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About the project and myself

That's me To the left you can see the face of this site's author. My name is Konstantin Vlasov, and I'm a programmer. I met the world of programming in about 7th year of school, and, as many other programmers, I started with Basic on such legendary machines as ZX Spectrum and BK-0010. Later, in 10th year they started teaching us Pascal and I became an adherent of this language. But after my aquaintance with C and C++ I switched to them and continue to like these languages, sharing dislike of most of C/C++ programmers for the newfangled trends like C# and .NET which may be convenient for programmer but are real disasters for user who has to suffer from everlasting machine slowdowns and download huge .NET packages for the only reason that a tiny 1 Kb program could be launched.

At school my experience was limited with programming for MS-DOS only. After my entering the institute, I knew about the development environment Visual C++ 6.0 and the MFC class library. Maybe this is not the best library, but I liked it very much for its simplisity and for not having to distribute additional DLL files: all the necessary files are already included into the standard Windows distribution. Unfortunately, this IDE is way too outdated (in particular, it does not support building 64-bit applications), so I had to switch to the more modern Visual C++ 2008 (version 2010 suddenly was rewritten on WPF and became slow as hell).

Some time ago in our country popularity of so-called japanese crosswords increased drastically. I was carried away by them too; it is very interesting how from chaotic set of numbers one can construct some picture, and quite often these pictures were very beautiful! The only thing I didn't like was the need of spending much time painting over many cells instead of thinking about later part of solution. At that time I decided to write a program for work with japanese crosswords: a mouse click is much faster than painting square cells on paper.
The first version of this program I tried to write on Pascal under MS-DOS, but I did not finish it. The next version I wrote using MFC, and it was much more serious project than the first one. And then I thought: why not distribute this program over Internet?.. That's how this web-site's idea was born.

At first, there was only the program itself plus several packages with the crosswords. Then, as I was implementing new projects, the site have been being filled with new handicrafts. Some of them remained almost uncalled for, the others found their lovers. Unfortunately, because of the lack of time most projects are frozen. For each program I have a large list of wishes and future plans, but I don't have enough time to implement them all. However, some of programs are being slowly developed, and the chanses are that new versions will appear in the future…

And in the end I'd like to say several words about web-browsers. I'm an Opera fan myself, so all the pages are first checked in this browser. Also, I try to support Mozilla Firefox. The Google Chrome browser which have gained popularity recently, I refuse to install to my machine until they stop polluting it with crapload of their precious auto-checking, auto-updating, auto-advertising and so on, and so forth. If you find anything wrong with them, I might check and try to fix the problem using a virtual machine, but don't expect me wasting too much time on it. What about Internet Explorer, I refuse to support this miracle of nature. I'm really sorry to say that, but its behaviour does not follow any logic known to man. If I tell it to create a table cell with height of 8 pixels, and it stretches it to 20; when I tell it to put text at center, and it moves it to the left; when 2/3 of all the development time is spent for adjusting the site exclusively to this particular engine — I'm losing heart. I'm creating my site according to the approved international standards (particularly, XHTML 1.0). The latest IE versions finally seem to come to realizing that such thing as international standard exists, but sorry folks, too late. I'm not going to wriggle myself to the odds and whims of this browser any longer. It works? Fine. No? Not my problem. Write to Microsoft, I'm not going to spend my time for their faults. Of course, I'll still try to keep some basic functionality of my site working in IE too, but what I won't do is to clean up all the minor visual glitches, so some artifacts might remain.