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December 5, 2007

Irth Online Screenshot Gallery

I’ve upgraded the old pages to a much nicer format. This is the new gallery for Irth screen shots.

Here for example is a picture of the sample landscape in wire frame and non wire frame modes with fog turned off. Notice the decimation and size of the terrain triangles into the distance.

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Filed under: News,Project News — admin @ 10:11 pm

January 2, 2007

Building You Own Computer

I’ve just built a new computer. Back in the old days (~3 years ago) things were much easier. Anyone could build a computer (more or less). Now it seems things aren’t quite so simple. There are lots of new things to go wrong. Technology mismatches can cause sub optimal performance (best case), pointless expense or even cause the system to go up in smoke (worst case). I decided to share my research/results with others who might want to build a modern, high power, yet not too expensive machine (~$650).

Price/performance ratio is a big issue here. As a general rule, 1.5 steps from cutting edge is about where i want to be. Paying extra to get the latest of anything is rarely worth the money. Paying extra for the next .5GHz step in CPU speed is never worth the money. (IMHO)

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Filed under: News,Research — admin @ 11:11 am

November 21, 2006

Things to worry about…

This is a fun topic i just had to write something about. I was listening to the radio today and heard the host (Clark Howard) say I should worry about “computer addiction”. He named a bunch of warning signs and introspective questions we should each ask ourselves to see if maybe we have a problem with our use of computers. Computer addiction I was told can have all sorts of bad consequences and many people are effected by it and donít even realize it. After confirming that I have 9 out of the 10 watch signs of this dread condition, I promptly decided to ignore it. Iím more or less happy with my use of the computer.

The real point I took from this radio show was how often I hear such warnings. Every day there seems to be some new things I should worry about. Every single one of them is VERY important. The world is just full of scaremongers. Are these people really just attention starved? They realize that scaring people is a way to be heard? So often I hear people under 30 talking about how things are “nowadays”. hehe. The world is plenty scary without inventing silly things to worry about. I figure if i have a better chance of winning the lottery than being effected by X, then its not worth worrying about. You know anyone who has won the lottery?

Anyhow, I started thinking about all the things I’ve been told I should worry about:

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Filed under: Philosophic — admin @ 1:28 pm

August 17, 2006

Virtual Reality in 2006

I’ve been reading (and contributing to) some articles about virtual reality and it’s uses. Check out Doug Mealy’s article at Military Training Technology: Sharing New Technologies. The general idea is that virtual reality can be used for more than just games.

Everyone has seen VR headsets in movies and TV. They have been around since the 80’s. But have you personally ever tried a VR headset or been in a VR ‘cave’? IMAX doesn’t count. Most likely not, unless you have been to Siggraph, E3 or GameDev or some other graphics/game trade show.

I did some research to figure out what the status of some of these technologies really is.

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Filed under: Research — admin @ 10:43 am

July 21, 2006

Problems with USB and Motorola V3m cell phone

I recently bought a new cell phone. A Motorolla v3m from Verizon. It’s about time. I’ve felt a little behind the times not having a cool cell phone i could hack. It has NOT at all been a smooth ride so far. Although this is (mostly) a very boring story, I would love to have read it yesterday before spending hours trying to figure this out. hehe.
The Verizon/Motorola software for using the USB connection does NOT work out of the box as advertised. I plugged the USB cable into the phone and got a message saying it could not find the driver software for the device.

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Filed under: Gripes,News,Research — admin @ 3:01 pm

July 10, 2006

Cell phone technologies – GSM(TDMA) vs CDMA

I’ve recently had some cause to do some research into cell phone technologies. I need to buy a new cell phone and I’m a terrible shopper. I can’t buy anything without doing proper research. I also live near RTP where several big telecom makers are based. One of the many options i was presented when selecting a phone was the carrier technology, CDMA vs. GSM. Here is what I found to be the pros and cons of each.

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Filed under: Research — admin @ 11:23 am

Converted the site from Greymatter to WordPress

Just a note. I just converted the site from Greymatter to WordPress. Hopefully nothing has been lost. I’m really liking it so far. It’s much prettier and easier to use. I have plans to convert most of the site content. Its much easier to update and manage now.

I especially like the easy moderation of comment in WordPresss. I had to turn comments off in† greymatter because the ability to delete/moderate was way too cumbersome. Spambots would fill up the comments with junk and it took way too long to moderate. It made the comments feature unusable.

Filed under: News — admin @ 9:13 am

July 1, 2006

Physics engines for games and simulations.

I’ve been doing some research into physics engines lately. I’ve always been fascinated by physics. It started back in high school. I remember well the moment that I learned that all this weird math stuff they kept forcing on me might actually have some point. Math might actually have some relevance to the real world. I want to thank my high school physics teacher for not getting too annoyed with me every time i interrupted her with dumb questions. hehe. Anyhow, there has been a trend of the last couple years with games outsourcing major components to 3rd parties. Physics is a good example. There are a couple of interesting new things coming up that will really make PC physics simulations a lot more interesting…
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Filed under: Research — admin @ 10:24 am

June 28, 2006

Windows Kernel Mode – Who writes code in C anymore?

I’ve recently been working on some windows driver code amoung the many other things on my list. Oddly most of the sample code I find is in C. I began writing kernel mode (driver) code in C++ back in 1996 in VxD’s. Back then I was asking the same questions. Whats wrong with C++? It appeared to me at the time to be just another of the religious issues that programmers have to deal with on a regular basis. This of course makes me want to dig deeper.
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Filed under: Philosophic,Research — admin @ 5:05 pm

May 13, 2006

Taksi – Desktop Screenshot, Video Capture/Recorder

Taksi

Taksi is a desktop video recorder/screenshot capture application for most versions of Windows. It can be hooked to most applications/games (via GDI,OpenGL,DirectX8 or 9) to record as an AVI video all that you are doing. It is based on the VFW API’s and can use any of the installed video codecs to encode in real time (if your CPU can handle it). This is an open source project that can also be found on sourceforge.net.

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Filed under: Projects — admin @ 7:54 am
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