On Friday, January 18th, me and eight other people were let go from GarageGames. So now I am looking for work and have a strong desire to stay here in Las Vegas since it is an amazing town. I've filed for unemployment, revised my resume like crazy, and begun applying at a number of places here in town. I'm mainly been targeting IT and programming jobs here in the casino, education, and government arenas. Hopefully something will catch soon!
A lot has happened since the last time I wrote an entry. I interviewed and was offered a job at GarageGames in Las Vegas. After consulting with numero uno (my wife Marni), I took the job. In roughly two weeks, we packed up a 2700 square foot house in Pocatello and moved the vast majority of the contents to an 1800 square foot house in Las Vegas. Most everything is still in the garage. The house is a great place with easy access to the office. I'm renting from my friends Matt and Talana Fairfax who have recently moved to San Francisco.
The sad part of the whole ordeal is that Marni is still in Pocatello attempting to sell our house. We are currently looking at renting it out and getting her down here as soon as possible. I miss her so much.
Just thought I would post a small update on the off-chance that anyone reads anything that I post!
I am currently doing some work for the Union initiative at Unity Technologies. It is an initiative designed to bring current and future games to emerging platforms whether they are set-top boxes, TV internals (play a game on your Bravia without having a console), or cellular platforms. We are doing most of the business-end deals with manufacturers and hoping to bring a great catalog of stellar games made with the engine to them.
I am also still doing community support for the Torque line of engines, though I cannot really announce anything officially until the trigger is pulled by Eric Preisz. But the future there is bright for all Torque licensees.
I am also applying for a position with District 25 as the Technology Coordinator. I have no idea yet if I will even get an interview. I am hopeful, but I also really enjoy working at ISU as a Computer Analyst.
So that is just a small update on some of the things going on in my life right now. Thanks to the two spammers who are reading!
It has been a long time since I started learning Japanese, and I was actually pretty good at reading it years ago. Since I have not kept up on it, I've pretty much lost all of my language memory. So to get back into it, I've thought about getting this. While it is definitely a rudimentary learning tool, it is exactly what I need to try to get back on my feet again with the language. I remember seeing this a while back, but I did not know where my DS was at the time. I would prefer to do the "writing tutors" on the DS with a stylus than tracing characters with my finger on the iPhone.
It has been quite a while since I posted anything. I wish I could say that I was being productive in that time, but mostly I think I was just being sick and goofing off. "Goofing off" has included limited playtime with Bayonetta, New Super Mario Bros, Mario Kart Wii, Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, Collapse, and Swords & Poker. It has also included limited research on community theatre history in our region and into backend game server technology. Against my better judgement, I picked up Doom II RPG, so I am sure that my iPhone's battery will fail fast, most likely while I'm blasting baddies in turn-based goodness.
I am enjoying my tiny role in Gaslight at Westside. It is refreshing to get to help out with a show, wear a costume, and not have to learn any lines. It is also a lot of fun to see just how much people are loving Marni in the role. She does a spectacular job of being driven to the brink of insanity by her devious husband. I wish that I was able to see the end, however, since I am told that she shines, but that is while I am waiting to come on stage for my few seconds in the limelight.
Marni and I go to a lot of theatre. Since my last entry (Dec 14th), we have gone to A Dicken's Christmas at the Gateway Foundation, White Christmas at Mystique, November at ARTI, Gaslight at Westside (cheating since we're both in it), Avenue Q in Salt Lake, Crimes of the Heart at OTAS, and Old, New, and Broadway Too at Mystique. We also happened to see a couple of movies Sherlock Holmes, Avatar, and When in Rome and quite enjoyed them. We headed to Valentines Day last weekend for...you guessed it, Valentines day.
For a long while now, we have been under the impression that Zoe is not nearly the climber and jumper that Broots is. It made sense since he can jump up on the tub in a single leap and it often takes her a couple of leaps. He climbs anything he can get his claws into while she half-heartedly climbs only when there's not an easier way to get to where she wants to go. So, when we got back from Salt Lake and The Wedding Singer Saturday and noticed that one of them had gotten out, we assumed it was Broots. After all, he had done it before, but this time there was a difference: he had climbed back in the cage! This morning, our perception of our little girl changed somewhat.
It is fun to personify your pets; to add a little human thinking to them. Since she's never expressed much interest (or talent) in climbing, we didn't think that she would be the one who got out and made a mess in the book/piano room. We imagined her watching Broots from the cage, wishing she could go on a grand adventure. And just before we came in the door, he climbed back into the cage so that we would be none-the-wiser--except for the mess in the room, of course!
This morning, I slunk out of bed in my usual early-morning Gawd-I-HATE-mornings stupor. I heard something sliding around in the other room so I went to investigate, expecting them to be moving their food dishes around the cage. I also thought Broots may just have gotten out again, even though Marni secured the blanket on our makeshift door (the real door still in shipping limbo from Marshall's). Broots was in the cage, excitedly running back and forth. I saw something fall down from the side of the cage and thought that she must be down on the bottom. She was, but she was trying to crawl back up the outside of the cage to get back in. I like to think it was to put on the ruse that she never really escaped.
So now I know that if she really wants to, she can not only jump and climb like crazy, but she can get out of the cage and back in without us knowing. I hope Marshall's gets the new cage door here quickly! I think I'll have to move it back down to the bottom so that they don't have as far to climb. It just makes it a pain to clean. The current arrival date for the cage door is Thursday, but now that they know they can get out, they just keep doing it!
This morning, on my way to work, I nearly hit a car that blew through a red light. He did not slow down or stop at the light. He just barreled through. My light was green and had been for some time. It was not a case of him rolling through a yellow light. I do not know if he saw the light or even cared; except that he seemed to care about my truck trying to run him down since I saw him at barely the right time to hit my breaks and skidded before smacking into the side of his car.
California traffic camera widely circulated on the net.
And as he went, he gave me a thumbs up. That's what I don't get.
I understand people blasting through red lights whether it be because they are not paying attention or just do not care. What I do not get is that as I was about to hit hum during his traffic infraction...he gave me a thumbs up.
I was driving home from Theatre ISU's fun and lively production of Picasso at the Lapin Agile when I heard a song by Dope featuring Zakk Wylde of Black Label Society (as well as being a hell of a guitarist for Ozzy). The song "Addiction" has the chorus:
Cocaine, heroin, alcohol and vicadin
And I couldn't get out of my head that I had heard this string before or at least something like it. Here is the video:
Nice bit of nu-metal, that.
The song that I had in my head wasn't Nu-Metal, though. Not really much of any kind of metal. More of a fun-punky sound that the second stage of Vans is so fond of. It took a second to remember what it was. It was Boink! A band that I found while looking for music for Die Happy.
Here's their in-development site. The song is "Prescription Cocktail". Two different styles that use what I am sure is most likely a twist of a common drug-poet chant in very different ways. Boink's list is a lot longer and a bit more fun, though. Definitely not the same, but both caught in my head and it took looking them up (and sorting through my music collection) to figure out why my brain would not shut down.
Prosiac, Ridilin, Aderal, Welbutrin/Put it in the water now/Everybody's learning how
Paxil, lithium, SoCo, give me some/Put it in the water now/Everybody's gonna feel happy, happy, happy, not sad.
I have to say that I love my jobs. Sure, there can be horrific pressures. ISU is seeing budget freezes, layoff's, hiring freezes. I get people who scream at me to support their non-existent C++ coding knowledge when they were told repeatedly that certain features require C++ changes to the engine (PhysX in TGE, for example). But 99% of the time, I quite enjoy my jobs.
I enjoy getting to work with Chuck and Ron on our lab issues. I really enjoy getting to sit down, test logic, and program. My boss, Tony, makes chatting about extremely important issues seem light and much less stressful than they could be. In all, it feels like a pretty big win situation.
Working at ISU and GG is an Epic Win!
On the GarageGames front, I really enjoy Deborah, Mich, Brett, Jacob, and Michael who I seem to be in constant communication with about any given number of things that are going on in my work-day. Sometimes I feel a bit out of the loop, as can be expected from a remote employee, but Matt and the rest of the Torque 3D crew and contractors keep me well-versed in everything that is going on in the development shell. Jacob is excellent at keeping me updated on what is happening with web pushes that he and his team are working on. Mich is a powerhouse when it comes to documentation and community presence. His GDC interviews and documentation are absolutely awesome.