Wednesday 19 November 2008

We Built This City on Rock and Roll

My new hard drive appears to be working fine, no problems since reinstalling my entire life.....

Been down in London (Where? Lon-don? Could you spell that please? L....?) and paid 12 quid (18USD) for a Mojito, which appeared to be a long glass full of ice. Consumed a good Magnum PI worth of free champers at a wedding so I guess it all evened itself out. Lon-don quite nice, but wouldn't want to live there.

Slowly but surely environment takes shape. Got street lights in, avenue style trees, and .... stuff. Still more .... stuff ... to do, mainly signs, benches and a few interior props before I'm happy. Had a further fiddle with the facade textures of buildings, and have finally decided on an art style.

Also been playing around with DRL and HDR lighting, and how the whole thing works with 200+ models (not batched) and visible range. And the answer appears to be ... fine. There really isn't much performance saving to be gained from cutting the visibility right down, or much to be lost from moving it right up.

So I've decided on just over a mile view at 1800 metres. Originally I was planning on half of that, but the performance change is fairly negligible. I'll see how the whole thing works when I have an extra 3-400 trees in the background (using batching to speed it all up).

Tuesday 4 November 2008

Nigou Backup!

Apologies for the truly awful Japlish - at least that's what it sounded like phonetically if not literally ....

And how come the japanese don't have their own word for Backup?

By default it seems cavalier to apropos words from other languages like some sort of doppleganger.

So, death of my hard drive --- again..... sends an accusing glance in the direction of Dell and mutters "reconditioned" under his breath. At least the replacement arrived promptly.

Out with the Samsung of Korea and in with a Seagate of Thailand ...... but the first corruption of NFTS and I'm ditching the lot and buying my own decent quality drives (as opposed to constantly getting malfunctioning replacements from Dell).

But this is why we backup (that's the Royal "we" ..... or possibly the Gollum "we" --- depending on how often I'm eating raw fish heads).

A privately bought Seagate Freeagent is the main backup - main cos it's the biggest, and I've got a couple of drive pens after that, and then it's burning info to CDs. It's all part of a system designed to fight obliteration of blood, sweat, tears, nervous breakdown, etc of time and effort put in to development.

They might have sent men to the moon on something a little more powerful than a calculator, but they never had to reinstall 600 megs of Vista patches. No wonder no-one fancies chancing a Mars mission with Microsoft as the software flagship.....

And then there was all my programs, and then all the codecs, and other stuff that I don't really keep too much of an eye on. And then the development SDKs, at least TGEA (game engine - up for vote alongside the hugely expensive Cryengine2 on the Game Developer Magazine Awards)just slides across as is. Then what drivers did I have?

My usual forest of yellow, sticky, post-it notes had become overgrown into a thicket of the damn things. But anyway, we're back, after 12 hours of updates, reinstalls and reconfiguring settings to what I like. No WMA, you don't open anything, get off! It's Winamp and MPClassic, and what the hell codec did I have Mpeg4 playing with? And why can't I read anything at this resolution?

Anyhoo, drama over.