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Tagged: spline

[dev] Weekly roundup: sleepover

June’s theme is clearing my plate, a concept that becomes increasingly nebulous as time goes by.

I accidentally went nocturnal over the past week, which always leaves me completely fried for a few days due to losing a day. So not the best week, but not the worst either.

  • art: I drew a very quick happy Minccino to try to cheer everyone up last weekend. Their tail fluffs are upside-down. Sorry.

    I drew and colored two old friends on a whim, trying to apply some things Mel had told me about color harmony. I think it came out as possibly one of the nicest things I’ve ever drawn, so, that’s nice, whoa.

    I started drawing daily PokĂ©mon (in a predetermined random order), where the only rule is a time limit of 30 minutes. Here are Wobbuffet and western Shellos; I’ll be dumping them all in a Tumblr tag too.

    While I was out at lunch, I drew on paper for the first time in a while. I should probably do it more, but the results aren’t too bad.

  • Runed Awakening: Aha! I pixelled an NPC or two, possibly marking the first real character design I’ve ever done, as well as an item and an attempt at a room illustration.

    A couple friends played through the current state of the game, which led to a couple days of chasing down extremely obtuse minor bugs. It’s a little frustrating to have spent a lot of time and have so little to show for it, but one of the bugs was something that’s plauged me for over a year, so I guess it at least fits with the theme of getting rid of looming things. From here I should be able to get back to building things.

  • spline: I finally granted Mel the ability to create a new folder by themselves. So far I’ve always done it manually, which has gotten increasingly painful since the folders use the nested set model. There’s still no UI for rearranging them, but this removes a huge source of… requests for manual intervention.

  • veekun: I started reabsorbing the current state of the new YAML schema and thinking about how to get it where I want. Didn’t make any actual progress, though.

    Working on getting the remaining images veekun is missing, too.

Probably more of the same this next week. I want to make huge inroads on Runed Awakening, fix the other category of things I have to do manually for spline, and get some work done on veekun one way or another.

[dev] Weekly roundup: building steam

February’s theme is writing, and the major project is, er, a book.

I haven’t actually written a single word of a book? But oh dang I had one solid-ass week. I’ve been nocturnal for a few days and it’s been working pretty well.

  • art: Did a ton of doodlin’ practice. I think I’ve finally hit a point where I can sketch something and have a decent chance of getting it sort of right, which is amazing, and a confidence boost as well. I ended up crafting a brand new Twitter banner, which is absolutely gorgeous.

  • Runed Awakening: I built out several areas, fixed up a central critical puzzle, and had a lot of ideas for plugging together things I already had. I’m being vague, so that doesn’t sound like a lot, but it was a pretty big step forwards.

  • blog: I intended to write about abuse and harassment, and it sort of morphed into offense in general, but it seemed to resonate. Also I wrote about Twitter’s weird collection of subtle features, and I’m still getting suggestions for edits. Also also I switched the site to pretty solid https, which turns out to be pretty easy with Let’s Encrypt.

[dev] Weekly roundup: well, no wonder

February’s theme is writing, and the major project is a book.

I had a strange week.

I’ve had frequent headaches since around the end of January, especially when staring at text on a screen for long periods of time, which has made the theme of writing a little difficult. This week, I finally went to an optometrist. Lo and behold, my eyesight has worsened from 20/15 post-LASIK to 20/25. One pair of glasses later, and the headaches are gone. I barely notice the difference, but I guess teeny-tiny monitor text was just fuzzy enough that I tired my eyes out trying to focus on it all day every day.

I’ve also been a little disillusioned with drawing lately — it seemed like I couldn’t even move the tablet pen how I wanted any more. This week I discovered I’d somehow turned on the stabilizer (which smooths out your strokes), and it was high enough to mess with me but not high enough to be the obvious cause. Whoops.

Not a great start to the month, but at least that’s all taken care of.

  • art: One or two dailies, though I’ve taken a bit of a break, due to eye pain and lack of ideas.

  • spline: Trimmed blog posts to the first couple paragraphs on the front page of Mel’s personal site, so you can actually see the buttons at the bottom.

  • Runed Awakening: Dealt with some technical nonsense regarding touchability, which was satisfying but made no visible improvement. Did a lot of planning. Still feel like there’s too big a gap in the middle of the game, but I’m very gradually closing it.

  • doom: Playing with weapons again. Looking for sound effects. Experimented with improving function documentation on the ZDoom wiki.

  • blog: Wrote about UI changes.

  • slade: Worked on previewing 3D floors — mostly fixing tricky bugs with what I’d already done.

[dev] Weekly roundup: slow week

February’s theme is writing, and the major project is a book.

  • spline: Styled Mel’s personal site and put it in production. Did a lot of last-second oh-god-we’re-in-production-and-nothing-works fixes, like throwing in Disqus and GA and fixing permissions and whatnot.

  • blog: I made pretzels! Also I wrote about making pretzels. And about writing. And like two-thirds of a post about UI changes.

  • art: The usual. Also hourly comic day.

  • doom: Some more tinkering. Made a few weapons that are pretty sweet. Also made a little start of a ZDoom editing demo map.

[dev] Weekly roundup: second wind

January’s theme is web dev, and the major project is spline, the thing that runs Floraverse.

I had a lot of stuff to do that I sort of left to the very last minute, as I am wont to do, so I’ve been rushing to actually do some of it.

  • art: The usual. Bit lazier with them this week, since I’ve been busy with not-art, but now I miss it!

  • spline: Got image embedding working in the blog editor. Cleaned up a few places I was writing values into JavaScript in templates. Vendored archetype into a submodule, rather than hardcoding (!) a relative path to it. Migrated the clumsy generated Pyramid script to a CLI you can just run with -m, and added a command for creating a new user manually. Added front-page support to the blog.

  • SLADE: Submitted a pull request full of some old papercuts. Finished a branch that fixes and extends the Boom generalized labels for most specials’ speed args. Fixed one or two new papercuts.

  • doom: Sifted through a bunch of Realm 667 resources looking for some neat gems. Toyed with weapons and powerups and monsters, with a few interesting results. Eventually I’d like to sit down and actually make a map, but this is the kind of thing I can do for an hour or two, and it’s interesting to try balancing extensions to the vanilla gameplay.

  • quixe: I read about Lectrote, Andrew Plotkin’s IF interpreter that just bundles Quixe with a Chrome renderer, the same way Atom works. I’m not a huge fan of this approach usually, but IF requires support for a few layout tricks that are most easily accomplished with an HTML renderer anyway, so it makes some sense. Anyway, the post mentions that one of the concerns is speed, so I was inspired to go optimization-hunting, and I found an improvement of about 10% across the board. My benchmark story (Counterfeit Monkey by Emily Short, which is absolutely massive and does a ton of work at startup) still takes more than ten seconds just to load, but this is a vast improvement over the thirty seconds it took when I first started hacking on Quixe.

  • twitter: I improved my bot @flareon_favbots a little — it now reports offenders for spam, and makes an effort to tweet more than just when it’s first run. It’s blocked another hundred or so fav-spammers in the last few days!

  • veekun: Ported the CLI to argparse; previously it was optparse plus a lot of manual mucking about. Also started on a stub of a search interface built right into the pokedex library.

  • book: Started taking serious notes on a book about computer stuff.

  • blog: Started writing a post about, ah, writing.

  • flora: Created a stub of a repo for Mel’s personal site.

Hey, that’s not a bad haul. Still more to do, as always, but I’m making a dent and finally have some momentum back.

[dev] Weekly roundup: stuff

January’s theme is web dev, and the major project is spline, the thing that runs Floraverse.

I’m rapidly discovering that I’m just tired of web dev.

  • art: The usual. Also drew a new avatar, which I will probably be redrawing after some feedback.

  • Mario Maker: Finished and published The Works.

  • spline: Made some tiny inroads on getting CKEditor to work with reStructuredText instead of HTML, then realized what a mountain of work it was going to be to make anything non-trivial work, and totally gave up. Settled on storing HTML for now, and got the basic stub of a blog working for Mel.

  • meatspace: Spent a whole day rearranging furniture — Mel’s desk is now in the spare room, and my desk has a lot more breathing room.

  • blog: Wrote a birthday post.

  • tech support: Helped a friend with some tech stuff and inadvertently discovered the most infamously ornery project owner I have ever seen.

  • Runed Awakening: Updated to work with the latest Inform 7 release, including hacking around a segfault with some bundled extensions (!). Drew another experimental item illustration, but this time with pixels. Not sure what I prefer yet.

[dev] Weekly roundup: reaccelerating

January’s theme is web dev, and the major project is spline, the thing that runs Floraverse.

Getting momentum back after completely blowing it all on AGDQ was surprisingly difficult. I felt like I’d forgotten that I’d ever done anything and would never be able to do anything again. After just a week! Brains are weird.

  • art: The daily comics continue.

  • Runed Awakening: Web dev seemed particularly imposing with no momentum, so I turned back to my game to get going again. I actually made some really solid progress! Implemented three or four new puzzles, added a way to see which alternative solutions you’ve found even across playthroughs, and fixed a bunch of obscure bugs. Still a long way to go, but it’ll get there if I can keep it moving along.

  • flora: Yet another cutscene.

  • blog: I dug up and finished an old heteroglot post about Pascal, and threw in an Inform 7 problem I’d done in the meantime. It was also 🎂 my birthday 🎂 this week, which called for the age-old tradition of putting confetti all over veekun. I’d always used some ancient snowflake “DHTML” script because I’m lazy, but this year I rewrote it from scratch to use CSS animations and only the slightest iavascript to generate the markup. Now it animates much more smoothly and is much less of a resource hog. For a joke that appears one day a year. Oh well.

  • spline: Less than I would have hoped for halfway through the month, but I did clean up the (minimal) docs a little bit and replace a bunch of code with a third-party module.

  • Mario Maker: Made Purgatory.

[dev] Weekly roundup: speedwatching

January’s theme is web dev, and the major project is spline, the thing that runs Floraverse.

I spent an embarrassingly large chunk of the week watching AGDQ instead of actually doing anything. Oh well.

  • flora: I slopped together another three “cutscene” updates, all pretty short but a little time-consuming nonetheless. I also put some work into refactoring the guts of the player, with modest success. The eventual goal is to build an editor, so people who aren’t me can make little web VNs without having to cobble together a bunch of undocumented JSON and pray it works.

  • art: Keeping up the daily comics. They’re definitely larger in scope than what I was scrawling in pencil a year ago. Sort of like speedpaints, but the time limit is loosely defined as “I don’t want to spend all day on this”. Trying to vary how I do them, too, though it ultimately comes down to whim.

  • blog: With some reservations, I wrote a thing scoffing at how condescending Paul Graham’s latest masterpiece was.

  • SLADE: Bit of very minor work, fixing a few papercuts and trying to diagnose a couple others.

  • Runed Awakening: Didn’t get very far, but I did manage to spend a couple distracted hours stubbing out a puzzle I really like.

And that’s it! Mostly drawing and dabbling. I (accidentally) woke up early today, so I’m going to try to get a good chunk of something done to get my momentum going again.

[dev] Weekly roundup: not much

This month’s theme is game dev, and the major project is my text adventure, Runed Awakening.

I got knocked a bit off course by accidentally watching some Discworld specials and sleeping through all of Saturday because my cat is a jerk. I’m hoping that writing this now will help nudge me back into a more productive mindset.

  • Runed Awakening: Made some huge improvements to AI, which is surprisingly tricky, so I’m always happy when it works out. Fleshed out more stuff in the start area, started adding some tester amenities, and fixed bunches of bugs. There’s some more to do with what I have, but I’m currently a bit blocked on planning out the middle of the game, which I want to have some intertwining side stories. So I did a lot of thinking without necessarily making much progress, which is annoying. Hoping to get closer in the next few days.

    The game is pretty story-driven, being a text-based game, but it’s also a pretty shallow story — neither the player nor the universe are in imminent danger or anything nearly so dramatic. I considered trying to make it a little heavier at the end, but I think that would feel pretty tacked-on. I’d rather try to get this out sooner and do something bigger for a second game. I just hope people enjoy this one? I realize I’ve never actually published a creative work, so I’ve been anxious on and off.

  • art: I drew a Delibird and it’s okay though I’m still not happy with the way I do outlines. Also this Friskeon. And a lot of doodling. I think I’ve managed to draw for at least an hour every day this week, which I’d like to keep up. Still frustrated, though; I’m painfully aware that I only know how to draw a few body shapes in a few general poses, and I’m trying to branch out from that, and it’s all stuff I’ve never tried before so it comes out awful. So it goes.

  • music: Something I want to learn how to do. I toyed around with LMMS a bit and made a few notes that aren’t entirely terrible. A huge problem here is that even if I think of something I like, I can’t transcribe it correctly, and after hearing the wrong thing a few times I’ve forgotten what the original thought was. Next time I give this a shot I might just practice transcribing tunes I already know very well, like Zelda melodies.

  • spline: Fixed some fallout from CSRF protection, whoops.

  • flora: Mel wants to design a card game, and I’ve been helping plan that.

  • blog: Worked on this month’s posts some, but I hate everything I wrote and will probably delete most of it. We’re halfway through the month already so I really need to get these done, ugh.

[dev] Weekly roundup: makin’ games

Here we go — the first weekly status post, Sunday to Saturday.

This month’s theme is game dev, and the major project is my text adventure, Runed Awakening.

Also I’m going to try picking a major project to focus on each month, along with a general theme that will direct minor projects I work on when I get bored or stuck on the major project.

  • blog: Wrote a new post about, I guess, boobs. Added this ‘dev log’ category, and seeded it with posts about all my Mario Maker levels — big high-quality screenshots and a few paragraphs of what I was thinking. Started taking notes for blog posts for this month, which I think might end up being a three-part series on getting into Doom mapping.

  • Mario Maker: Made and released Pipe Dream. Went through and played through all the levels several of my friends have made, leaving doodle comments on all of them. (The Miiverse drawing interface is super primitive — only one level of undo — so this was surprisingly difficult!) Made a level called The Works, but I’m not super happy with it and think it has a lot of filler, so I’m sitting on it and will revisit it next time I play.

  • spline: Did that stuff for Sketch. Later I went back and improved the YouTube embed support a little, finally fixed thumbnails being shown using full-size images rather than actual thumbnails (oops…), and updated forbiddenflora to take some recent CSS changes into account.

  • art: Drew a Psyduck petting a cat for @sarahjeong. Did a lot of doodling, but none of it came out very well; been having this problem a lot lately, ugh. Also I realize I haven’t actually been posting any art on here since it’s much more of a pain in the ass than just dragging something to the Twitter web interface, but I’ll make an effort to do art roundups every so often.

  • Runed Awakening: I recently rearranged the entire world and have been dealing with a lot of fallout from that. The intro sequence saw a lot of improvement, as did some AI. (I’m being intentionally vague since it’s a story/puzzle game and I don’t want to spoil it. This is driving me up the wall.)

Back to doodling!

[dev] Did some Spline work, again

Sketch is still buying days of my time, which is super cool of him. Continuing from last month, he asked that I make it possible to disable normal editing and only accept proposals on the wiki.

After some internal debate about how to add a real configuration system, I realized this could just be expressed with permissions, so I wrote some little permissions UI. And actually added them to the proposal code. Which is good.

I wanted to have a nice way to iterate all possible permissions from whatever plugins are currently active, but the way permissions work right now is kind of fucked up anyway, so in the end I just hardcoded a list of existing permissions. Oh, well. I’ll get around to it.

Also I added CSRF protection everywhere. Whoops. Like I said, spline is still lacking in a lot of niceties, such as “being ready for production use”. But it’s getting there, one architecture astronauting session at a time.

While I was in there I finally added UI so Glip can attach videos and cutscenes to Floraverse pages without my intervention. It was pretty easy and I don’t know why I subjected myself to messing with the db manually for so long.

This isn’t very long or exciting; it was my project and I knew what I was doing, and there was a lot of pondering involved, and I don’t have anything to complain about.

Which is why I’m using it to start off a dev log, containing shorter posts about things I have done that don’t merit some deep dive into obscure technology. I also started keeping a notebook (a real, physical notebook) for jotting down stuff I do every day, and maybe I’ll summarize it once a week or so. I’ll also post about little “releases” like Mario Maker levels. In fact I might go make backdated posts for all the levels I’ve made so far.

Remember, if you’re following via the Atom feed and only want to see the blog, there’s a feed with only blog posts.

I’m not sure what this means for the projects page, which has always been kind of a mess. It’s also annoying that you can’t easily filter by project, because they’re just tags, and it’s not obvious which tags are projects. I’ll figure this out as I go, I suppose.