will be a name very familiar to regular readers of loonygames,
well, it should be! Apart from doing the cover for issue
1.29, Illiad's ISP-inspired kinda-sitcom-stype comic series,
User Friendly, has
been featured inside the hallowed pages of loonygames every
day since issue 1.12!
first things first. Illiad? What sort of name is that? It certainly
had me pondering that question for a long time - was it his
real name? If not, what does it mean? How is it pronounced?
Was it Egyptian maybe? Can it be used to hurt people? The truth
behind the name is actually related to one of Illiad's personal
interests - poetry - and stems from one of his favorite poems;
Homer's epic, The Iliad.
The cover image from Illiad's new book (73k).
I guess if I had known something about poetry then the name
wouldn't have been quite so enigmatic, but the additional 'l'
really threw me off the track! (And who'd have guessed that,
as well as working in the atomic power industry, Homer was also
a poet? Not I!)
know that it's not his real name now, but the name, Illiad (pronounced;
ILL-EE-ADD), is mentioned everywhere, including on his new book
(discussed below) with no mention ever of his real name. So
what is his real name? Well (I feel a bit like Shaggy at the
end of an episode of Scooby Doo, just about to tear off the
mask and reveal the true identity of this weeks baddie!), Illiad's
real name is J.D. Frazer!
initials! There's still some mystery after all!
of whether you want to call him Illiad or J.D., history will
record him as the creator of the incredibly popular comic strip,
User Friendly, a project that started innocently enough, with
Illiad drawing a few of his work mates, but it was quickly to
become a success that even now is still growing, with plenty
of fans in high places. "Eric S. Raymond? Jerry Pournelle?
John Carmack? There are others, take your pick!"
Illiad does the Matrix (88k).
Editor loonyboi, is also a huge fan of User Friendly and its
little group of strange inhabitants. I asked him why he approached
Illiad about running UF daily on loonygames. "Because the
strip rules. If Dilbert were remotely funny, it still wouldn't
be half as entertaining as User Friendly." Actually, the
Dilbert reference also comes up in Amazon.com's glowing review
of the book:
Friendly is to the open-source world what Dilbert is to swarming
hives of Windows cubicles." [Amazon.com]
has a seriously wide-ranging background, seemingly happy to
give anything a bit of a go. Take his university career for
example. "A year of criminology, two years of geology/planet
science, and about two years of classical studies and literature.
Never graduated." If nothing else, he could probably write
a really interesting book about industrial companies that illegally
dump toxins into the atmosphere (!).