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review 2018-09-24 00:33
The Girl Before: A Novel - J.P. Delaney for some square TBA
The Girl Before: A Novel - J.P. Delaney

I spent half a hour down a rabbit hole just because I couldn't remember if this was a library copy and Amazon deleted my review, which was witty and succinct and insightful but not spoilery, and not at all like the review of  a very tired person, which I am.


Good book, lots of twists in the spaghetti and many of them unexpected.


Good for genre: suspense, romantic suspense, darkest London, amateur sleuth.


Library copy

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review 2018-09-18 01:47
Mistress of Mellyn - Victoria Holt for Genre: Suspense
Mistress of Mellyn - Victoria Holt

Maybe it's nostalgia, maybe it was the disappointment of the last book, maybe the potato finally got digested, whatever it was I quite enjoyed this. Unlike the heroine I have a bit of familiarity with gothic conventions, so there weren't a lot of surprises, not that I expected any. But now I would like to do some kind of survey of the genre, noting popular locales (Cornwall and Scotland, of course, but where else), characteristics of the leads, relationship with the servents, what happened to the first wife, etc. No doubt the time of the writing has more influence on these attributes than the supposed setting year.


Fun times with old houses and dark doubts.


Library copy 


Would also work for Romantic Suspense, Terrifying Women, Gothic, Country House Mystery, and Amateur Sleuth.

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text 2018-07-26 08:22
Why Smart Cities need solid cloud computing foundation

A city is not just as smart as its people, but also as much as its computing prowess and in that department cloud is the over-arching technology with super computer-like proficiency. The First-ever IDC Smart Cities Spending Guide released in March this year predicted that spending will accelerate over the 2016-2021 forecast period, reaching $45.3 billion in 2021. In Asia-Pacific (except Japan) alone, the Smart Cities will consume $28.3 billion in 2018 alone! With such investment-heavy projects in the offing, use of the best technology in business is only just organic.


About Smart Cities


To have sustainable economic development and improve the quality of life of citizens, countries all over the world are proceeding towards establishing ‘smart cities’. Now, any city cannot be termed smart if it has certain amount of automation incorporated in its system. A city can be called 'smart' if this economic development and high quality of life is achieved along with organized conservation of natural resources as well as with participation from its citizens. The investments in human capital and technology should produce a smart city that include networking applications, data management and optimization, sensors, software and real-time information analytics that can transform the urban environment and address specific needs.


Thus, use of ICT solutions is inevitable. These can help in resolving urban problems and monitor their functions. While new technology and innovation are the need of the hour in any Smart City solutions, there is also the need of great capacity.


Cloud Technology


A common string that connects the entire smart city is data and not just some but terabytes and petabytes of data that gadgets connected to people, buildings and transportation among other things create. Without a strategic approach to control this data smart cities cannot deliver on their promise.


Handling such huge quantity of heterogeneous data requires high storage capacity and computing power. For this, the continually developing cloud computing scenario coupled with Internet of Things needs to be widely deployed in cities. The cloud will facilitate storage, integration, processing and analysis of this big data in low time frames.


Currently, many citizen services involving IT are delivered by domain-specific vendors through tightly coupled systems. Services like transportation or health care have domain-specific application requirements leading to isolated systems with firmly joined infrastructure and application logic. Scalability is a challenge in these systems, and the creation of new services is hampered due to closed relationships between stakeholders. Cloud solutions can reduce such intergovernmental silos wherein different departments have no idea or understanding of what other departments are doing. Such domain-independent, cloud-based service-delivery platform for smart cities delivers an open and scalable platform and encourages collaboration between stakeholders in both IoT and clouds.


Cloud solutions can also support both public and private deployment models. In the former, the stakeholders can keep their applications on a public cloud while in the latter, they can deploy services on equipment at their own sites and feel the maximum potential of privacy and security requirements.


The rise of IoT has given birth to thousands of interconnected devices that can be exploited for mischievous purposes posing demonstrable security risks that clouds can aptly eliminate.


Clouds also help in extracting maximum value from the data received since not all data needs to go to the same applications all the time, but the right data needs to get to the correct applications at the right time. Clouds can help in managing data across all environments including edge, data center, private, public, hybrid clouds and the billions of connected devices being added to the network.


Thus, a well-built cloud platform can offer a cohesive, single-window view with quick scalability that enables quicker processing of the data at the source for faster and more accurate results.


Well, we reserved the biggest benefit for the ending note! Clouds can enable operations cost reduction in Smart Cities. A city is not a smart one until it utilizes its resources optimally and that also includes capital.



About US:


A city is not a smart one until it utilizes its resources optimally and that also includes capital. For more information, Visit us at: smart city architecture AND smart cities in India

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review 2018-07-14 17:02
Bath: Past and Present, Joyce & Wells
Bath: Past and Present - Noel Joyce,H.Mary Wills,Maria Joyce

So here's a great idea: Take an archive of old photos of Bath then try to replicate them as accurately as possible to illustrate the changes and similarities between then and now. But "now" has become "then" too since we are talking about a project undertaken in '86-87. This actually adds to the charm as it is now a historical record twice over; we need an update - even a big project that takes images from every decade to show the slow evolution of the city.


The research about each image and what has changed in the intervening time is excellent and interesting - this is a fab little book.

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review 2017-12-26 18:52
16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 15 - Boxing Day: Well-Served with Murder
Tied Up In Tinsel - Ngaio Marsh
Tied Up In Tinsel - Ngaio Marsh,James Saxon

Book themes for Boxing Day/St. Stephen’s Day: Read anything where the main character has servants (paid servants count, NOT unpaid) or is working as a servant him-/ herself.


Well, I guess one could count Roderick Alleyn as a public servant, seeing as he's a policeman, but the actual pièce de résistance in this book are the servants at the North Country estate where his wife Troy is staying for Christmas (having been commissioned to paint the owner's portrait) -- because they are, every man jack of them, murderers.  Or, well, at least homicides, whose sentences were commuted to something less than the gallows or life in prison because they had some pretty convincing "provocation" for their deeds, or who were let out early because of a successful appeal.  So of course, when their employer's Christmas party ends up with the disappearance of the manservant of an elderly guest couple (who is soon suspected to have been killed, even though nobody can find his corpse, either), they duly consider themselves in more than a bit of a pickle: all the more so as, in the days preceding the death, a number of pranks of questionable taste have occurred, each one of which seems to mirror the particular circumstances or modus operandi of one of their bloody deeds. -- And it doesn't make one iota of a difference that Mr. Alleyn, originally having arrived from London to keep his wife company and escort her back home, but soon enough (and very unwillingly) put in charge of the case, assures them that suspicion does not lie their way solely because of their past history.


This was a revisit of a favorite Golden Age mystery, courtesy of James Saxon's audio narration, which I enjoyed very much.


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