Daily Illuminator

November 16, 2014: Happy 20th Birthday, Daily Illuminator!

I first became aware of the Daily Illuminator not long after it started, probably around 1997 when Knightmare Chess grabbed me and wouldn't let go. Back then, I'd check it now and then and read back to see what product announcements I missed.

Now, of course, reading the Illuminator has become a daily (or nightly) ritual, one that started 15 years ago when I was a grad student in Victoria, British Columbia. Because of time zones, the new Illuminator would post at 10 p.m. each night, giving me a brief glimpse of home . . . and, of course, talking about games I really enjoyed playing -- I first heard about Chez Geek, Tile Chess, and several GURPS supplements when they were announced in the Illuminator.

(And then I paid way too much for them, because the only game store in Victoria added a "you're on an island and where are you going to go?" upcharge. They aren't around anymore, and good riddance.)

In fact, I have the Illuminator to thank for working here. I was not happy in my grad program (nothing against Victoria, the university, or my friends up there -- I just didn't want to be a student anymore) and was looking for a path back to Texas where I would see the sun more than once or twice a winter. One day in early 2000, I saw that SJ Games was looking to fill four jobs, none of which I was remotely qualified for.

I applied anyway, and the rest is history.

The part of the Illuminator that I really enjoy is that it's just as much a company blog as it is a news feed. In a given week, you might read about new releases, staff changes, new technology, Cthulhu, and some funny video that happened to cross Steve's desk -- or anyone else's. The Illuminator doesn't speak with one voice, and to me that is one of its strengths. We are a community, and the Illuminator reflects that. Reading the archives is a look back at our history.

What's next for the Illuminator? Good question. Keep watching and find out when we do!

-- Andrew Hackard


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