More Birthdays, Bill Cosby, Beer, and 2.5D w/ ImpactJS

In the past past few weeks I really have not done much with the ImpactJS demo I have been working on. There are some minor updates to the collision layers, collision boxes, and graphics, but not much functionality has been added. I’m currently working on developing a Game Design Document (GDD) for an original game so I don’t see much more time being spent on this demo/test. Most of the updates I made have been summarized in this thread. I didn’t get a chance to upload the most recent version last time so here it is. Keep in mind that there are lots of bugs, and Ramona is the least buggy character to play with.

Click here to PLAY!

 

Moving on…

Over the past two months I have felt an enormous amount of excitement for HTML5 game development and the idea that some of today’s most popular computer games will one day be run in the browser using the tools that built the web.  I constantly run into professionals that are ready for true multi-platform development.  There is so much to look forward to for “web development”.  Will web developers still be “web developers” when the term encompasses so much more?  Sounds fun to me!

1st Bday #inBend

At this very moment last year I was visiting my brother and his family in Atlanta.  I was over joyed to be with my family, but the timing was just a little off.  Actually, Jenna and Nate would say it was right on time, and it is hard to beat a bday with the number “11”x2 in it!  Fortu”Nate”ley, I was able to spend this year with the fam as we celebrated Marlo’s first Birthday!  There is nothing like a first bday, and Marlo’s was no exception.  Friends and family showed up from all over with an appetite for Nate’s superb

The Billsons
My Little Pudding Pop!

brunch, and maybe a few beers!  Marlo kept us all entertained because she is pretty much the cutest thing you have ever seen on this earth.  Can’t wait until birthday number two!  It’s just bday number 18 I’m worried about… I guess Nate will have had plenty of target practice with the shotgun by then!

The Cos

If you have the opportunity to take your family to see Bill Cosby while he is still touring I would highly suggest it.  We had a chance to see Bill last Sunday at the Hooker Creek Event Center in Redmond, OR.  I  expected Bill’s performance to be similar to what we have come to expect from him, but maybe a little slower.  He is after all, much older than his days of bouncing Rudy and Bud around on one knee.  It was Bill’s perception and values that gave me hope for breaking the stereotypical african-american family portrayed in the media.  I stereotype that even today is often placed on TV because of the ratings dramatic character development often brings.  Anyway, I expected him to be humorous, but not “as” humorous.  In reality, it may have just been the fact that this was somebody I looked upon as a role model when I was younger. I’m just happy I finally was able to experience him LIVE in Bend, Oregon.  That… plus the fact that it was in Bend, Oregon… a place where even a black man can relate.  One thing is for sure… we all know how to laugh… and that’s exactly what we did.

 

T-Mobile Plan Change Bug

So for the past few days I have been trying to change my mobile phone plan on T-Mobile’s website.  And each time I try to change from 1000 minutes to 600 which is $10 less I am greeted with an error on the next screen which does not allow me to ever change the plan.

The bug crashes Firefox, Chrome, Opera, and IE. hmmmmmm……

Online Education: YouTube

Recently, I have been asked several questions that were easily answered by pointing them to a YouTube URL.  Don’t forget that YouTube has tons of community added content making it a great place to learn. If you don’t find what you are looking for on the initial search try looking at the related videos  in the right sidebar.

I personally learn better visually so watching “How-To’s” online is what’s good!

From One Developer to Another

Every once in a while as a web developer I run into the chance to help another developer with a project, product, script, etc.  A few years back I bought a flash file that displayed images in a slide show.  I did not want to spend hours writing the script myself so I found one that suited my needs and purchased it.  After downloading the script I found that it could be improved.  Instead of breaking the developers back for the fixes I submitted the changes I made to his script directly to him.  Truly, it only took me minutes to edit the script, but for the developer it saved him time.  this developer probably could have solved the issue also, but sometimes it is nice to just give back.

With a lot of software becoming open source software improvements are increasing at a much faster pace.  I love the idea of helping the community and hope other developers will take the time every once in a while to help other developers.  You might even get a cool shout out like I did!

http://www.tufat.com/resources15.htm

shout_out

Boo the Economy!

Does life ever ease up and give you a break?  Do the hours we spend slaving away at the American Dream ever pay off?  With the way the economy is shifting things are not looking good for the land of the free.  Personally, I have never really been effected by the plagues of the economy until now.  As people try not to spend as much due to raised prices on gas and food it is causing hurt for the companies they used to support.

Even the internet development industry seems to be taking a hit or at least here in Bend it is.  Granted, our shop is not a for those looking to start a super cheap site, but anybody serious about getting into the web game should be looking to spend at least $5000 to get started with an online business.  Sure, anyone can hire their nephew or friend to design a site and throw some HTML on the net.  This start-up way of getting online can often work for a little while, but most of these sites end up coming to us eventually in hopes of scaling their project into what it should have been in the first place.

Ok…basically I just wanted to rant about the economy and how it’s hurting my video game budget for a minute.  You all know the deal and if you are one of my peoples from back home you are probably feeling it more than I am.  All I’m saying is stop putting up these cheap ass template websites! Hit us up and get that good good! 🙂

Auz

Across the Sea

Last month my parents were able to go on this cruise as shown in the image.  It’s amazing that my mother was actually able to talk my dad in to going at this age and his condition. He finally gave in and decided this was his last time to get away like this.

After flying 14 hours they landed in Livorno, Italy taking a train ride to Pisa. Rome ( more pics )where they were met by our cousin  Madi, and her sons.  The first meal they had just had to be sphaghetti which I heard was really good.   The next major stop was Barcelona. After leaving Spain they traveled to Casablanca in Northwest Africa and then back to Cadiz, Spain. After a short trip in Cadiz they moved on to Lisbon, Spain. Once Spain had been trampled upon they were off to Le Havre, France.

I have not heard much more about the trip yet, but will edit this post when I do.  I just wanted to say they inspire me to keep working and striving for more.  You know the American Dream for middle class Americans is still possible when you can take a trip like this.

Back to Blogging

I have not been blogging due to several reasons. Non which should truly keep me from writing my thoughts down every once in a while, but never the less they are apparent.

One reason is that it takes me a long time to write something good.  I would often find myself editing my words until they were neat and structured.  Being, that I never really exercise my writing muscle this became a pain in the ass.  So now I am going to just concentrate on short entries that are sweet and to the point. Not only to help me fit blogging into my schedule, but to just get me writing again which should hopefully help with the pen stamina.

Another reason I have not blogged is because my life is in such transition it has been hard to admit the turmoil. I am not saying I am unhappy with life, but with some of my relationships I am in need of some heartfelt spillage. So how do I reveal the juice without hurting feelings and burning bridges.  Is this why the pen name was born or why they post that little notice about changing names? I guess so…

Third reason… I suck!

Dogs/Children Are Expensive

So after noticing blood in jada’s urine the past couple of days I took her to the vet.  I have never been to this clinic, but since they are literally right across the street from my work it’s pretty obvious why I switched.  The doc said the same thing the last vet said concerning Jada’s frequent urinary track infections so we are back to square one.  They sent off some urine for a culture and did a few x-rays to the sum of $350.  We also found a small amount of arthritis in Jada’s back when looking at the x-rays.

I truly love my dog… the last year we have spent over $9000 on her medical bills or from things she has destroyed.  Sometimes I really don’t know what the limit is. I mean when do you just put a dog down bc they are killing your pockets?  All I can say is that I… no SHE is lucky I don’t have any kids.  Figure that one out…

My mom emailed me this video about Negro spirituals.  I thought is was pretty interesting so take a peek:

My Grandfather

Just wanted to post a link to some information about my grandfather: Arthur J.H. Clement, Jr.

Arthur Clement, Jr.

Arthur J. H. Clement, Jr.
– Business Leader

Promoting positive race relations, spurring community development, and enhancing business incentives in his hometown of Charleston, S.C., were goals and achievements of businessman and community leader Arthur J. H. Clement, Jr. Born in Charleston, S.C., in 1908, his life later became a beacon for business savvy, political skills, and philanthropic support as he worked to promote goodwill among the citizens of his state. Upon Clement’s death in 1985, Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr., cited him as a pioneer among African American business leaders, ìduring a time of changing attitudes of the white race toward race relations. Riley credited Clement with helping to hasten ìthis positive change which improved our community.

Clement prepared himself academically by attending Charleston’s Avery Institute, which was founded in 1865 via the philanthropic support of Charles Avery and the American Missionary Society, to provide elementary through ninth grade education. He then attended Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, N.C., earning his high school diploma from its high school department in 1926 and his baccalaureate in 1930.

Highly motivated and determined to excel, Clement’s work experience began with North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company, founded by John Merrick in Durham, N.C., in 1885. He soon moved up the ranks. His hard work, continuous acquisition of knowledge, and positive disposition resulted in his being named manager of the Savannah, Ga. district in 1937. In 1942 upon his father’s retirement, he became manager of the Charleston, S.C. district. His outstanding achievements led to his opening new district offices as manager in Newark, N.J. in 1955 and Los Angeles, Calif., in 1961. He returned to the East coast as district manager in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1963. Clement’s outstanding career with North Carolina Mutual ended in 1967 when he accepted an appointment as Director of Admissions and Career Counseling at Voorhees College in Denmark, S.C., a position he held until 1973.

Arthur Clement had a basic interest in politics, which was closely allied to his enduring concerns for racial equality and social justice. He was an active member of the South Carolina Progressive Democratic Party. It was organized in 1944 to provide African Americans with an opportunity to participate in state and national elections, which were then controlled by the all-white South Carolina Democratic Party. In 1950 Clement opposed incumbent Rep. L. Mendel Rivers in South Carolina’s First Congressional District, becoming the first African American in South Carolina to run for Congress as a Democrat. In his later years he was involved with the South Carolina Republican Party.

An avid writer, and collector of copious records on race relations, politics, and community issues, Clement’s vast array of papers is housed at the University of South Carolina’s Caroliniana Library.

As a public servant and community organizer, Clement’s extensive civic activities included the Board of Trustees of Johnson C. Smith University, Board of Visitors of Clemson University, Advisory Council of South Carolina State University, the Charlestowne Montessori School, Porter Gaud Academy and the M.U.S.C. Area Health Education Center. He was president of the Charleston Branch of the NAACP and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and local district chairman of the Boy Scouts of America. Among his extensive honors and awards is the Boy Scouts of America’s Silver Beaver Award. He was an active member of the Rotary Club of Charleston.

A true philanthropist, upon his death in 1985, Arthur J. H. Clement, Jr., bequeathed money for the creation of a trust fund which makes annual gifts to the YWCA of Charleston, the Coastal Carolina Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Hospice of Charleston, the Charleston Salvation Army, and the Hope Service, Inc.

Live Life Backwards

I want to live my next life backwards: You start out dead and get that out of the way. Then you wake up in an old age home feeling better every day. Then you get kicked out for being too healthy. Enjoy your retirement and collect your pension. Then when you start work, you get a gold watch on your first day. You work 40 years until you’re too young to work. You get ready for High School: drink alcohol, party, and you’re generally promiscuous. Then you go to primary school, you become a kid, you play, and you have no responsibilities. Then you become a baby, and then…You spend your last 9 months floating peacefully in luxury, in spa-like conditions – central heating, room service on tap, and then…You finish off as an orgasm. I rest my case.

Yep, that would be a great life right there. Unfortunately we get to grow old and lay in a casket for the finale. So it’s February 21st of 2007 and I have not made an entry for almost a year. Wow! Time sure does fly when you are having fun!

I am still in Oregon and so far so good… or so good so far… whateva! I was recently hired as a PHP developer for Alpine Internet Solutions (www.alpineinternet.com) here in Bend. I was really fortunate to have come across the web design shop as there are barely any big technology firms in town. I am new to the PHP side of programming, but I think I can get the swing of it in the next few months. My first client is www.asukabook.com. I am currently programming the backend to accept orders and process the payments. The system they have built at Alpine for web development is pretty sweet. It makes things a lot easier if something goes wrong with your website. You can just roll back the code and start from a working point.

So the job is cool. The peeps are cool. I just have to get used to being around computer nerds all day. It was bad enough when it was just me talking to myself… My hours seem to be pretty flexible. I can work from home if I need to and I can also take some working vacations.