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Why is it so difficult to convince people that computers are not analogous to
washing machines, cars or television? I suspect it's because they've come to
view all electronic goods as consumerist phenomenon. That and raw fear.

Okay, I am now even less happy with these people. They called me up to ask
me to do some work on short notice ( like 1 HOUR'S notice), and I said I'd do
it. Then, they call me back 10 minutes later, when I'm in the fscking shower
to cancel. Apparently they kept on calling people, and found someone who
could make it there sooner than I could. Charming. Travail, the employment
agency, are to be avoided. The other agency I've used are not all that nice,
and they're not strictly honest, but they don't screw you over this blatantly.

On the now abandoned Tampa facial recognition camera scheme:
"Police are at a loss to explain why the software wasn't effective, since it
seemed to work fine in controlled testing." - Atlanta Journal-Constitution

On his ditching of microsoft in favour of free software, Ernie Ball said:
"I'm not in this just to get free software. No. 1, I don't think there's
any suck thing as free software. I think there's a cost in implementing
all of it." The interview ended at that point, as RMS entered and wouldn't
stop screaming until they promised to replace OpenOffce with emacs...

/Other/ temping agency called me up, then called up 18 hours later to cancel.
I am not happy with these people.
However, I _am_ happy with progress on excido. I've 'let there be light' over
the whole arena, which I hope creates the effect of an eerie glow from the
nebula in the sky. I still don't know exactly what I'm doing with this
lighting lark, but I'm managing.
Done other random bits of eye candy too, like shadows on the menus. Fixed a
couple of insignificant bugs in the menu system. Have one known serious bug,
where the screen goes bright pink and nothing works properly. Work on that

...much later...
Today has been a day of fixing niggling bugs, and getting to know my code
better by making new bugs and fixing those too. In the name of feature-
expansion, I added a nice green fps meter. Doing this reminded me of the
horrific granularity of SDL_GetTicks() as a way of knowing simulation time-
step size. Must investigate alternatives.

Also, tried out Slickworm [1]. Damn impressive stuff. Intend to poke around
in the source to learn and possibly contribute. Planning to redo my audio
class with an OpenAL backend at some point - current sound implementation in
slickworm appears relatively crude (also OpenAL based), so may see if
developer wants my sound code if I come up with anything remotely elegant.
Slickworm has lovely, lovely terrain rendering, and uses ODE (which I keep
meaning to learn), so the physics is fun too. It has deformable terrain,
however you're deforming a heightmap (imagine what happens if you shoot a
hole in the side of a mountain). I think that if I were writing something
like that, I would make it so that impacts to surfaces beyond a certain level
of steepness just charred, rather than cratering. The vertical extrusion of
the crater when on a mountainside really kills the otherwise slick illusion.
Graphics are nice beyond the terrain, too. Ubiquitous stencil shadows give
a strong feeling of sunlight. Comedy development release quirk - there's a
weapon model (first person view) but no character model. Therefore, when
one looks at the ground, one sees the shadow of a shotgun floating in mid-air.
  I have a feeling that slickworm is a sufficiently cool project that it's
worth paying attention just so that one can casually say "Oh, yes, I remember
0.2, the handling was SO much better back then" in years to come :-)

[1] -

Temping agency called me up. Asked me if I would like to do the shitty job
that I did for a week previously and then gave up, and then told them I didn't
want to do it again a few days after that. When will they learn? I guess they
were hoping that I'd developered a crack habit and had grown desperate.
Yesterday, I accidentally made a flocking algorithm. I say accidentally
because I didn't know what I was doing, so it couldn't possibly have been on
purpose. Anyway, today I'm going to add nodes in the scenery that the AI tries
to avoid, to get away from the situation where they're almost always sliding
along the edges of the buildings to get to me.

Thought of clever way to deal with bug whereby player can escape the arena
through the edges. Then I tried it, found that it didn't work too well,
and fixed it using a one-line solution that I thought of while on the toilet.
Played with having the player modeled as a particle on a spring rather than
having 'fake' bounce in the hover, realised that it wasn't necessary yet
and would involve revamping certain things more than I felt like.
Played with a 'flamethrower' effect yesterday. Seems quite doable, although
would require me to have implemented animated textures to work well. Curse
gray matter for raising the bar so much on that one :-)

Collision detection is relatively functional at present. It's still only ray
poly detection. Sphere-poly today. Then that will be done for the moment
and I will have to find something more worthy to work on.
I've had it highlighted to me how inadequate Config::Load is, so will probably
rewrite that today. I intend to use Standard C++ Library strings, which is
going to be a first for me.

That was scary. I thought it was thursday. Anyhoo, today I will try and make
collision detection work somewhere near properly, paving the way for funky
scenery. You never know, someday in the future we may even get gameplay :-)
In other news, my sister is stuck in Toronto (where the power is out).

Greetings. I arrive on, with my fledgling project Excido. What's currently available shows gameplay in a wide-open
arena. What I'm working on at this time is buildings - suitably cuboidal ones.

When this .plan was written: 2003-08-22 08:45:33
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