J167 – Sandstorm 14


This comic was another rally run, basically drawn in 1 hour of sketching yesterday and then 2~3 hours of inking and shading today. I’m not sure how come I keep doing this now. Probably it’s not intentional. More like me waiting till the last minute.

Just had to go fix a typo in Derek’s comic. There’s a typo in his rant too, but I can’t be bothred to fix it now. Ah well.

dcomic 441


Drawn up through 459 now. Experimental “features” for 454 and 455 also complete. Looks pretty “sharp” according to a friend of mine.

So I’m actually writing this one up a bit early. During my friday CME session for that matter. This room is very stuffy and I fear I’ll fall asleep if I’m only paying attention. Paying attention can be quite the difficult task, as I’m sure we’ve all found out the hard way. Professor’s talking about fitting lines to scatter plots…

Ok so I hate like adhering to someone else’s eating schedule cuz I get hungry at rather arbitrary times. Eating on a cafeteria system can get annoying at times as I can’t just go and get snacks throughout the day as I usually would at home. So I bought snacks industrial quantities and set them in my room. This consists of lage amounts of goldfish and gatorade.

Now I can’t drink Gatorade unless I have ice and this still requires me to get out to the cafeteria, but the ice machine is open at more hours than the cafeteria itself. So that was great, but sometimes they turn off that ice machine. Only happened a few times now, but it’s annoying.

So I thought ok. I need to get my own ice somehow. Problem is, unlike dry foods like goldfish and power drinks like gatorade, ice doesn’t keep so well at room temperature. So what doo I need? A fridge. Duh. Where am I going to get that? Well, it’s no fun unless I build one.

Well, I haven’t actually build a fridge, but I’ve got a good idea as to how to go about it. There’s a thing called a thermoelectric cooler that works off something else called the Peltier effect. I don’t really have more than a broad idea of how it works, but what this thing does is move heat.

So we know that, given sufficient insulation around a given space, moving heat out of that space will lower the temperature. So we place our TEC in the walls of something like a foam box, add a few fatty heatsinks and a power source… and voila. Instant fridge.

And it shouldn’t be that much harder in practice than in theory; most components are premade for you. e TEC itself is widely available and many should be compatible with PC heatsinks. At the same time an old PC power supply should provide juice and the foam box is a joke.

Ok, well sometime when I’m not too lazy I’ll take a look at this. That’s all for now.

PS: I wanted to add that I usually update a bit earlier than J, but you’ll need to scroll up in the drop-down menu to see an early update on my half. So you can check that on a sunday or occasionally a saturday or friday and possibly expect to see an early update.

J166 – Sandstorm 13


Happy Mole Day again, everyone. (I hadn’t realized this before I started writing this rant.)

So, on the topic of random junk that’s happened: I’ve built an “ion motor” in my room. Sort of. Basically, it’s an S-shaped paperclip balanced on another paper clip. When you


connect the “motor” to a high-voltage power source, charge gathers, collecting at the sharp points at the ends of the “S” (this is how charge behaves). The gathered charge creates a strong electric field at the ends of the “S”, charging the air nearby, which then expands (charged air particles repel other similarly charged air particles), spinning the spinner.

Where did you get a high-voltage power source, you ask?

Why, almost every house these days has one.


I also participated in a cardboard boat race. This is not as dumb as it sounds. We were allowed to use waterproofing lacquer/paint and caulk, so you could actually make your boat waterproof. Our team took first …

In vertical speed. We left with the “Titanic Award”. Ah well, such is life. Picture of boat here (with (obscure) meme!).

I hope it’s clear that “J” is putting on his vest in the last panel. (Like I said last time, the characters aren’t actually named; “J” is a convenient way of referring to him, though.)

EDIT: LOL @ Derek spoofing panels from some of my older comics. GG, dude.

dcomic 440


456 in process of being drawn.

I’m really liking some of the art up here past 454. It’s unshaded due to laziness and a miscalculation concerning the heavy shading of pages of past, but the lineart is coming together quite well. Essentially I’m trying to put together the cleaness of pages in the 410 and 420 series with the – for lack of a better word – “substance” of the upper 430 and lower 440 series.

Both are kind of experiments in the extremes so I’m poking around the middle ground for now. Though I really like the last panel on 455, 454 and 456 are probably some of the pages for a while. Hopefully this keeps up into 457 when I reintroduce shading XD.

Anyways I realized a while ago that somewhere along the line I stopped trying to immitate the Akamatsu style. Conference with J confirms the fact that the Akamatsu influence has largely left my drawing. I don’t really know when this started to happen, but my best guess is that it started way back in the 410’s.

Anyways that’s all I’ve gotta say. Have yourselves a nice day.

J165 – Sandstorm 12


Originally, I was going to post something else. But then I thought, “Hey, if I hustle, then I can get a page of Sandstorm done, and then I can keep up a chain of Sandstorm updates again.” So today’s comic was done in less than two days’ time. Whee.

Recently, one of my textbooks fell off my shelf, hitting my poor computer and dislodging the “delete” key. Now it doesn’t really stay on, so it’s kind of a bummer when I go over there to hit it and wind up pushing this random rubber point instead. I guess I’ll either have to fix it or get used to it.

I finally caved in and bought a 4H pencil, as discussed back in this update. There were no 6H pencils in the store, so I setteled for 4H. This was probably a good idea as the 4H is pretty darn hard already, and I don’t want my art to be too invisible.

Read Derek’s “entry” for today before continuing.

Another alternative would be to use “J” and “D” as initails for something else. I’m still not sure what’s wrong with keeping the original names, but whatever.

Or he could do what I’m doing for Sandstorm, which is basically to avoid mentioning the character names at all. (How many of you noticed?)

dcomic 439


Started working on 454.

ANYWAYS, this next part added a bit later. I’ve actually been thinking about this one for a while, though not really in earnest until more recently. It goes something like this: way back when NWars comics were just J and I talking about random shit, it was alright that we were just J and D, cuz those were (in my mind at least), graphical representations of ourselves doing random shit and everyine knew that J and D stood for Justin and Derek cuz those just happen to be our names.

But the problem is at some point I decided to write this blasted story and though it wasn’t really supposed to be a serious affair in the beginning it’s started to turn out to be a slightly more serious affair than I originally envisioned (or at least I think it is) even though this affair of seriousness has actually been in the planning for a very long time, just not since the beginning. So it happens that at the beginning I thought it was pretty much ok to keep our names as J and D because they were still graphical representations of ourselves just doing random shit that was more random than usual (Well, J’s representation was of his id or something, who the hell knows).

But now a days this story is kinda picking up the pace and with those blasted compilations and stuff I’m tempted to try to make the entire story if not less random at least make more sense. This involves giving the characters some blasted names. Not like J and D. Especially since J and D are not quite graphical representations of ourselves like they were at the beginning (well, mad scientist J may still represent J’s id, as we can’t really tell what it’s made of). But that’s not the only problem, Mr. Young and Mr. Duong have never been given proper names, just randomass nicknames which are coming back to bite me in the ass. I’d also want to modify the names of the UN group and others such that, at least nominally, they are different from their real-life counterparts, just as I did in Starcrossed.

So my initial idea was simple: we can still have J and D. Just make it phonetic; we can have ‘Jay’ and ‘Dee’. Crappy names at best, it at least gives some semblance of a real name that’s not just letters or our actual names. As people actually do call us J-Lan and D-Lim, ‘Jay Lan’ and ‘Dee Lim’, though terrible to look at in words, does not sound too bad when you roll it off the tongue. Chikara and Aerith have fine names; I have no qualms there. Mr. Young’s name is easily rectified into a nominally different variant, he can be “Jack Yung”. Makes his name sound asian, but ultimately still the same. Mr. Duong’s name is harder to rectify because his first name is a direct translation from vietnamese. “Duong” is actually pronounced “Zuung”, so his last name can be made “Zung”. Very simple. Chris Armstrong, Daniel Silverman, Achuta Kadambi, Nat Crawford, and Doug Tsui will be “Kris Armstrong”, “Dan Silver”, “Achoo Kadambi”, “Nate Crawford”, and “Doug Tissue” respectively. Ok, so not Doug Tissue.

or that’s the preliminary plan. It’ll be something like that. I’ll just have to go back through the archives and correct everything once it’s done. At that point I will also edit the text such that each character is properly introduced. Compilation one may even get some extra material. I’ve also wanted to write out a character page, but of course, that can’t happen ’til this mess is taken care of. Alright, That’s pretty much it.

and I know there’s tons of typos, I wrote this fast.

J164 – Sandstorm 11


Hi everyone! Sorry the comic is late yet again! I had some sort of mental malfunction and decided to do my homework first. *gasp!*

Anyway, today’s comic is a bit … weird. I was thinking of something like this, but I’m not sure it turned out exactly the way I thought it would. mostly the blending from image to image isn’t nearly as smooth as I would have liked. Ah well. Adding to the already-frequent wordless plot advancement in Sandstorm.

On another note, please take a look at the “Editor” entry for clip #11 here. w00t.

J163 – Sandstorm 10


Hey, sorry this is late. I had a Physics exam on Monday, and was up late studying.

So, I finally caved in and watched Haruhi. It was good. However, I was wondering about some of Haruhi’s actions after


Episode 6. If she put her hair up in a ponytail because Kyon supposedly likes them, why doesn’t she wear it that way after that episode? D claims it’s because Kyon said it looked good on her. I don’t quite think that makes sense in what I’ve understood of Haruhi’s disposition thus far, so I was trying to figure out what else could have caused her actions or change of mind.


While I was pondering this thought, I smacked into one of the doors on MIT’s Ralph Landau Building. That’ll teach me to overthink anime.

In other news, I finally figured out that the hat the sunglasses-wearing policeman has is called a combination cap. I’m also starting to figure out how to draw them correctly.

As for the ribbon-like stuff around J-san’s wrists in the last panel, that’s cuff-tape, as inspired by Dominion Tank Police. Think hard plastic heat-seal packaging bands used as handcuffs.