Darkness Springs is now Free

Posted on: April 12 2013 Comments: 6
Do you remember, about 5 years ago, when I developed this Flash role playing game? I made a lot of blog posts about it here. Since then, a lot has happened. People were playing the game, and some even purchased it (yay!). I added an editor to it, to make it possible for players to create their own stories and quests, and had to close it down again after half a year because it was abused by Nazis and other strange people to spread their political statements and claims. The game wasn't a very big success, b... [Read more]

Programmer? Back Pain? I might have a solution.

Posted on: April 10 2013 Comments: 13
If you are a programmer, or in general: Doing 100% of your work in front of a computer screen, typing, then it's probable that you will suffer back pain sooner or later. The human body simply wasn't engineered to stay in this specific position for long times, and so it will start complaining some day. Not sure how many blog posts and tweets of fellow programmers with similar problems I came across already, but they were quite a lot. Last year, finally after about 15 years of fulltime programming, I also sta... [Read more]

Looks like WebGL for IE is coming

Posted on: March 30 2013 Comments: 1
Last week, a build of Microsofts update to Windows 8 appeared on the web, code name "Windows Blue". François Remy took a closer look at it, and when testing Internet Explorer 11, he noticed that there are WebGL interfaces defined in it, although they do not seem to be functional yet: I didn’t get webgl working, even by trying using iesl, hlsl and other combinations. So, it seems like WebGL interfaces are defined but not functional at this time (if you are curious, you can find the property list of prope... [Read more]

Asus VivoTab

Posted on: March 29 2013 Comments: 2
My notebook broke a few days ago. It was a nice Sony Vaio with Windows XP, and I think it was about 8 years old. I used it nearly every day during these 8 years (mostly for doing work), and it was a great companion. I was surprised that it worked that long. Anyway, so I needed some replacement, and I shortly thought about buying some of those tablet PCs, which are currently so fashionable. But apart from surfing the web and watching youtube videos, what are tablets good for? They are made to consume media,... [Read more]

Small bank run

Posted on: March 27 2013 Comments: 8
Last week I physically visited a bank for doing some paperwork, and what I saw was really unusual: There were dozens of people queued up, depositing money from their bank accounts. Doesn't sound strange, right. But the amount of money they took was what caught my attention: It looks like they were taking everything they had off their bank accounts. The money counting machine was running constantly, and there were only very big notes in there. Every second person was taken aside and escorted to another room,... [Read more]

Announcing GameDevNews.net

Posted on: March 21 2013 Comments: 9
This weekend I had some spare time and hacked together a small new website, based on a PHP framework I developed a few years ago: I present to you, GameDevNews.net. There isn't much content there yet, but hopefully this will change soon. You can even submit infos yourself: If you are developing some game development related tool, library, framework or similar, you are free to submit news on there. I'm going to update this page from time to time to during the next months, let's see, maybe it will become us... [Read more]

Linux, Steam and irrKlang

Posted on: March 14 2013 Comments: 7
If you are programming a game and planning to sell it on Steam, you might want to consider irrKlang as audio library: I just uploaded irrKlang 1.4.0b, which includes some Linux improvements. Some developers of games which are using irrklang had a preview-build of this, and it appears to be working fine even for those who are being sold as Linux version on Steam. You can get irrKlang here. Happy programming! [Read more]

3D Game AI in WebGL and Javascript

Posted on: March 13 2013 Comments: 2
Programming artificial intelligence for games, aka Game AI usually is a challenge. And if you are limited by CPU, lines of code, memory and even the programming language itself, it quickly isn't that fun anymore. I just released a free update of CopperCube, version 4.0.3, which includes an update to the included Game AI behavior. If you ever used it, you know that it is very basic, but with this new update, I made it a bit smarter and a bit more tweak-able. But see for yourself, in this WebGL demo: Both ... [Read more]

SearchCode and Bug or Censorship on /r/programming

Posted on: March 08 2013 Comments: 3
Do you know SearchCode? It is a nice little search engine for source code. Since Google CodeSearch has closed some time ago, I didn't use any code search engine anymore, because I didn't like the alternatives I tried. Their URL was to long or difficult to remember, and their UI was to complex. Today, I found SearchCode, and I liked it very much. So much that I immediately bought an Ad on their pages in order to support their work. I also posted a link to it on /r/programming, as I sometimes do when I find ... [Read more]

Doing a startup? 50% of your work will not be what you expect it to be.

Posted on: March 01 2013 Comments: 8
With the existence of the Internet, it should be rather easy to create your own startup today. Especially if you are into digital stuff, like if you are a programmer like me. You sit down, code your product - be it some software or maybe some online service - hack together a website for this and start selling, right? A dream job: Program stuff as long as you want, fix a few bugs here and there and make money with your favourite hobby: programming stuff. Unfortunately, it doesn't work like this. What a lot... [Read more]

How to remove all useful comments from your blog

Posted on: February 27 2013 Comments: 7
Since I implemented my own very simple Anti-Spam system on this blog - the one where you have to enter a specific word into the comment form when posting a comment - the amount of comments on each entry of this blog has dropped significantly. Yes, the spam is gone, yay. But also real, user written comments are not many anymore. It seems to be posting comments is now a bit too complicated? Hm... [Read more]

Stupid, Non-Working Anti-Spam Mail Links getting out of hand

Posted on: February 13 2013 Comments: 1
Recently, some companies and even individuals thought it might be clever to classify any incoming mail as spam, and return it to the sender instantly. The returned mail will then contain a a link to click in order to "unlock" that mail, so that the receiver will get it. Sounds clever. But it doesn't work. If people using this kind of spam prevention system are trying for example to register in a forum, a board or similar, they usually get a mail by the forum, to confirm their email adress. And said mail w... [Read more]

App signing and certificates - a PITA

Posted on: February 08 2013 Comments: 1
When creating apps or updates of existing apps for the Mac App Store, there is one thing which really is annoying: Signing your apps. The process itself isn't difficult, its basically automatic. But setting up your build environment to correctly work for this is honestly a pain in the ass: You need to generate certificate requests, generate the right certificates from them, install them correctly in your system, and set your XCode projects up correctly to use them. Additionally, you need to do this multiple... [Read more]

How I doubled Android 3D game scene quality with 4 lines of code

Posted on: February 01 2013 Comments: 4
The feature to generate Android apps is new in CopperCube, and if you published an Android app with lots of textures, polygons and character data using CopperCube version 4.0, it was possible that you would get something like this instead of a working app: This happened when the app was running out of memory. Huge scenes with lot of textures need a lot of memory. Imagine, a texture with 512x512 pixels, standard 32 bit depth per pixel takes not 1MB of memory as you would expect, but about 1.4MB of memor... [Read more]

My Encounter with The Walking Dead

Posted on: January 31 2013 Comments: 2
I'm used to buy games as physical copies, and carry them home, to install them there. It just feels nice. But today, this has become nearly senseless, because after you installed a game from disk, the DRM stuff kicks in, and you usually have to download a patch anyway, which sometimes is as big as the game itself. So I'm late to the party: A few weeks ago, I purchased my first computer game entirely as digital download, from the internet (via Steam, in particular). The game I bought was The Walking Dead, an... [Read more]

CopperLicht 1.6

Posted on: January 30 2013 Comments: 0
Finally, I've also finished the update for my free WebGL 3D engine, CopperLicht. I just released version 1.6, which has all the features from CopperCube 4: Particle Systems, Mobile2D input nodes, extended Overlay2D node with nicer API and multi-line text support and more. I also speeded up billboard rendering by about 600% (measured a few times with Chrome), because I now don't construct and destruct vertex buffers anymore senselessly. I also updated its website a bit, hope it doesn't look that crappy ... [Read more]

CopperCube 4 released

Posted on: January 24 2013 Comments: 2
I just released CopperCube 4. In short, the new features are: Android support, Particle systems, Touchscreen support for mobile devices, customizable loading screens for all targets, Multiline text, more and extended actions and behaviors (cloning, deleting, vehicles, random positions, etc.), new examples and prefabs, lots of other improvements. See the details in the forum. When I posted the hint image about the new feature, it was a picture of Lieutenant Commander Data, who is an android. I thought it w... [Read more]

After Earth

Posted on: January 23 2013 Comments: 3
I received a link to this movie trailer now for the second time, both from persons telling me that this is similar to the ideas in my book: I like the settings and idea in 'After Earth', and it really reminds a bit of my book. But the book is entirely different. Really! :) Post-Apocalyptic settings now seem to be in, did you for example see the Oblivion trailer already? It also has some similarities. Sooo... did you look into my book already? Amazon currently has some of them in stock again, hint! :) [Read more]

Subscriptions on Dreamingmethods

Posted on: January 20 2013 Comments: 0
Andy Campbell from onetoonedevelopment now offers subscriptions on his website Dreamingmethods.com. With a subscription, you get access to the source code and the media files, textures and sounds used to create the projects on this website. Definately worth the $31, I guess. Alternatively, if you like the projects he creates, you can also donate on that website. [Read more]

IonMonkey first impression

Posted on: January 19 2013 Comments: 0
Just tried out Firefox 18.0.1 with its new IonMonkey JavaScript engine. It needs a bit to start up - you'll notice complex JavaScript code lagging for a fraction of a second once - but boy, this is fast. At least with the latest version my WebGL 3D engine. Mozilla did a great job with this piece of software, I'm impressed. [Read more]

Guess what feature I mean

Posted on: January 16 2013 Comments: 7
I finally have finished and cleaned up the particle system implementation for the upcoming new release of CopperCube. With that and all the other already finished features, CopperCube is nearly feature-complete now. Here is a screenshot of one of the new examples which will come with the software package, showing some instances of a few particle systems in action: A camp-fire and some futuristic green ball-thingy: I know, I haven't talked much about the other cool features which will be in the next relea... [Read more]

Malware gates wide open!

Posted on: January 16 2013 Comments: 0
Out of curiosity, I just took a look into the Internet Explorer options, to see what addins and plugins there are active in that browser. Altough I don't even use it anymore. Turns out, there were about 20 plugins active. Some 'safe search' toolbars (where did those even come from? Preinstalled maybe?), two versions of Java, two Java "helpers" from Oracle (WTF?!), Silverlight, Adobe PDF reader, and whatnot. Disabled them all. Just in case I use IE in mistake. Boy, a lot of crap wants to be "in the web" toda... [Read more]

Mobile Game Engines Interviews

Posted on: January 11 2013 Comments: 4
Jason Brownlee from Mobilegameengines.com did a short interview with me, mainly about the 3D game engine stuff I am working on. He did the same with 21 other developers and now published this interview compilation as a book: Mobile Game Engines: Interviews with Mobile Game Engine Developers. If you are working with mobile game engines or planning to create one yourself, this might be an interesting read for you. It's already available as eBook, and Paperpack on Lulu.com, but also soon on Amazon.com, as it... [Read more]

3D Particle System in Flash / Stage 3D and WebGL

Posted on: January 09 2013 Comments: 9
I just finished the implementation of a small particle engine for CopperCube. Besides in the native Windows and Mac OS X targets, it also already works in Flash and WebGL, so it's possible to show it in action directly on this blog: Does it run smoothly on your system? It's not very optimized yet, but I am very happy with the outcome so far. Also, it looks very nice :) This feature will be in the next release of CopperCube. If you would like to get a mail once this new version of CopperCube is releas... [Read more]

Short visit in Skyrim

Posted on: January 06 2013 Comments: 3
The lack of updates in the last week on this blog were because I spent New Year in a part of the world which looked surprisingly like the world of Skyrim. Here is proof: It was also quite cold, but at least there were no dragons. During my stay there, I had a lot of ideas about my software projects, and I'm quite busy implementing those already. I'm going to post some experiments and tests about this soon on this blog. [Read more]


Posted on: December 19 2012 Comments: 0
I recently came across Gnomoria, a "village management game". I especially liked the graphics style. It seems to be a bit like "Dwarf Fortess", and never having played that one, I now finally also see what that game is about. The developer also claims that the game has been influenced by Dungeon Keeper, so it can't be bad! :) The game is currently in alpha, but can be preordered and is in playable state already (unlike some specific zombie shooters which even made it to steam while hard working indie gam... [Read more]

Ambiera Winter Discount

Posted on: December 12 2012 Comments: 2
I do this every year, but usually not at the exact same date. This year, it's from now until Sunday this week: The yearly Ambiera Winter discount is in effect. You can get some of the software I work on for 20% less. This year, it's for CopperCube, WebsitePainter, DiagramPainter and irrFuscator. A lot of people already got used to this, and were asking me whether and when I would do it this year. Well, now you know! :) [Read more]

Solar Tournament - WebGL Multiplayer Game

Posted on: December 05 2012 Comments: 0
Johannes Hoppe created a multiplayer WebGL game based on the Asteroid Demo Game I once wrote for showing off CopperLicht, when most people didn't know WebGL existed at all (and also when it didn't work in any browser yet :) ). The name of his game is Solar Tournament. It is also open source, here is the SolarTournament gitHub repository, Johannes put everything under the zLib. [Read more]

WebGL Canvas Background-Color visible when using Alpha Blending

Posted on: November 29 2012 Comments: 0
I was just working on some rendering code of CopperLicht, the WebgL backend for CopperCube, and noticed a very strange behavior. Somehow, all the transparent elements in the scene looked somehow colored. Playing around with it, I suddenly realized that the color depends on the used background color of the canvas element in the HTML (For an upcoming new feature, you will be able to define the HTML background color for the WebGL canvas in the editor). Setting the color back to its default, black, made it look... [Read more]

Preinstalled crap on Android phones

Posted on: November 21 2012 Comments: 7
For testing, I just bought a new Samsung Android phone. I started it up and went straight to enabling the Debug option. And I'm not planning to use it for other things than testing, but there is one thing I noticed: The amount of crap Samsung put onto that phone is incredible. Samsung Account? AccuWeather? SamsungApps? AllShare? Buddies? DigitalWatch? DualClock? The list counts about 40 entries. You are not even able to uninstall all this crap. It's just like a new Windows PC with all this senseless apps l... [Read more]


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