GPF News Archive

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Howdy, gang. You would not believe how long I've been trying to sit down and compose this News post. Well, OK, it has to be less than four months, but I can assure you it's been quite a while. Unfortunately, day job responsibilities, business trips, illnesses, surgeries, birthdays, holidays, blizzards, and even plain old senility have gotten in the way its composition. Let's hope I can finish this in time for it to go up on Monday....

Numerous Archive Fixes: First, I'm happy to report that through the diligent reporting of several Faulties—a special hat tip is due to Richard L. who single-handedly reported most of them—quite a few errors in the Comic Archive has been fixed. Many of these errors were introduced during the "upgrade" of the regular comic images mentioned in the previous News item. Unfortunately, having a legacy of twelve years and over three-thousand comics introduced inconsistencies in how the files were named and organized. This resulted in several stories being processed incorrectly when I ran them through my automated scripts, causing some comics to be out of order or to even show the wrong comics for certain stories. Among the worst affected stories was "A Tail of Two Species", our crossover with Kevin & Kell, which was broken pretty badly by this bug. The GPF Premium exclusive High-Definition archives were unaffected by these issues since the problem only manifested during the "regular definition" upgrade.

Another gitch that was fixed was our crossover with Funny Farm, although the root cause was somewhat different. The crossover, "Evil Minds Unite", ran way back in the summer of 2003. Since then, Funny Farm has ended and Ryan Smith has taken the archives down (a state that Ryan assures me will be temporary). The old URL to the Funny Farm main page redirects to a subsection of Ryan's current site, but all the crossover links here at GPF were subsequently broken. Thankfully, Ryan was generous enough to provide me with the Funny Farm strips from the sequence, which I have since added to the GPF archives. There are two outstanding problems which I'm still working on, however. First, the crossover banners above the strips do not work for the first week of the crossover. For the subsequent weeks they provide a static link back to the current Funny Farm site, but for that first week the links point to broken URLs. I've updated the files on the site but mysteriously the changes are not taking effect. Secondly, the first week of Funny Farm strips are not currently included, largely because I need to sit down and figure out what order they should be displayed in with respect to the GPF strips. The first week of the crossover, which occurred before the crossover was officially announced, provides a sort of preamble to the full story but the chronology within each strip is independent of the other and doesn't fully sync up between the two titles. I do plan to add these strips in eventually once I find the best way to approach the issue, but I haven't been able to set aside time yet to that task.

GPF Store Now Accepts U.S. Credit Cards: The next bit of good news is that after twelve long years I finally have a means (other than PayPal) to accept credit cards as payment in the GPF Store. We have signed up with Square, which allows us to accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover cards drawn from U.S. banks. Thus you can now pay for GPF Store orders—including subscriptions to GPF Premium—via another method other than PayPal, check, or money order. The caveat here is that our international readers are unfortunately still left out in the cold. While Square plans to support international cards eventually, they have not given an ETA for when they'll be added. Obviously, once they add that option we'll hop on it licketty-split, but for now those of you outside the U.S. must still use PayPal for any purchases with us. PayPal is still the fastest option, of course, especially for Premium subscriptions (those paying by PayPal can use the automated sign-up and renewal system and have their accounts ready in minutes), but U.S. readers can now choose from even more options to financially support the strip.

GPF Tip Jar Now Accepts BitCoin: Speaking of financial support, I'd like to remind you that the Tip Jar page is still up and available. I don't push the Tip Jar because I don't like fishing for "donations", but I know some of you like leaving tips in lieu of or in addition to making purchases from the Store. Well, we're running a new experiment and introduction BitCoin donations to the mix. Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer digital currency; there is no central authority to issue new money or keep track of transactions and it is an open source project currently in beta development stage. We find the concept of BitCoin fascinating, although we're approaching it cautiously for now. While we're not ready to consider accepting Store or Premium payments in BitCoins just yet, we are opening up the Tip Jar for the ultra-geeky out there who are interested in this option. You can find our BitCoin address on the Tip Jar page. If you have any questions concerning BitCoins in the Tip Jar, e-mail me and I'll try to answer them. You can learn more about BitCoins at the official BitCoin FAQ.

2011 Convention Status: I mentioned briefly in the previous News item that I'm hoping to return to the convention scene this year. So far, I don't have anything new to report, but I'm still investigating my options. I know Dragon*Con is officially off the list for good (they've snubbed me as a guest three years in a row), and Comic-Con International is likely too expensive but I haven't ruled it out completely yet. I put my name out to convention organizers that I'm available should they want me, but I should broaden than appeal to con-going fans. If you're a Faultie with plans of attending a convention this year, why not put in a request with then con staff on our behalf? The requests of attendees likely carry more weight with guest committees than with us coming to them on our own. If you'd like to approach a con guest committee about looking into us, feel free to drop me a line and I can provide you with any details you might need. You already know the URL for the site, of course, and you can find our other contact information on the Contact Us page. Please note that attendees requesting that a guest be considered will likely carry more weight when those requests come in volume, so try to work as a group with other attendees of the same con to coordinate your efforts. We may be able to provide means for collaborating with fellow attendees if necessary.

Well, what do you know... I did finish this News post, and before the deadline at that. Hopefully I can take less than four months to compose the next News update when it's time comes.

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