October 2017

  • Propellant Storage Figured Out, Reactor Controls Next

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! I think I figured out how I'm going to handle propellants for the reactor/thruster, so I finished up adding that data to the game, and I'm starting on the reactor controls.

    Yesterday, I wasn't sure how to handle storing propellants, since the fuel used in the reactor/thruster (He-3 and D) had such a low density, even as liquids instead of gases. I was calculating needing 40 of those 4 giant canisters you see in the image above. And while that would be realistic, it'd also be kind of a buzzkill.

  • Fuel and Propellant Storage

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Hope everyone had a good weekend. Pretty uneventful here, though I did fire up a bit of both Alien Isolation and Warlock for some fun. Forgot how much I enjoy those!

    Back at the office, I resumed work on end-to-end flight systems. Last week, I managed to get everything on the ship assigned a mass, as well as an estimated thrust for the typical reactor, and that's a major step towards getting the flight computer to plot an actual course based on ship parameters.

  • Accounting for Mass and Thrust

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Big science and engineering day today, as I tried to work out reasonable thrust ratings for the reactor, and mass ratings for all components on the ship.

  • Reactor Is "Go"

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Finally got the reactor working today. Well, "working," as it doesn't do anything fancy just yet. But it's enough to stand-in until later!

    Most of my morning was unfortunately spent wrestling with JSON. As mentioned yesterday, I was having trouble getting the JSON reader/writer to deal with single vs. double precision numbers. And I briefly steered down a course where I was going to replace the LitJson library with Unity's built-in one.

  • Reactor Charging...

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! I think I finally got the batteries behaving, and I'm back on the reactor again.

    I decided to bite the bullet and just write code to handle power distribution on the ship. Puzzling out the Rube Goldberg machine of conditions and triggers to do what is basically a heartbeat function was getting to be both too much of a headache and too unreliable. So now, all my powered items just update on the same heartbeat as other conditions, and the nitty-gritty power use/storage/transmission stuff is all handled in code.

  • Recharging Batteries

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Some progress today, though still a bit slow. Working on the power system a bit more, focusing on battery recharging and visualization tools to help tell what's going on.

    Power on a ship is going to come from one of two things: a generator (like the reactor) and stored energy (batteries/fuel cells). And so far, the system can handle either. In theory, anyway.

  • Power System

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Hope everyone had a good weekend. Ours was actually one of the nicer ones in recent memory. We took care of a lot of house stuff we've been meaning to do (I installed a kitchen faucet!), and spent a lovely autumn day at the zoo. It was nice to get outdoors, flex some muscle, and do real world stuff for a while.

  • Power, Thrust, and Science

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Going to be a short post today, as I've left news too late to dive deep. Family is waiting for dinner :)

    Early in the day, I spent a bit of time looking into a bandage/wound issue on NEO Scavenger mobile with Tiago, and a DMC map edge bug. And late in the day, I reviewed some of Michael's latest edits to the space prototype's major players/brands.

  • The Great Wide Open

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! I reached a crossroads today, where I've finally finished a major task, and I'm unsure which to tackle next.

  • Permission To Board: Granted

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Productive day today. I think I got the docking stuff sorted out. We are officially able to dock and do stuff across ships!

    Unsurprisingly, there was a long list of loose ends and issues to sort out when going from "one ship" to "more than one ship." Some of which, like yesterday, caused the editor to crash, making debugging difficult. And since that's where I left off yesterday and picked-up today, let's start there.

  • Catch-Up On Mobile, Space Brands, and Crashes

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Today was a day for all for blog post tags. A little bit of everything, though admin work was the lion's share.

    First order of business was NEO Scavenger mobile. Now that Tiago is situated in his new place and has time again, he's resuming work on mobile issues. So I spent most of the morning triaging the issue list, and helping test a display issue with hex maps.

  • Docked Gas Exchange Is Go

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Hope everyone had a good weekend. Ours included a harvest festival with pony rides, hay bail maze, farm animals, and a pumpkin trebuchet. All on a day with what seemed like the utmost perfect weather. Not bad!

    Back at the office, I resumed work on the docked gas exchange problem. Last week's proposed solution did the trick, but not without a few bumps along the way.

  • Revised Docking Rings

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! More work on the docking system today, as I continue trying to fix the bits that make one docked ship talk to the other.

    One of the first changes today was getting the ship's position correctly updated after it moves. It turns out that while I was moving the ship's parts correctly, I was incorrectly recording the new position of the ship's reference point, which caused things to misbehave later (like replacing closed doors with open ones). Easy enough to fix, just time consuming to track down.

  • Docking Tiles, and Admin

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Sort of a 50/50 day today, split between admin stuff and the docking feature.

    The quarterly business license tax is due in two weeks, so I decided to tackle that first. That meant updating the books to calculate amount owed, then filing and remitting the taxes.

  • Docking Refactor

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Decided to try and make up lost time on the prototype today, and continue work on the docking system.

    When we last left docking, I was able to load a new ship into the scene, and align it with the current ship so their docking systems mated. This was a good start, but largely only visual.

    Today's task was less about visual and more about mechanics. Today was about making everything in the game "see" other docked ships. And that kind of change uproots a lot of code.

  • Space Brands and Emails

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Hope everyone had a good weekend. We seemed to have a paradoxically busy yet lazy one here, running around doing errands and fixing stuff around the house and then vegging out in front of the tv. Weird mix.

    Back at the office, it was mostly an admin day, though a good chunk of it was fun admin. Namely, looking over Michael's latest "Space Brands" work.

  • Docking Initiated, and OOO Monday

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Made some decent progress today on the docking system. Not "completely operational," as they say, but getting there.

    The first task was to get the game to spawn additional ships, since it was only ever designed to work with one at a time. Fortunately, this wasn't too bad. Just repeating the same steps to load the first ship thankfully "just worked." I could load a second ship right on top of the first.

    The next step was to get those ships aligned so their docking systems connected. This turned out to be harder.

  • Home Sweet Home

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Back to work on the space prototype today, as I continued laying the groundwork for ship docking.

    The first task was to finish fixing the issue I ran into the other day with rooms vs. void detection. Some ship rooms were being classified as void, and vice versa. It turns out this was a two-pronged bug.

  • DMC Scrolling Bug

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! No space stuff today. I had to miss the early part of the day for an eye appointment, and Tiago was back to help with some NEO Scavenger mobile bugs, so I used my afternoon to help track down a high-res issue.

    Basically, the bug was that the map wouldn't scroll far enough toward the right or bottom edges on certain devices. And since those devices had much larger screens screens than ours (~2880 pixels wide), we hadn't tested them adequately.

  • Spaceworthy

    dcfedor's picture

    Hey Folks! Today was all about ships and ship systems, as I started prepping for adding docking to the game.

    Initially, that meant a lot of reading and thinking, as I refreshed my memory on how everything worked in code, then tried to come up with ways to represent the concept of a docked "other" ship. How would AI know it could pathfind on another ship? What about gas exchange between ships? What about room and item ID uniqueness?