Navi Menu
main blog files profquotes Zygote Asylum contact link junk



Happy Fun Ball may stick to certain types of skin

Filed under: General — 19day @ 00:12:30

Just for the nostalgic fun of it all

Edit: Link no longer works, and you can’t even upload the damn thing to youtube anymore with the new filtering. God forbid someone enjoy an ancient 30 second clip of a tv show. So I’m just posting a fucking file and be done with it. And don’t bother going to the watermarked url.
Happy Fun Ball (wmv, 3megs)


The Black Triangle

Filed under: General — 19day @ 12:42:08

I found this story in my journey, and it’s a familiar thing, so I thought I’d repost the guts of it here. The original article is at Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Black TriangleOur company financial controller and acting HR lady, Jen, came in to see what incredible things the engineers and artists had come up with. Everyone was staring at a television set hooked up to a development box for the Sony Playstation. There, on the screen, against a single-color background, was a black triangle.

“It’s a black triangle,” she said in an amused but sarcastic voice. One of the engine programmers tried to explain, but she shook her head and went back to her office. I could almost hear her thoughts… “We’ve got ten months to deliver two games to Sony, and they are cheering over a black triangle? THAT took them nearly a month to develop?”

What she later came to realize (and explain to others) was that the black triangle was a pioneer. It wasn’t just that we’d managed to get a triangle onto the screen. That could be done in about a day. It was the journey the triangle had taken to get up on the screen. It had passed through our new modeling tools, through two different intermediate converter programs, had been loaded up as a complete database, and been rendered through a fairly complex scene hierarchy, fully textured and lit (though there were no lights, so the triangle came out looking black). The black triangle demonstrated that the foundation was finally complete – the core of a fairly complex system was completed, and we were now ready to put it to work doing cool stuff. By the end of the day, we had complete models on the screen, manipulating them with the controllers. Within a week, we had an environment to move the model through.

They apparently referred to these kinds of advancements as a Black Triangle, a metaphor indicating possibly massive progress, but in a framework or engine or supporting code, such that the current results give you (or rather, people looking at it) no sense of progress. For me, it was usually a white triangle (on a black background) when dealing with 3d graphics, but similar events have occurred, like when I got a tile displaying in one of my 2D games, or when working on an automated script for work creating many large templates and supporting code when the test itself is actually not that long or complex, or Curtis’ graphics project, that had all sorts of physical simulations going on with real-world formulas being applied… but for a long time all he had was a text console spitting out numbers.

I like the Black Triangle metaphor, I will try to remember to use it in future, even if no one knows what the hell I’m talking about.


Zygote Dev Journal (or how I spent my winter vacation)

Filed under: General, zygote — 19day @ 06:54:38

I took a week off from work, not really for any reason, just to relax.

And relax I have, to the point where I’ve got nocturnal again. Oh, it wasn’t a-purpose, my sleeping had been very chaotic since day 1, going to bed at 6pm, waking at 3 in the morning, and then lounging about. But still my body is quite aware that it’s not sleeping at the right times, since the glare of the midday sun is painful and I feel in a zombie state, despite not actually needing to sleep at that time.

And having the week off, you’d think I’d have lots of time to work on Zygote, but alas, I haven’t… working on it that is, I’ve slept a lot, but not so much work.

Collision detection hasn’t been touched, though I bought a new big book on 3d game math topics, which has all sorts of lamdas and a-knots and matricies and stuff, so I’m sure it will help.

To distract myself from the real work that is tricky, I’ve been playing with eye candy instead. I’ve been working on… ah… hmm.. a debris field. Well, my imagination had it as being like the flecks of debris you see with underwater cameras. It’s a useful thing since it shows that you are moving. Unfortunately, at the moment, they kind of look like stars. Also, at sufficient ranges, they wink on and off as they alias. The trouble I’m having is that I’ve implemented the system as a particle cloud, in an axis-aligned box. The particles have a slow downward drift, and if they exit the box, they die and respawn at the top. But at a sufficiently high particle count, the game bogs down (on eye candy, that’s bad). The particle count has to be high when the size of the box is enlarged to contain a game level.

The reason something that simple would bog down the engine has partly to do with my simulated dynamics. Oh, it’s quite crappy, but the idea is that as you pass by the particles, or shoot through them, or what not, they spread apart, not in any mathematically correct way, but I’ve just been trying to get that working at all. And that requires all sorts of collision detection (simple detection, but still, more computation).

I’m currently experimenting with having the particle cloud bounds follow the player, and perhaps not having them descend. This will allow a larger concentration appear in your field of view, with a fewer particle count. The trick is that they would continually die and respawn (this time they would need to appear randomly in the plane of direction so as you move it doesn’t look like they’ve all suddenly started to snow from the top). I’m not entirely sure how to make that work. I might just give the whole thing up as needlessly complicated, and icky.

I’ve also implemented a basic targeting reticle to go along with my change to allow auto-targeting an enemy. It’s a little graphic that, within the threshold, as you point more directly at the enemy, the reticle gets smaller and tighter and brighter. It’s hard to describe, and I may not keep it that way, since I liked the idea of it rotating. I might use the rotation as an indication of lock-on, so you can move away and still fire directly at the enemy.

What else is going on… well, I got my watch strap adjusted. It’s a metal one so I had to take it in to have it done. It was a christmas gift from Alicia, a nice silver clockwork watch with 3 sub-dials, one for 24 hour time, day of month and day of week. It took a while to figure out how to set it, I guess my timex digital watches have spoiled me. Anyway, it’s very classy.

Also, my brother, for some reason asked me to render a truck tire and rim. I dunno, I followed a tutorial (badly) for the tire, and winged it for the rim, Here it is for those who like links in blogs.

Vacation is nearly over, I guess I’ll just cry for the next 3 days.


The worst exposition I’ve ever heard

Filed under: General — 19day @ 21:23:24

Sorry, I just had to put this here. I threw on Tron to fall asleep to (as I’m sure Alicia and Curtis would say, because it’s soooo boring that it’s suuure to put me asleep…. *coughbastardscough*)

Anyway, I hit this bit, and It’s just painful.

Here goes nothing

Heh. Interesting, interesting. You
hear what you said? “Here goes nothing.”

Well, I –

Whereas actually, what we propose to
do is to turn something into nothing
and back again. So you might just as
well have said, “Here goes something
and here comes nothing.” Heh?

…. Right….

This is in reference to their molecular disintegration and reintegration laser wotsit.

It’s just… awful.

Sorry again.


If Saint Valentine were alive today, he’d probably say he had been misquoted

Filed under: General — 19day @ 06:08:28

arrow through heart

Oh, it’s you again. Has it been a year already? What? No, nothing’s changed, you can read this or this, in which I managed to plagiarize myself in the second one, heh.

It’s probably a stereotype that someone like me would dislike this day, and I do. But it’s just another landmark in time, as bad as xmas, or birthdays (which are worse since I get another little tick over my head counting towards death, or at least baldness).

Oh yeah, I guess that’s relatively new. I’m starting to go bald, my hairline is receding. Not with the rapidity as was seen with my brother, but it’s happening. The rest of my hair is really thick, so eventually I’ll probably look like Doc Brown from Back to the Future. The perfect triumvirate, fat, ugly and bald. It’s baffling that I’m single, it’s that supposed to be the new physical ideal? what? it isn’t? Oh.

Tomorrow I’ll celebrate annual February 15th day.


Zygote Dev Journal Update

Filed under: zygote — 19day @ 13:25:18

Yes, I’ve started working on this thing again, despite the awfulness of the game in terms of both quality and subject matter. Asylum has completely stalled, no idea when I’ll feel like working on it again. But Zygote is sort of amusing in it’s own hideous mathematical kind of way.

A couple of things I’ve been trying to work on:

Frustum culling, nearly have this working, only a slight change in the order of matrix multiplication was needed, sad really, I might have gotten the full mark for it if I had been clear-headed. There is still an issue with it with the near and far planes, it doesn’t respect them, and the culling doesn’t cut the stuff behind you. Still it’s an improvement.

I’ve added the beginnings of a targetting system for the player. I have another key bound to the feature right now, so that when you’re within a certain angle of an enemy, the shot you fire goes right at it. This helps with accuracy problems (both for the game and the player). I’ll have to have it pick the closer of available targets. I was also thinking of having a targetting reticle that appears when you are in the angle threshold, and maybe a lockon system, so if you maintain an enemy in that zone long enough the reticle is solid (unless you turn too far away) and your next shot will go right at it. Right now the shots merely go straight from the player to the enemy, I haven’t decided if shots should be able to track. Probably not given how that would detract yet further from the reality of the environment, heh.

The thing I’ve mostly recently been working on is a method of fixing enemy rotation. In the version I submitted for my graphics project, I was only barely in time able to find a method to make the enemy point at the player, via a simply-calculated lookat matrix. However, it didn’t allow a gradual tracking with the player, it just, frame by frame, pointed right at the player. I finally was able to get something working late last night that appears to work properly, but I only managed to get it working while in the middle of writing an email to my former graphic professor. I decided to send the email anyway since I could still be totally messing this up.

And I might as well close with what is the effective Zygote programmers slogan, “’straight to hell”.


I Will Debug

Filed under: General — 19day @ 22:55:00

Looking over some old code for various classes at waterloo, stumbled upon this, which if I recall correctly, was one of two songs we came up with during cs342 during long lab sessions only interrupted by massive hand trauma. We actually put an .cpp extension on this so it would be submitted along with the code, but not being in the make file, wouldn’t screw anything up. Anyway, here it is… and boy, is it geeky. How I miss concurrency…. “You… shall…. not….. pass!!’

I Will Debug
(sung to the tune of I Will Survive)

First I was naive
Life was so sublime
Just a casual geek
Coding from time to time
But I spent so many nights
Trapped infront of my screen
Hooked on Caffine
Because these assignments are all mean
and so you’re back
from dinner break
You just walked in to find me here
with that stunned look upon my face
I should have released my stupid lock
I shouldn’t have blocked in your queue
If I had known for just one second
that this deadlock would ensue

Go on now debug that code
just typed in gmake
damn stupid server load
wasn’t that your class that was compiling when it died
you think I’d not compile
you think I’d deadlock and die
Oh no, not I
I will debug
as long as I make mistakes
I’ll have coffee in my mug
I’ve got all my code to write
I’ve got to stay up all night
and I will debug
I will debug

It took all the Coke I had
not to fall asleep
kept trying hard to make
myself stop counting sheep
and I spent oh so many nights
just thinking to myself
I used to try
Now I just give up and cry
and you see me
somebody old
I’m not that happy little person
just bitter and cold
and so you asked me if I passed
and just expect to say yes
but I just say kiss my ass
’cause my life is such a mess!

hey hey


Put the Fat Cat out

Filed under: General — 19day @ 13:58:47

Went to Fat Cat with some friends for Winterlicious, which is a set time when restaurants pretend to offer a lower price prix fixe menu, but in fact charge a large amount for merely worse food. Well, to be fair, the food was alright, but the service was pretty bad.

So some of us arrive, we are originally 11 but one couldn’t make it, 10 is still a respectable number. But at first, only 4 of us are there, and the staff badger us a number of times about whether the rest of our party is coming. Yes yes, we say, they are just a little late. Like 10-15 minutes, not terrible. But in that period they ask three times, go away already, surely there are other customers to harass.

So we utter the phrase that seems to be the bane of our waiter, “separate cheques”…. “No, no” he says, “No, that’s just…… impossible… we can’t do that… with…. we’ve got a lot of people…. we just.. No… no, it’s impossible.” Hmm, I wonder how many decades we will have to wait for the technology for separate cheques to catch up with our fanciful dreams.

The next thing is the sort of thing people experience often, but man, it’s hard getting his attention, and we were trying to buy wine… wine!, don’t you want to sell us your relatively expensive wine?

Two stragglers finally came, but they didn’t seem inclines to sit apart. We had one spot at one end of the table on one side, and one on the far side on the other, but one sat at the head of the table where there was a chair but no plates or cultery. We started shifting down, but the waiter jumps out again, “No no, don’t move around, you’ll mess up the seating order.. we can’t handle that.. no… no…..”

The food was alright, nothing particularly fancy. One of my friends said, quite loudly, but not knowing the waiter was pouring water two seats down, that Winterlicious isn’t a good time to try to experience a restaurants best food. Heheh, unfortunately, it was accurate enough. I won’t talk about the food, curtis can do that himself I guess.

Anyway, we were there for a while, got the bill, paid, and then were told we should be on our way. Thanks.

Conclusion, if ever you have Fat Cat’s food, it’s probably best to get it to go.

Powered by WordPress

Page by 19day (S.B.H.)
Everything here is property of 19day productions, unless it isn't, and cannot be claimed by anyone else regardless, sort of like a copyright, but in many more words.
Last modified: September 07 2009 18:21:00.
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS! CWH Get Firefox