Monday, March 27

Wiener Citybike

There is a bike-stand network in Vienna that allows free use of the bycicles for 1 hour. In order to use them, it is required to register in one of the terminals and to pay a one-time fee of 1 Euro by using any Maestro or austrian debit/credit card. Everytime you want to use a bycicle, you login into the terminal with your card and password, and then choose one of the available bikes. You can ride free of charge for an hour. If you don't return the bike to another stand in less than an hour, you must then pay 2 Euro per extra-hour.

The goal of this free service is to promote the use of the bicycle as an alternative to private and public transport. It takes me between 15-20 min to get to the university by subway, and about 20 by using the excelent Vienna's bikelane. Now that the spring is here, I prefer to ride : )

En Viena existe una red de puestos con bicicletas que pueden usarse gratuitamente durante una hora. Para hacer uso de ellas sólo es necesario poseer registrarse en uno de los terminales por tan sólo 1€, mediante una tarjeta Maestro o de algun banco austríaco. Cada vez que quieras tomar una bicicleta, haces "login" con tu tarjeta y contraseña, eliges una de las disponibles, y tienes hasta una hora para depositar la bicicleta en cualquiera de los otros puestos distribuidos por la ciudad. Si te pasas del tiempo, tendrás que pagar varios euros por cada hora extra.

La idea del invento es que la gente coja más la bicicleta para desplazarse por la ciudad, para ir al trabajo, la escuela, etc. Yo tardo aproximadamente 15 minutos en ir a la universidad en metro, y usando el excelente carril bici, unos 20. Ahora que llega la primavera, prefiero bici : )

Bike stand next to the Opera. It is close to my university too

Bike stand next to the flat where I live

Click to see the complete city map in PDF

Friday, March 24

Tasty links

Some interesting books and tutorials I have come across recently:

Become an Xcoder
Free open source e-book about Objective-C and Xcode for beginners.

The Physics of Racing
A set of free articles focused on realistic physics simulation of racing.

Game Physics
Interesting articles on the basics of game physics: integration, springs, networking, etc..

Optimizing OpenGL Data Throughput on Mac OS X
Brief discussion of the best ways to handle static and dynamic vertex data in OpenGL applications.

Thursday, March 23

Que Pasa Killo!

When I get really late at night, thinking about the wasted time and all the stuff left I must work on... I sit in front of the computer, start Xcode, and begin a productive afterparty coding session ^^

This week I am working on the Mac OS X port of Dylo's Adventure, an indie(independent) game for PC/Windows. If everything goes as planned, it will be ready for online distribution next month. The man behind the game is Pogacha, a regular user of the spanish game development forum Stratos.

Even though I don't usually like spanish music, I have been hearing quite a lot "Fabio y McNamara" and "O'Funk'Illo" recently. Looks like my roots are calling me back..

Cuando llego a casa de madrugada, con la sensación de haber perdido el tiempo, y pienso en toda la faena que tengo que terminar... me siento delante del ordenador, arranco Xcode, y comienzo una productiva sesión de afterparty coding ^^

Esta semana estoy trabajando en el port a Mac OS X de Dylo's Adventure, un juego indie(independiente) para PC/Windows. Si todo va bien, el juego estará listo para su distribución online el mes que viene. El responsable tras Dylo's Adventure es Pogacha, un habitual del foro de Stratos.

Aunque no me suele atraer la música española, últimamente ando escuchando bastante a "Fabio y McNamara" y "O'Funk'Illo". Se vé que me llaman las raíces..

Tuesday, March 14

Poster for Mousy Ball

As required by the Computer Graphics course, here a poster from our game:

Here you can see the posters of last years' games.

Now we will move on to the pre-production stage, namely: the design document, or "game bible". The next milestone consists on a playable prototype of the game. With deadline 2nd May, and considering the amount of work involved, there is no time to spare..

Sunday, March 12


Comb the desert for them!!

Durchkämmen sie die die Wüste!!

Peinad el desierto!!

Aaah, Spaceballs, what a great movie. When will we see "Spaceballs 2: The search for more money" ? Can't wait, can't wait.. : )

A year ago...

... I switched to the Mac. And I couldn't be happier about it : ). My loyal PowerBook G4 12" has been my main computer since then. I left my PC in Alicante, and I haven't used it since september. That means one can survive without Windows : )

I have already forgotten about virus, spyware, the long sessions formatting C: and reinstalling Windows and apps, the evil drivers, and all the nasty things that Windows users have already accepted as a part of computing. The OS is more solid and user-friendly than Windows by far, and the array of preinstalled applications and utilities really makes my life easier. The iLife suite is a joy to use, and it is fun too.

Moreover, the switch enabled me to apply for several jobs that allowed porting of PC games to Mac OS X.

Macs have also become cheaper than before, and specially the new iMac beats the crap out of any PC on the same price level. A couple of friends switched during last year(Mac Mini, iMac), and others are considering a Mac as the next computer they will buy. I must add that GNU/Linux is a good alternative to Windows too, but the user experience and the hardware compatibility are still big problems, despite all of the "Linux goes mainstream" news in the internet.

After a long time, I am having fun using a computer, again : )

Friday, March 10

Mousy Ball

Mousy Ball is the extremely-original title of our game for the Computer Graphics Lab course. I am developing it together with a girl-also CS student-, so I want to give the game a "cute" look. I am using Macromedia Fireworks for all of the concept and 2d artwork. The game is intended to be a clone of Super Monkey Ball.

On another side, the Xplanada Party 2006 website is already online. It is a "kind of " demo-party which takes place anually at the University of Alicante.
It is funny how the webmaster claims proudly that he is only designing the site for IE6.0+, even though he has taken many design elements(and some graphics) from Apple's Developer Connection.

Thursday, March 9

Lectures in the summer semester

This semester I am going to be much busier than in the first one. These are the subjects I have taken:

  • Technical English II
  • Italian for Engineers II
  • Internet Security I
  • Computer Graphics Lab (german)
  • Computer Animation (german)
  • Introduction to Audio Production

In the CG Lab course we have to develop an OpenGL-based 3D game in groups of two. The Audio Production course also includes lab sessions with Adobe Audition(formerly known as Cool Edit). Overall, I find the subjects offered by the TU Wien more interesting than those available in my home university.

Este semestre estaré bastante más ocupado que en el anterior. Estas son las asignaturas que voy a hacer:

  • Technical English II
  • Italian for Engineers II
  • Internet Security I
  • Computer Graphics Lab (german)
  • Computer Animation (german)
  • Introduction to Audio Production

Para la asignatura de gráficos tenemos que desarrollar por parejas un videojuego 3D basado en OpenGL. La asignatura de producción de audio tambien incluye sesiones de laboratorio, donde nos manejaremos con Adobe Audition(antes conocido como Cool Edit). En general, las asignaturas ofrecidas por la TU Wien me parecen más interesantes que las disponibles en mi universidad de origen.