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Infinety Column : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

The long and bombastic story of the candid Jean Francofan and his bizarres ideas




How old is the Internet? In the form that made him famous, of course, the web... For, five years? Less... It happened when the Mosaic grows with 99k each day, until one day he realised that his name is really Netscape... It was when in Redmond they did not knew the words site and browser, and when, somewhere in Europe, a young gentleman named Linus preapred in his little college-room a "self-made" Unix, called Linux...

At that time, the one who write this right now, tried to think the he was a producer of a soap-opera on the romanian FM. Even more, in his loneliness, he think to write it himself. A bit of luck, some juncture, a (very little) narrative toolbox (inherited during the very fast traversal of the Letters Faculty at the Bucharest University) - all of this made what they called "The long and bombastic story of the candid Jean Francofan and hist unfulfilled destiny". 60 episodes, 5-7 minutes each, for three months.

Who was Jean, anyway? His real name was (and, for those who believe that the soap-opera characters never dies, his real name is) Jean Ionescu. They call him Jean Francofan. Don't ask way. He's looking for his destiny. Don't ask why. He is 25 years old. You can ask why, but I don't know what you can get. For start, he want to be a MIG pilot. And he wants to do that for saving the Baragan from the slow and very nasty MIG-degradation: he want to keep the MIG on the sky, so it never falls down on the Europe's best granary. He can't do that all by himself, he need an advisor: Julius Plamadeala, called Aragon, and a friend, Manuel, called Manu marca Banu. We have of course some feminish flavor, a lady character: her name is Gilda, and, for the first ten episodes, she is a strange and misterious presence...

Well, well that was three-for years ago... Meanwhile, Navigator turned into Composer, and he was saled in no more than 2.000.000 (2 million) copys to American Army, in Redmond they finally invented the word browser, but they don't know yet if it's part of the operating system or not (by the way, wich operating system, anyway?), and his draft is writen using an editor from a window manager (www.kde.org) from the X-server used by Linux RedHat 5.1

And, whether you belive this or not, Jean survived to all this dramatic changes: he continues to exist, is alive and kicking, but no more hertzian waves...

Jean Francofan try now to conquer the Net... He found a very comfortable place at www.roua.ro, he relies on the fiability of a databse server like mSQL  for keeping track of all readers, and he also relies on the goodwilling of all the tired surfers who need to relax their eyes and minds.

Why a net-serial? Because the Net is the first worldwide "democratic" media. It belongs tho everybody and to nobody. Virtually he can overcome any other traditional media: TV, radio, print. He can mix them all: sound, image, text. If you want to make a soap-opera on your own, you don't need producers, casting, maybe your own television station. In exchange of that you must know what is a web-server, a cgi-bin itnerface, HTML, gif, jpeg and so on... And of course, you must persuade your friends to read you every day, and you must have enough inspiration each day for writing what you want to write.

One more thing: if you are interested in this soap-opera (the official opening is, or was, depending on when you are reading this, on 1 september 1998) you'll have to wait 24 hours between episodes. You must to. This is the very principle of a soap-opera, doesn't it?

Dragos Roua
dragos@roua.ro
dragos@ctn.ro
dragos@romsat.ro

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