Fork us on Github!

After finishing up recording of our album, we decided that it would be the greatest thing ever to release it under a Creative Commons license, and see what the world could do with it.

As such, The Narwhalingus EP: the debut effort by the Bristol 7’s (oh those cheeky lads), is now available for download on Github, containing both the final mixes, and the individual tracks– all in STUNNING 320kbps MP3 format (come on, it’s a free github account– what do you expect!?).

So please, Fork the repo, sing some harmony, steal my guitar solo, or add a Trance beat. Whatever you want to do, just tell us about it, so we can hear what’s become of our baby!



Also available on Soundcloud


In Which I Join Greplin

Hay you guys! I got a new job in San Francisco! Starting next month I will be a software engineer (specializing in mobile) with Greplin, Inc.

Some of you may be asking “Why the switch?” Well, I’ve been an avid follower of the Valley tech scene for quite some time now, from TechCrunch and GigaOm all the way down to Valleywag. I have also been the earliest adopter of tons of weird web stuff at SPG (to the sometime-bemusement of my coworkers!)– so it stands to reason that I would eventually find myself moving out to SF and working for a web company!

Anyway, if you’re not quite sure what Greplin does or who they are, I forgive you! They’re still quite young. You can check them out at — or just watch this video:

Anyway I’m incredibly excited (and also incredibly nervous!) to be joining these guys out in the bay. By the way, did I mention that Greplin is nominated for a Crunchie? Well we are! Vote for us! (I think the we/us pronouns are appropriate, even though I haven’t technically joined up yet? Not really sure, but ohwellz!)

Now somebody needs to buy my house. Quickly, get to it! It’s in a great spot in Carrboro– walkable distance from everything!

[related: In Which I Leave Spark Plug Games]

In Which I Depart Spark Plug Games.

And so it is, that after nearly three years of Igniting Fun, I have made the difficult decision to leave Spark Plug Games. Amie and I have been talking about moving out West for awhile now, and San Francisco seemed like a natural fit– given that I’m a bit of a fanatic for new web technologies and the startup scene.

In early February of 2011, I will be joining Greplin, Inc. as a software engineer and Mobile Dude.

I’ve absolutely loved working at SPG. I don’t lie or exaggerate when I tell you it’s the best work environment I can possibly imagine. This is to say nothing of the absolutely incredible people that I’ve had the privilege of working with. The guys at SPG are nothing short of world class talent and I can only hope to work with them again someday.

Obviously there are reasons for my decision, which I won’t go into here, but I think the best explanation is a simple one: I got the “itch”.

I need to see what else is out there and I wouldn’t mind getting away from games for awhile. Seeing that I’ve been fascinated by Valley culture and the tech race for awhile now, it really does make perfect sense for me to be there at this point in my life.

Now buy my house… Seriously, you guys! It’s in a great part of Carrboro and we don’t need it anymore. I’ll love you forever.

[related: In Which I Join Greplin]

Gingerbread goes further down the Native Rabbit Hole

I’m really glad to see that they’re starting to seriously broaden the NDK in Android– as that whole Java thing was really kind of a drag, and making it a pain to port from iPhone and other C-based devices. I’m still not sure what the status is on STL support though– I guess it’s possible to get some hacked third-party implementations working.

Either way, the fact that they spend the first 1/3 of this video on NDK tells me that they’re realizing how incredibly important it is to have code compatibility with iOS.  Lets also not forget the fact that the future of Dalvik Java is somewhat in question thanks to a certain evil DB company. It is very possible that Google is hedging, in the (imo unlikely) case that they are actually forced to move away from Java on Android (And yes, ‘DB’ can mean two very different things in the above context).

via [Android and Me]

A List of Free Programming EBooks!

So the great Christian Arca just tweeted about an absolutely lovely thread over at StackOverflow with a great list of freely-available ebooks on programming. It really is anything and everything you could want, especially if you don’t want to shell out the bux (though I still recommend grabbing a cheap copy of Effective C++ on the interwebz somewhere, I got mine for $8).

There are THIS many books in the list.


Anyway, I think I’ll start perusing some x86 Assembly and some Advanced BASH. Haven’t played with those in awhile (and I’ve always been nothing less than woefully inadequate when it comes to assembly). I also need to reignite my quest to dive deeper into web stuff. Been too buried in native/local lately.

…Ooh! Scheme book by old man Dybvig– reminds me of college. And holy crap they’ve even got Maven guides!

Don’t thank me, thank [StackOverflow]

Data Formatters in XCode (or how to make XCode suck less at custom containers)

Ever been working on somebody else’s code with their cruddy old custom string class and come across this?

Really? This is all you got?

Gee, thanks summary!

…only to drill down into the object to find more of this:



Do you see my actual string there at the very bottom? Man… I’d really hate to have to do this every damned time I want to get at a string! Luckily, that empty summary box is not the final word in debugger previews. Instead you can use a handy little scripting language to create DATA FORMATTERS that will do the work for you. Check this out!

What's that?

….and then…


BAM! You win. By the way, in case  you were wondering: The ‘:s’ gives you the summary field of the value you’ve drilled down to.

Also this:

The Console can be useful as well.

P.S. — You can build Data Formatters into your project via a Bundle, instructions HERE


Where Have You Been?


I’m sorry I abandoned you, Internet! I know I haven’t called or written lately, and I’m really sorry for that. I’ve been spending quite a bit of my off-hours time developing noncritical engine features for NYMPH, and haven’t really had much time to write on the ol’ blog.

I’ve got a couple ideas for posts kicking around that you may find interesting. Firstly I want to write about why the hell it’s so hard to turn a profit over here in Gameland while Techland over in the Valley seemingly has more money than it knows what to do with. I mean– I know we’re kind of commoditized as a field, but don’t we get a pass by sheer virtue of the fact that we’re in a creative industry? Evidently not.

But there’s more!

Continue reading

Some Good News

Figured after all the time I’ve spent railing against unaccountable, disinterested corporations lately, I’d relate some good news, even if it isn’t mine.

A few days ago, my dad dropped his Kindle while going through airport security, breaking the screen. Pretty depressing situation, considering he had just recently purchased the thing.

Well it seems that Nissan could learn a couple lessons from Amazon– as they are now overnighting him a brand-new replacement, free of charge. He didn’t need to escalate the case to a manager, or beg and plead, nothing. He simply told a low-level CSR that he had dropped the kindle, and the CSR authorized a replacement.

Thanks Amazon, you guys rock! (Sorry Nissan, you’re still pretty useless)

…and we wonder why the auto industry is in so much trouble.