Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Boy, now this is my kind of job!

Wired! offers us this article about playing games for money. Now, it's not a lot of money, but it's playing games for a living...

Monday, August 23, 2004

This sound like fun?

The task:
1) Update your company's winform application to resolve data entry issues and to implement image thumbnails so that images can be linked with data. Migrate from a jet based database system to and msde based system. Create a new install application that will create an MSDE instance and allow for networked communications at your customer's locations. Create auto-update feature that will allow for database updates as well as application modifications.

2) Add features to the web site your company hosts for it's 3rd party customers so that said 3rd parties can place more complex orders with multiple pricing models. Create an OrderProcessing database to accept these more complex orders. Allow the site to have the apperance of your customer's website so that their customers do notice a great difference in look and feel.

3) Enhance the web site your customers use for there various functions to also use the new OrderProcessing database (instead of Access/Jet), so that orders can be better integrated.

4) Update the webservice your winform application uses to interface to your systems so that it works with the new OrderProcessing database (which needs to also talk to 3rd party production software as well as 3rd party business software)

Time Frame: 4 months
Programmers: 1 (plus 1 consultant)
Budget: What's that?

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Games, games, and more games...

Yea, I know, games aren't everything. But sometimes you just wanna have a little challenge to the cerebral cortex that involves non stressful, un-important stuff.

In an effort to provide this for you, I have provided a couple of links to some online multiplayer games.

Kigns of Chaos is a pretty good, text based, knights and swords kind of RPG.
Ferion Is a little different. It's a space based, some graphical interfaces, and a lot of thought. I like it, cause you can take it at your own pace, if you have to leave it for a while, you'll be okay, or you can be in there more often if you'ld like.

Take a look. If you use the links on my page I'll get points, so please do.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Another look at exceptions and lazy coding

Why is this such a popular topic? Cause everybody makes exceptions. It's a polite way of saying you made a mistake, you didn't plan for something. It could be as basic as not validating data entry. It could be you never figured somebody would score 50million on your game... Whatever the case, here is another clear breakdown of exceptions and what they mean. I like it cause it mentions System.SystemException, which I hadn't looked into too much.

Check out Eli Robillard's site here.

Also from Eli's site, I saw this interesting post. It talks about the nefarious SQL Injection fear, mentioning 'Use Parameters' as well as Regex (Regular Expression) techniques to clense your code.

I haven't used Regex yet, but after this article, I think I will. I also liked how he made a simple class to parse illegal characters from strings that may be entered manually. A link on his site also mentioned Request Validation, a feature in ASP.Net 1.1 that has been safeguarding my site and I didn't even realize it.

And my new favorite quote: "If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy person - they will find an easier way to do it." -Hlade's Law

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Monday, August 09, 2004

There are by some estimates more than a million weblogs. But most of them get no visibility in search engines. Only a few "A-List" blogs get into the top search engine results for a given topic, while the majority of blogs just don't get noticed. The reason is that the smaller blogs don't have enough links pointing to them. But this posting could solve that. Let's help the smaller blogs get more visibility!

This posting is GoMeme 4.0. It is part of an experiment to see if we can create a blog posting that helps 1000's of blogs get higher rankings in Google. So far we have tried 3 earlier variations. Our first test, GoMeme 1.0, spread to nearly 740 blogs in 2.5 days. This new version 4.0 is shorter, simpler, and fits more easily into your blog.

Why are we doing this? We want to help thousands of blogs get more visibility in Google and other search engines. How does it work? Just follow the instructions below to re-post this meme in your blog and add your URL to the end of the Path List below. As the meme spreads onwards from your blog, so will your URL. Later, when your blog is indexed by search engines, they will see the links pointing to your blog from all the downstream blogs that got this via you, which will cause them to rank your blog higher in search results. Everyone in the Path List below benefits in a similar way as this meme spreads. Try it!

Instructions: Just copy this entire post and paste it into your blog. Then add your URL to the end of the path list below, and pass it on! (Make sure you add your URLs as live links or HTML code to the Path List below.)

Path List
1. Minding the Planet
2. Luke Hutteman's public virtual MemoryStream
3. Mark Kenyon's 'To Whom it May Concern'
4. (your URL goes here! But first, please copy this line and move it down to the next line for the next person).

(NOTE: Be sure you paste live links for the Path List or use HTML code.)

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

I want to save this fix

If you can't see Rotate Clockwise or Rotate Counter Clockwise when you right click on a thumbnail in Windows Explorer, try this: regsvr32 shimgvw

I'm posting it here so that it will be out in the world for me and others to find.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Beware these people

Beware of YourGiftCards.com. I accepted an offer of a 'free' $50 dollar gift card for ordering and Entertainment book. The entertainment book cost $15 and has already saved us about $50. So, although I don't usually try these offers, I knew this was something I wanted to order, so why not try to get a free gift card.

I ordered my book in April, and received it in less than 2 weeks. Now in August, 3 months later, I still don't have my gift card. In an e-mail I received 1 week ago today, they claim to have received all the necessary correspondence from me, yet still have not shipped my Gift Card. I have had to go through mumbled requirements, even mailing THEM a printed out form.

Some offers out their are legit. But there are too many out there like this company.

Remember BBS doors?


A post by Rory Blyth reminded me of the days of doors. He mentioned, and even posted a screen shot of, LoRD (Legend of the Red Dragon), an old BBS door. (Basically an online role playing game before the internet.)

I found an interview with Seth A. Robinson (aka. Seth Able). He created LoRD and a couple of other BBS doors. I then found his site. Looks like he's been a busy fella for only 28 years old.

I am wondering if he's gotten into .Net (I know he's done some Pocket PC and DirectX stuff) and if so, could Rory and Carl talk with him and maybe do a show about game development?

>> Here is the reply I got from Seth. Wow, he wrote me back! >>
I’ve never used C#. I’ve only used VB on a view projects, I’m not great with it. C++ is my fave!

Seth A. Robinson