Saturday, June 15, 2024

Delays and more delays - responsibilities gets in the way.

So, we've been busy. Nicco had a medical emergency, and I had some important projects that are robbing me of my free time to work on this.

It's really a niche project, and as I handle students and work with schools, the love for sci-fi and combining it with TRPGs is much rarer and probably will end with my generation. I'm on the edge of Generation X, with friends 5 and 10 years older than me.

Although my sci-fi studies and aspirations are finding their way into my work as we become partners with Netgate (pfSense), Nextcloud, and Frappe, and the family business is slowly transitioning to me. The project that is closest to what I believe is sci-fi is creating a VPN with Wireguard to give people who buy our Nextcloud appliances a tunnel for their home or SME Nextcloud. It's supposed to be an open-source, free tunnel system with Wireguard under a non-profit, but of course, we have to build the technology up first then - as advised by IT friends - split it into an LLC and ensure the technology is distributed to prevent easy traceability.

We are building micro-datacenters (data cabinets with UPS, AC, all built-in, as older buildings cannot take the weight of a full data center, and a data center requires intensive planning and preparation) and plug-and-play Fediverse servers to create a "NEW" open internet that will be able to fight back against mass surveillance and mass misinformation systems. We plan to use H2Ogpt, the new GPUs and NPUs, cheaper distributed Fediverse, wikis, and augmented support.

I'm going to lose my evenings as I prepare for my pfSense certifications, which I have to achieve in the next six months, and planning for a Service Management System (ISO 20,000-1). I'm targeting creating my ANKI deck by July 15, and then, with our network support team, all the hands-on exercises. I plan to make sure all the ECEs and IT interns with us will finally have hardware hands-on experience, and my team will create ANKI-like testing to prepare them with hands-on practical exams. We hope to train 30 people who would easily pass the pfSense certification every year and provide SMEs and people with affordable services to secure their home and their self-hosted tech.

One of the results of the ARM transition from x86 is the wattage cost of on-premise hosting will only cost $2/month for a 10-watt device (scale up). Having 5-10 such devices or the equivalent wattage of devices running would be just as cheap.

So, in a hard sci-fi TRPG, particularly in the genre of punk, casting off shackles (like mass surveillance, corporate monopolies, and information manipulation) – a free internet and market is one of the key fights. It's not so black and white, as "criminals," "terrorists," and "enemies of the state" will use the same technology as human rights groups to protect their privacy. For me, creating open-source technology that allows developing worlds like the Philippines to have an internet without ads and mass surveillance and manipulation is worth my free time. It both serves my game inspiration and my work.

It's just sad to think that this animal, the sci-fi TRPG gamer, is going to be extinct, but then I realize that every archetype of a different era was made irrelevant and extinct. I really want to be a game writer and designer, but it looks like administration, project management, and system design is where I can do the most good while daydreaming that I could write and make some TRPG tools so I would be able to run games in the future.

I really want to run more games and hopefully help teach a new generation to get into TRPGs and learn all the writing, planning, research, and problem-solving skills from TRPGs that helped me become the person I am at work. In games, I get to experiment and have my ideas tried. TRPGs – a fun and highly immersive version of case studies – allow us to make mistakes and enjoy the difficulty of trying again and again.

I'll probably have one or two frustrating nights where I will just do the math of low orbits (based on atmospheric density and gravity), but they are becoming rarer.

I see interest in my work declining when we don't post and don't produce - it pains me to lose what we've worked hard to gain. Anyway, Nicco will still be producing the ships and the editable ship maps - note that he is taking care of his sister and dad and might get busy giving out the next map and product - note that I've financially committed to having all the CE ships converted to our Creative Commons blender ship designs - even if very few are interested in designs they wont get in trouble for.

Mneme Space Combat is my worse performing product (if you measure its Cost to make vs Income it generates) despite how ambitious it is - interestingly, students who are looking for Internships from my alma mater get to have Toy making experience as they design the FDM prints of the ships (we are working on geometry nodes) and get to use our 2 reality Ender 3 3D printers (when they don't have their own) through the project. In a way it makes the dreams of others come true. 

CE was around for a long time before I got around to really appreciating it - now it is its own thing, separated from Traveller (probably eating up traveler sales). 

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