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frob last won the day on July 19

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  1. Sorry for the edit, but these are discussion forums. If someone has answers and knows about other options, please place them in the forums so they can help other people for years to come. If people reply directly through email then future people will search for the same question, find this result that should give answers, but get no answers because they've all been sent to a personal email address instead of attached to the discussion. Posting the answer on the site allows everyone to use the knowledge.
  2. C++

    So you impose a cost to ALL code using bitwise shift because someone once wrote a bug? Most functions have rules about their use, such as not passing null values as parameters, or ensuring elements are within a legal range. This is no different. Shift operations have a mandatory range between zero and the number of bits of the type. Passing a negative shift distance is a bad parameter, exactly the same as if the programmer had passed an invalid object address or dereferenced a null pointer. Don't do that in the first place, then you don't need to write special code to handle the buggy code.
  3. A lawyer is not that expensive for this type of work. They are simple business agreements, mostly boilerplate. Assuming you've done your homework (clearly you have not) a friendly lawyer can hook you up with all the forms you need with a quick meeting and transferring some electronic documents. Depends on your local lawyer costs, around here it is about $150/hr for this type of work. If you haven't done your homework it may be 2-3 hours, so perhaps around $500 for you. If your game isn't worth $500 then it isn't worth the effort your putting in to it. Otherwise you need rights assignments, perhaps in the form of an independent contractor agreement or partnership agreement or collaboration agreement. Exactly what is assigned, who it is assigned to, what happens for succession of rights, payment for rights, and other details are all up to your agreement. What are the exit clauses? What happens if someone becomes bitter and wants to leave? What happens if some of the group want to sell it to another group? What happens if some people want to buy out the others? You will probably need to create a legal entity (a business) to hold those rights since your friends are unlikely to trust it all to you personally. Revenue sharing needs many more details. Who ensures revenue is handled correctly? Who verifies the limits are met? Who can audit the system to ensure they are being paid? How often can they audit? Who handles tax forms? Who handles distribution of money? What happens if someone dies? What happens if someone is no longer in contact? If you don't think it is worth hiring a lawyer than you've already decided it won't reach enough money to justify paying anyone. So either go get a lawyer or recognize you already know deep inside that the project won't make money.
  4. C++

    I'm not sure what you're on about. This seems unnecessary. They're undefined if you have a negative number of bits or if the shift is larger than the number of bits. But you should never be in either situation. That is a bug in the code, a bug in the logic. Writing code that solves a bug by wrapping it inside a function that hides the bug is nonsense. That is a "Don't Do That" bug, the problem is that the programmer did something they shouldn't. It also gets into trouble if you attempt to shift a signed negative value. Since the language does not specify exactly how numbers are encoded it would be nonsensical to enforce what happens on those situations. That's another case of "Don't Do That'. None of those are particularly problematic. Programmers shouldn't be doing that in the first place, and if they do, that's a bug that should be caught through testing. As for your performance concerns, every CPU that matters implements a bit shift opcode. Every compiler I'm aware of either simplifies the expression to something even faster, or it generates the CPU-specific opcode. It is hard to get much faster, especially compared to all your branching code.
  5. Can you? Yes. Should you? It is a STRONGLY discouraged practice. Generally in programming you want to minimize the amount of coupling with other systems. You've got your collision system coupled with a texture system, which doesn't seem to make any sense to me. What does physics collision have to do with object texturing? You're suggesting increasing the coupling even more. Not only is the physics coupled to rendering, but now the object is coupled with the entire Application entity. Far better for systems to work independently, and there are many great patterns that work with this. One is forwarding commands to be handled by the appropriate level. Your collision system might pass an event or call a function on the object when the collision takes place, now the collision system knows nothing about textures; the object itself may not know about the details, but may have a component that is interested in the response so it calls the component's function on collision; the component already knows the texture and it also knows to change in response to a collision.
  6. That is always risky. Many people are deeply attached to their specific settings, and will vocally complain about how a character class has been 'nerfed', how they will refuse to play, how they will flood every online forum telling them about it, and more. In online games, I prefer the policy that they must always have the latest version in order to play online. It simplifies many things, and avoids incompatibility issues. While they should not be problems, sometimes even minor compilation differences can be enough to cause different builds to be subtly incompatible.
  7. For backup, the standard computer system backup rule is 3-2-1. At least three copies, at least two media, at least one off site. In businesses, a system of D2D2T (Disk to Disk to Tape) is common. That's the original copy, a copy made to another disk in the server room, and a tape backup that gets stored somewhere else. As for a drive to put all your stuff on, if all that stuff is software source code (since you're asking in a game developer forum) there are many services that will offer free version control online. Assembla (that used to have a link at the bottom of the page...) offers a free private source code repository up to 500MB and up to 2 users.
  8. Algorithm

    Agreed about the 200 objects being small. If they're cache friendly and arranged linearly you could iterate over them all faster than you could jump around a tree with the corresponding cache misses. For timing approximation, iterating over a cache-friendly array takes around 0.5ns per item since array traversals are prefetched to L1 cache. Jumping through a tree takes about 10ns (or more) per lookup as they're usually in L2 cache (or worse, L3 or main memory). A tree may have five, ten or more of those jumps depending on how it is implemented. My search skills is failing right now so I'm not finding the links, but I believe it was the DICE Battlefield 2/3 team who basically abandoned the traditional spatial trees in favor of cache friendly objects in flat arrays because they were faster for their work.
  9. Just realized I forgot to mention: Instead of distributing a drive with music, give links to your YouTube / SoundCloud / Whatever account that features your music. I don't want to directly plug in anything that you've got, but I trust the major web sites to give me a stream of your recordings. I won't look at them from a spam, but if I'm in the market and looking for you, I'd expect some way to hear some demos of things you've created in the past.
  10. Probably easier to ask what you don't understand about it. Do you understand what the basis vectors are? Do you understand what the cross product operations do? What about the function is confusing to you?
  11. 1) No, but I also have spam filters. I suppose it is possible they could be sending me things I'm blissfully ignoring. 2) Everyone should present themselves professionally. I expect that if I have a need to hire a composer, I would be the one contacting them. I don't expect to have a steady stream of composers marketing themselves through spam or other email in an attempt to get business. 3) I've worked with people we have worked with in the past. It is rare to need someone new. Note that we're talking about composing a small amount of music perhaps only a single time every year. 4) I would almost certainly not listen to it. If I get a business card I might file it. If I get a USB drive I'm probably just going to format it and use it for temporary, throw-away storage. 5) When I am working with them I engage in a steady stream of email and video chat meetings. Depending on where we are on the project that can mean anywhere from daily face-to-face meetings to weekly face-to-face meetings, and email messages as needed but at least weekly in the most extreme case. One key thing to remember is that most games don't have a steady need for original composition. It is a rare event, and when it is needed the job is almost always filled either by people who've been used in the past, or by people who are connected by friends or friends-of-friends. I've never heard of people reaching out to unknown strangers as music composers, that has ALWAYS been through existing connections, or through reaching out to known composers, or with friends-of-friends as the most distant for the hunt.
  12. Item 1 is mostly true, they have done what they can to restrict direct access. Many games have various practices that still expose addresses. Hook up voice chat and you can likely see a direct connection either to the player's IP addrss or to a repeater's IP address. Items 2 and 3 seem a little odd, so perhaps some clarification is needed. Severs have a heartbeat to their controllers, but it seems like you are asking about using the server acting as a star, and each spoke in the star being told the status of other spokes on the star. You might be asking something else. Any game can implement their own heartbeats if they want, and many games do. Track the time since last message from the player, and if exceeds a specific time you can take an appropriate action. If you want to spread that among other users, the star's hub could send that out to every spoke or to every leaf node. Details might get more complicated depending on how your game's logical networking works out. If you have a full star where everyone must connect directly to the star's hub, or if you require a complete mesh where everyone can talk directly to everyone, you can require them to all chat occasionally. But if your game allows for other layouts where individual clients can act as a forwarder or repeater, you may not hear directly from another node even though messages are passing through. If you want to pass any of that information along within the game, it will be your game's code doing that, not the API.
  13. And just for clarification, exactly how old are these old phones you are talking about? The official end of support for Android devices is 3 years after product launch or 18 months after first sale, which ever is longer. After that you're entirely on your own. Apple devices are similar, 3 years of support. The are called "vintage" for a few more years, then they're obsolete. Everyone knows it is short, even us as consumers. However, as customers it is clear the devices are no longer supported, and as developers it is unrealistic to expect years-old devices to conform to this year's needs.
  14. The FAQs went away with the forum software transition.
  15. First thought is to use a better texture compression algorithm. The DXT# formats (often called dds format or S3 algorithms) give a 6:1 compression ratio. PVRTC2 gives 8:1 or even 16:1 compression depending on which sub-format you use. Others like ETC and ASTC also have great compression rates but varying hardware support. Make sure you have set Unity to compress those textures. After that, make sure you are actually destroying the textures. It will have some memory that won't instantly vanish but will be cleaned up, but the bulk of the memory should be immediately released. You should be able to load them and replace them all as you go. The resources will be released as you move along, and assuming you've released all the references, the other allocations will be picked up by the garbage collector in due time. (Note: Don't force the garbage collector to run. It is designed by default to run at lower priority during idle cycles, forcing it to run usually means interrupting time-sensitive work.)