July Life Update – Changes for the Better

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Hello, I’m going to try & make this concise since there’s a lot I want to bring up.

A quick overview for those low on time:

  • Work – my old boss returned & changes are happening + temp contract ending next month. I also made an offer with him; if he wants to keep me.
  • D&D – need to actually put into action the campaign I’ve been planning all this time (yes I’m terrible  😛 ). May keep my word of posting about it next time.
  • Health – taking action to cut down & change my diet. Going dairy-free & reducing sugar intake.
  • Return to Game Dev – I made a simulation demo in Unity based on an old assignment & I have more assignments I’m planning on re-imagining.


With my old boss back, changes & a restructuring in my team are happening. He’s actually had me do work on a database for him. That along with his eccentric personality has made work more interesting then just adding 200 photos to 200 asset records. The downside is I’ve barely done any brainstorming on projects & other things at work since my boss is now in the same place as me & directly getting me to do things.

He’s disappointed that I have no interest in making a career with the company & that my contract is ending; I think he would prefer if I’d stayed. Whilst my contract extension is set to end in August, I made him the offer that I’m willing to stay on two conditions: 1) I change to working part-time, & 2) I remain in Dunedin. He said “leave it to me” & mentioned a permanent part-time role as something he would like to open up in the last meeting. If this works in my favour I can finally stop worrying about the security of my income whilst gaining the time to live a better life & work on my projects in earnest  :D.

 

D&D is probably going to be my main project focus over the coming months (though I’m hoping it won’t stop me from doing the other things below). I’ve been keeping my players waiting for too long & I really feel it’s better to just get it started. I’ll need to compile a campaign handout detailing what to expect & what their characters should know about the world from the onset. Question is where to start the campaign?

My next posts will likely (probably) be about the campaign. I don’t want to make any promises given how flighty I can be about posts.

 

Since the last life update I’ve gone to see my naturopath three times now. She’s had me go see my doctor to check if my dermatitis/digestive issues could be stemming from something worse then my diet. My x-ray & test results suggested no problems with my stomach or anything else; only thing of note was that my LDL (the “bad” cholesterol) was on the high side. She also gave me some supplements in the form of fish oil & zinc tablets, & suggested some health/diet changes which I’m taking on-board. Seems I picked the prime time to decide my health for the rest of my life.

I’m essentially going dairy-free & finding I’m heading towards a vegan diet. I’ve changed cereal, cut out drinks that I used to have every work day, cut out alcohol, & I’ve been making the conscious choice to not buy any chocolate or icecream (well, except for dark chocolate  😛 ). The reason for going dairy-free is that there’s a real chance I may be becoming lactose intolerant; something my brother has & I believe we’re having similar symptoms.

It’s made me more watchful of what I get at the supermarket since there’s more crap there then I realized (why is it that the more I learn about the world, the more fucked up it seems to be). I’ve now been trying out foods like tuna, alfalfa, & eggs as additions to my meals; foods apparently good for the skin. I’m also returning to pan frying food rather than just throwing crap in the oven & microwave; forgot how it can add to the flavour.

At the moment, my hands are looking better than they usually do  :).

 

Finally, I’m now taking the time to reattempt game development. I plan on revisiting some old assignments & putting my own spin on things.

I’ve just got a demo simulation setup using Unity. It’s based on an assignment called Molecules, which was simply about drawing coloured circles & having them move in random directions on the screen – like spazzy molecules. In this case they’re GameObjects set to go forward & change direction every second. My demo goes a step further & has “molecule factories” which spawn molecules every few seconds (up to ten per factory) & colour codes them according to it’s source factory.

The demo about 20 seconds in. Circles are the molecules, the small squares are the "factories".

The demo about 20 seconds in. Circles are the molecules, the small squares are the “factories”.

I want to use this to test out future ideas relating to AI & see how entities fair against each other given certain strategies. In fact I plan on using this for another assignment – Finite State Machines. An FSM is an AI architecture where an object will decide what state or action to take based on certain conditions. Apparently this was used in games like Quake.


Life seems to be going in a great direction for me, but I need to utilize my time well. I’ve been complaining about how little time I’ve had for the things I want to do – now I may have the opportunity to make them happen; I can’t let it go to waste.

Farewell

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