Now, not only can you have your own copy of the program that creates the "virtual blackboard", but you can customize it (even if you don't know Java or have a Java compiler): Just about the only things you can't do are set the font type (Java doesn't have that many fonts available to begin with), and change parameters in the middle of the program.

Here's how you do it:

  1. First, you need a text file that contains the quotes. This has to be a "straight text" file (like NotePad would use), not a Word, WordPad, or other "word processor" file. Also, there can be no blank lines, no lines that have "comments" or other "non-quote" text, and no quotes that stretch to multiple lines; as far as the program is concerned, each line is a single quote.

  2. Next, you need the program file, quotes.class; Click Here to download it. (You need to save it as "quotes.class".) The quotes.class file needs to be in the same directory as the web page that calls it.
    If you have a Java compiler and want the source code, Click Here. Note that the Size() function is being replaced by the getSize() function in Java 1.1, but Netscape 4 does not support getSize() yet.

  3. Finally, you need the HTML file for the web page where you want to include the file. If you are editing the HTML "manually", here is the code:

         <applet code=quotes.class name=quotes width=600 height=200>
         <param name="File" value="quotes.txt">
         <param name="OneQuotePerLine" value=true>
         <param name="RandomQuote" value=true>
         <param name="Delay" value=100>
         <param name="FontSize" value=24>
         <param name="Color" value="#008000">
         <param name="TextColor" value="#FFFFFF">
    The values that appear here are the default values; if you leave a PARAM line out, that default value will be used. (These are the values used for the blackboard that is used on this page.)
    Width and Height are the width and height of the applet. (These are the only two values that have to be there.) The "blackboard" itself is about 10 pixels smaller in each direction.
    The parameters are:
    File (string, in quotes) - the name of the quotes file. This should be in the same directory as the web page; if it isn't, use a "relative path" for this parameter.
    OneQuotePerLine (true or false) - if true, each quote starts on the left side of the "board" (the way Bart writes them on The Simpsons); if false, each quote starts immediately after the end of the previous quote (the way Jason writes them in FoxTrot). If you set this to false, you should have a period at the end of each quote; otherwise, you won't be able to tell when each line ends.
    RandomQuote (true or false) - if true, the quotes are selected from the list randomly (although the same quote will not be selected twice in a row); if false, the quotes appear in the order they appear in the list.
    Delay (integer) - the (approximate) time it takes to draw each letter, in milliseconds; for example, 1000 means one letter per second.
    FontSize (integer) - the font size of the text. Values less than 8 or greater than 48 are changed to 8 and 48.
    Color (# followed by a six-digit hexadecimal number, in quotes) - the color of the "chalkboard". Note that the "color names" cannot be used; you have to use the six-digit number method. ("#008000" is dark green.)
    TextColor (# followed by a six-digit hexadecimal number, in quotes) - the color of the text. ("#FFFFFF" is white.)


Permission is granted by the program's author to use the applet .class file in your own pages, and to use the Java code for your applets and to make modifications to this applet itself, PROVIDED:
  1. You do not charge ANY sort of fee, including "costs", for this applet, any modified version of this applet, or any applet you develop which derives significantly from this code ("borrowing" one or two basic concepts from this code, like "how to read strings of text from a file without getting a SecurityException", is OK - how else do you learn except from working examples?);

  2. If you modify this applet, you add your name (and, preferably, when and how you modified it) to the comments and not remove any existing names or otherwise make it appear as if you were the sole author;

  3. You do not own any bootleg Calvin and Hobbes or The Simpsons merchandise. (Note that, except for the books, copies of the strips themselves, and one calendar, ALL Calvin and Hobbes merchandise is bootlegged. C&H author Bill Watterson owns all merchandising rights to the characters, and refuses to merchandise them (see The Calvin and Hobbes Tenth Anniversary Book for an explanation why). If you have a T-shirt that features Calvin (in his pajamas and wearing sunglasses) and Hobbes dancing, you are in fact in possession of stolen property.) I'll overlook bootlegged King of the Hill stuff because of this stupid "let's move the show to California" idea...
Violators will be subject to anything from a not particularly cheerful E-mail to branding on all appropriate newsgroups and, in severe cases, having to listen to me drone on and on about "in my day, we didn't have luxuries like HACK and color monitors and 300 MB PCs with 64MB of RAM; it was ROGUE and ADM3A terminals and either waiting for a terminal in Cory or connecting with a 300 baud modem (because even the directly connected terminals couldn't handle anything faster than 9600)"

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Last updated on May 10, 1998 by Don Del Grande (