...... news ......

11/08/99: Today marks the first anniversary of this site. I have watched with interest for the last few days as the counter slowly crept upward. I had hoped for a fortuitous rush of meandering web folk to push the first year total over the millenium mark. It was not to be, but I am nevertheless surprised by the number of people who do click through here. Thanks to all. May the second year be as groovy as the first.

11/23/99: Weeks have slipped by without an update, which means I must have been busy. It's nearly Thanksgiving again, though, which means plenty of overeating and camaraderie for the Magnus clan.

12/02/99: Thanksgiving was a good time. It was a gas to see my nephew, Wolfe, who is at a point in his life when runny noses and Sesame Street dominate his consciousness. I've returned to the last two weeks of the term, a flurry of things to do, and the warm weather that San Diego ranks amongst its attractions. December already!

12/03/99: The site was unavailable for several hours yesterday. No justification was given, but all was well after they restarted the server. The glitch delayed the update: Blasphemy-Boy entangles our omnipotent protagonist in his nefarious plot!

12/09/99: The site was unavailable for several hours again this evening. The guys at my ISP have a 'system performance specialist' on the way to check out the problem, but so far the outages are mysteries they resolve by restarting the server and crossing their fingers.

The real update is that the adventure concluded with glorious battle in last night's session. Since Sam Mercury and company helped to defeat the elite defenders of humanity, fortune has begun to shine on monsterkind. I've updated his page in true D&D style by adding all the loot he salvaged from humanity's finest.

12/13/99: The server problems having been traced to a small glitch resulting from recent upgrades, service here should return to its irrefragable resilience. Elsewhere, I recently registered the domain Boomshakalaka.com. My brother and I went halvsies on it ostensibly as an investment; surely, we reasoned, some basketball or disco fan would pay to have it as a vanity domain. Covertly, we were both jonesing to register another domain; Boomshakalaka was as good a rallying cry as any.

12/16/99: Well colour me disgruntled. Although it's been available for a month and a half and although forty-some people have downloaded the freeware teaser, Vector Heroes has not been registered by even a single person. It's disappointing, because it means that although bunches of folks have scoped out the ten figures in the free version none of them saw or cared to see the other thirty-odd figures. I've used the word 'although' three times already, which means I'm starting to rant. Well, I still have my day job...

12/24/99: Hanukkah has come and gone, Solstice was bright, and now Christmas is nearly here. I'd be callous not to take a moment from my busy schedule of basking in the sun to wish you a merry holiday or joyous secular vacation, as you prefer. May Y2K bring you only the happiest of chaos.

1/06/00: It's the year 2000, which means this fun and surprisingly productive break is almost at an end. Now hours of back-breaking labour and unrelenting deep thought beckon from the bowels of next week.

1/07/00: I'm still writing 99 on my checks, but I'm sure an upgrade to my firmware will fix the bug.

I didn't mention the good news when it came to pass, but the last days of December saw the inaugural registration of Vector Heroes. Woo hoo.

1/09/00: Today I cleaned and polished the links page. I also removed the front-page link to last Fall's logic course page, but if you need it you can still find it here.

1/24/00: It occurred to me today that the sentence "This is a recording" is true when played back, just as you'd expect, but only because it was false when somebody said it.

2/6/00: In the weekly game, Jane's dark past is threatening to repeat itself. I've taken the opportunity to update the Jane Page. No art was left untouched, plus there's a vignette from last session.

2/16/00: This week, campus was visited by the proselytizing firebrand Brother Jed. He defended righteous hatred, the subjigation of women, and anti-semitism with all the moral persuasiveness of a Jack Chick tract. He even took the time to digress and reminisce about his history of collegiate sexual conquest. Somehow, Jed managed to arouse the wrath of dozens of usually apathetic students. The crowd directed mockery, derision, and general dislike at him and his message of hate.

You'll burn for this.

(above) This is the climax to Brother Jed's hellfire storybook.

2/20/00: Jane's recent tribulations headline the Gaming Page. Sammy is moved back to his own page, but with a spot of new art.

3/12/00: A silly idea and a bit of time with Freehand produced a new file of paper miniatures this week. It's an homage to the sort of Dungeons&Dragons that most of us were weaned on, the game that put the dungeon first and put the "roll" into role-playing games. Lured by the clamour of +1 maces and Lightning Bolts, check out Vector Stickmen.

3/16/00: Spring-cleaning in my Documents directory, I recently uncovered a vignette that I wrote several years ago. With that theme stuck in my mind, I doodled faeries all day. Prose and doodles now converge to form The Fairy Story.

3/17/00: An article I wrote a while back was virtually published today. Pyramid magazine, which has been an on-line journal for some time, ran an article by yours truly.

3/26/00: Recent additions to the site didn't quite fit into the old taxonomy, so I've added a new page where I can put odds and ends. Unhappy with any anglophone moniker, I call it Zettel.

3/28/00: RPGnet's Industry Directory presently lists Vector Heroes among its Top 25 listings. I feel a bit silly about it, though, since its score of 7.5 is the average of two votes. If you have an opinion on the pages here, good or bad, you can make it count: Rate Vector Heroes! Rate Gaming Stuff!

4/4/00: Java roll overs come to the home page! I had entertained various java-driven possibilities for the site menu in the past, but they were either too clumsy or too cheesy. Then I concocted this which, I dare say, steers between those extremes.

4/6/00: We didn't actually see any rhinos on this recent trip to the Zoo, but we did see signs of them.

Another sign. Signs of life.

4/26/00: Almost three weeks have passed without an update here, but I have a host of excuses ranging from the academic to the romantic. All goes well, I am glad to say, and I have few complaints.

I have made my own bookplates for some time, but with the most recent batch I decided on a total redesign. Two new drawings resulted: one a misappropriated Aubrey Beardsley and the other of my own mouse swashbuckler, Tarrant Claypoole.

Ex libris. Ex libris.

4/27/00: I'm running Tarrant in tonight's game. Since it's been a long time since he's seen action, I've taken the opportunity to touch up his character story. New art, too.

5/17/00: After two days of down time, the site is back up. Tech support blames a faulty hard drive on the server, one which they told me several times would be replaced "within 2 hours."

I made an update to Gaming Stuff just before the loss of service, revamping the character pages and so on.

5/31/00: Rummaging during last weekend's trip to Texas, I found heaps of gaming art from the old days. I've scanned in several drawings and added them to the Supers World page.

6/8/00: The same rummaging that turned up old drawings also turned up old game books. I just listed my old Warhammer 40K books and my back issues of White Dwarf on eBay. If that's the sort of things that rocks your boat, check out my auctions.

Also: God-man's secret identity is revealed in his latest thrilling adventure.

6/13/00: I have fond memories of Dark Dungeons, the funny little book that showed just how ignorant some people can be. It's been published to the web, but with some curious changes.

6/19/00: Some time ago, a fellow philosopher and I were discussing various systems of logical notation. We devised our own, Stickman Logic, which I HTMLiorated and humbly submit for your perusal.

6/26/00: Take the red pill. I returned from MacHack yesterday. It was a glorious weekend of sleep deprivation and high geekdom. I presented a paper which, although well received, came in second place behind a paper on techniques for 3-D imaging. Chris Russ, who wrote that other paper and ran away with Best Paper, provided 3-D glasses for the whole audience at the Hack show.

7/6/00: I returned yesterday from five days in Texas. With Warren, Bridget, Wolfe, and Cristyn all visiting at the same time I was, my parents put me on a couch in the living room. It was good to see everyone and to be able to show Cristyn around my old stomping grounds, but it is good to be home.

This trip allowed for more rummaging. It turned up a boxful of delights, several of which are destined for eBay. Until I get the auctions together, I offer only this doodle from notes I took in one of my first philosophy classes.

Consciousness is a function of brains. Well... some brains anyway...

7/9/00: A double shot of Dark Dungeons:

First, I have learned more about the curious changes in Dark Dungeons between the elf-hating version I remember and the version on the Jack Chick website. Read all about it.

Second, I have finished editting Mystery Science Theater 3000 meets Dark Dungeons. It's a steel-cage death match of silly dogma versus wise-cracking robots!

7/10/00: It's disconcerting when actual news reads like an episode from Klingon history. A Reuters news item appears under the headline: Barak Heads for Summit As Government Self-Destructs

7/17/00: On Friday, system trouble escalated to calamity. Something happened such that any application doing anything on my computer would cue a fatal crash. I tracked the problem to a heretofore unproblematic extension, which I removed. I subsequently rebuilt the desktop, meeting with mixed success. My big mistake was to load Norton Utilities. It found a host of problems on my hard drive, problems which it offered to fix. After enough fixing, the hard drive was no longer recognizeable to the system. It would not boot, could not be read, and so on.

I ordered DiskWarrior, waited until Saturday for it to arrive, and held my breath. That groovy program was able to recover much of what Norton had managed to corrupt, but could only provide it as a sea of files where the directory structure had been. I panned it for files that had changed since my last backup, reformatted, and set about rebuilding.

One thing that was lost was my e-mail address book. Perhaps I still have your address, but perhaps I do not. If it's important that I should, drop me a line.

If you're a Macintosh user, remember this take-home lesson: Shun Norton. It is evil. Cling tight to Alsoft's DiskWarrior. Praise be to Al.

7/26/00: I have gotten enough programs reinstalled and reconfigured on my computer that I can sit down and use it without being constantly reminded that there was a recent hard-drive calamity. I took the crash as a sign that it was time for a new computer, however, so all this is only biding time until the G4 Cube arrives. The Cube even comes with digital speakers, a real comfort since the power supply on my old speakers died just yesterday.

I'm not sure why, but all of this put me in the mood to redesign the menubar for the site. Behold. Click.

8/2/00: I defended my prospectus today, which was a vigorous but enjoyable process. When the paper work is finished, I'll have my Masters degree and be an official PhD candidate. Whew!

In more sitely news, I added a page which allows visitors to search the site. Why, you ask? Because it was there.

8/4/00: More research into the bowdlerization of Dark Dungeons has turned up some curious details about the illuminated scapegoat John Todd.

8/6/00: A couple of new items. The article on Beat Poetry is both a bunch of poems and the rules for a game, so I wasn't sure where it belonged. Since it's a diceless sort of game, I put it over on the Zettel page.

8/15/00: I have been let go as the department webmaster for UCSD Philosophy. I get the sense that they intend a total site redesign, so the Alice in Wonderland theme will probably go the way of the dodo. Sigh.

8/25/00: It's been a busy week of sorts. I spent five days in Seattle, drinking martinis with Warren and Bridget and playing legos with Wolfe. My new computer had arrived by the time I returned. The new box is a G4 Cube: a sleek, unnervingly quiet lunch pail of a Macintosh. My room is now cluttered with boxes, cable, and gear as I try to sort out the several computers.

8/26/00: I've moved the site to a different server. With any luck, you won't notice any difference.

8/31/00: A few weeks ago, I read at an open-mic poetry night. I now offer the same bad poems in writing, to console anyone who missed the live performance.

9/2/00: Recent adventures in the game pushed us north, revealing new territory, so I've updated the Map of the Known World. I also added a list of known Fey Lords.
Also: a recipe for cranberry sauce.

9/3/00: I discovered a glitch that made all the pdf's download as blank pages. That should be fixed. If you tried downloading Vector Heroes in the last few days, you should try again now.

9/16/00: Both Cristyn and I had birthdays this week, which has provided ample occasion for celebration, jubilation, and all my favourite 'ations.

I only made small touch ups to the site today. I've played with a few ideas, run up against the limits of style-sheet support in current browsers, and decided that the touch ups are enough.

9/26/00: I added a new page with links and descriptions for the on-line comics that I read regularly. Is it hubris to assume that you will defer to my impeccable taste in such matters? Probably, but perhaps you'll discover something that makes it worth your time.

9/27/00: Another thrilling adventure of God-Man!

10/4/00: Yesterday, I received a genuinely polite e-mail from Chick Publications asking me to remove the Dark Dungeons tract from my site. Mystery Science Theater 3000 meets Dark Dungeons riffs on it, but with a bit of work I arrived at a new version which links to the copy of the tract at Chick's own website. The solution is not exactly elegant, but it seems compliant with both IE and Netscape.

10/16/00: This morning, I moved my alarm clock into the office and set it up to serve a web cam. I plugged it in, booted it up, and it worked. Although I spent some time tweaking it and preening it, it worked straight away and took to its new network environment like adhesive to a sweater.

10/20/00: Cristyn and I are engaged. It has been a week or so, but we wanted to notify certain people directly and I didn't want them to read it here first. I want to say something about the depth of my love for her, but I fear words are insufficient to the task. I'll stop, before I get any sappier.

10/22/00: I've added a second a web cam. None of the colour but all of the excitement of the first web cam. That is to say, very little ever happens but it's updated frequently.

Update: After wrangling with the second webcam, I have brough it off-line and given up. It could be made to work, but only in fits and starts.

10/23/00: After struggling with alternative methods, I finally settled on something rather like a web cam pointed at my alarm clock by having the box serve up an image of what's happening on its screen. After some scripting and optimization, I had it working for a brief while. Other problems developed. Argh.