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The Letter Project: Messages in motion

Wednesday - 1/30/2013, 6:31am  ET

websiteweek.jpg
In case it's hard to read, it says 'Website of the Week.' (Courtesy of Zefrank.com/letterproject)

Lacey Mason, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - It's a seemingly unavoidable symptom of our digital age: Nobody sends letters anymore.

But there's a project that's collecting letters and letting you send them.

Kind of.

Since 2001, online performance artist Ze Frank has been working on The Letter Project. It started with Frank collecting pictures of people holding up images showing the first letters of their last names.

Now, with 262 letters, the project has a twist, and it's all in a special section on Frank's blog.

But I won't lie ... it's a little hard to describe.

By typing a message into the project's text bar, you'll receive a moving image of your phrase. Each letter constantly spins and goes to a different image of the letter.

If you type "Hello," the letters "H" and "O" may linger for a moment, while the "L"s and "E" spin out of control. By the time they stop, the "H" and "O" are already flipping through other images. Your phrase on-screen never holds still, unless you take a screen capture.

Sound confusing?

Try it out right here.

Another fun feature if you're bored with typing moving messages to yourself: Send it to a friend.

Entering in your phrase (you can include punctuation) will generate a URL so you can send the email along. Though I've noticed sometimes that the longer messages get, the more difficult they are to read.

If you're interested in being a bigger part of the project, send your letter! Just take a photo of yourself with the first letter of your last name, attach it to an email and send it to zefrank@mindspring.com.

Finally, I have a special message for you. Read it here.

Follow @LaceyWTOP and @WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2013 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)