Wednesday, July 25, 2012

On Vacation in Colorado (with pictures)

I want to apologize to my couple of readers for not posting as frequently as I should. The reason: I'm on vacation at my in-laws' house in Colorado. I've never been to Colorado, so I'm trying to soak it all in. My in-laws have been very hospitable in this area by taking me on hikes to various mountains, buttes, streams, lakes, etc.

While here, I planned to make some progress editing one of my trunk novels, formerly titled The Shadow People, but unfortunately, that has kind of fallen by the wayside. Instead, I've been snapping pictures like crazy. If you could see the scenery here, you would probably understand. I did manage to sit down for about two hours and work on the story though. I've since renamed it Consuming Darkness since I discovered my original title was not at all unique.

Hopefully, I'll carve out some more time to work on the next book. After all, it's been hibernating in a desk drawer for about seven years! Also, it was the first novel I ever wrote. I think it will be worthy of publication after plenty of editing. Look for later posts where I will tell more about it.

Today, we are planning to visit a brewery. I can't wait! In the meantime, let me leave you with some pictures I managed to upload to the interwebs. Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Book Review: Incognito

I apologize for not posting recently, but I've been getting my geek on. As per my last post, I've been indulging in learning more about scientific things that interest me, which includes reading books on astrophysics, math, physics, and neuroscience. In addition to this, I am spending time with my youngest son who is visiting me this summer. So, I hope you'll excuse my absence.

During my quasi-sabbatical, I read a book that I felt needed mentioning. Recently, I finished reading Incognito: Secret Lives of the Brain by David Eagleman.

I first saw Dr. Eagleman discussing some of his research into the brain's mysteries on an episode of Nova ScienceNOW with my hero Neil deGrasse Tyson. Dr. Eagleman was conducting experiments to learn whether our brains perceive time differently during traumatic or scary events. This piqued my curiosity a great deal. Not to mention, he seemed like an extremely intelligent and laid back scientist, which is non-stereotypical of the field.
While recently browsing the bookshelves at Barnes & Noble, I saw this book and immediately remembered watching that episode on TV. I took the book down and quickly looked through it. The concepts outlined in the table of contents sounded very interesting.

I know many of you might think that reading a neuroscience book about our brain functionality seems anything but interesting, but, I have to disagree. For instance, Dr. Eagleman tackles subjects such as how we actually experience what we perceive to be reality; how our consciousness is only a facade for the neural subsystems that really drive what we do; how our brains can easily be fooled by illusions; and, how mental illnesses affect our actions, among other things.

If you're at all curious about how that three pounds of gray matter in your head controls who you are and what you do, I highly recommend this book. I promise, you won't be disappointed by the discoveries waiting for you between the front and back cover. In addition to the rich subject matter, Eagleman writes in a way that doesn't leave the average layperson wondering what he's talking about as many scientific books can.

Unlike most of my previous book reviews, I want to finish this one by leaving you with a video of Dr. Eagleman discussing his book. As always, thanks for stopping by!