About ogresan

Richard Parks' stories have have appeared in Asimov's SF, Realms of Fantasy, Fantasy Magazine, Weird Tales, and numerous anthologies, including several Year's Bests. His first story collection, THE OGRE'S WIFE, was a finalist for the World Fantasy Award. He is the author of the Yamada Monogatari series from Prime Books.

It Ain’t What You Think, Part 2

The original plan was to upgrade the current workstation with new MB, RAM and CPU, keeping the disks as they were. Mostly because 1) I’m lazy and 2) I was not looking forward to transferring all my working files/programs to new disks. Been there, done that. Not fun.

Best laid plans, and all that.

Turned out the case I ordered (and liked best) was designed more with solid state disks(SSD) in mind. My boot disk was already SSD but a little on the small side. So I bit the bullet and switched to M.2 and SATA SSD for the boot and data disks, respectively. Kept the data disk at one terrabyte since that was the same size as my old HDD drive and perfectly adequate for my needs. Had some minor bobbles with USB and PSU connectors, but got the new machine (and by this point it was an entirely new machine) up and running, and now time to transfer the files. Getting everything off the old drives was easy enough with a large USB backup disk. And then…

Let’s simply say that certain modern backup/clone/restore software didn’t work as advertised and let it go at that. You know what did? A backup/restore program included with Windows 2007 back so long ago they were still referring to it as Windows NT. By the time it was done everything was in place and working just like on the old PC, programs and data alike (and yes, all my working files and the WIP for The Laws of Power book 4 made the trip in good shape). All I had to do was resize the partition to account for the larger disk and everything was set.

I’m always somewhat surprised when things go right. I’ll probably reincarnate the old machine as a Linux or ReactOS PC just to play with. Waste not, want not.

It Ain’t What you Think

New Desk

In computer years my workstation was just shy of Methuselah. Not that I really cared. Writing and light gaming doesn’t take that much horsepower. Then I decided to take a course in machine learning.



I’d been an IT guy for most of my day job years. Had the degree, did the work, coded, often built my own computers just for fun, that kind of thing. It had been a while, though, and I wanted to try something new, like a different computer language and an introduction to AI. Learning something new freshens the mind, and frankly mine was getting a little stale. Problem was my computer was overdue for an upgrade which the course made apparent. So I thought why not build the replacement yourself? You get exactly what you need.

Well, that’s the plan anyway. One thing has definitely changed since my last build. I mean, I knew there would be differences and thought I had a handle on what I needed to research. One thing I hadn’t counted on, because I’d never run into it before:


Things advertised as a two terrabyte flash drive that, well, aren’t. Then there was a name-brand external disk bought from a reputable dealer. It provides the promised storage but, judging by the model and serial number, is almost certainly counterfeit. Kind of annoying. Adds a complication when you’re trying to source parts.

Buyer beware.

Probably Karma

Playing With Fire

You want to think there’s a reason things happen. This tendency in humans causes a lot of grief, I’ve found. Example, one possible explanation for why my fellow citizens are so likely to fall for idiotic conspiracy theories. It all turns on two mutually exclusive assumption: 1) Either a secret cabal of politicians/Illuminati/People-Who-Are-Not-You are in charge of everything or 2) No one is in charge of anything and chaos reigns. All one has to do is pick your scenario and run with it. A surprising number of folk choose option 1 because it’s a lot less scary to them than option 2.

Drifting from the topic a little, which is karma…maybe. Remember last time I mentioned our cat got skunked? Not only that, two days later the fluffy little idiot went out and got skunked again. He is now under curfew. Come evening, the cat door gets locked. I try to tell him it’s his own fault, but he is quite put out about not being let out.

On top of which Microsoft is pulling an Apple stunt and my perfectly fine and stable computer is now obsolete. So just to spite them I’m doing a build your own with just enough new parts to satisfy the requirements and refusing to buy a new computer. I’m not against an upgrade but I hate being forced into it.

Feels like I’m being punished for something.

Monday. Just…Monday.

The deer are in the yard again. Not the one above, but could be her twin. Which goes along with the twin fauns she also brought to the feast. One nibbled the hem of my jeans on the clothesline, but decided the taste wasn’t up to her standards.

The trial is over. This was my second experience as a juror in a criminal trial and if I never have a third it’s all right by me. Let’s just say I know more about some of my fellow citizens than I ever wanted or needed to, and now I shall do my absolute best to forget it. Also, I do realize If poor judgment was a crime we’d all be in trouble at one time or another, but some people elevate it almost to an art form. What a waste.

And to cap things off, our silly cat got himself skunked in the early hours of the morning and I was too groggy to treat the situation as was needed. So now we have to wait for the funk to wear off.

Did I mention he’s a lap cat? We’re obviously being punished for something.

Civic Duty Again

I’ve got jury duty today and have to leave in a few minutes. Actually, it’s the second time I’ve been called since the move, but the first trial got cancelled so now we are here again. I actually don’t mind. It’s never going to be convenient, but so what? Someone’s future is on the line. That’s not something you take lightly.

Besides, I much prefer being “juror xx.” Could be worse.

Could be the defendant.