Important: Transitioning to new Blog!

I have just set up a new blog using wordpress. I feel this provides more options, particularly for themes and plugins.

I had a problem with spam on this blog some time ago, and none of the anti-spam plugins I could find dealt with it, so I had to eventually disable comments. This is something I didn't want to have to do, and the wordpress blog seems to have far better anti-spam capabilities, in addition to a host of other features.

So, I am officially moving to Wordpress from B2Evolution. My new blog is located here:

http://phoenixgamedevelopment.com/blog/

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Project 130: Computational Fluid Dynamics Water, Tar, Mud, and Lava Shaders Demo

I have begun the final optimisation and debugging stages of this project. I have not yet completely decided if I want to release it for free or charge a small fee, but I should be releasing it either way in the next week or so.

The code is fully network safe, allows for multiple instances of the simulation running with completely different simulation options and materials (as the below video shows) and comes with four example materials: Water, Lava, Tar, and Mud.


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Project 129: Sleep Learning App Beta

 

I have completed a beta version of the Sleep Learning App that I spoke about in previous posts.

 It is not really ready to be uploaded to the play store, especially since even the underlying concept is experimental.

The concept is that listening to this tone while studying a piece of material will associate that material with the tone subconsciously. Then, playing the tone back at night will trigger the subconscious mind to recall the piece of information, aiding in recall.

 

To use the app:

First, Type a name for this tone into the text field. It should be something memorable.

Then press the "Generate" button, this will produce a short random sequence of tones.

Next,  press "Save Tone". This will write the tone to a file for permanent storage.

The "Delay" text fields are used to specify a time, in hours and minutes, before the tone is played. This can be useful at night, to give the user a chance to go to sleep before the tone starts playing.

The "Run for" text fields are used to specify how long, in hours and minutes, that the tone will be played for. This can be used to ensure the tone stops playing before the user wakes up, or only plays for the duration of a study cycle.

Pressing play will start the tone after the "Delay" time has elapsed, and run it for the time specified in the "Run for" text fields. Pressing stop at any time will stop the tone playing.

The "Load Tone" button will allow the user to select or delete tones that have been previously saved.

 

The App can be downloaded here.


 Bug reports and comments can be sent to jackstone@phoenixgamedevelopment.com


 
 

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Debugging Android Tablets with Generic Google ADB Driver

I develop Android apps with Eclipse, and, in addition to the Android Emulator, I used to use my phone for development (It is important to develop, or at least debug, using a real device). However, the touch screen on my phone has broken, and the only other real device I have is a generic brand Android Tablet, with no manufacturer or model listed on it.

Unsurprisingly, this tablet didn't show up in Eclipse using ADB (Android Debug Bridge). The only other way of testing an app would be to sign and export it to an .apk, then copy it over to the device using USB storage, then run it. This is tedious and time consuming, and doesn't provide any debugging features at all. So, I tried to find a way to connect my device to eclipse.

Eclipse itself does not "recognise" the android devices, it uses the aforementioned ADB interface. This interface requires a driver to be installed for each device in order for it to work correctly. Android Devices usually have several drivers, one for uploading firmware to the device, one for using the device for USB storage, and one for ADB.

The USB storage mode used a generic windows driver, and so this will usually work by default with any kind of device. However, the ADB mode usually requires a specialised driver, which is provided by the manufacturer of the device. If you are using an off-brand or generic device however, or if the manufacturer doesn't provide an ADB driver, you may have a problem.

Thankfully, I found this: "Intalling the Generic Google Android USB Driver"

This article provides directions and a download link for a Generic Google USB driver, that should work with the majority of Android devices, regardless of the manufacturer.

I thought this was worth making a post about, since it is something that could save a lot of time and effort.

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Artillery! Progress Report

 

 

Progress has been quite good on this project so far. In addition to finishing the turrets, I have LAN gameplay working, the game logic and main menu's are mostly done, and I am currently working on the AI.

I have also completed the turn-based system, and a customisation screen allowing the players to choose the level, the number of players, single player or multiplayer, etc.

I am still having issues getting the internet play to work. I have a master server running and working, but there are connection problems preventing the client machines from seeing each other. This may be due to testing both machines using the same internet connection.

I still need to finish the AI and implement some kind of random level creator, as well as build the art assets and create the different projectile types that will be needed for this game, but it should be a fairly quick project.


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