Warning. The following publications may induce intense reasoning.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Bleach Used To Be Cool

This is the case of how the stylistic anime Bleach turned from being amusing and cool, into a gay infested bothersome series.

As evidence, I give you Opening Theme song #1 (first aired), and Opening Theme song #15 (last aired). I have quit the series long ago, somewhere around its' middle. It was indeed promising, but like many children, it became lost and crappy; not to mention depressing and boring.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Amazonian Adventures

Kindle Touch
As one may notice by the small adverts to the right, I have been releasing eBooks on Amazon these recent weeks. This is a project I have taken on myself, as I am a great fan of stories & books. I felt I must repay society, just as I had enjoyed the products it gave to me.

Also, I felt that books are a magnificent way to promote one's ideas, and even gain some cash. With this motivation at mind - I have been working hard at writing, conceptualizing, and managing my books on Amazon. These guys may be tricky at times. It took me several weeks to understand the right approach for getting things done.

For example, my books would not have their Number of Pages displayed, until I had finally messaged Amazon support directly. They have a form for this specific request, but it seems redundant. Another example, is changing the price of an eBook, and repeatedly releasing it updated, thus it may eventually cause the release to be bugged - and not work in diverse ways. Be warned. Enjoy :)

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Sing a Song, Little Bird.

"Oh, clouds of the sky. 
    Oh, moon in the night.
        Fetch me up and light. 
             Tell me to shine in spite."

Friday, December 28, 2012

What Name Would You Choose?

Gandalf the Grey by Lucas Graciano
As part of my upcoming Flash RPG game, I was wondering about character names. This is both for the players to learn from, and for NPCs (Non-Player Characters) and the game world.

I feel that a page or a method to assist with name choice is a good step in the right direction. As such, let me share here a few interesting results I have pinpointed in my quest for awesome ancient legendary names!

"Looking For Group" Comic.
An awesome character necessitates
an awesome name!
A good start is always Norse Mythology. A second best and great for Elves is Celtic Mythology. For variation and less fluid sounds there is Ancient Germanic. Finally, for those who are interested in more finesse and modern names one can browse through Anglo-Saxon.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A Signature

I am in dire need of designing myself an HTML signature for posts in other blogs and places. ><'

Let's try something then:

Assaf Koss, 
Professional Author & Web-Developer, 
Check out my blog and books at: AssafKoss.blogspot.com

Code for the above:

Assaf Koss,
Professional Author <i>&</i> Web-Developer, 
<b><a href="http://assafkoss.blogspot.com">Check out my blog and books at: AssafKoss.blogspot.com</a></b>

Showering versus Bathing

I don't know these kids,
but they sure are having fun!
In the past, people would wash themselves either in natural water basins, or using a bucket. In pre-historic times, I can reliably claim that only natural water sources were used.

Today on the other hand, it seems that the lack of free time together with stress, has reduced bathing to a minimum. I conclude from this about the contemporary use of soap.

It seems obvious that while people were soaking in water for extended periods of time, their skin would cleanse and refresh efficiently. When water is scarce, or expensive, the use of natural plant oils as soap can reduce water usage tremendously. Therefor, if a person does not enjoy a lengthy amount of time inside water (e.g. Swimming), then I would certainly recommend using soap. Only then would the skin and its' pores be honestly clean.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

TortoiseSVN - Software Version Control

Lovely interface & functionality.
In relation to the flash game project I'm working on (as mentioned in a previous post), I feel that TortoiseSVN deserves some credit.

TortoiseSVN is an interface that connects and sits in the OS's shell (Windows/Linux/Mac), and allows the user to manage the source code and files of a software project. It features useful functions, such as sharing the same files online with other team members. Also, it offers a revisioning system, that makes sure all files have rollbacks. In other words, every change and update is managed and stored automatically for you.

It runs quickly and neatly. Some websites offer hosting services that work with the SVN infrastructure for free or for a cheap price, thus completing the requirements of a manageable project environment for a team.

Monday, December 24, 2012

"Believe In Yourself"

Dr. Ivan Joseph in his TEDx talk "The Skill of Self Confidence", shares a lesson learned the hard way. In life, we get plenty of negative feedback from our surroundings. Whether it is people - those closer to us or strangers - or simply life itself disagreeing with our opinion.

The skill we each must develop, in order to grow as people and take care of our most important needs and wants, is confidence in ourselves. Be it as a single person, "I am confident in myself all the way," or be it as a group or team, "We are confident in ourselves and our shared ability and responsibility."

I have learned my own self-confidence the hard way. I pushed against shove, and often did so only when push came to shove. Learning to trust yourself and your own intuition and feelings takes effort and time. The best way, that I recommend, is taking on challenges every day. Regardless of the sense in those tasks, we all must challenge our abilities and ideas in order to grow. Just as important, we must do this so that we don't wither and eventually wilt.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Technical Update #2,504

I have updated some of the gadgets on your right. Among them is an image-link to my first published eBook and short story "Short Link, Quick Wink."

Please comment to recommend any gadgets you think should appear on my, or any, blog. :-)

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Olive Oil Lamp

If you have not yet seen, played with, and/or made an oil lamp with olive oil - please do. Here is advice on exactly that.

Aladdin style.
Frugal Survivalist Style.
There is an endless variety of lamps, and many methods to use. I recommend using any lamp material that would not heat up and burn your fingers. Also, I recommend using cotton for a wick. And last, but not least, I recommend pure high-quality olive oil, even though other grades and kinds could be used. That's just me :-)

For you, here is how I made my own lamp. A used glass jar is great for holding the oil, and it is possible to add water below the oil - so that the wick is not far away. If there is a large distance between wick and oil, more than a few centimeters, then it is likely that the wick will burn-out and the lamp stop flaming. Easily fixed with a new wick and oil replenishment.

I used a hammer and nail to make a hole for the wick to pass through. I bent the wick sideways so that the flame doesn't easily kill the soaked wick. Olive oil is hardly flammable, and would take very flammable conditions in order to burn openly.

I am still adjusting my lamp experiment, and will update on the matter here. Somehow, it feels that having an ancient style lamp would be most awesome and comfortable. Meh, used jars are what I have.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Treating Cotton To Withstand Water

Maybe you have recently asked yourself, "Hey! How do I make a piece of cotton fabric stand against the winter rains? Maybe even cover my -insert item-, so it is kept dry and clean." So here it is.

Things You'll Need
Waterproofing Spray


    • 1
      Clean the cotton fabric before applying the waterproofing spray. If you are going to apply the waterproofing spray to a cotton trench coat or overcoat, have it dry cleaned first.
    • 2
      Hang the coat outside in an open area or lay it flat on a clean table outside. Apply the spray in an even back and forth motion to fully cover the material. If the coat is laying on a table, make sure to allow the spray to dry on one side before turning it over to apply to the other side.
    • 3
      Reapply the waterproofing spray following the same steps as above once you find that the coat has begun to lose its ability to keep the water from seeping through.

      Quoted from eHow.com after scanning around for an easy solution. Second best is something awkward, like hardcore oldstyle ways, for example our friend StigOfTheDump shares:
      Horace Kepharts book Camping and Woodcraft contains a recipe as follows:

      Waterproofing Cloth at Home. — If one has 
      home facilities, there is no reason why he should not 
      make a good job of waterproofing for himself. 

      Paraffine Process. — The cheapest, simplest, and, in 
      some respects, the most satisfactory way is to get a cake 
      or two of paraffine or cerasine, lay the tent on a table 
      rub the outer side with the wax until it has a good coat- 
      ing evenly distributed, then iron the cloth with a medium- 
      hot flatiron, which melts the wax and runs it into every 
      pore of the cloth. The more closely woven the cloth, the 
      less wax and less total weight. 

      Some prefer to treat the tent with a solution of paraffine. 
      In this case, cut the wax into shavings so it will dis- 
      solve readily. Put 2 lbs. of the wax in 2 gallons of tur- 
      pentine (for a 7x9 tent or thereabouts). Place the ves- 
      sel in a tub of hot water until solution is completed. 
      Meantime set up the tent true and taut. Then paint it 
      with the hot solution, working rapidly, and using a stiff 
      brush. Do this on a sunny morning and let tent stand 
      until quite dry. The turpentine adds a certain elasticity 
      to the wax; benzine does not. 

      For tents to be used in cold weather before an 
      open fire, the following process is better: 

      Alum and Sugar of Lead. — First soak the tent over- 
      night in water to rid it of sizing, and hang up to dry. 
      Then get enough soft water to make the solutions (rain- 
      water is best; some city waters will do, others are too 
      hard). Have two tubs or wash-boilers big enough for 
      the purpose. In one, dissolve alum in hot soft water, 
      in the proportion of 34 Jt). to the gallon. In the other, 
      with the same amount of hot water, dissolve sugar of 
      lead (lead acetate — a poison) in the same proportion. 
      Let the solutions stand until clear; then add the sugar 
      of lead solution to the alum liquor. Let stand about four 
      hours, or until all the lead sulphate has precipitated. 
      Then pour off the clear liquor from the dregs into the 
      other tub, thoroughly work the tent in it with the hands 
      until every part is quite penetrated, and let soak over- 
      night. In the morning, rinse well, stretch, and hang up 
      to dry. 

      A closely woven cloth should be used. 

      This treatment fixes acetate of alumina in the fibers of 
      the cloth. The final rinsing is to cleanse the fabric from 
      the useless white powder of sulphate of lead that is de- 
      posited on it. Failures are usually due to using hard 
      water, or a less proportion of alum than here recom- 
      mended, or to not dissolving the chemicals separately and 
      decanting off the clear liquor. When directions are fol- 
      lowed, the cloth will be rain-proof and practically spark- 
      proof, but not damp-proof if you use it as a ground-sheet 
      to lie on, or if exposed to friction. After a good deal of 
      use, the tent will need treating over again, as the mineral 
      deposit gradually washes out. 

      Remember that cotton goods shrink considerably when 
      first soaked. 

      Alum and Soap. — Shave up about a pound of laundry 
      soap and dissolve it in 2 gallons of hot water. Soak the 
      cloth in it, dry out thoroughly, and then soak in an alum 
      solution as above, and dry again. 

      I have had no success with the alum and lime 
      method mentioned by " Nessmuk." 

      Good waterproofing compounds can be purchased 
      teady-made from some tent-makers. 

      The following recipes, although not suitable for 
      tents, are useful for other articles of equipment, and 
      are included here while on the subject of water- 
      proofing cloth: 

      Oiled Cloth. — For groupd-sheets to use under bedding: 
      get some of the best grade of boiled linseed oil of a 
      reputable paint dealer. One quart will cover five or six 
      square yards of heavy sheeting. Pour it into a pan big 
      ■enough to dip your hand into. Lay out the cloth and rub 
      the oil into it between your palms, using just enough oil 
      at a time to soak the cloth through, filling the pores, but 
      leaving no surplus. Then stretch it in a barn or garret, 
      or other dry shady place, for one week. Finish drying by 
      hanging in the sunlight three or four days, fi .st one side 
      up, then the other. 

      Apologies for wierd spelling mistakes as its taken from an OCR scan of the book that is free online and in the public domain here:

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Lemon Water [FREE]

Slice a lemon in half. Prepare an empty and clean cup; preferably from glass.

Take saw-knife or fork, and grind the flesh of the lemon into the cup. Make sure you turn the lemon towards the cup, so you do not spray nor leak beyond the edges. Juice will flow - maybe some seeds as well. No worries, for the seeds drop to the bottom.

Add water. Not too much. Probably just a bit more than the amount of juice. Mix with the fork or knife. A sweet-sour drink is ready for you enjoyment! :-)

Monday, December 17, 2012

"If blondes have more fun, then blond pirates must have a heck of a lot more fun.”

I have recently been invited to Like the Israeli Pirate Party, which is not running for the upcoming 2013 elections. The invitation came from a respectable activist and distant friend Moshe Menkin.

As I do with anything new, I went ahead to check on it. Reading Wiki and from their website, curiosity got the better of me. Nevermind the sensibility of having a pirate party or organisation. What about the logic? It is faulty, and I intend to get some answers!

A. How could pirates, who often go solo, and sometimes group in very personal crews, join hands with a mass crowd of many thousands? After all, pirates are suspicious and protective.

B. Pirates do whatever they like; without consent or agreement. They behave so at all times. How could a pirate, that shares no trust beyond the self, go about asking and even demanding things vocally? I mean, pirates just take what they want when they want it, and do what is necessary for success.

I see myself as a pirate in person and action. I have suffered the torment of living under the rule of morons for too long, and have learned to trust only myself and those who prove themselves in action. Therefor, I do as I please and I ask for no permission.

Anyone who does not act this way is no pirate.
^ Double Negative FTW

Friday, December 14, 2012

Gaming A Make

Fighting monsters in abandoned halls. 
The Dungeon Blitz Website
Getting inspiration from the small project of Dungeon Blitz, both I and a good friend decided to make an old dream come true - and make an Online Multiplayer Roleplay Action Game (OMRAG? lol).

Making a simple Flash scroller with cartoon graphics and animations seems like the most reasonable choice for a team of two. We are both without funding, but we try to make up for that with (part time jobs) enthusiasm and dedication! He is more the artist type, and I am definitely a programmer and technical person. While we are both doing Flash tutorials, I am attempting to put into action a simple server and client.

There seems to be a variety of options to choose from for such a project these days; something that makes this easier and quicker. Flash Professional has become a powerful tool, and I only need to tweak a sample server, and insert the client code into my own project. I intend to have a basic version to show this upcoming week, and you can definitely expect to see it here. ;-)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Greens Growing Gigantically Good.

The shock and awe of winter in the eastern regions of the Mediterranean sea. Morning light. Sitting on my bed with the laptop's webcam activated. Time to show the greens!
I recon some sort of fox or digging animal attacked my Turnip root. ><' The garden-bed was dug again, and all the new seedlings got buried. Lucky the root was not eaten.
Petting my strong growing Radish patch, showing other friends around and behind. I love mixed gardens. There is nothing more joyous than seeing my Broad Beans climbing up and covering the ground so well.
Lacking a three dimensional feel to it - this is my circle garden-bed, surrounded by the stones dug up from it. Heavily stoned place :-P This one is strictly mixed with everything I get - seed or root plant.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Eating Fresh And Low Sodium.

200mg Sodium per 100g
My choice of cream!
It took me a while to realize that our Human bodies can seriously get dehydrated by confusing certain foods that digest slowly and contain a lot of sodium - or salt in common language.

For example, for dairy eaters such as myself with an attraction to cream or yogurt cheese (spreadable), it is a mandatory action to check the sodium content listed on the package. I have felt the difference between choices in practice already, and recommend that you notice it as well!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Celebrate With Me: This Public Life Begins!

"Tonight, a window cover clears
Within view of clouds anear
By the firelight and mold
Our merriment grows bold."

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