Line by Line

Archives: 2016

2016 was kind of a crazy year. Fortunately, that had basically no impact on this site's updates. It's just too bad I already used my "end of the world" joke back in 2012.

Sonic, Comics, and Me

posted December 07, 2016

Tags: comics, Sonic, video games

I apologize for the length of time it's taken me to get this post out. This spring, after a series of Sonic-related misfortunes, I decided to take a hiatus from all things Sonic for the duration of Lent. You can read all the details in my earlier post on the subject, so I won't recap them here.

Since then, a few things have changed. For one, I started getting Sonic Universe again. It turned out that the reason I didn't get part 4 of the Silver arc was a delay on Archie's end, so no subscribers got the issue. After a couple months, it did show up. It was also a huge disappointment, like the finales of SU arcs usually are, but whatever. I continued getting SU issues until my subscription ran out, which includes all of "Eggman's Dozen" and the first three parts of the next arc starring Knuckles, Amy, and Team Dark. I never did get the issues I missed from the start of the subscription, or any STH issues.


Read the rest of this post in the blog.

New Art: Inktober 2016

posted November 3, 2016

I decided to try my hand at the Inktober challenge this year. I figured I didn't need thirty-one individual drawings in a row added to the gallery and I definitely didn't have the time to draw and upload something every day, so I put them all together sketchdump-style.

If we're being perfectly honest, I didn't actually manage a drawing every day. There were a few days I didn't get anything drawn and I had to make it up later, and one drawing ended up taking two evenings to finish. But I still had 31 drawings done by the end of October 31st, so it still counts!

You can check out the complete set of Inktober 2016 drawings in the gallery.

Site Navigation Update

posted August 16, 2016

After veritable minutes of work and hours of back-breaking procrastination, I present to you the latest improvement to my Web site: The Reviews section!

Reviews now have their own section, accessible from the main navigation bar (though a sub-section remains on the Other Writing page in case anyone's still looking there). The old Web Stuff section has been removed from the main navigation, since it never became the big section I once hoped it would be, having only the one item that it had when the site launched in 2010. It can now be accessed via Other Writing.

While I was at it, I also removed index.html from all the internal links. This should clean up my URLs a bit, as "index.html" makes the URLs longer and kind of messy without really telling you anything you don't already know.

Don't worry, though; the old URLs ending in index.html will continue to work, and will take you to the exact same content as the shortened ones.

New Art: Wet Cat

posted April 28, 2016

What's this!? I'm posting art, and it's not even December! You can find Wet Cat in the Art Gallery.

This took way too long to get ready to post. I finished it a couple months ago and have been waiting around to get it scanned and added to the gallery. Not much else to say about it that's not in the description in the gallery.

I'm not sure what my next project will be, but if I had to guess I'd say either a review or a blog post. I do owe you a follow-up on that Sonic post.

Tag Search Update

posted April 21, 2016

Tags: programming

After about two and a half years of being "temporarily down for maintenance," the Tag Search function of this blog and that of the art gallery are now back up and running.

I had taken them down in September 2013 when I found an XSS vulnerability. While I'd meant to get them back up quickly, I ended up confusing myself into thinking that the code was beyond repair and abandoned it in favor of writing a new tag search from scratch. (Throwing out your whole existing codebase tends to be a terrible idea, but as with most terrible ideas, it seemed like this time, it was a good idea. It wasn't.)

One roadblock led to another, and I kept setting the project aside in favor of other things. Eventually, I got fed up enough to ask whether that old version was really as irreparable as I'd thought, and it turned out that the bug that looked so daunting was actually fairly trivial to find and fix once I knew where to look.

Here's where things currently stand:


Read the rest of this post in the blog.

Tag Search finally returns!

posted April 20, 2016

After far too long, the tag search in the blog and the one in the art gallery have been restored to a basic level of functionality.

By that I mean that clicking a tag on a blog post or gallery page will now list all the other posts that have the same tag. There are also a few other improvements and bugfixes.

It still has one big limitation, namely that the posts aren't sorted by date or in any other especially meaningful way. (It turns out they're actually alphabetized, but by filename rather than actual post title.) I'll need to do some more work to get aroud this limitation. I have a few other changes I'd like to make as well. However, it's functional enough now to post it and get rid of that temporary "down for maintenance" message that's been up since 2013.

I'll have a short blog post up in a little while explaining what happened. For now, suffice it to say, it works and that makes me happy.

On Hiatus from Sonic Fandom

posted February 10, 2016

Tags: BumbleKing, Sonic

I don't know if this is a rough time to be a Sonic fan, but I've been having a rough time being a Sonic fan lately. It's been a steadily growing pile of frustrations.

For starters, I'm still a little sore over the comic rebooting. I'm also not thrilled with the games lately, as they've focused mainly on mobile apps and Sonic Boom for the last year or two, and before that the last big Sonic game was the playable but disappointing Sonic Lost World. On top of that, Archie Comics cashed my renewal check for Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Universe last Spring, but I've only gotten three issues since then. I e-mailed them twice about this and never got a response.

On Saturday, January 30, I checked to see if Dan Drazen had posted any new reviews, only to find out that at the beginning of January he potsed his last review. He was giving up on the comic (again) after having basically the same subscription problem I had. Not only is one of my favorite reviewers bowing out, but this tells me my subscription issue was not a one-time fluke. I went to BumbleKing to see if anyone there had anything to say about Drazen, only to discover that the forum was shutting down. There were threads set up for everyone to say their goodbyes and to say where they could be reached. It officially locked at midnight the morning of Feb. 7.

Well then. With that, I was just about ready to bow out of Sonic fandom entirely.


Read the rest of this post in the blog.

Review of Sonic #133 and update on coming attractions

posted January 16, 2016

It may be more than two weeks later than I'd hoped, but here's my review of Sonic the Hedgehog #133. You can find it in the Other Writing section.

Writing this review was tough. Because the issue has so many flaws and is so boring overall, it was hard to find something to say without just rattling off a list of nitpicks (though I definitely do a bit of that as well). Fortunately, the "Home" arc is almost over, so I can move on to issues I like, or at least more interesting failures.

I'd also like to add other features to Other Writing so it isn't just the Reviews section but with a confusing name. I have a couple things in the works, but no idea when they'll be ready. I'll probably need a separate Reviews page before much longer, but initially it will stay a subsection of Other Writing. Eventually, I'd like to swap Reviews and Web Stuff, putting Reviews on the main nav bar and Web Stuff as a subset of Other Writing.

I'm considering saving that last change for an HTML5 revamp. That revamp will make it easier for me to implement some other stuff like RSS feeds.

Finally, I'd like to get the Tag Search back online at some point. I have a soft deadline of March, which I doubt I'll meet, but I'd like to have at least a status update by then.