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Lessons Learned: Communication is Key!


As developers communication is very important. If you are working in a development team, naturally you have to communicate with your team members. Above that we also have to be able to communicate with our management, which can be a minefield at times, as I know so well. Even if you are working for yourself on a project that will make you millions, you still need to communicate with your target demographic (I think that’s the right word). Needless to say communication is key. That being said let’s talk a little bit about communication and what we, as developers, can do better.


Trying To Do the Right Thing When Working on Your Own Project.

Honestly I think that when working on my own projects, I find it extremely hard to actually follow the development process correctly. I just want to throw code at it and move on. I know that this is a bad habit, and I’m doing my best to break it, but man it’s hard.

It is my desire to use my private projects to learn to follow the development process better. The problem for me is that I really hate all the paperwork (feature list, UML diagrams) that it just makes me lose interest. Most of the time if given the chance to draw UML diagrams for my project, or play Minecraft, I will choose to play Minecraft. I wonder if other developers have this problem too, and how they move past it?



We’re Getting an Introduction into SCRUM!

So I was happy to hear that my department head has scheduled a short introduction class into SCRUM. This is the closest thing we’ve had to further training in the company for a while now. If anyone has any suggestions on some books to read about SCRUM and AGILE then drop them in the comments.


Lessons Learned: Ask Good Questions When Looking for Support.


When looking for support asking questions is not enough. You must ask good questions to get the answers you want in a timely manner.


Lessons Learned: Dealing with UML Diagram Updates.

Hey a new Lessons Learned. I’m going to try to post something like this every week. This week I’m going to discuss about UML diagrams.


Lessons Learned: Dealing With Large Arrays, Unit Testing, Paper and Pen

I’ve been looking at trying to post here more, and one thing I thought I could discuss what I’ve learned for the week. So here are some Lessons Learned for this week:


I’ve Been Pronouncing .GIF Wrong All These Years??

Well, I had a bit of a surprise today, I just realized that I’ve been pronouncing .GIF wrong since like forever. If you are unaware, apparently the guy who invented .GIF said it should be pronounced with a “j” sound as in “JIF” as a way to spoof a popular peanut butter brand in the US. I guess that was back in the time of maverick developers, who felt they had to put Easter Eggs everywhere, I don’t know. In any case, I will probably still call it “GIF” like it should be (if you are not a peanut butter geek) unless we are going to change the pronunciation of the word “graphical”.

— Jason


In fact I am a peanut butter geek, I just live where it is not very common to get the brands I grew up with, without paying a large sum of money. In any case I preferred Peter Pan Peanut Butter over JIFF.

UnnamedGameProject: Finally has a name, and a concept (kinda).

Well I start talking about learning LWJGL, but then don’t really post anything else. Well, that’s just how I am, not that anyone is actually reading this stuff anyway :p.

Anyway I finally have a concept for the game I want to build, and have given it a working name. The working name is GalacticAntFarm which basically was what my wife said sounded better than Voxel Based Galactic Simulator, who would guess. Anyway that’s what it is tentatively called. If anyone actually reads this and has another idea for a final name, just post it in the comments.

So the current concept of the game is that it will be a space exploration, sandbox. My idea is that you can fly to different star systems, and explore different planets. It’s still all a little rough, but pretty ambitious.

I’ll try to keep anyone who is reading this up-to-date on my progress as it goes. Currently I’m working on dealing with the game environment, how to generate it without blowing up my computer, after that I will start attempting rendering.

Thanks for reading (if you ever do)

— Jason



UnamedGameProject: Suddenly I’m Finding Some Good Tutorials.

Wouldn’t you know it, the day after saying that I couldn’t find tutorials that explained the information that I need clearly enough, I start finding a plethora of tutorials that are doing just that. Now there is not one that covers all aspects the way that I like them, but when I take several of them and mix-n-match what they have to say, I find out more and more information.

Right now my plan is to list the tutorials that I found useful in each of the future posts I make on this project. I’ve already rendered my first 3d box using the LWJGL and this tutorial: “‘Let’s Make a Voxel Engine’ LWJGL port”.

I plan on giving a better report on what I’ve done with this in my next post.



I’m Going to Learn Something New! How to Work with LWJGL!

After a few months of crazy work, I’ve decided that I’m ready to try to do something new. Something just for me, well mostly just for me. I hope that maybe afterwards some people may find it fun too. I’ve decided I want to write a computer game. I’ve got a few ideas on what I want to do for a game, but first I need to learn how to use the library. I’ve decided to use the LWJGL for the basis. The problem I’ve found is that there aren’t much in the way of tutorials, or books on the subject. The tutorials I’ve found were somewhat helpful but not something I could stand to use for long. So basically I’m going to document what I’m doing to learn how to write the game.

I have no plans on how long this should take. I’m guessing it will take a while to write. Once I’m done though I do plan on releasing it so people can play with it. So hopefully all goes well. If you have any ideas on how best to document my work let me know in the comments below.

— Jason