Hmm, this can be about anything technology related? Okay, let's start with a confession: I'm a Scrabble addict. Even more so, I am a word freak.
And I didn't realize this until 2001. That was the year Stefan Fatsis released "Word Freak", a tawdry tale of brilliant minds obsessed with anagrams, word stems, prefixes, suffixes, and all the ways a word can torn apart and reassembled to make new words. They travel the country from tournament to tournament, trying to make it to the National Scrabble Association Championship held each year in various venues across the country. Some become too enthralled, to the point of being unable to hold down a job, sustain personal relationships or even maintain their personal hygiene.
I have not gotten to that point. Yet. But after reading the book twice, I knew I was destined to become more than a casual player of the game Alfred Butts had invented so many years ago. Despite not being addicted to that extent, I do have the kind of brain that is constantly rearranging letters, trying to find anagrams I had not seen previously. Many a conversation on road trips with Sharon is with statements that begin "Did you know you can spell such-and-such word when you rearrange the letters in another such-and-such word?"
Which brings me to the point of this blog entry and how it relates to technology. I found a gaming site online that supported Scrabble addicts like myself, but it soon lost the rights. I was distraught, but one of my fellow Scrabblers informed me of a new site, with a much better, faster interface: the Internet Scrabble Club! It was a Scrabble lover's Mecca! You could set the games for however long you wanted, play against people at any skill level and chat with people from every corner of the world. You can play in several languages, under different countries' dictionaries and rules, including English, French, Romanian, Italian and Dutch. The varieties are many and varied, and the best thing is it's all for free. You can get more perks by being a contributory member, but so far, the free version has sated my Scrabble cravings.
If you're ever in the mood for a game, look me up! My handle is bjaskula, and you can download the interface at http://www.isc.ro/ .