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Tutorial Doctor's Journal



Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name...

Posted by , 13 February 2014 - - - - - - · 875 views
forum, community
So, when I am on this site, I am a total noob, but on this other site they think I am a genius. hehe.

I like being right in-between though. I can learn from the best and brightest and take what I learn, decipher it, make it simple, and share it with the common folk. And we all know I am one of the "common folk."

I am on a new path, one that I think will really be the future of programming, so I am investing some time into seeing how that works out.

This node-based programming is a phenomena that I think will change programming. Yes, perhaps in the past it was irrelevant and such, but I have met some people who are implementing it (and very well). If it doesn't change general programming, it will at least affect game programming.

It's something old yet new, and it is exciting to be a part of something that is not so popular before it gets popular, and to tell you the truth, I have a knack for that sort of thing:

Apps (I called single task programs)
Augmented reality (not as big yet, but it is used on professional levels whether people know it or not)
3D printing (Yeah, saw it at SIGGRAPH a long time ago).
Geodesic domes (old but new)

The list goes on.


Albert Einstein thought like me

Posted by , 09 February 2014 - - - - - - · 705 views
Einstein, Albert, thinking
I have always had thus idea, that if you can't mask something easy for a little child to understand, you reall can't teach.

Today I found a quote by Albert Einstein;

“If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”
― Albert Einstein

The other day, I was thinking how easy it is to have complex information, but how hard it is to make that information easy to understand for the layman.

Lots of people who have years of accomplishment make tutorials on their field of study, but little to none actually can teach well.

It's easy to have knowledge, but it takes a profound sense of understanding to convey it in an easy to grasp way.

MORE QOUTES:


“One should use common words to say uncommon things”
― Arthur Schopenhauer


“Truth is ever to be found in the simplicity, and not in the multiplicity and confusion of things.”
― Isaac Newton



“I am not a genius, I am just curious. I ask many questions. and when the answer is simple, then God is answering.”
― Albert Einstein

“..things are never as complicated as they seem. It is only our arrogance that prompts us to find unnecessarily complicated answers to simple problems.”
― Muhammad Yunus, Banker to the Poor: Micro-Lending and the Battle Against World Poverty


“Complex things are easy to do. Simplicity's the real challenge.”
― Robert James Waller, The Bridges of Madison County

“Simplicity is a great virtue but it requires hard work to achieve it and education to appreciate it. And to make matters worse: complexity sells better.”
― Edsger Wybe DIJKSTRA

The role of genius is not to complicate the simple, but to simplify the complicated.”
― Criss Jami


Your game is a dime a dozen

Posted by , 03 February 2014 - - - - - - · 904 views
Unique, game
Found this definition:

A dime is a small amount of money. A dozen is 12 items.
When something or someone is described as being a dime a dozen it literally means that you can get lots of them for a small amount of money. - ie There are plenty more like them about. (the person or item is not unique.)

How does this make me feel?

Like crap.

How does one handle this statement, because it does seem to be true.

If I'm going to make games, I'd have make unique ones.


I'll always be a novice

Posted by , 31 January 2014 - - - - - - · 678 views
novice, noob, beginner
I always consider myself a novice at things, because I am always learning new things, and always assume my understanding or skill level is always inferior to the many possible advancements I could make in the future.

So I have been calling myself a beginner in computer programming, though that may not be entirely true, but I know that my skill set is inferior to the many advancements that I see on this site alone.

So as long as there is something to learn, I am just beginning. Now, I do progress, as we all should, but how far, I don't know, unless I have something to compare my progress against.

Some people might say I am intermediate, but at what point is someone truly intermediate? Am I advanced if I can create a game engine? Perhaps not if that game engine is simple in nature. What type of engine should I be able to create at an intermediate level? Ehh....

I'll never be at pro status, though others might call me a pro. It's all relative.


Gonna try out Mind Mapping

Posted by , 30 January 2014 - - - - - - · 639 views
mind, mapping, idea, sketch and 1 more...
So, I had been browsing a good app to help me make an outline, couldn't find one. Passed over a few mind mapping apps, but they looked like high school projects I had to do.

Fast forward a few months, and I am literally making a mind map to record my ideas, but not considering that I am using what I thought was useless to do it.

So I sorta re-discovered mind maps without knowing it. haha. Strange.

But I think that mind maps represent the way our mind works, although I see some ways that mind maps can be improved. For ideas on how it can be improved (needs a better standard) I found this post here:

http://www.gamedev.net/topic/532678-does-anyone-use-mind-mapping-software-for-game-design/

I agree that mind maps can't replace a linear outline for some things, but a merger of the two sounds good. It would be a way to organize sporadic thoughts into an organized outline. Sounds like a good algorithm to work on, no?

Edit: Just found a cool app that sorta does this called Idea Sketch on the iPad.


Programmers talk "Alien"

Posted by , 29 January 2014 - - - - - - · 765 views
programmer, langauge, hard
A little frustrated because just browsing through forum posts on any programming website full of competent programmers sounds like alien talk.

I mean, do you really have to abbreviate english? See so many topics that sound like the person is speaking in a broken english-like JAVA.You don't use terminology that requires specific knowledge when you are making a tutorial for beginners. Just doesn't make sense. And you don't assume people know this terminology and make a video called "For beginners," with a side note that no prior experience is required.

Most youtube videos I see have a bunch of views for the first video, and then those views exponentially decrease with each new video. Most college courses are like this also. First few days are cool, then they start to crack.

I made a full tutorial on the basics of computer programming that breaks it down for the average person, yet gives a lot of good and "must-have" information.

Now, if only someone could take some time out to teach me what they are talking about in "Alien" so I can simplify more advanced concepts. Anyone know of any tutorials that make it so easy a cave man can do it? I am just tired of looking for them (yes, I have tried Bucky).

SPECIFICS:
Firstly, please check out the tutorial I made to see how I explain programming as a reference to my train of thought when approaching an entirely new subject.
http://snapguide.com/guides/understand-computer-programming/

Secondly, the reason I started to learn programming is because I thought it was an interesting new hobby. I learned it within a year, and now I want to understand more advanced topics better.

Thirdly, I do understand Object Oriented Programming (though not in the guide I made) sorta well.

Fourthly, I finally found a solid instructional video about C++ (I have always dreaded it, because the syntax is scary):


SO NOW:

I do not know how to improve the performance of my software. I don't understand most algorithms (I understand what algorithms are and such, but don't understand why a particular algorithm might be more efficient).

I don't understand all of the extra terminology that comes with more advanced programming topics such as when working with OPEN GL, or "binding" stuff, and such. I do understand what compiling means. I don't always understand how to compile stuff (different for each environment). Eclipse is scary, but Scite is... not scary.

I thought GML was the best method of programming, but now I understand why just typing it out can be faster and easier and less "clunky"

I have written a program that is 300 + lines, but mainly because I like my program neat and nicely commented (no long comments though)

It is far beyond me even how to get started programming my own engine (although if I could do this, I'd feel I have arrived).

Hmm, there might be more, but I do think that if someone could take me from completely ignorant to being able to write a full game engine while keeping it easy to understand (nice allegory style), with terms and concept and all, then I will feel like I better understand the more advanced concepts.

Also, if someone could teach me how to make a complex program in C++ starting with no knowledge at all of it, while keeping it easy to understand (a breakdown of the terminology in easy to understand terms), I would feel more capable with that too.

Lastly, it is easy to find information, and very frustrating to find good AND FREE information, that is why I started my site. So yes, I do get frustrated trying to make things simple for the simpleton- me.


Programming Cause and Effect.

Posted by , 21 January 2014 - - - - - - · 742 views
boolean., cause, effect and 2 more...
So, it is sunny outside, and that makes you happy, so you go outside to play. But then, it starts raining which makes it rainy, and that causes you to be sad. So, you decide to go to sleep.

I sat down today and thought of a way to program cause and effect. I came up with this notation:
(initCondtion, initState, initBehavior) + Action = (deltaState, deltaCondition,deltaBehavior) = Reaction
The initial condition is that it is sunny outside.
The initial state is that you are happy.
This causes an initial behavior-- you go outside to play.

But then, something happens (an action).

It starts to rain. Now it is rainy outside.
Now you are sad.
This causes you to go back inside and go to sleep.


The action triggers a change in state and a change in condition.
This change in state and condition produces a reaction-- You go inside to go to sleep.

PseudoExample:
--States
normal = true
happy = false
sad = false
 
 
--Conditions
clear = true
rainy= false
sunny = false
 
--Behaviors
 
--Initial Behavior
function GoOutToPlay()
 
--Change in Behavior
function GoToSleep()
 
--Action
function Rain()
start to rain
end
 
--Reaction
function ChangeState()
sad = true
 
function ChangeCondition()
rainy = true
 
function ChangeBehavior()
if sad && rainy
GoToSleep()
 
I wonder if this is solid enough to implement. hmm.


I finally realize how important planning is.

Posted by , 19 January 2014 - - - - - - · 610 views
plan, important, produce
So, I am the type to work by trial and error, usually. I get stuff done, sometimes.

However, every time I sit down, gather my thoughts and type out a plan, it seems I have more control over the processes I take to accomplish something.

You know how in the PC version of the Sims you can record footage and compose it into a video? Well, I was making a feature film with it, and it was very nice. But as always, my ideas get too big for my ability, and it stopped short. Then, I had a "somewhat plan."

Maybe I need a plan that is easily adaptable. Hmm. Okay, let's try to do this again...


Why am I making a game anyway?

Posted by , 17 January 2014 - - - - - - · 695 views
game, industry
Am I trying to change the world? Am I trying to create something I will play every day of my life to pass time? Am I trying to make money from it?

Most games today are temporary games and have no real value. So why am I even thinking about making a game with the hope of potentially making "a" sell? So much goes into them, and if I want it to have any sort of polish I am looking at a couple of years. And it feels terrible to work so hard at something that is worthless.

Now, chess, that is a game that sticks around. A game like that was worth making. This i why I am thinking about making an educational game if any, because it has usefulness and replay value by its very nature.

Or perhaps I will quit the gaming thing very soon because I don't see where I can get any sense of satisfaction.

One thing that interests me about game programmers as well as some gamers is that they are problem solvers. I think if you collect all of these rather brilliant people and have them solve real life problems with the knowledge they have gained from solving complex problems, perhaps we can build something useful.

When a farmer sows a seed, he hopes to receive a return on his labor of planting, watering, and tending to the seed. Perhaps he likes apples? Now that type of return is useful for generations perhaps. But games are so temporary? What real value do they have other than being a form of social interaction for the moment?

Or perhaps I will look into programming robots that can do stuff for me. Taking game logic and applying it to a real life object is a very interesting and useful thing. Perhaps I can use game programming for prototyping?

I'd rather make software (another useful thing).

Yeah, games are cool to play, and perhaps I had an idea for a game I would like to play. But is it worth all the effort just for a game? Ehhh...


Games are good social pastime.

Posted by , 17 January 2014 - - - - - - · 584 views
game, social, interaction
I had a eureka!

So, a friend and I were bored, and we were wondering what we could do together to not be bored. We could have talked, or we could have watched a movie, or we could have listened to music etc. But we wanted to have fun without having to go out somewhere and spend money.

Well, we played a game!

Games are a good social pastime. And I think this was the purpose of games, to create a social interaction between people without having to use conversation or physical activities like sports. My friend didn't have any video games or anything, so we couldn't do that. Maybe we should have bought some cards or something? You real don't need video games.

Now I understand the purpose of games. They shouldn't be addictions like many people play them (slaving away hours on end on COD or some other game). They are just another type of social pastime (alongside many others) that one can use to interact with other people.

I think it is healthy to take advantage of all forms of social interaction. A lot of people think they are social because they have Facebook friends, but in real life they don't know how to socialize. People are tough behind the tv screen through the mic of their xbox, but in real life they can be a coward.

So go outside, play a sport, go to a library, watch a movie, have a conversation with a live person, go observe nature, etc. Playing games all day is not healthy, but is mainly one type of social pastime.

There are so many others.

ramble finished.






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