Monday, March 21, 2022

Progress Update: Delays - bills to pay and Side Projects (more of a work post)

 So my team is delayed this week and probably until the end of the week to next week. This is because i want them to focus more on the future job in doing their 3d part time work. The part time work pays more than what I can afford and is more sustainable in the long term, so I advanced some pay so that they can focus on that one until that job would pay. 

The goal is that the team have a more sustainable side job so in the long term my projects are not going to be a significant source of income. This is where Blender and FreeCad helped people make a living. 

Well my Target was May 1, but real life gets in the way and thats the problem with part time and the natural uncertainty of things. Also I am also a family man so I only got a 1 page draft done this weekend. 

The goal can be so close and so far away depending on the day or the troubles. Right now I wish I could be there helping troubleshoot the rendering issues. I'm more disposed to fix it because my friend left his GT 1070 Asus Desktop with me until he comes back from the US in December (2022). So I can probably prototype those renders faster. I also have the OJTs that I can teach 3D too because they are IT OJTs but they want to do game design and I realized I can teach them 3D as a side gig. 

But I have to focus on a ERPNext migration this week - our vendor is going to give us an image to upload in digital ocean and hopefully migrate baremetal server to digital ocean SG, so we can format those servers to be hypervisors and be remotely controlled with Remmina + OpenVPN. Juggling many dreams - including making the developing world company outside of India very much open source to reduce our 200k usd total cost of ownership yearly (depreciating and equipment for repairs, ISPS, licenses, and the biggest of all GSuite Basic legacy license). 

I assigned OJTs to help john with the javascript problem which is an undefined A2:H which shows up as a "6" is undefined in the World Building Spreadsheet. I honestly wish I can have 2 days to figure this out myself, but I've delegated the programming and I'm not mentally available. 

Whats occupying my mind is the migration, I currently visualizing all the problems and what I will do. Particularly we have to set up ERPNext pop email client so that it can generate a complete backup which we will upload. We will upload first the Sandbox then the Production. Then we will upload to DO, then test it out, then tell the users to migrate to the DO. 

I have to defend my usage of Blender and FreeCAd to the company and fully visualize how it will be used in everything and how its a Win Win to teach as many of the staff and ojts how to do it. Particularly the use of 3d software in planning Construction when I've used it to plan with the wife our move to the new condo. Its strange that I have to justify 3d a lot as well as Maintaining an ASSET library - I dont recommend just grabbing anything off the web and letting the clients "Imagine" something - because what they imagine may be too far from what we can provide and that GAP costs money and frustration. Its Way better to ensure the Client knows exactly what are going to expect from the renders. The MORE we can visualize for the client how the project is Going and What we are going to do the better - the way couples and families fight a lot when it comes to furniture and have the tools in 3D for them to prototype and see how it will look like is SO IMPORTANT. The phenomenon where couples argue in IKEA is alive in well in enterprise fit-out (design and build) but in board rooms instead of dining rooms. 

You can imagine how I'd rather do World Building problems - finish the mechanics, finish the spreadsheet to make it a few clicks not a multi step dice roll, and then proceed to create some Blender models to compliment it. 

Not only do I have to see how Open source tools are supposed to work, but understand what prevents existing users of Autocad (more than a decade old versions) can migrate. What prevents them from understanding the FreeCAD and Blender Workflow... oh and figure out how the Manufacturing Module in ERPNext is supposed to work along side it. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

+3D6 Roll but Keep either HIGH or LOW 2 dice is better but harder to communicate.

 I realized in 2D6 adjusting the Roll & Keep (roll 3D6 Keep High 2 or Low 2) is just pretier but hard to communicate. 

Advantage: Any Value Can still happen but we adjust the Bell Curve or Weight Distribution of the odds. 

So if I have a Level 4 Skill in Cepheus Engine and roll 6D6KH2, but i have 5 levels of Disadvantage  I will NET roll 3D6KL2. 

Question: Then what is the Function of adjusting the Target Number? 

Answer: Fine Tuning, the Refree and Players can adjust the Odds in the Give and Take of crafting the scene. Target Numbering being the Default and ADV and DIS being a significant increase while TN having a smaller yet still tangible outcome. 

So a 3-7D6 keep H/L2. will still be TN 2-12.  

output [lowest 2 of 6d6] named "6d6kl2"
output [lowest 2 of 5d6] named "5d6kl2"
output [lowest 2 of 4d6] named "4d6kl2"
output [lowest 2 of 3d6] named "3d6kl2"
output 2d6
output [highest 2 of 3d6] named "3d6kh2"
output [highest 2 of 4d6] named "4d6kh2"
output [highest 2 of 5d6] named "5d6kh2"
output [highest 2 of 6d6] named "6d6kh2"

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Hex maps with Inkscape and Hex Map Extension by Pelle Nilsson

Hex maps with Inkscape and Hexmap extension Copyright 2008-2020 Pelle Nilsson and contributors

1) Download Inkscape (if you don't already have it)
2) Download the Hex Map Extension in Git Hub

3) Go to Preferences - either go to Edit > Preferences (very bottom) or Shift+Ctr+P
4) In Preferences look for where Extensions can be Found.

5) Unzip Hex Map Extensions and copy hexmap.inx to /home/user-name/.config/inkscape/extensions (drag and drop works)  
6) Shut down and relaunch Inkscape
7) In Extension > Board Game > Create Hexmaps
8) in Dialogue Box of Create Hexmaps check the Live PREVIEW

  • Mine was buggy, Stroke 0.01 had to be re-encoded to preview. otherwise it disappears. 0.1 inch is just too thick. So after I played around with the settings, I had to retype 0.01 and the grid appears and press apply. 
  • Add Columns and Rows as Needed. 
  • Drag and Select Everything and Manually Center. 
A2 Hex Grid
2ft x 3ft (24in x 36in) Hex Grid 1-inch hex I got quoted 4usd plus 2usd delivery for this. Hope to get it Printed on Monday. I can always have it cut so I can fit in a small table. 

I currently use Cepheus Engine basic combat for just pure combat games. 


Tuesday, March 8, 2022

One more team member, meetings running long, 4 OJTs

Onboarded another team member. 

His job is to help make the spreadsheet that generate the world. He has some java experience but I shared him my javascript notes and the tutorial that will serve as the first iteration of the world gen form data base. 

The costs will be considerable but i will have some more speed. So launching on May is the worse case scenario. 

Thankfully they are also the same team i'll be using to help in the company's 3d renderings. So after the book they still have jobs in 3d and I can take a break from the writing to focus on my family which I admit i've been neglecting. 

I talked to 4 Ojts and of them 2 are IT and they are very much interested in becoming Game Developers. Typically I require them to make a research paper of their Post Grad Plans which we will refine and update. I want to make sure they watch or read the various Independent Game Development made in Gumroad, Steam, and Itch Io. Particularly how will they balance their constant skill development and their need to make a living. 

I noticed being a Game designer is an easier goal to Understand - you may have a ton skills required but its easy to see the outcome. I noticed there is a HUGE generational GAP - where there really are much fewer TRPGers and Indie games are what is now more accessible. 

I'll be tasking the OJT to research GODOT - which I can justify for the company because its for Walkthroughs in Architectural Visualizations. Walkthroughs are so basic and useful to a lot of people. One of the departments who will find it useful is Mech (HVAC) and Electrical who have a hard time dealing with the 3d Space of HVAC and cabling. A workflow where in 2 days we can produce the areas of work and we can see which is better to arrange: electrical or mechanical or which alternating works has to be arrange given the project - will be aided by 3d Visualization. 

Also rendering Data Centers and the Science behind it has been something I wanted to do. Particularly explaining the science and why our 30 plus years in the biz helps. Particularly how a lot of the concepts and science ties in my Scifi Interests - from near future (next 10 years) to next decades. 

On a personal note that my impression of the IT industry is filled with very dark and depressing realizations which is alleviated by the Open Source and Repair movements. So what I feel about work is mostly upturned by making open source materials more accessible and demonstration and showing how people can make a living (and contribute ) to and with open source. That cutting out middle men and large overheads of management and have small teams of highly professional and high agency workers - delivering critical and high value work at more sustainable prices (prices that are not trying to bleed the next customer or trap people). 

At least I get to Correct and give opportunities I didnt have - the guidance of someone who failed and had to make a living doing something else and watched from the sidelines and appreciated the risks. 

the skills one learns in Game Design where you learn SOOOO MUCH and learn from so many disciplines should be something a lot of Biz Analysts relate to.  


Saturday, March 5, 2022

Crash Courses Geography was one of my key inspiration to World Generation Mechanics


The Crash Course Geography Series has been a recent inspiration for Traveller. Especially for the Economics and Nuance Side. 

For me when it talks about the History of colonization, definition of development, and social issues and conflicts - it provides inspiration for worlds the PCs arrive in and how their goods, influence shapes these worlds. 

As independent freighters and traders, the more risky underdeveloped, developing and near Developed worlds and the markets these worlds are part of can be pretty interesting. Especially given the opportunity Travel, Do business and with Empathy the inhabitants can be their own universe of culture and narratives.

Travell + Empathy + History/Context + Languages makes the world even more special and strange. 

I hope it emerges from our writing and prioritization of how we designed the world generator that we are want to also see our world - we also want to see all the people and all the cultures - health, finances, and time allowing.  

I want people to find the book and go "Ok so these definitions would help talking a bit of jargon about space.", "this complex idea will be boiled down to this mechanic, but this interpretation of the concept is open to more nuance and subverting expectations."  "Oh wow I just made a world and system in a couple of clicks that can have so much detail that can be put on." "That the material is available for editing if I believe or want to tweak it. The spreadsheet also and its javascript." "Oh they gave me a way to render Planets and 2D terrain maps (Icosahedron maps). 

Hopefully the price is value since the tools save so much time and effort so we can produce more.