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Author Topic: April 2014 Status...  (Read 8612 times)
pspeed
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« on: April 30, 2014, 12:37:41 AM »

So, I continue to have little or no time to work on Mythruna.  I'm able to eke out some time on smaller projects and I've posted a bit about that here and there.  Mostly, my work time is abysmally small.

On the plus side, Simsilica, LLC continues to operate at a slight loss so a) I'm nearly breaking even, and b) the company didn't have to pay any taxes... nor will I have to calculate estimated taxes going forward.  There are some up sides to operating at a loss.

Things at home are holding but less great than last time I updated.  My wife continues to have more problems getting around and is using her walker 100% of the time now.  We even had one trip to the emergency room because of a fall.  A friend of mine who is in a really good local band and wanted to help out in some way even organized a fundraising even for her: https://www.facebook.com/events/414892365313611/  If you are in this area and want to see a good band then this is also a good chance to say hi... I plan to be there.  We're not really strapped for cash but we do seem to be bleeding it like a sieve these days.

So, on top of all of this, over Spring Break, one of my kids brought home a nasty case of head lice from school.  We immediately went into panic/epidemic mode and started washing everything in site.  We went to the doctors that Thursday and while I was the only one who didn't catch it... I did find out I have high blood pressure.  So in the midst of all of the washing and treating, I was doing a complete 180 degrees on my eating habits.  That Friday night I felt like I had bees crawling under my skin from lack of caffeine. Smiley  (On the Lice issue, eventually we hired a service to come and treat the infected and they talked us back from the edge... totally worth it.)

Ultimately, this means I spend a lot more time thinking about and making my meals.  Keeping sodium levels down, potassium levels up, etc...  On the one hand, I'm eating better than I ever have.  On the other, I'm not used to spending so much of my time on thinking about food.  I'm starting to get into a nice equilibrium, though.  I try to make one or two big dinners and lunches and then just eat on it during the week.  It cuts down on decision fatigue.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decision_fatigue


On the technical front, I spent a good deal of time thinking about my tree generator side project.  I ran into this tricky issue with mapping textures to the tree joints in a pleasing way.  This occupied my brain for about a week before I finally resorted to graph paper to try and work it out.  That got so frustrating I was ready to start making paper models.  Ultimately, I'd just about given up and was going to try modeling trees in Blender and chopping them into segments.  I started watching a tutorial on making low-poly trees and something about the way he made his trees made something click in my brain.  I came up with a solution to my problem that was 1000x simpler and worked better with all of the other stuff I needed to do with it.

Only getting to work on it an hour or two here and there (with minimal caffeination I might add) was very frustrating.  This evening I'm finally getting some interesting results.

Here is a most recent example including many of the algorithm's features (in three different views):


You can also see some different variations:




So, I might actually finish that project and get to publish it.  These are the kinds of things that I used to finish in a weekend, before... so it will feel good to get it "out the door".

My hope was to dedicate May to finishing new-Mythruna's networking interface... but I'm just not sure I'm going to have the mental bandwidth.  We'll have to see how things stabilize out.

Sorry the Mythruna news couldn't be any better.

« Last Edit: April 30, 2014, 12:41:41 AM by pspeed » Logged
MadJack
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« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2014, 01:04:28 AM »

Keep the morale up! Smiley There's no choice. Nothing you guys can't handle I'm sure.

If you need something, hit me up. I'll do what I can. Cheesy
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pspeed
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« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2014, 01:37:58 AM »

Keep the morale up! Smiley There's no choice. Nothing you guys can't handle I'm sure.

If you need something, hit me up. I'll do what I can. Cheesy

Thanks, man.  Just taking it day by day and trying to find the humor in it.  I got my wife a basket for her walker and I've joked about putting a bell and some tassles on it as well. Smiley  She's not really amused.

Also, many jokes were made about "not the kind of egg hunt I wanted to do at easter", re: the lice.  Gotta laugh.
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BigredRm
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2014, 05:46:21 AM »

Thanks for the update. Hang in there creator.
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Michael Musgrove
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« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2014, 01:22:00 PM »

Things aren't the happiest here, or at least with me. I'm losing sleep every day because of my brother. Tongue

I'm glad to see your progress and your new healthy eating habits (but of course, it will take time to adjust) which I'm glad for you. I wish I could do something to help with the fundraising for your wife, and I'm sorry to hear about the condition she's in, really.

Hold up, Paul, and I'm sure you'll make it through. Wink
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Sean
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« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2014, 05:51:42 PM »

Every time I read your posts I'm surprised you even have time to still contribute to jMonkey.
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pspeed
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« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2014, 06:24:37 PM »

Every time I read your posts I'm surprised you even have time to still contribute to jMonkey.

Yeah, I don't have much time for that either other than answering forum posts.  But that's easy. Smiley  Typing "Learn Java, NOOB!" is no problem. (lol)

These things that I'm working on right now may end up being the ugliest things I release simply because I don't have the proper amount of time to clean them up.  We'll see.

Either way, it's easier to put an hour in here and there.  On Mythruna, my next tasks take me more than an hour just to reload it into my head... so I try to only work on it when I have solid blocks of time.
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pspeed
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« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2014, 11:13:29 PM »

I turned out not to have any free time to work tonight but I did upload my little tree tester thing if anyone wants to try it out.  You can find more information here:
http://hub.jmonkeyengine.org/forum/topic/tree-editor-sort-of/
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pspeed
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« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2014, 12:36:09 AM »

I turned out not to have any free time to work tonight but I did upload my little tree tester thing if anyone wants to try it out.  You can find more information here:
http://hub.jmonkeyengine.org/forum/topic/tree-editor-sort-of/

I know these kinds of non-updates probably wear patience thin but I think it's looking pretty good.  I had a bit of time to shoe-horn in leaves and some leaf-lighting:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36-dDY29i2g

It is actually within the realm of possibility that I might use this sort of thing for Mythruna some day.  Block trees have very frustrating limitations in a general sense... though they provide fun blocks to build with.
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Sean
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« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2014, 11:43:07 AM »

I spent a good hour playing with the sliders two nights ago. I thought it was neat that you can control the amount of polygons you can control.
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pspeed
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« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2014, 01:19:34 PM »

I spent a good hour playing with the sliders two nights ago. I thought it was neat that you can control the amount of polygons you can control.

Cool.  There is another version up with leaves.  I'm working on roots at my next opportunity.  Maybe this evening if I'm not too tired after putting the kids to bed.
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Teknonick
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« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2014, 04:58:40 PM »

This would be amazing for making trees grow... :O Like, from sapling, to full grown adult! Would be pretty awesome sitting with your friends and watching the tree grow, while watching the paint dry on the goblin king you just captured and turned into a sculpture... eh, no idea where that last bit came from....
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« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2014, 05:34:01 PM »

Oops, I crashed the program after messing with it for two seconds. xD
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« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2014, 10:37:47 PM »

Best of luck to your family, Paul. Seriously. I've rarely seen life so hectic.
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pspeed
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« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2014, 02:15:23 AM »

Best of luck to your family, Paul. Seriously. I've rarely seen life so hectic.

Thanks.

And for those following along at home, here is a recent screen shot from the tree editor thingy... just a cool pic with tree roots:
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