 2019 Based On 2018’s Lookback!”

7 Tips To Form A Reading Habit

This is Part 1 of my Reading 101 series. If you are one of those people who really wished they read more books but could not start and/or maintain a reading habit, then this post is for you. Even if you are a disbeliever and think reading is only a substitute for sleeping pills, do try the tips below and you just might cave in and enter the wonderful world of literature. Continue reading “7 Tips To Form A Reading Habit”