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bio website scivium.com
location Oceanside, CA
age 41
visits member for 4 years
seen Jun 23 at 17:25
Game developer since 1996. Many shipped games. Some did very well, some did not-so-well. Strong opinions about the Right Way. -tom!

Jun
23
comment How do you calculate where a ball should go when it bounces off the bar?
They are exactly the same if the walls are along the major axes. If the walls are not all along the X, Y, and Z axes then no, the two are completely different.
Mar
26
comment Where should the animation be done?
@ashes999 you author the animation in an authoring tool (e.g. Blender) and play it back in your game engine (e.g. Unity).
Mar
20
comment What is the story of game programmers beside gaming history?
I don't know about that; we did what made sense to us but there was nothing automatic about it either. It was a pretty low-tech solution to us. We wanted levels to be bigger than what would fit into memory so this was the solution!
Mar
20
comment Does Big O really matter?
Joe, sure, although that's a different sort of concern. Do you want O(1) where the constant factor is high, or O(n) with a small 'n' and a low constant factor? Knowing big-O in this case isn't a problem but can help you work out whether or not the solution makes sense for the circumstances in which it'll be used.
Oct
16
comment Thread runs faster on a faster processor… how to control Thread speed
yes, so I was commenting that the simple takeaway for the OP is that ... Fixed timestep is the One True Path, even if GoG takes a lot of words to get to the point.
Oct
14
comment Thread runs faster on a faster processor… how to control Thread speed
The OP should not be using a fixed sleep time when the rest of the processing can take an unknown amount of time.
Oct
14
comment Thread runs faster on a faster processor… how to control Thread speed
Everything gets harder with a variable timestep, so while it is an option it is not a great one (IMO).
Oct
14
comment Game Development Degree vs Computer Science Degree
@Alex I meant simply that a degree from a trade school is not necessarily a positive addition to one's resume/CV. Indeed, in some circles it is actually a negative. (Countering your first sentence?)
Oct
13
comment Game Development Degree vs Computer Science Degree
@Alex Schearer - Trade school degrees tend to be a negative for the candidate. Choosing between a university education and a trade school one is a no brainer in the absence of other information. One thing shared by most of the trade school educated people that I've interviewed is that their money was not well spent and they did not know basic computer science, which in my opinion makes them poor additions to the programming team.
Oct
13
comment Comparing angles and working out the difference
@Chewy, huh? The difference between 180 and 0 is not 0, and the difference between 181 and 0 is not 1...
Oct
13
comment Alternative to pyGame?
I learned Python in an afternoon (from years of C++ experience) and within a week I was writing more functionality faster in Pygame.
Oct
11
comment How were cartridge-based games programmed?
Re: "Compress what you can," on the old hardware you typically would compress to whatever the hardware could handle. You would never compress audio to MP3, because the audio hardware didn't handle it natively and you wouldn't want to waste the time decompressing it on the CPU when you could just stream it straight off of the media into the audio hardware. MIDI was great though because everyone had (and has) a wavetable synth on board; just load up your samples and there you go.
Oct
11
comment How were cartridge-based games programmed?
@speeder it's easy to click 'edit' or 'delete' on accidental comments...
Oct
11
comment How were cartridge-based games programmed?
It's worth pointing out that the carts were often sized in mega*bits*, not mega*bytes*. Those 64Mb carts were only 8MB.
Oct
7
comment Algo for given an amount of XP, find a character's level
Also it's not like you need to determine the current level all of the time. Just check to see if the current XP is more than the threshold for the NEXT level, starting from the current level that you've stored somewhere. I.e. I'm level 5. If my XP is greater than or equal to xpTable[6], then I'm level 6. Keep looping until you find your new current level.
Oct
7
comment How different is Java for JRE vs Java for Android?
For what it's worth, Android applications are typically written in Java. The difference between the two is that "Android" is an operating system and "Java" is a programming language. They serve different (non-overlapping) purposes.
Oct
3
comment What is a good starting platform for a teenage game programmer?
Python and Pygame was a breath of fresh air to me after writing games in C for many years. I figured I could get the same thing done in about 10% of the time in Python because of the higher level aspect to everything.
Oct
3
comment Handling game states for Android
I haven't done enough Android development to say for sure, but I would suggest that you do not want your Views to be doing any logic. Views are for viewing, they should only be drawing whatever the data model says that they should draw. Likely it's the Activity that should be updating all of this stuff. (Put 'View' in place of 'Renderer' in my example above.)
Oct
1
comment How do I build games with scripted actors?
This is basically how it worked in the one game I worked on using Lua. Each thing that wanted Lua control had a LuaComponent, and that component had its own Lua VM which got a single 'tick' per frame. I can't say that it worked great, but it did result in a shipping game.
Oct
1
comment How do I build games with scripted actors?
Without polymorphism in the entity (your "Character"), this can also be accomplished with an abstract AI base class and derivations, PlayerAi, NpcAi, LuaAi, etc. Even better perhaps would be for it all to be Lua controlled, and the Lua could do the controller "AI" processing.