Certain Things

Sometime last week, I discovered that being old is very scary. I suppose it’s a realization that should’ve come sooner (or maybe later) but it’s something that I could’ve done without. To be clear, it’s not the finale that I’m afraid of; not the big Black Man, not at all, but rather the creaky worndown way when you near him… that’s terrifying.

I should probably expand on this, and I will, at a later date. Still thinking =)

On a related note, Vanilla Sky is a great movie.

Koal: out of the closet!

I’ve added a new story to Koal: The Adventures of Me and Martha Jane, but before you go reading that (ha!), a few words…

Good writing on the net is hard to come by. However, one kind of writing that the net has in excess (perhaps because of its lack of censorship, or because of its relative anonymity) is erotica… or to be blunt, porn stories. A great majority of these (perhaps > 99%) is wham-bam porn. A few gems surface every now and then, but simply because of the extent of erotica that the net has produced over the years, the number of good sexual stories far exceeds the number of good non-sexual ones. That’s not to say all sexual writing on the net is good, but as a personal observation, I’ve found this rule to be valid through and through (it has changed a lot in very recent history though). Of course, good has no place in Koal, but there are a few great works too… <g>

One of the sweetest authors I’ve read is SJR. From the moment I read his story (sadly, he has only written one), I wanted to give something back, and this is my small way of paying tribute to this wondeful writer. If you are not offended by this sort of material, go on and read his story; if you have an open mind, I urge you to read it, it’s really that nice 😀

A personal note… “Coming out of the closet” is a relatively innocous term that has in recent history been accorded some distinctive other meanings. While the title of this blog doesn’t mean what the phrase means in popular lingo [no offense to you guys out there ;-)], this is still in some ways a coming out of the closet for me. Close friends will know what I’m talking about.

Btw, don’t tell me I didn’t warn you. And it has been gradual too… 😛

Away Again!

Onam is up, again. And a trip to my mom’s house is on the table, again. So I’ll bid adieu for at least two days from now on since getting on the net in Malakkara is like getting on a boat in T’puram, it’s just not done 😉

Before I go, a status on my projects… LOBAglobal has some interesting times up ahead, I’ll assure you that ;-). The mini-project hasn’t been going anywhere, mostly because I still don’t know enough C++ to have a whing at coding; pthreads on win32 (thanks to a link by Vivek) at least seems to work, but the bulk of the coding still remains to be done. About my other project, well, that’s stalled too… though I’ll think on it in the days ahead.

For people who asked and still haven’t gotten my trip pictures, I’m really really sorry. I meant to send them sooner, but got tied up in lots of other things – I will get them to you 😀

Books too… a review of Six Degrees should be up as soon as I finish reading it, that’s a really amazing book.

And about my latest project, Koal: the response to it has been really heartening. Though it didn’t come from the sources I expected it to, many people emailed me and told me it was nice, some had a lot of suggestions to make too. Koal is something that I’ve been wanting to do for a long time, and a growth in the number of stories hosted will happen very soon 😉


Koal: Online Reading!

One of the projects I mentioned before is now online.

Koal is an online reading repository (stress on online reading) that aims to make reading from your browser a great experience. It maintains an archive of freely available stories on the net written by independent authors who love to write and craft words together in their free time. Koal is still in a very alpha stage, and some browser and usability issues linger. Comments and noises of encouragement are welcome.

Some assorted info about Koal:

  • Koal was developed in three days. The source (still alpha) is available.
  • Koal aims to be both XHTML/CSS compliant and work in every browser on the planet. Currently, IE 6 SP2, Firefox 0.9.2 and Opera 7.2 work without a hitch. If you notice problems, leave a comment or email me.
  • Koal is also an experiment in usability. The interface (as you might have noticed <g>) is closely modeled on Microsoft Reader, and one of the challenges was how to bring about a coherent design in such a small amount of space. I hope I have succeeded 😉 Suggestions are always welcome.
  • Volunteers to convert malformed HTML documents into XHTML. If you have a working knowledge of what XHTML is, I’ll be very glad if you could help!
  • I’m stopping work on Koal for a while to pay attention to my other projects, but content additions will go on as and when I get the time to do it.

Do try it out and leave a comment here. One author is currently hogging all of Koal, but he has the credentials to do it ;-). All of Fel’s works will soon find their way in.

New readers, do give Tower of Sorcery a spin, it’ll be worth the addiction 😉