Visual Pinball I-PAC

Got a new part of the project in the mail this week. The I-PAC will let me use real flipper buttons instead of a keyboard to control the flippers and start games. Getting close with hardware. Now it’s time to finally build a cabinet. Hopefully next week.

Happy New Year!

Virtual Pinball Machine – Week 1

I set off to build a virtual pinball machine last week. I went out and bought all the stuff to build a PC for it. I haven’t built a PC from scratch since high school. I had to base it on a Windows machine for a few reasons. First is because it all runs on some open source software that only exists on Windows. Second, and the reason I couldn’t use Boot Camp or Parallels, is because I need to have access to some pretty beefy video cards. Parallels just doesn’t have that ability to utilize a big card, let alone two of them that I eventually need to run three monitors. So, a PC it is…

All the parts for the big PC build.

Anyway, here are the results after the first few days of work. I got the machine up and running, the software loaded and the skeleton of the machine built. It’s all controlled with a keyboard now, but when the i-Pac gets here, I will have the ability to control the game with real buttons. I have a long way to go including making a cabinet and buying larger monitors, but it’s been pretty fun so far. As with most of my silly obsessions, I’m not sure where this will end up. But, I certainly am having fun.

It worked!

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Mr Bungle Animatic: None Of Them Knew They Were Robots

Here is a crude animatic I made back in school about an idea I had for an animated Mr Bungle Video. I always had characters in my head during the crazy vocal parts, so I decided to give it a go. It features some of my horrible drawings scanned into an animation lunchbox for the basic moves and transferred onto Mini DV. Then the tape was captured into Final cut pro, cut out and the rest was animated in After Effects.

It’s Official: I’m Obsessed with Pinball

I tend to obsess over things. Like REALLY obsess. I tend to build my life and ways I make money around my obsessions. Every few years another thing comes up that interests me and I have to learn as much about it as I can. Magic Tricks, Yo-Yo’s, Pro Tools, After Effects, Photography, Cinema 4D, Designing iPhone Apps, all came out of following random obsessions. Well, I think I found a new one.

About about two months ago, wile I was waiting for my laundry to dry in a San Francisco Laundromat, I put a few quarters into a Terminator 2 Pinball and ended up playing a couple hours until I beat the high score. That’s all it took. I am now obsessed in learning everything I can about pinball and becoming a better player. I learned about who designed pinball games, who makes them, how they are distributed, how they are cleaned, fixed, and transported. I’m also committing to play and practice at least 4 hours a week to learn how to become a better player.

Fleeting obsessions come and go for me, but it looks like this one is here to stay for a while. I’m even looking into purchasing one for home or for an office space and learning how to fix them myself. Mostly, I’m excited I finally have a hobby that doesn’t involve staring into a computer monitor all day.

Want To Be More Productive? Take A Cold Shower

The hot water heater busted where I was staying in San Francisco a few months ago. It was after a very sweaty run around the city, so I had to get clean. I knew an unintended cold shower was in my near future. So, I soaped up and jumped in. It was cold. Breathtakingly cold. Uncontrollable funny noises cold.

After I rinsed off, I noticed something happened as I stood there shivering and drying off. I felt alive! Better then I had in a long time. I felt like I could slay a dragon!!

So, I did it again the next day. I didn’t bother to call about the busted hot water heater. It was the weekend anyway, and I didn’t want to bug anybody about it (I was a guest after all). I just hopped in the cold water ready for the challenge. New day, same feeling. Ready to start the day. Ready to take on the world. Ready to do everything on my to-do list and more.

Monday came and they fixed the hot water heater, but that didn’t stop me. I was hooked. Crank it to cold, soap up and rinse off. I felt like I was in the army. Like if I could survive this, then the rest of the day would be easy.

Well, I have been doing this for a few months now and it’s effects haven’t worn off. The showers are still breathtakingly cold, but not miserable. I actually look forward to it. It’s better than coffee. It gets me in the right state of mind. In a state of control, not comfort. The perfect mood for making the world work for me instead of merely reacting to the world around me.

Here are a few notes if you want to try the cold shower for yourself

  • Just turn it to cold and imagine that the hot water heater is busted… Forever!
  • Get all soaped up. Now, there is no way out. you have to get in.
  • Try working out first. It get’s your body temp up and makes the cold water feel more refreshing.
  • Think of it as a challenge. Like a hard work out.
  • iPhone 4S Bump In App Sales

    A word to app developers and others interested. Any time there is a new iPhone launched, app sales go up. Here is the graph for the last thirty days for combined sales of both my apps.

    It’s probably a combination of a few things. First, new iPhone users hitting the market and they may be asking their friends what apps they need. Hopefully, if I did a good job, they are recommending mine. Second, a very highly social period comes with a new phone as everyone shows off what it can do, including the new camera. And, as we know, whenever people flip their phone around to show off an app or a photo, there is a higher chance of a sale.