Coded green.

Sunday 10 September 2000


Pic of the day: Screenshot from Daggerfall.

Escape from reality

OK, it seems that creating micro black holes is not a certainty at the Large Hadron Collider, but rather a possible event if some cosmological theory turns out to be correct. That is slightly reassuring, though I still think that people should not take even a moderate risk of removing the whole planet from the universe, except by unanimous vote of all humans, great apes and dolphins. Then again, I guess I feel pretty strongly about this planet after all those years here.

This have not kept me from momentarily escaping to another dimension, though. Namely, the pocket universe of Daggerfall. Although long in the tooth by now, this computer role playing environment is still the ultimate in free form roleplaying, unless you happen to have a vivid imagination and a competent dungeon master with you. (Dungeon master in the RPG sense of the word. I understand people with other hobbies also use expressions like dungeon and master, in other connections. Not that I would know, really.)

Anyway, apart from some eating and walking and small quantities of Baileys, I've spent much of my day in Daggerfall. Either playing the game, or fleshing out my new character, Aureus. I've had fun writing a little bit of fan fiction, a tradition generally accepted by our friends at Bethsoft. While keeping within the bounds of the Daggerfall universe, I've still managed to create a heroic character with a wild streak, in the tradition of the early 20th century fiction. (Think Conan, Tarzan, Carter, and that bronze guy whose name escapes me.) I even threw in a scantily clad, innocent young female for good measure. (These are notoriously rare now at the turn of the century.) Pure fluff! I am proud of myself.

Today's picture is supposed to be from the end of the second story. The stream is not visible, but should be in the gully to the right.


Even without black holes, reality has its potholes. For instance, I've had to revert my web browser to Opera 4.0 beta 4. The final version - Opera 4.02 - was better. And it only cost $15 to upgrade, which I was more than willing to do. However, the online shop crashed on me, giving me a silly error message. And I don't have the foggiest idea what I did wrong. I tried several times. I don't usually shop online, and there was no helpful guiding text. For instance, do you write your credit card number in one stretch, or do you put in blanks for every 4 digits like printed on the card? Will Norwegian postal codes be legal in zip code fields? (Remember that Opera is made in Norway, here.) What about non-US characters in address? Not a word, except a very generic error message.

They can't miss the money very much if that's the best they do to sell their browser online. Luckily the beta version still works with the 3.x registration code. The rollback was fast and painless.

The error I got when I tried to shop online was incidentally the same as when I tried to register as a customer in the co-shopping network some days ago. (And no, it's not Opera - I tried with IE and it was even worse. IE substitutes its own error messages, it seems.)


Apart from all things Daggerfall, I also read my free online comics, come black holes or high water. These days, I particularly adore Clan of the cats. The current story line ends today Sunday, and the last few days have been all in color. That Jamie guy sure can draw!

Also the comic stands out by the respect it shows for different faiths. While the main character is a witch, the Christians around her are generally portrayed as sincere and tolerant - probably more so than many people in real life. All around, Jamie portrays all manner of people with a rare empathy, where even the bad guys have their good sides. And the good ones have their weaknesses, too.

I may also mention that the Clan of the Cats section on the Keenspot message board is similarly friendly and slightly humorous. I am surprised it's not more frequented. Then again, I personally find message boards inconvenient at best. I prefer doing my writing offline, under no time pressure. Like e-mail, newsgroups ... or my journal.

Well - that's basically it. Bright blessings! :)

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