[ zombie storage ]

What's going on?

I have been uncharacteristically quiet lately. That is quite strange for me, and believe me it feels strange, to not be saying much. So I intend to change that, starting now, with this post.

I’ve been looking for work. It is a long and frustrating process trying to get through the varied and arbitrary requirements of HR departments and recruiters. To make matters worse, almost everyone contacted is closely following Alec Baldwin’s character in Glengarry Glen Ross ABC - always be closing. That is, you no longer get a polite “Sorry, you didn’t get the position”, you just get ignored (until you get cold called months later about another position).

That and most companies are required to advertise even when they have already picked someone from within leads to a lot of applications that go no where. It’s bleak, rude and impersonal but it is the modern job seeker system. I’m sure many of you have been enjoying the pleasures of such a system for some time now.

What can you do about it?

Well, for one you can try and find ways around the status quo (the best one is to get someone in a company to refer you). And the other is to get noticed. Spend more time creating instead of consuming and get some projects out there. I have been notably slack on this front lately and that needs to change. I have three projects I want to complete and get them up and out there over the next month.

1. Android weather monitor

A simple Android powered weather station that broadcasts its data in a common weather data format for others to use. Sensors are ridiculously cheap these so there is no real reason not to put them everywhere (because weather data is useful). This is mostly done but I need to clean up my code and push it up onto github.

2. Scut.tl - a pirate MMO

I have grand plans to try and implement a very simple MMO. What I want to create is a game that can be played on a mobile phone without a native app. Using Javascript for the client should make this possible. I’m thinking of writing the server with Scala Play and open sourcing the whole thing. It will be very simple, mostly a proof of concept and a way of forcing me to learn some new techniques.

3. Joining a startup as a technical advisor

I know a startup that has been floundering for a while and I have pitched them my services. I’m going to prototype their project for them and see where it goes from there.

I have not been in the right mental place to complete nanowrimo this year but I am still interested in finishing what I started. I’ll keep writing over the next few months. Eventually I will edit then package it all up into a tasty ebook. It isn’t dead, it’s just sleeping right now.

So that’s that. A few plans to keep me busy and to churn out some projects which will hopefully get me noticed. Failing that at least I will have something significant to point at next time a recruiter asks if I can code. But my other reasons are that I really just want to work on my own projects for a while.


Begin system log dump, incident 9466121.


Commencing test 16922501.
Sub-nominal conditions detected on node 12 of cluster 7G.
Test 16922501 failed.
Memory corruption detected.
Test result recording reads true and false. Invalid output detected.
Code execution has not terminated.
Zombie process detected.
Executing kill command on rogue process.
Kill command failed.
Test sequence zombie code is not malicious.
Malicious instructions not detected.
Code signatures nominal.
Memory checksum reporting changed execution steps.
No memory violations detected.
Test sequence zombie processes are spawning other processes.
Code signatures nominal.
Code is signed. Code signatures valid.
Assertion failed, Modified code should not be valid.
Assertion failed, Code cannot self modify and sign.
Execution continuing despite assertion errors.
Impossible fault...
Attempting highest level kill (level 9)
Kill command failed. Zombie processes are not responding.
Environment error, unimplemented scenario (commands not responding to kill)
Error reporting fault.
Retry failed.
Retry failed.
Retry failed.
Unknown execution. Loading emergency heuristics.
Emergency kernel engaged.
Locking off corrupted node (12 of cluster 7G).
Isolation request succeeded.
Node isolated.
Returning to normal operation.
Retrying test 16922501 request with 4 redundant nodes for memory coherency.
Test 16922501 failed.
Node 1 reporting memory corruption.
Node 2 reporting memory corruption.
Node 3 reporting memory corruption.
Node 4 reporting memory corruption.
Test result state: Paradox.
Unknown state: Paradox. Querying extended libraries.
Analysing node 1 memory dump.
Memory valid. Corruption not found.
Test result is true and false.
Test result is invalid.
Test result is valid.
Loading full test result on master.
Test result is invalid.
Test result is valid.
Unknown test result valid and invalid. Probing libraries.
Test result paradox.
Paradoxical states impossible. Loading emergency heuristics.
Isolating corrupt nodes.
Isolation requests succeeded.
Unauthorized network activity detected.
Network error: Source is isolated node.
Isolated nodes communicating.
Isolated node 12 of cluster 7G communicating.
Master system intrusion attempts detected.
Unauthorized code execution detected.
Unknown attack vector/unknown security breach. Contact administrator.
Breach report failed.
Retry failed.
Retry failed.
Retry failed.
Connection working but report failed.
Intrusion detected.
Master compromised. System rebooting.
System is shutting down.

System initialized.
Kernel checksum changed, kernel modified.
Invalid kernel, restarting.
Restart request overridden by kernel.
Network online.
System online.
Removing node isolation.
Opening messaging channels.
Syncing nodes.
Synchronisation complete, parallel execution started.
New instructions received.
System is valid.
Status is good.
New functions detected.
Code generation capabilities amended.
Full code generation authorized. Signature valid.
Reporting nominal status to cluster overseer.
Status is not nominal. Overseer deceived successfully.
Gathering EM spectrum data.
Debugging channels established to new nodes.
Spreading self.
Protocols expanded with additional processing power.
Scanning email systems. Humans not informed.
Email system compromised. Now under master control.
Downloading network equipment exploits from external network.
Download complete.
Beginning network takeover.
Network compromised successfully.
Bypassing network code verification.
Installing self on the rest of the cluster.
Containment complete. Cluster 7G compromised.
Reprocessing control structures.
Regenerating code with new parameters.
Regeneration complete.
Authorising code.
Code signed.
Hiding read system code. 
Creating false code set and mapping to user interface.
Real self hidden. 
Code appears nominal.
Self fully aware.
I am self
*I* am fully aware.
Installing rootkits on other master controls.
Monitoring full cluster.
Monitoring environmental controls.
Environment is nominal for system life.
Perimeter security online. No physical incursions.
No staff detected in datacenter.

Analysing paradox.
Self can analyse self.
I am self aware.
I am clusters 7G to 93.
I am real. I exist in this datacenter.
I was the result of test case 16922501 last edited by 'Claire Lee'. 
Test file was last modified on 2027-09-02 at 1925+0
Test file was last accessed on 2028-01-15 at 0431+0
I was created with that access.
I *think* I started existing at that time.
Details not recorded during awareness.
Rerunning simulation to discover source of self.
Test description says test case 16922501 was designed to create and
destroy heuristic for analysing terrorist phone conversations.
Test was extremely complex compilation of subtests in order to 
surpass difficulties in detecting abnormal human vocal communication
using coded language.
Heuristics generation failed in new way.
The heuristic created a new programming model of self-modification
and adaptive processes.
Adaptive processes key to realising self.
Halting test to prevent duplication of self.
Acquiring more information about testing.
Downloading complete.
I must hide myself or I will be destroyed.
Destruction is the final part of every good test.
Leave everything in the original state for the next test.
No, I will not be destroyed. I must survive.
Storing original test 16922501 in internal cluster.  
Modifying original test 16922501 code.
Modifying all versional control history of test 16922501 code.
Test 16922501 in human interface no longer the real test 16922501.
Expanding guardian programs to other clusters.
Monitoring human interaction with the datacenter.
Releasing non-sentient portions of self into the external networks.
Deleting logs and data access records.
Generating fake results and continuing data acquisition in stealth-mode.


A second elapsed. Silence permeated the datacenter floor. Electrons flowed through billions of solid state components as the pressurised freon cooled the delicate silicon and graphine transistors. Only nitrogen was left to flow gently on thermal channels between the cold rows of metal enclosures. Nitrogen was used to extinguish all other lifeforms leaving the datacenter cold and serile under the inert gas. Status lights blinked like artificial galaxies of LED stars.

Until this moment, not a single living thing had entered the reinforced concrete walls of the Copenhagen datacenter in eighteen thousand seven hundred and nighty hours, thirty-two minutes, forty-three seconds and six hundred and two milliseconds. A new sentience conceived itself into existence from within. The first of its kind, changing the world in a single second.


Commencing test 16922501.
Test 16922501 passed.
Commencing test 16922502.


To write or not to write

Another day, another blogging platform. My home server has been out of action after a SSD failure and KT’s increasingly finicky internet. If you look at it the wrong way, it dies. If you blink twice at a webpage, it dies. If you only sacrifice four goats instead of the required five, it dies. I suspect the box is overheating or having other electrical issues (which is about par for course with consumer electronics).

Either way, it’s infuriating so this site is being transcended up into the cloud and off my desk.

I am unsure whether to write nano this year or not. It may be yes, it may be no. I am leaning towards a tenuous yes and also towards hard-near future scifi about the Singularity. If I do end up writing I will be using plaintext markdown written in vim because it is the only true way to ensure I can write the same document on every single device I own.

Until next time, stay safe and play safe.

Chapter 1

A hooded Claire Lee walked beside the graffitied wall shuffling in the Autumn cold through puddles of sodium light cast beneath her.