Messages & News
Wednesday, December 31th 2003
2003 synopsis and New Year Resolution
What can be said? It's that time of year again. The time when you have to be nice to people around for no particular reason, the time to be joyful and eat and be sick. It’s bloody xmas again where all the shops are playing endless tape-loops of Christmas carols, which, lets face it, are not the world's best tunes. So this year, I have decided to hibernate and miss it all.
The website has received more than 183,000 visitors this year, a little more than last but not by much. I have received a grand total of 5075 email of spam, with fortunately will be reduce if my predictions are correct, to around 600 next year with a more intelligent way to display my email address while shielding it from spammers.
About my last year resolution, I indeed got better at drawing and I now got a Watcom tablet that I still need to master... Overall, I admit that 2003 was all but a good year, I was busy as inhumanly possible. I still need to work on my drawing skills and learn how to get to go beyond the pencil & paper, more specifically learning to color what I draw.
This year, as 2004 dawn, I am online trying to get back to the AM and THC message board and read what I have missed and hope that a few people still remember me at any of those place. So for now, no Freespace, no BattleZone, or anything... No time...
Tuesday, December 16th 2003
Yipido I have graduated
I am officially a bachelor in biochemistry. Yay me.
On the other hand that just mean I am up against something more challenging for my master degree since I am not that eager to start a professional career at this moment.
Friday, November 14th 2003
Former Email Address Blocked
It's official, I have suspended my old email account. Hopefully, my new account will be more difficult to harvest and it will also help me remove myself from lists of unwarranted mass chain-letters since they’re usually more pointless than entertaining/interesting.
So from now on, you can contact me at Tempest [at] Colba [dot] Net and any email sent to the former address will give you a “The following addresses had permanent fatal errors: Quota exceeded” message.
Sunday, August 10th 2003
Email address change
It makes more than 7 months now that the new address Tempest [at] Colba [dot] Net is the primary address to contact me for the website and as planned, I will suspend completely my other address (Tempest1 [at] colba [dot] net) in the next few weeks.
Wednesday, July 23th 2003
Denial of Services and/or Spammers
I have started to get reports from technicians working at IPowerWeb and got a few explanations about the recent shutdown of the entire Dragnix.Net domain. In the hours that preceded the suspension, one or a group of individuals has tried to illegally gain and/or accessed the server. IPowerWeb has opted to pull the plug on the site rather than compromising the whole domain.
At this moment, it is still unclear what these individual were trying to do, but it is possible that our server was about to become (unwillingly) a platform to launch massive quantity of advertising or to launch denial of service attack (DoS).
The site will be closely monitored for the next few weeks by IpowerWeb and the staff here.
I would like to thank you for your patience and understanding throughout the difficult times we have faced.
Wednesday, July 16th 2003
Unplanned Services Outage
We understand that there is a severe disruption of services for all users and we are aware that the services outage does continue. We have quickly undertake a constructive dialog to resolves the problem but at this moment we do not know the nature nor the source of the problem.
As we works through this issue we appreciate your patience and support. In order to help us, please refrain from speculating about this or trying to contact IPowerWeb staff about this problem. Also, avoid sending emails to inform us about this situation; this is likely to aggrieve the situation by possibly taking down our mail server located on the ColbaNet server, however, you are encouraged to leave your supportive messages in our guestbook or discuss and be informed of the latest developments about this there.
In closing, I would like to reaffirm that the problem is addressed and will be corrected shortly. All the sections of this website will soon return online.
Thanks you for your understanding,
Sunday, June 29th 2003
Altermeta & Deus-ex-morphic
I think I was so busy that I greatly neglected this site and this section. Today, I want to speak about drawings. Yes, New Year resolution and once I put my mind to something, I don't let it goes easily.
First thing is, I plan to get back drawing and posting a lot more. I also think about making my own little gallery and make those drawings easily available to public.
Secondly, I told you two messages below that I would contact the authors which I was trying to grasp their technique and as the image above imply, I think it is time to pay tribute to them. There is two main artists that I wish to thanks, first is Joseph Jones who contacted me a year and half ago (if you are reading this, sorry if I didn't get back to you). His site contain some interesting info about anatomy but it also contains adult material so I cannot really link it here, but you can find his gallery by searching it in google by using his name (adding "tegu" in the keyword help a lot).
But I think a notable part of the tribute goes to Casey Young. I came across his site about 6 month ago and I got some honest comments about my drawings so far. Moreover, he maintains an amusing web comic involving anthropomorphic dragons (dragons who are human shaped). The artwork is quite good, the story is amusing and it involves dragons... what to ask more from a webcomic? So I guess if you are reading this, you could be interested to take a look... Seriously do it and vote for his site if you like it.
Sunday, June 22th 2003
Scratch another year
Well, for those who are wondering why the theme music of the site has been changed to Blink 182 - What's My Age Again, it was to commemorate that Tempest as another summer on his account. What this has to do with the music, just assume that I have my reasons.
At any rate, I have taken a moment to pause and to think clearly for a moment about this... about what I have done and about the things that should have done but didn't. It as been quite a recurring subject in a lot of recent discussion (on the board, in chat, and on another board as well) was about on what is an adult exactly. Depending of the definition, I qualify and then when I look at the facts, I certainly do not. It all good pretending to be an adult, but that just doesn't match the facts.
All this to says that I would relish the opportunity to be 10 years younger if I could retain my "experience points"... You know it quite hard to reach level 2, I don't want to start all over again :P
In closing, perhaps to give half a worth to this message, I just want to say that you (and everyone of us) should go get act like a child from time to time, like if you are twelve all over again and pretend that this moment is all that matters, because it is and it does, or at least it does to you, or it should, and that’s all that matters.
Thursday, January 16th 2003
New Year Resolution Update
Well, with everything going quite fine recently, I thought I could keep you updated with my "New Year resolutions". Because somewhere, if I am able to come with nice drawings, I may be able to add more original pictures on the site. If anyone actually care, send me your support, flames mail, or advice at the usual address.
Last Tuesday, I have gathered the very basic tools I needed:
- A Staedtler Marsmicro 0.3 mm automatic pencil
- A pack of 25 lead for the above mentioned pencil
- 500 sheets of photocopier papers (actually, that what I planned to buy, but I saw a 150 pages "Artist Book" with a genuine fake leather cover, so I opted for that...)
For the real artists out there who are insulted at the idea of using a 0.3 mm HB automatic pencil and drawing on ultra cheap paper, well just sue me ;) (no sincerely, you can send me tips and advice if you want to).
So I have started drawing something at least one a day, something good enough for a public display at least once a week and something I am proud of once a month. So far, I am trying to assimilate the skill of a few undisclosed artists, I will try to contact them once I have something nice to show them...
All this to say: stay tuned for Tempest's Artwork.
Tuesday, December 31th 2002
New Year: Fresh Start?
As the year 2003 dawns, I feel the urge to write something that will constitute the final entry of 2002.
I think I should start with something related to the website. First, I managed to avoid using advertising to finance the website and when I think about it, this was probably not a very good idea. Also, back in 1998 this site receives more than 29,102 visitors and it has doubled every year until 2002 where it will probably reach around 183,000 visitors. While this is slightly above the attendance of 2001 (with 172,885 visitors), it is nevertheless a number I did not even expect to reach back when I started to code html.
However, this popularity has come with a price: there was a steady increase of spam, and it will probably reach the 3300 emails of useless advertising before 2002 comes to an end. As this slowly get out of control despite the tougher measures to control it, I think that I should merely abandon my former email and make the complete transition to Tempest [at] Colba [dot] Net. Tomorrow, I will probably began removing the old address from the site and from the last few places where I still use it. I still plan in a near future to do some changes to the site and update sections that were forsaken.
Now unto personal stuff and the traditional New Year resolutions. I am a few courses away from getting my Bachelor's degree in biochemistry and I cannot say that I am displeased with my grades so far; this a good news considering my charged schedule. As for the New Year resolutions, I think there is only one serious thing I could do this year and it is to become a more talented artist. My inability to produce quality artwork has made it toll felt on the website and it's a "problem" I always wanted to correct... If I manage to be successful on this one, I will probably be more cheerful when adding the last message in the 2003 page ;)
Where in all of this I will be at midnight? Well, certainly not waiting for the clock to change a 2002 into a 2003; after I reset the website counter, I will go fight the Shivans' Armada. It is perhaps not the best way to use my time right now but I will take comfort in knowing that it will be good for my reflexes and "pilot" skills.
Despite all, I still wish each and every one of you a healthy, happy, and prosperous New Year.
Thursday, December 19th 2002
Today, I have taken the initiative to purchase more server space and now this website has it own domain name: www.dragnix.net. This name is a contraction of the word "dragon" with the word "phoenix", the fist word represent obviously the main theme of the site while the second relates to the mythological creature that die in flame before raising from it ashes. You can disagree with me but I think it's a nice symbolic, especially for a site dealing with mythological creatures.
However, I admit that purchasing an account on IPowerWeb was something I have done with reluctance. I always wanted this site keep it Canadian location, mostly because I am definitively more aware of the laws and Canadian regulation. In fact, the only thing that made the balance tip for IPowerWeb (a server located in California) rather than CanadaWebHosting (my second choice in this decision, a server located in Ontario) was the free domain name offered by the first. It would have appeared amateurish to not have a unique domain name for this website. Also, while this server do not come close to the quality and reliability ColbaNet has offered me during these all these years, I admit they compensate by having useful administrative tools such as reporting 404 errors (i.e. I am notified of problems when they occur rather than waiting for someone to report them).
Bottom line is that I have now 400 meg of webspace and 30 gig of transfer per month, something I do not plan to exceed anytime soon. This will allow me to continue moving forward by making this site one of the most resourceful dragon-related website on the 'net. But all this come with a price, while I can say that I get the most from the least, this has cost me 166$ US for a two years contract. If you find this site useful and if you do not mind parting with a dollar or two, it would definitively appreciate your support. Remember that with or without your support, this site will always be here in a foreseeable future.
22th 10th 2002
Five Years Already!
Well, what an unspectacular site anniversary for this special occasion - you're right, the website has turned FIVE YEARS... about ten days ago... It's a bit disappointing that I can't spend as much time on it as I'd like but it's amazing that you all bear with that and still keep visiting this site...
Looking back at it, that's a long time. While some will probably say that five years is not much from a human perspective, a 5-year-old website is in its golden years. So many updates during these years and countless of emails and feedbacks (and a few flames as well). In general, I can say that I am happy with the design of the site, though I always wanted to make it more objective and include additional information...
A lot of things have happened to me in those five years as well, and while some has been good and some has been bad, I can says that I've enjoyed it and changed for the better... I think.
Sunday, August 25th 2002
This site receives around 20,000 hits per months and while my server ColbaNet was more than generous by giving me 10 meg of web space and an unlimited bandwidth for $14.95 CAN ($10 US) per month, I am seriously lacking of web space. ColbaNet offers me one additional meg for $2 CAN, as you can see there is a limit to their generosity (an additional 100 megs would cost me $200 per month, and this is not very competitive).
As most people, I dislike ads and I think this world would be a better place without them but I need a way to lighten the cost of buying more web space. I have used many geocities accounts (the GW128642TM series) but without FTP access, the management of these sites is just painful not to mention the extremely low transfer rate I am allowed to (1.13kb/sec or 4mb/hour; a 14,400 bauds modem would have a higher bandwidth per month than that). So far, I found a company in Ontario that could give me 400 meg of web space and 10 gig of data transfer rate that would fully satisfy my needs but that also mean additional costs which would not be welcomed these days. It doesn't means that the site will go offline, that just mean that extra web space would be greatly appreciate.
So here are the options available:
1- I continue the GW128642TM series and this cost me nothing but it is not very reliable (these sites often go down because they exceed their data transfer rate)
2- I add ads to the site (by this I means dealing directly with those interested to advertise on this site and making ads as related to dragons merchandises as possible.)
3- I start my own PBS-style funding campaign.
If you feel to comment this or if you have a rather good amount of web space you can provide me (at least 25 meg and 5 gig data transfer rate), you can use this thread to do so or contact me at the usual address.
Monday, August 19th 2002
Apparently MSN staff have removed this site from their "featured site" list and replace the whole section (for the dragons topic, at least) by a new "sponsored site" list. As you can expect, relevance made way to corporations that thought that adding the name "dragon" aside their product would necessarily increase their sales.
So I guess the absurdity has been pushed a bit further by removing sites related with dragons and replaced them with some other sites totally related *ahem* to dragons, such as Dragon Natural speaking voice recognition program, Dragon (tm) Sunglasses at Low Prices (take note that they specify you should expect a cheap product of poor quality and also note that these sunglasses are just plain ordinary sunglasses, and no they do not even have a little dragon logo on them) and the last one but not the least, Ebay which is renown for being a site with vivid descriptions, legends and general information on dragons *end of sarcasm*.
But seriously, it's their business, they can change the rules if they want but it's still a shame that they drop they policy to reward sites for the quality of their content and thus deserve be displayed as a resource sites for a specific keyword. I wouldn't mind that my site would have been replaced by another that would have been better. This would have pushed me to come with something better; some sort of evolutive pressure that would push some to make sites aspiring to a quality of ever-increasing excellence and aesthetic refinement... but now you just have sites that have absolutely no relationship with the keyword. It is also unsurprising that all "featured site" I have found so far are directly linked with Microsoft Inc. such as Encarta Encyclopedia articles.
Bottom line is MSN Search could have been a place where hard-work is rewarded, but as everything else, it just become another source of income for a company that would not even notice the difference if they have or not switched to accept this kind of advertisement on their netsearch.
Friday, June 7th 2002
Well, this site didn't get a proper update for a long time and I am a bit tired to "patch" the site instead of creating new stuff. Therefore, I plan to change several things around here, correct several mistakes as well as improving the general design. So yes expect to see entire sections to be unavailable for some times... Those who remember how horrible (in design, I mean) was the Artistic Section, called the
Miscellaneous Section back then (look how it looks like now), know that re-writing the entire site can only help.
Saturday, April 6th 2002
Back to the Future
Don't forget to switch to daylight saving time at (exactly) 2 a.m. on Sunday.