Blogus Maximus

Rubbing people the wrong way since 1970...

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June 2005 Entries

I'm a good coder and a decent game designer, but I'm a downright lazy bastard when it comes to documentation. So... in the spirit of true laziness, I'm foisting the grunt work off on someone else. Here's the deal: Download Heroic Adventure! 0.1.6 Play it. Play it some more. Play it a lot. Send me emails. Ask me questions. I'll tell you pretty much whatever you want to know (about HA!) Write some kick-ass documentation and/or a FAQ. Send it to me. I might send it back once or twice. (My prerogative) ......

I'll be speaking at the Portland, Oregon Code Camp on July 23/24 (not sure which day I'm speaking). Portland Code Camp If you're in the area, come check it out... it's gonna rock! This is actually extremely cool for me, since I've never been west of Texas before. I'll be hitting Oregon and Washington in the same week. I've hit pretty much every state from Texas to Maine, but never anything west of that (somewhat crooked) line ......

ok... since apparently I'm not going to be Bill Gates when I grow up, when I do get old, I want to be this guy!!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/8317484/?GT1=6657


This is an interesting demonstration of ragdoll physics. You can drag her around and let go. I don't know how accurate the physics model actually is, but it does make for an interesting example.

http://www.izpitera.ru/lj/tetka.swf


Interesting proposal, although I don't see it getting very far.

http://www.freenation.tv/hotellostliberty2.html


blogging this so I can find it when I need it...

Aaron's article on Projectile Physics. Too bad it's in C#. Easy enough to port though. :)


According to Jason Olson, the mark of a successful blog is when you have more comments than posts. (Presumeably this is only applicable after you have a substantial number of posts...) At any rate, I'm there now. I don't feel any different. Maybe a little taller. ;)

I've spent the last few hours working on the overland map for HA! and I'm happy to say the initialization routines are done. FWIW, they didn't take as long as I thought, but still longer than I would have liked. If you're interested in what the overland looks like, when actually represented, you can go here, but keep in mind that some (maybe a little, maybe a lot) of it will change as I implement it. Currently though, that's it. So anyway, now I have the overland map data loading at the beginning ......

Funny thing is... I'm pretty much on top of my game right now. I know that sounds arrogant, but it's true. I have a kick-ass job, good friends, awesome professional contacts and a book deal in the works. I'm in the best health I've been in over 10 years and I'm happy. I've got my MCAD, MCSD.NET & MCT certs, and I'm being considered for MVP (no guarantees). The user group is going well, we have a code camp coming up and I'm speaking all over the southeast US at code camps and user groups. Not bad ......

Any of you uber-geeks ever use SphereXP? http://www.hamar.sk/sphere/ I'm considering trying it, unless someone fills my head with horror stories.

I'm a geek, I know, but I love stuff like this:

http://www.newscientistspace.com/article.ns?id=dn7564

(Thanks SBoyle for sending it to me)


got mentioned in the Z Buffer... ZBuffer

linked 3 times in one post... heh


This started as a semi-private convo, based on one of my blog entries, but I wanted to open it up to you guys. Naturally I asked permission, because that's just the kind of guy I am. Dan: (original post here: Dan's Post) Mewell yeah... #1 does kinda make the rest of it pretty pointless.As for #2, you neglect to mention that the bootleg Bnet also does not do any serial key validation, which means it's wide open for piratedcopies to play all they want. Pretty sure Blizzard has the right to defend against ......

Recently joined the IGDA... if you're into game development then I encourage you to check these guys out. They have several membership rates, ranging from $48/year for regular members, $30/year for students and a free (limited access) membership. The biggest advantage to joining is the networking, of course... which the free membership restricts a bit. No matter which level you sign up at, you get the IGDA newsletter. Depending on your goals, $48 is a steal... it's cheaper than some of the books ......

Registered... CHECK! Hotel Accomodations... CHECK! Plane Ticket... pending ok, so anyway... in a subtle twist of fate, I happened to be liquidating a substantial portion of my old comic book collection anyway... so if you're not feeling the need to sponsor a semi-starving developer in his quest to gamer geek Mecca, perhaps you want something of value for your money... Feel free to bid on some of my loot. All proceeds will go to funding my plane ticket to Seattle (and back of course, sorry Charles.) ......

YES!! I've got my registration confirmation in hand.
*Happy Dance*  I'm goin to Meltdown!!! Yeah!

Maybe I'll get that new tattoo after all...
Pixelicious


Send me to Microsoft Meltdown and I'll even get a tattoo of one of the Meltdown superheroes...

I'm kinda partial to this one...

          Or this one (if I have to)...


Blizzard... very cool!

Ok, the *revised* story so far... RPG Dev book proposal is being considered by Publisher 1 - I sent 3 ideas - They requested a proposal on 1 of them (although they are considering possible 2nd idea) - I submitted detailed proposal - They're sending me a contract!! OMFG! (I have roughly 6 months to write it)Mobile Game Dev book proposal (of no interest to Publisher 1) is being considered by Publisher 2 - I sent ideas - They requested a proposal (strong interest in one idea, maybe others) - I submitted ......

from the C# Corner newsletter...

Finally Visual Studio 2005 launch date was announced at VS Live and we should be getting our hands on final product on Nov 07, 2005.

SWEET! (I added that part myself)


I sent this to my favorite book publisher... wish me luck!Top 10 Reasons your company name Should Send Me To Microsoft Meltdown http://www.microsoftmeltdow... July 26 & 27, 2005 10. It gets really hot here in South Carolina in July. 9. I'm (hopefully) writing a .NET Game Development book (still in the works) 8. I'll do pretty much anything your company name wants! 7. I've written numerous articles (some even paid) on .NET game development. 6. I'll do anything... seriously! 5. I'm tech-editing ......

I would saw off my left arm to go to this...  http://www.microsoftmeltdown.com/

I need a sponsor... I'll do anything. (ok almost anything... ok fine, anything!!)


Linux Desktop HacksReview by Sandeep Kachru (of the Greater Charleston .NET User Group) Linux Desktop Hacks by Nicholas Petreley and Jono Bacon, is a collection of 100 hacks to make your Linux experience richer and better. I think this book will appeal to users with all kinds of skill levels ranging from beginner to expert. A basic knowledge of Linux commands is required for most of the hacks but some of the hacks are more involved and are clearly marked by a thermometer icon. The book is well organized ......

ASP.NET Developer's Cookbook Review by Cherrie Yuen (of the Greater Charleston .NET User Group) "ASP.NET Developer's Cookbook" is a truly handy-dandy code reference. It does what it says. I am impressed by how the authors touch on a vast amount of topics, yet keeping the content succinct at the same time. The excellent organization of topics not only helps you find the solutions quickly, but also inspires you with other great ideas. Here is a snapshot of book topics: 1. ASP.NET Pages - Web Forms, ......

Ok, the story so far... RPG Dev book proposal is being considered by Publisher 1 - I sent 3 ideas - They requested a proposal on 1 of them (although they are considering possible 2nd idea) - I submitted detailed proposal I'm waiting on feedback from that proposal. (Should be today or tomorrow)Mobile Game Dev book proposal (of no interest to Publisher 1) is being considered by Publisher 2 - I sent ideas - They requested a proposal (strong interest in one idea, maybe others) - I submitted detail proposal ......

This is a must read for developers! Great stuff in here...

http://www.hanselman.com/blog/ScottHanselmans2005UltimateDeveloperAndPowerUsersToolList.aspx


WoW skin for Media Player 10


The Bungie.net site is the online companion to the wildly successful Halo 2 video game for Xbox, released in November 2004 by Microsoft. The site also acts as the community hub for all things related to Bungie games. Built with the Microsoft .NET Framework, Bungie.net serves up more than 4 million pages per day, accumulating 300 gigabytes of online game statistics per month from more than 1 million games played daily. Deemed "Most Innovative Design" by IGN Entertainment in 2004, the site provides ......

wow... more good words about HA!

http://weblogs.asp.net/lhunt/archive/2005/06/20/413940.aspx

Looks like I better stick to my release schedule.



Let me start by saying I don't usually get all worked up over movies (for good or bad). I've seen a lot of good ones, and a few that I really liked, maybe even loved. Generally, I'm the type of guy that finds something to like in nearly every movie I see. As a result, it takes a lot for me to really label a movie "bad". Oh sure, I've seen a couple stinkers but generally speaking they are few and far between. Having said that, let me just say Batman Begins is unquestionably the best damn movie I have ......

about my little pet project... Heroic Adventure!

http://www.panopticoncentral.net/archive/2005/06/17/9565.aspx

This is PURE MOTIVATION for me to keep plugging away!


I've got a few more years to go before I need to start worrying about this one.

http://www.microsoft.com/architecture/default.aspx?pid=share.certification&abver=E9A00024-3DC1-4B6A-BC20-22716E4D2FEA

I like how they've broken it into two categories though... Infrastructure and Solutions


more good words about HA!

http://blogs.msdn.com/brada/archive/2005/06/16/430024.aspx

Good feedback (ok... any feedback) is always appreciated!


I asked a few of my friends to come up with cool imagery or fansigns for Blogus Maximus.

This is the first one, and it's gonna be tough to beat.

Thank you Jason Olson! You totally rock!!


Just bought my ticket... can't wait! I wonder if any of my Atlanta geek buddies will be going? If you've never been, but you like sci-fi / fantasy or RPGs or Anime or cool toys or comics or all of the above... you should totally check it out. I've taken pictures the last couple years, and some of my favorites are here: http://geekswithblogs.net/c... ......

Of the three submissions, #1 & #2 were both appealing. No mention of #3 at all.

#1 (the Home Automation book) may be overlapping with another project they have in the works, they are looking into it.
#2 (one of the Game Programming books) was the most appealing to them and they have requested more info from me to "kick things off".

Here I go feeling cautiously optimistic... :)


I submitted 3 book proposals yesterday (2 on Game Development, 1 on Home Automation).

First Attempt... wait and see


Pics from the Atlanta Code Camp

There was a giant turkey there too, but it's not in these pictures.
I say, I say it's NOT in these pictures...

1 2 3


I mentioned the “ride from hell” during Tech*Ed, and now I have pics to prove it.  (Thanks Matt!)

http://www.devcow.com/weblogs/Travelling+To+TechEd++The+Day+Before+The+Day+Before+All+The+Festivities.aspx

It's like the geek “clown-car”. BTW, the guy driving is yours truly.


You ever have days where you hear a portion of a REALLY old song on the radio, and it gets stuck in your head, so you go download the mp3 (along with EVERY SINGLE ALTERNATE VERSION YOU CAN FIND) and then play them all day long on repeat/shuffle until you absolutely can't stand it anymore? Ok, so maybe it's not that common of a thing. Surely it's not just me... What is the song, you ask? You spin me round (right round, like a record baby) by Dead or Alive (this is vintage '80s!!) so anyway, I'm on ......

Anyone posting long code samples to the main feed, please follow Aaron Rosenfeld's excellent example.

It just makes things easier for everyone.  (Yeah I know, I'm guilty too... but I'll change I promise!)

http://geekswithblogs.net/arosenfeld/archive/2005/06/13/43466.aspx


Robin Edwards is a good friend and trusted advisor, and she's also an innocent bystander on my road to “geek stardom” (thank you Jessica for that term). Anyway, Robin made the following observation this morning: I actually find everything you're doing totally cool - it's fun to see you travel down the yellow brick road to the land of geek. I will be the lion because when it comes to doing presentations I am definitely cowardly. That's classic! (Although I've seen Robin give a tech presentation, ......

Bill Ryan, you did NOT just call me a piker...

http://msmvps.com/williamryan/archive/2005/06/09/51521.aspx

(ok, so technically he didn't, but read his post anyway... it's a funny one)


http://blogs.msdn.com/dwell... (scroll down) Take a good look at the picture and tell me what's missing... (for those just tuning in, the photo is of David Weller's bookshelf/collection of good game programming books. ISBN 1-59059-401-0 is noticeably absent... guess he knows something I didn't.) my rant/review (Believe it or not, I don't have anything personal against Mr. Weller, I'm just really annoyed at having wasted good money on such a crappy book. I'm sure he's ......

After a great (although short) discussion with Theo Moore I've decided that at least basic support for the magic system will be included in HA! 0.1.7. This will definitely complicate the game balance issue, but I'm confident it will result in a more playable early game, fleshing out some of the other character types. I don't plan on pushing back the date (8/31) any, so I'll just have to spend more of what time I have on it. Of course having some help (Theo) won't hurt either. More info to follow, ......

Spent a little time this weekend working on HA! 0.1.7 It was mostly minor stuff, like Davis' request for a random race & class selection option. I also toned down the trap frequency a bit (it was already low IMO, but some people died too often) and reduced the duration of the confusion trap. While I was at Tech*Ed, I managed to work on some of the code for the character information display (just press @ of course) which I need to reintegrate back into my source tree. (I did that on my laptop at Tech*Ed, ......

After a weekend of mostly vegging, I'm mostly back to normal and ready for work on Monday. Tech*Ed Orlando was awesome but I'm glad to be back. That's a tough pace to sustain for much longer than a week. What's next on my agenda? Well... lessee... 7/14 Open Source Mobile Game Programming Expo (Final) 8/18 - 8/21 GenCon (Indianapolis, IN) BIG MAYBE 8/27 Jacksonville Code Camp (Jacksonville, FL) Speaking 9/2 - 9/5 Dragon*Con (Atlanta, GA) 9/17 Charleston Code Camp (Charleston, SC) Speaking 10/23 - ......

I'm happy to announce that despite completely trashing my diet at Tech*Ed, I managed to not gain a single pound. Must have been all the walking (and sweating) I did. I figure I probably averaged about 4 miles per day, definitely more on Thursday. me happy... still on track. and on a somewhat related note... I'd like to thank all the folks who approached me at Tech*Ed regarding my weight loss. Asking me how I did it and telling me I've inspired you were definitely two of the biggest motivators to ......

Friday was kind of a day for goodbyes and wrapping up. I didn't make it to any of the sessions, instead choosing to hang out with some of my new friends for a bit before heading back to the airport. There were a few folks I wanted to hookup with before leaving, but I know we'll all catch up eventually. I did get to hang out some more with J Rapp (that should totally be her rapper name) for a bit, along with my INETA gang. Jessica Rapp - it was extremely cool meeting & hanging with you. Good luck ......

Too much running around last night to post this in a timely fashion. Day 4 was pretty rocking! I missed out on the Patterns for Service-Oriented Architecture session , unfortunately, but I did catch Using VSTS to build Enterprise Web Applications, Getting Ready for VS2005 and SQL Server 2005 and Extending VB to suit your needs. All very goor presentations. Took a trip to the Hands-On Labs and did a really cool set of labs on Tablet PC Development. After finishing the labs and submitting feedback, ......

from the Tech*Ed 2005 intranet... What does it take to feed 13,000 people at Tech·Ed? 117,000 bottles of water 14,300 lattes 15,600 ice cream bars (it’s HOT out there) 4,000 pounds of chips and snack mix 2,300 dozen eggs 8,000 pounds of chicken 52,000 servings of juice ......

What a busy day... Started off with What's new in the framework for version 2.0 which was a terrific presentation. Joel did an excellent job showing off some of the cooler aspects of what's new with 2.0. Among my favorites were the improved console class (for obvious HA! reasons) and the support for encrypted XML and of course generics. Edit and continue is back w/ 2.0 (and new to C#) but not without some limitations. Another cool thing he highlighted was Debugger Display Attributes. Cool stuff indeed. ......

After talking to Laura (www.shutuplaura.com) Hunter at the MVP party last night, I figured www.blogusmaximus.com was surely taken. Well... lo and behold, it is now... by yours truly!

Lovin' it!


Hey alright!! Somebody likes HA! (and he's at Tech*Ed this week, so maybe we'll chat) http://blogs.msdn.com/brian... I'm a proud papa! (and thanks Tobin for letting me know about it!!) update: OMG!! I'm on the MSDN Coding for Fun page!!! http://msdn.microsoft.com/c... (Anyone remember that scene from “The Jerk” where he sees his name in the phonebook for the first time? Yeah that's me right now... http://www.garnersclassics.... ......

Another day come and gone... Despite persistant wireless issues, I eventually managed to get connected. Check some email, etc. First on my plate today was a session of Tablet PC development, followed by a quick stint with the INETA gang. Unfortunately, prize patrol got shut down by “the man“ for being too rowdy. Silly, but I think it's safe to say our booth had the most personality of any in our area. Next, I caught the SQL Internals session on the SQL Server 2005 CLR. Unfortunately the ......

OMG I'm exhausted. I feel like I've been beaten with a bag of tshirt bricks. As the first official day of Tech*Ed draws to a close, let me just say one thing... “NOBODY throws a bash like Microsoft”. I have not spent a dime since I left SC. Everything at Tech*Ed is covered. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, after-parties, etc... It's amazing. (Ok yeah, technically I owe the state of Florida 75 cents but that's a whole other issue.) Met more cool folks today, and also got a chance to get better ......

Spent the morning hustling for INETA... had a good time. It's funny, you can tell the difference in who controls the various groups. INETA is run by developers, CodeZone is run by marketing. While we definitely had more personality at our booth, the CodeZone team hired the Tech*Ed equivalent of (I'll be nice) *exotic dancers* to pass out CodeZone flyers. I feel the dark side calling me... it's scary. Planning on hitting lots of cool sessions this afternoon including a MSDN focus group. That should ......

Technically, Monday is day 1 of Tech*Ed. That doesn't mean that today (Sunday) wasn't crazy busy though. I spent all day at the INETA User Group Summit. What an incredible experience that was! I learned more about running a user group in one day than I have in 2 years of actually doing it. Before I go into too much detail, I just want to say Julie Lerman and Sara Faatz totally rock! Those two (and so many others) made this day possible. I met so many incredible people today, and learned so much, ......

The day started off well. Sara picked me up at home around 11:30 and took me to the airport. Being the AR type, I always try to get there about 2 hours early. As usual, I was glad I did. There aren't many things in this world more entertaining than folks who are running late for a flight, blaming everyone but themselves and trying to take it out on folks who just do not give a damn. I show up two hours early, check in, let them search my checked luggage, get in line... no hurry. Open my backpack, ......

It's so simple...

Yet addictive!

There is only 1 rule:

Fill in the grid so that every row, every column and every 3 x 3 box contains the digits 1 through 9.


(sorry for the corny title... I haven't had much sleep) ok, I gotta play with this: http://lab.msdn.microsoft.c... Starting with the Visual Studio 2005 release, the Microsoft build engine black box is extracted from Visual Studio. The new build engine, MSBuild, becomes extensible and available for all since it will ship with the .NET Framework. How will this affect me? I work with a small team (part of a larger whole) and I'm the guy responsible for the build. We ......

What a GREAT acronym for a user group... http://www.sci-nug.org/

Eric Hammersley is trying to start up a new group in South Central Indiana... http://geekswithblogs.net/ehammersley/archive/2005/06/03/41845.aspx

As someone who has started two .NUGs so far, I'd be happy to offer any help to get the ball rolling. Drop me a line after Tech*Ed and I'll hook you up.

Man... if I could have snagged that acronym for our South Carolina group (GC.NUG) I would have!


Ok, newbie question alert! It's my first Tech*Ed so please forgive...

Will there be free wireless internet in the Convention Center (and wherever else) at Tech*Ed? 

I probably won't be lugging my laptop around, but I am definitely bringing my PDA everywhere I go... 802.11b


I'm gonna need to followup on this one:

http://blogs.msdn.com/msdnwebcasts/archive/2005/06/03/424665.aspx


Sweet!  Tech*Ed pre-party...

http://dotnetjunkies.com/WebLog/jpalermo/archive/2005/05/23/88141.aspx

I'm there!


Greater Charleston .NET User GroupOur June meeting is a *mere* 6 days away... Lou Vega of SPAWAR (and GC.NUG) is our guest speaker, and he will be talking about Mobile Development with the .NET Compact Framework. We'll also be handing out a bunch of copies of Visual Studio 2005 Team System BETA 2 DVD SET We have some GREAT drawings this month, including books from Addison Wesley, MS Press and more. We aren't having a “members only” drawing this month... so our big item will be open to ......

In case you couldn't make it to Orlando...


TechEd 2006


So I'm at favorite bookstore and this Game Programming book catches my eye. Ok, the title was interesting, but it was actually the 40% off sticker that REALLY sucked me in. Hmmm I think to myself... a game programming book that focuses on VB.NET, from one of my favorite publishers, and 40% off?? Well, needless to say, $30 later (do the math) I'm flipping through my newest acquisition. Preliminary opinions are not good. (There will be a review, and the tech editor will be crucified...) However, I ......

I tend to overpack, not clothes, but just "stuff" and Jeff's post here: packing tips has me a little worried.

This is my first Tech*Ed... do they really give away that much swag??


Ok, so everyone knows I'm gonna be in Orlando for Tech*Ed from 6/4 through 6/10. I have the User Group Leader Summit all day Sunday, but that wraps up around 6ish I think. So as long as I'm going into full blown geek mode for the week... I'm thinking about running a Tech*Ed D&D campaign for a few hours Saturday (maybe), Sunday & Monday nights... (gonna be waaay too busy Tuesday through Thursday evenings!!) I can't really handle more than about 5 or 6 people, but I'm willing to pre-generate the characters ......

Examining "Test Driving Linux", a guided tour book. Review by Peter Mikovitz of the Greater Charleston .NET User Group (GC.NUG) David Brickner offers to readers of this book a unique opportunity to have a guided tour of a working Linux desktop. With the companion CD, he offers a risk free experience on the reader's own PC, without needing to install any software whatsoever. The choice for the CD-runnable distro is the Move Live CD, which can have its roots traced to Knoppix CDs, the original "run ......

It's absolutely amazing how something can go from an idle thought to a giant snowball so quickly with the right people around to push and steer and clear the road ahead. Yes... I'M TALKIN 'BOUT CODE CAMP AGAIN The fact is, Tuesday morning (yesterday) I thought to myself... Charlotte and Atlanta Code Camps were such a blast, wouldn't it be great if we had one down here? So I sent around an email for a sanity check, and it turned out everyone else was just a crazy as me... they all said “Yeah... ......

In addition to all the gnarly Tech*Ed festivities, like the various sessions and cabanas and after parties and whatnot... I'll also be cooling my heels at the INETA booth as part of my INETA Tech*Ed Scholarship duties... (I'm actually looking forward to it, what a great way to meet some new people and talk up INETA at the same time.) So be sure to stop by and say hi. You can't miss me, I'm the guy with the tattoo sleeves! Just don't ask me about our upcoming CODE CAMP... or you might never get away! ......

I've been dumping this to Outlook and my PDA all morning... too much cool stuff, not enough time... Monday, June 06 9:00 AM - 10:15 AM Opening Keynote 10:45 AM - 12:00 PM CSI241 Connected Systems Technologies and the .NET Framework: When to Use What S 220 E DAT382 Database Application Quick Start with SQL Server Express and Microsoft Visual Basic .NET 2005 S 210 E 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM GNL003 Microsoft Learning Presents: Getting Ready for Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005 N 320 D/H 1:30 PM - 2:45 ......

You're in luck, according to the Tech*Ed website, some seats just opened up... --> Very limited additional Tech·Ed conference space is now available!! Due to overwhelming customer demand, we’re excited to announce we’ve managed to create the availability of a very limited number of full conference passes to accommodate additional attendees at Tech·Ed. These additional full conference passes are in an overflow seating area for the Day 1 keynote. This overflow seating price is ......