Friday, October 31, 2008


Originally uploaded by mikedailly
So someone was asking who was who... so here we go (hope I remember it right!) Clockwise fomr the top-left.

Robbie Graham - Artist
Malcom Scot Maxwell - Game coder and project leader
Dave Jones - Boss, Big cheese, and all round pest.
Andrew Innes - Front end, stats and general coding.
Martain Good - CG artist (did all the unicycles!)
Steve Hammond - Manual
Mike Dailly (Me!) - Level Editor, Uniracer compression, SNES framework and tools.
Colin Anderson - Music and effects.
Craig Arbuthnott - Head of testing
And I cant remember the last two. Testers I think....?

Head over to the staff pics on the Flickr account for better (all be it older!) pictures of some of us.

Demo coders....

There was a post on plus4 world about how to teach new people to code on the Plus4 and it got be thinking about some pet hates. Demo coders are renown for keeping sources to demos secret, never releasing anything but binarys in case someone steals their ideas. Others don't release code becasue, well... demos are usually hacks that are horrible bits of code and they don't want anyone to see just how much of a hack it is. Great Demos usually flow like works of art, but if you saw the internals, then its like being told how a magic trick was done, and the wonder falls away.

Still, I was thinking.... I never really code demos because, well... I'm not very good at them. Sure I can code things so they run quickly, and I can code things so that they're small. But I've never been good at prducing great demos folk really want to see. That said, I think theres a market (as it were) for demos that simply show how to do something. Kind of like online tutorials, simple demos that show off a simple effect and how to pull it off. This would allow others to use it and do what I can't, make great demos - or perhaps even use the effect in a game!

I was watching the demo posted here and was trying to think how they did the full screen scaling coz I think it would be cool in game. I think now I know but I also suspect that if the source was available I'd be much more interested in using/trying that I am now. Anyway, Csabo over at plus4 world is thinking about this too and I think its a great idea. If nothing else, it adds something valuable to the scene - which is what its all about now.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

It's alive!!!!

I've rebuilt my PC, got a hold of a version of Vista64 and got it all up and running. I've also installed my new copy of office so my email is working fully again, which brings me to another point. If anyones been trying to get in touch and I haven't responded then feel free to ping me again as email should be back to normal.

I now have to reinstall all my normal software again, which will take a couple of evenings I guess, but I hope that by the weekend, I'll be back to normal - but with my fancy new quad core. I have also gotten two new terrabyte drives to try and get rid of all the little drives my PC was using, so with any luck... I shouldn't have to do this again for a long time!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

New bits!

My new bits have arrived at last! So I can finally get started on rebuilding my shattered life...err..PC. The motherboard looks pretty good and actually has 4 DIMM slots, not the 2 I thought it had (the picture was pretty small), this means I could go up to 8Gigs of RAM if I want to (thanks to Vista64).

However...first things first. Build and reinstall is the job for tonight, if I get a chance - hope so. I'm gonna go and buy another 1Tb drive though so i can cut down on all the smaller drives I keep having to put it. My old primary was 160Gb, then I had a 240Gb and a 500Gb. So sod that, time to clean up and just get 2 1Tb drives. They're getting pretty cheap now, ebuyer actually had an external 1Tb for only £85(ish). This'll make life much easier and I'm beginning to get retro withdrawal!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Picture Fun...

I've been having fun with my new camera, and have been out specifically to take some nice piccys (something I plan to do more of if i get the chance!). I want to play more with the technique known as tilt-shifting. This is where you make real things look like models, and its very cool indeed given the right image. So I went up the law hill (the large hill bang smack in the middle of Dundee) and took a few images, then had a go applying the tilt shift effect to them. The image shown here is one of them, but I'm uploading more to my flickr account along with any other pictures I take (since they can stay full res there).

So if you want to see some of my piccys, check our my flickr account now and then.

New machine...

Well, with pay day comes the chance to finally fix my machine. I've order the bits I need to rebuild my main machine and I must say, I'm really looking forward to actually sitting down and a proper PC and not using a laptop. When multi-monitor appeared back in windows 98 it really did change everything. Not that many took notice back then, but I've now been using more than one monitor for so long, I really take bad to laptops with a single machine. In fact, at home I have 3 montors, and at work 4! Yes, you read that right...I have a single machine with 4 montors attached! I really should take a picture of it sometime as its quite neat. It lets me have virtually all my applications open AND visible - its very cool. I do wish they would make newer PCI cards other than the NVidia 6200 or ATI 7000 (which isnt Vista compatable)- which are both pretty crap.

So, I've bought a new motherboard that'll take my new quad-core CPU and 4gig of ram. To be honest, I'd be happy with a dual core, and 2-3gig ram but since I dont like doing this, I may as well make sure I dont have to upgrade for some time (a year or two at the least), so I've bought a good setup. Its costing about £250, but thats still less than half the price of an off the shelf full PC (from what I've seen...). I've also decided to install Vista64 (*sigh*) because I dont want to have to go through this again anytime soon... It does mean I'll have to either install DosBox, or rewrite the important ones. The other reason is so that I can create 32 and 64bit apps easily. I want my debugger to run in 64bit mode for example, and it also means I get access to ALL my RAM - which is nice... So yeah... hate it, but Im buggered.

When I was in the US I got a stack of BluRay disks, and I was horrified (and disgusted) to see they've started to region code things. Now, I read somewhere that they do this because something might be released on disk in the US, but just be coming out at the Cinema over here in the UK. Now, you might think well...okay, we might just about give you that. But then I was reading through a list of region coded disks, and found out The Longest Day was also region coded. Now... it was released in 1962, so what the hell do they take us for. In todays climent, we're in a world market, not local - particually with the credit crunch having been in the US but affecting the world. So I think it's actually a form of racism. After all your giving preferential treatment to some contries, and not others - and thats racist; Particually given that their excuse of movie release dates is an obvious lie. Region coding pisses me off. I paid for the disk, I bought it legally when on holiday, so why shouldn't I be allowed to watch it? We're a global enonomy, so why should Joe Blogs from the US be allowed to watch it and I'm not.... Now I'll have to wait and get a multiregion bluray player. I'll tell you one thing though, I will have NO guilt getting a hidef media version of it to stream from my PC - I already own the fucker. I'm a big fan of buying things you use,watch or play. If you get a copy of anything and dont like it, delete and and dont buy it. If you do..then you should buy it - whatever it is. I have a stack of games I tried loved so bought - many are still shrunk wrapped and only opened when I go back to play them years later. So my region coded Disk will be the same. Still wrapped, but at least I own them.

Sorry.... bit of a rant there.... Oh one thing though.... Some BluRay disks over there come with a PC media version, which is a FAB idea!! Well done those guys (whoever thought that up).

Friday, October 24, 2008

Past tools.

I've just my old SNES framework source, so if I get a chance I'll clean it up and release it. Not sure who its of use to but its always fun to look at others code so... It does have a nice squareroot function in it, so you could always steal that. Its also (of course) 65816 based, so C64 SuperCPU users could steal more from it. If its of immediate interest let me know and I'll try and do it sooner....

Speaking of SNES.... I found this video on youtube ( YouTubes great! ) of the end sequence to Lemmings II. I had pretty good fun doing this. Theres actually a single pixel on the front end screen that if you click it, you get to the end sequence without playing the whole game - see if you can find it. ;-)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Home sweet home....

I'm finally back from Florida and back at work (pooh...), but until I get my main machine fixed I won't be doing much of anything. I just cant work with my laptop, its small keyboard and single screen. I could use its screen and an LCD I suppose, and plug a USB keyboard in, but it just doesnt feel right. I really am an old geezer stuck in his ways - oh well.

If anyone needs any small task done, nows probably the time to ask :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Disney world fun and games.

Still here having a blast. Kids are loving it of course, and its a shame I'm being forced to relax and have fun too! I've not done anything over here, and I'm not sure I'll manage until I get back home and get my machine rebuilt. I was looking at some off the shelf PC's, but they're so damned expensive I'll probably rebuild it myself; I only really needa CPU+Motherboard I think so...

I got a new camera over here too. A nice Nikon D60, very cool. Piccys are virtually always just brill from it without having to do anything special, and the manual settings are great fun. The piccy on the left was taken with it on auto setting. It just works...fab cam.

Anyway... off to church and then downtown Disney for some more shopping! It's a hard life....

Friday, October 10, 2008

Busy busy busy!

Been busy having some serious family fun so not had much time to do much - well, anything really. Still really needed to chill so here we are!

Kids have been in the pool a lot, and while I've only dangled my feet in, I've been lovin' it!

Still, time to eat I think, it must have been about 30min since I last ate! :)

Wednesday, October 08, 2008


I'm currently in orlando having a family break, it's long over due really but I'm loving it!We had a great flight over as the plane had TVs in the back of the seats, so you could pick your own films or TV programs. It also had some good games to play, so Rebecca and I had great fun - I didn't even get my laptop out I was having so much fun!

It's been raining a bit here, usually for about 1/2 hour a day, and it's incredibly heavy (as usual), but because of that, it's not getting as hot as it can get which is great!

We've actually spent more time in walmart than anywhere else just about! The misses is loving it! We spent most of yesterday in the Animal Kingdom and eventually had to leave cause the rain was so heavy we were soaked through. Our clothes dried pretty easily, but our socks/shoes were soaked. I also appear to have killed my iPod, as my bag got soaked through, and the screen is full of watter - bugger.... I'm trying to let it dry out before trying it, but iPods never really switch off so I'm not hopefull. *sniff*