Not too long ago, I went on a major Charles Stross kick, especially his blog. At one point he did a series of blog posts called Books I Will Not Write, where he outlined some story ideas he's had, but that would not be profitable for him to write.

I decided to try this with a game mechanic I'll never implement. A lot of people go onto the like of the Game Development Sub-reddit saying things like, "I'd talk more about my idea but I'm afraid someone will steal it". A lot of people will then correct the poster and tell them that it's not going to happen because anyone who develops games, either as a living or as a hobby, will have at least 10 ideas of their own that they want to get around to. On top of that, I also believe that the person with the idea will have a firm concept of the finer details of what makes that game theirs, so even if someone stole the original idea, it would be honed into a completely different product.

So, I'm going to share an idea that I can't imagine making my own, in the hope it might inspire someone else:

Description of the game - Battlefield: LA for the Aliens )

I think it'd be an interesting exercise, and possibly one that my former graphics lecturer would have loved as an academic project, but I can't think how it could be fun in any way.

Hopefully it might be of inspiration to someone else, who might make it their own and find the element of fun to it. If you're one of those people, please feel free to steal the idea and make something awesome with it. The only thing I ask is, if you're feeling generous, shove a copy of it my way (but only if you're feeling generous that day).
A few weeks ago, there was a Steampunk event in Dublin. I had intended to go to it, and I had also intended to take a dive into making a bit of jewelery for it.

This involved some leather strip, some nuts from a hardware store, and some findings that I got in Beads'n'Bling. Me being me, I managed to lose the leather, so I couldn't make the choker I had intended. It didn't matter that much as, due to a busy week, I missed the event anyway. I still have all the materials, with the nuts littering my room, and the leather being... somewhere.

Anyway, I have a pendant that a friend gave me. It's really worn and the clasp was slightly broken (the main latch was chipped), but I wanted to inject some new life into it. This morning, on a whim, I decided I'd fix up the problem by replacing the latch, given that I'd recently bought a bag of 50 of them.

For reasons I've long since forgotten, I have a pair of pliers on the shelf above my bed (I think it's from the last time I had notions about trying to make jewelery) - they're from Maplins, but they seem to be the same as a pair that I got in a magazine one time, except with a better grip. Using those, I opened up the jump ring, and replaced the latch with minimum difficulty.

Wearing it now, it somehow feels more secure, although that may just be a psychological effect from knowing that I made it more secure.

Yes; I know this barely qualifies as anything on pretty much any scale, but it's a start in the right direction, and it's something I did for myself with materials that I had. It's a feeling I've forgotten until recently, and it feels good.

Now, to put that huge roll of cat-5, rj45 crimpers and heads to good use.
I found an interesting little presentation linked from a wikipedia page on the Bus Factor - The number of people who have to be hit by a bus before nobody knows how something works.

How Open Source Projects Survive Poisonous People (And You Can Too)

I haven't watched it all, but it helps me with the idea of open source communities not being the free-for-all my commercial mind imagines it as. Some things are carefully managed, and there are people who review changes, either before or after the commit. There is some semblance of order.

I find it interesting because, at some point, I may try my hand at some project that's accessible enough for me to cut my teeth on (in terms of code, and mailing lists (I don't want too much traffic, but I fear that's just kidding myself)), and just see how I get on. There again, diving into some code and hacking is great for job advancement, but as far as actual social development goes, I'm not sure it's where I should be leaning. You know, I like to leave the house and things like that; so holing myself up with some source code isn't going to be the best way to go about it.

But I do want to get going on something. So at the moment, I'm a hacker without a cause.
So this is my first entry in this service. It's separate from the rest of my identities as most of my friends aren't too interested in what I really want to get into.

Basically, expect lots of geeking out, with a little overshare on low-level detail. Hopefully this might motivate me to actually get working on things that I have lots of theoretical knowledge of, but no practical experience.



September 2015



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