Fear and Loathing on the Learning Curve: Observations on Life, Tech and Web Design from a Slightly Misanthropic Mind

The Reckoning of the Finish

A Life Well Wasted – pos­sibly the most thought­ful videogame-related pod­cast ever – is back, and the new epis­ode is some­thing spe­cial. Robert Ashley talks to sev­eral indie game developers about their work, and one quote in par­tic­u­lar – from Greg Wohlwend, one of the developers of Gasketball – struck a chord with me, given what I wrote about fin­ish­ing things last week.

He remarks:

There’s some­thing kind of magical about an unre­leased game – like when Gasketball [was] unre­leased it’s like a sort of lotto ticket in your hand or some­thing, like even though it’s never going to make you 250 mil­lion dol­lar Powerball, it’s just– any­thing is pos­sible; it can go in one of one hun­dred dir­ec­tions, and when that’s not the case but you still have to work on this thing that is sort of failed and has all these things tying it down, like emo­tions and poor choices and your past and you’ve got to whip it up into shape when that’s the last thing you want to do.

Sums it up bet­ter than I could. Finishing means your work has to stand on its own two feet.

You can listen to A Life Well Wasted here, and you should.

Introducing Suncaster, and a few words on fin­ish­ing things

The winter months were get­ting to me recently as they so often do, so last week I released Suncaster, a little app that uses your loc­a­tion and the time you leave work to determ­ine when you’ll next be able to hit the streets before the sun sets (my favour­ite time of day).

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CSS3 Sprite Animations With Steps()… Almost

I’ve recently been pok­ing around with sprite anim­a­tion for a new ver­sion of this site (more on that later), and since I’m try­ing to show off my cutting-edge front-end chops I wondered if there was a way to accom­plish this anim­a­tion without using JavaScript. And there is! Sort of.

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Posted November 29th, 2012

Indie Game: The Movie

Yesterday one of my esteemed col­leagues aler­ted me to the recent release of Indie Game: The Movie, so last night I sat down with a friend to watch it. We were both abso­lutely blown away by it. It’s a beau­ti­fully shot doc­u­ment­ary fol­low­ing a few dif­fer­ent developers as they work on or reflect upon their titles – Jonathan Blow talks Braid, the guys from Team Meat hustle to fin­ish Super Meat Boy for its XBLA release, and Phil Fish drags Fez ever closer to its own (now at last arrived) release date.

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Posted June 14th, 2012

Facebook is Shit

So over the last six months or so I’ve exper­i­enced a sour real­isa­tion. It took me a while to come to terms with it, but I think I can finally sens­ibly express what I’ve dis­covered: Facebook, the increas­ingly omni­present social wünder­kind that I so loved dur­ing my University years is now, in 2012, shit.

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Your first Heroku Django app

I few weeks ago I decided to rewrite an old PHP site in Python + Django, and settled on host­ing it on Heroku, as I didn’t have time to go through the rig­mar­ole of set­ting up my own VPS just to demo the site. Heroku is a fant­astic plat­form for app host­ing but there are a few gotchas that I ran into on the way which I thought I’d share.

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You can find a complete history of older posts in the Archive.