Profeshnul Riter

Written on February 28, 2011 – 8:20 pm by Ding

"David" in shorthand. It almost feels like I paid a PR firm lots of money to rebrand me or something. UPDATE: Aaaand I'm wrong. The dashes should probably be on the OTHER side. I think I might just take the "it's a personal language" defence...

I am now on my way to becoming a profeshnul riter and I have just finished my first day on my NCTJ (which is a series of letters I never seem to be able to get in the right order the first time) course.  I have already learnt some valuable lessons which are as follows:

1)  Despite being a swot and trying to learn a bit of Shorthand before the course, I know nothing and what I do know I now know I know wrong.

2)  In shorthand, my name looks a bit like the logo for some variation on Starfleet.

3)  When you interview someone, you need to ask for a contact number.  I already knew that you also had to ask for their age, but asking someone over the age of about 40 for their age is an exercise in diplomacy that I wasn’t quite ready for today.

4)  Work experience in a call centre is good because it trains you for people telling you to “go away” in much less polite terms than that.

5)  I have a lot of work ahead of me.

In reference to lesson number 5, I am actually remarkably excited about this.  I’ve often said that I like having lots of work, but this isn’t entirely accurate:  I like having lots of work that I’m going to enjoy.

This work in particular is looking highly enjoyable and to be perfectly honest, this might well have been the first day in about four years that I haven’t found myself constantly checking the clock on the run up to 1pm and 5pm, traditionally being feeding time and home time respectively.

9 Second Lego Castle

Written on February 24, 2011 – 9:27 pm by Ding

Well, I like stop motion and I like lego…

I remember when I was young Lego used to make amazing adverts with everything building up in stop motion and flying around all over the place.  Maybe if I’m feeling ambitious I might try something similar, but for the time being I’m just proud I got this to work.  I want to try and make a little bit of traditional style animation using the same software so this has turned into a wonderful little test.

Collecting Compulsion

Written on February 24, 2011 – 7:42 pm by Ding

I’m not interested in frogs.

Frog. Not interested.

That is, I’m not interested in frogs until you give me a green one and a brown one and tell me there are more to collect.

This compulsion to collect things is something that a lot of ordinary geeks have and something that affects almost all of us at some point in our lives.  If you have two of something and there’s a third that’s in the same set, it’s almost impossible not to want it because you feel like the items “belong” together, and that getting two and not the other is somehow like splitting up a family.

In terms of gaming, the desire to get 100% completion of a game can sometimes overwhelm an individual, but this is a slightly different issue:  This is more to complete a collection.  To get a full set.   The confusing question that you will ask yourself shortly after completing a collection is obvious, but only obvious once that condition is triggered:  What happens next?

The answer is most of the time simple and a little distressing:  Nothing.

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Increased Tortoise

Written on February 23, 2011 – 11:02 pm by Ding

If anyone has been trying to read this thing tonight, I apologise for the rapid updates that I’ve made over the course of the evening.

This is somewhat of a redundant post, but I’ve changed the layout a little bit.  I managed to get rid of those annoying widget things in the top right that I’m fairly confident nobody used and I know I didn’t like at all, I’ve updated the colours and of course forged a lovely shiny new logo, shown above and to the left here in small pin-badge-able form.  I have decided to retire the faithful “Speedy” from my previous logo as he did after all belong to Blizzard, and they might want him back sooner or later.

I am aware that the colours are quite different to what they were before.  On one of my monitors it looks ok and on the other monitor it makes my eyes twitch a little, so if any of my lovely readers have any comments on this change, I have enabled comments for this post and you are allowed to have your say (whereupon it may well be ignored because the way I’ve updated this is through a series of technological voodoo rituals that I am already starting to forget.  All I know is that my fingers are hurting from excessive crossing).

I must admit that I have definitely come a long way since I started this blog (and even further from my Blogspot days and further still from my not-completely-functional webcomic site) and fiddling around with css files and snippets of php was starting to make a little sense.

CTS: Making background art and textures

Written on February 23, 2011 – 12:30 pm by Ding

Chaotic Tortoise Studios (CTS) is an indie games development studio that exists largely only in my mind.

I like this sprite. This sprite is not a problem. I will probably post this sprite a lot because I like this sprite.

I’ve always appreciated that to make a video game it takes a lot of work and mastery of several different disciplines.  Despite this, I’ve discovered that I never actually really appreciated just how much of this work and mastery goes in to making even the crummiest of games.  Never again will I outright dismiss a title as bad or worthless without first spending a bit of time checking the small minor details that I have overlooked. 

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CTS: Chaotic Tortoise Studios

Written on February 23, 2011 – 11:50 am by Ding

Despite being on the cusp of launching into my career as a profeshnul riter, I’ve been doing more work on fabricating my own computer games.  Putting the two together, I intend to therefore keep an ad-hoc log of my development process / journey / odyssey.  

 I’d like to say this is with the high-minded intention of helping other no-hope-want-to-be-developers like myself, but to be honest, it’s probably because I just like the sound of my own typing.

 Additional Notes:

All development-diary-like entries will now be included under the category Chaotic Tortoise Studios, and will be prefaced by CTS, because three letter acronyms (or as I call them, TLAs) are brilliant and everybody loves them.

The Raeburn Shield

Written on February 1, 2011 – 6:22 pm by Ding

Despite being an ordinary geek, I’m not normally a sports fan.  That may sound a little abhorrent as the words “geek” and “sports” don’t normally mix unless there is the letter “e” thrown in there somewhere but really, sports fanatics are ordinary geeks.  They pore over statistics and have encyclopaedic knowledge over things that really don’t matter.  Not only this, but a lot of them will play something like fantasy football which is quite frankly a couple of twenty sided dice away from Dungeons and Dragons.  It even has the word “fantasy” in the title.  If die hard sports fans aren’t geeks, then they are exceptionally close cousins.

A friend of mine at work was telling me about the Raeburn Shield and I did find this to be quite an interesting idea and thought I would share.

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