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Reader Services FAQ

What are Ftrain Reader Services? Why don't they work?


Why are you mucking with PHP instead of writing about tasty kittens?
I don't know. It might be a mistake.


Something is broken! I can't change my name!
Umm, yep. I released this thing too soon on purpose to find out what I need to do to make it work. Sometimes the name doesn't change (on IE?) I don't know exactly why. If things aren't working and you are willing to trouble yourself to care about this silliness, please:

  1. “Erase Yourself” by clicking the "Erase Yourself" link.
  2. Enter a name for yourself.
  3. Click “Change”
  4. Click one more links.
  5. If you're still called “Stranger”, send me an email at ford@ftrain.com with your type of browser and operating system.

Hopefully then I can figure it out.


All right. So it more or less works. What is it?
As my web site has grown to a surprisingly large ( ) number of pages of mostly textual content (about 1500 double-spaced pages) I've come to realize that the standard click-around method of navigating is not working; it's not giving real grade-A narrative experience. Readers are lost and never found again. Since Ftrain has been a rather half-assed affair for 4 years running, this is no terrific loss.

But let's say I or someone else wanted you to have more options as a reader. Let's say they wanted to help you find your way around a story and keep track of things and make use of all the exciting things computers offer in your reading experience? In a way that's not intrusive or distracting but actually contributes to the reading experience?

So that's what I want all this to be. This is just a tiny little beginning but I released it because it's fun and confusing in a way that I hope will make others think a bit, even if they just think I'm an idiot, and because I need to work out some of the basic problems before I continue building it.


Do you expect me to read all of this shit? Like all 1000+ pieces?
No. Honestly I myself don't know everything that's here on Ftrain anymore. I've more or less given up on editing too much from the first few years, although I'm trying to slowly make things into coherent narratives.

Anyway, this is more of a proof-of-concept. Maybe the idea will be useful for other things where the reader will gain benefit from reading it in its entirety. I'm starting somewhere.


You suck. This sucks. Please entertain me.
I promise to try harder.


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Ftrain.com

PEEK

Ftrain.com is the website of Paul Ford and his pseudonyms. It is showing its age. I'm rewriting the code but it's taking some time.

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About the author: I've been running this website from 1997. For a living I write stories and essays, program computers, edit things, and help people launch online publications. (LinkedIn). I wrote a novel. I was an editor at Harper's Magazine for five years; then I was a Contributing Editor; now I am a free agent. I was also on NPR's All Things Considered for a while. I still write for The Morning News, and some other places.

If you have any questions for me, I am very accessible by email. You can email me at ford@ftrain.com and ask me things and I will try to answer. Especially if you want to clarify something or write something critical. I am glad to clarify things so that you can disagree more effectively.

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© 1974-2011 Paul Ford

Recent

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10 Timeframes. (June 20)

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