Part 8, or 8.5, or 9, depending on how you're counting, has been posted at Ars Technica!
In this installment, I look at the demoscene, the amazingly creative group of people who made demos on the Amiga (and later the PC), held demoparties, and pushed forward the limits of graphics and the imagination.
Reaction to the article has been very positive:
"This article gave me chills. Excellent, excellent writing." - generic_1013
"Thanks author, I’m loving this series even though I just found out that it existed. Here’s hoping that it won’t take so long for the next installment." - secretknight42
"Awesome article and I got a mention in it too -- woot!" - MrNSX
I'm really excited and I'm going to start working on the next article right away!
In this episode, recorded ONLY A WEEK after the last one, we head out to the University of British Columbia and sit outside the Student Union Building. Topics include playing Starcraft, the gap between trying something and succeeding at it, the rise of good television, and the movie Battleship compared to real battleships.
Knotty_Geeks_Episode_20.mp3" width="290" height="24" />
I’ve always wanted to do a news show, and I love professional Starcraft, so I’ve combined my passions into a weekly show called... wait for it... This Week in Starcraft.
You can watch Episode 1 here:
And you can watch it live every Friday at 3PM PST here:
It’s basically a recap of what’s been happening in the professional Starcraft scene over the last week. I try to keep it down to 30 minutes because who has that much time in life?
Hope to see you there!
iTunes recently changed their rules for podcast feeds, and one of the new requirements is a high-resolution logo (1400 x 1400) so that all those lovely iPad Retina Displays don’t see nasty pixels.
So here’s the new logo, whipped up in Photoshop:
In this episode of Knotty Geeks, we try something different and record directly to our iPhones, then mix the two sources together.
Surprisingly, it worked! However, we messed up and recorded the audio at a criminally low 11kHz sample rate. That mistake will be rectified next week. WHAT?? NEXT WEEK?? Yes... we are going to be doing these a LOT more regularly now with our new setup!
The hardest part about mixing the two recordings together was getting them perfectly synced. Terry let out a big "BEEEP" at the beginning but it turns out that isn’t the best waveform to sync two sources with. I had more success just going off individual words, zoomed in at the highest level of detail, in the middle of the podcast. Also I discovered that putting one person on Left channel and the other on the Right seems like it would sound cool but ends up being kind of disconcerting to listen to. Putting both on one channel works better.
Note: The discussion in this episode wanders all over the place. We start by talking about the imminent release of my new article on the history of the Amiga on Ars Technica, and somehow end up discussing North Korea at the end. Somehow, though, it all works!
Link from the show:
Old-school Modem demonstration: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxM_0BguTkE
./Knotty_Geeks_Episode_19.mp3" width="290" height="24" />
Download show directly
The news is out that PC sales have fallen 14% last quarter over the same quarter a year ago.
Many people are blaming Windows 8 for accelerating this decline, rather than halting it.
Or, as The Professor so eloquently put it, "In other words, MS’s customers were drowning and Ballmer threw them an anchor."
The mental image made me laugh, so I thought I’d whip up something in Photoshop:
I’ve long been an avid fan of 3D modeling, but the software is usually expensive and takes hundreds of hours to learn.
For those who don’t want to invest quite that much money and time, there is Sculptris from Pixologic. The basic application is free, with a more professional version available if you want.
It takes a much more artist-friendly approach to 3D. You start off with a big sphere, and use the mouse (although it works MUCH better with a graphics tablet, even a simple one like my entry-level Bamboo works great) to stretch, pinch, grow, and contract. It feels very much like sculpting clay. A bit of pulling and smoothing later, and you can create a very organic-looking 3D mesh. Here’s my first attempt at modeling my Ke’ea race of intelligent avians:
The program also includes texturemapping that works with the mouse or tablet to "paint" textures right on the surface. It’s very cool, and the price is right!
On this episode of Knotty Geeks, we talk about software startups and how they might use various methods of marketing. Terry insists that viral marketing isn’t, and also disdains DropBox, which he will definitely live to regret.
<embed src="includes/players/1pixelout.swf" flashvars="soundFile=./uploads/Knotty_Geeks_Episode_18.mp3" width="290" height="24" />
New comic uploaded! Go here: http://jeremyreimer.com/comic.lsp?c=Star%20Gamer
There are a couple of things I always wanted to do but never did.
One of them was to have the courage to play Starcraft, 1v1, on the ladder.
Another one was to have a TV show.
So I've combined the two into a show I call "Overcoming Ladder Anxiety", a show on Twitch.tv:
It's basically my journey through playing ladder for the first time ever, talking about my anxiety and dealing with how reality doesn't quite match up to your expectations. It's about how Starcraft can teach you lessons about life.
The show runs Monday to Friday at 2:00 pm Pacific. Please join in live, or watch the videos! Thanks!
I'm a writer and occasional programmer. I write science fiction stories and novels.
I also write technology articles for Ars Technica.
I'm the creator of newLISP on Rockets, a web development framework and blog application.