Fog of Shore 
2011.06.30 11:58 - Whining, Work-related
It is extraordinarily frustrating to spend two and a half hours cleaning up problems created by a developer not even on the same continent as yourself. Especially when there's a big pile of unit tests that exist for the sole purpose of letting people know when they broke something they didn't mean to break.

Especially when the thing you were actually in there to fix was two lines of code that disappeared when the same developer deleted them a couple months ago0.

Especially when I spent 4 hours last week cleaning up a big check-in he put together.

I'm pretty sure the bulk of this problem is caused by the communications problems that arise when part of your development staff isn't in the same room, especially when it isn't on the same continent, in the same timezone, or in the same hemisphere. But, I don't really care about the why.

So, it's fortunate I didn't have a lot going on this morning.

Footnotes
0. This release has gone on forever, it seems like.

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I guess I missed the sign when we crossed the state line from Tennessee to Hell 
2011.06.08 07:33 - Guns, Magpul Masada/Bushmaster ACR, Meatspace Stupidity, Whining, Zombie Preparedness
I spent last weekend in West Memphis, Arkansas, volunteering at AAC's Silencer Shoot 2011. I was able to shoot a suppressed Remington ACR in full auto, and to shoot Remington's new gas piston AR upper in full auto, as well. I highly recommend the experience, if you can find a time and location when it's not quite so warm: highs starting at 99 Fahrenheit take a lot of the fun out of walking around and looking at things in the out of doors.

I also got to shoot a suppressed Glock 17. I'm pretty sure it was one of the 4th generation models, so that may have something to do with it, but I found the Glock less ergonomically awful than expected. Not half bad, in fact.

I had a blast, honestly, but I think if I go back, it may be as a paying customer and only one day (if they do a two-day thing again). And with more money. Fastest way to turn money into noise, indeed. Only, without so much noise.
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I will be patient, I will be patient, I will be patient... 
2011.04.29 22:12 - Guns, Whining
I am not very patient.

Ordered a semi-custom gun a while back (one of a small run of Sterling carbines built by a small company out west). Been waiting a while now. When I contacted the guy building it a week ago, I was told I'd get a tracking number when it shipped. So, I've promised myself I won't bug him about for at least a little while.

And, even if I got to pick it up tomorrow, it'd be at least a week before I could take it out and shoot it.

But! So impatient.
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I guess I'm keeping my car for a bit longer 
2011.04.08 09:55 - Meatspace Stupidity, News and Politics, Whining
This got me thinking about how long it would take for me to break even on replacing my current car. Assuming I replaced my $25000 car getting about 20mpg (hopefully, a bit low, but most of my driving is stoplight-to-stoplight) with a $15000 car getting 58mpg and assuming $5/gallon gas, it would take about 13 years (and some change) to break-even. I would have to be averaging less than 17 miles to the gallon just to reach break-even before the expected life of the new vehicle (about 10 years) is up. This doesn't take maintenance into account, of course.

But, that's an intentionally ridiculous estimate. I don't drive very much, but, on the other hand, the gas mileage estimate on my car is low and the one on the hypothetical nĂ¼car is fairly absurd for a car costing $15000--we'll leave motorcycles out of the equation, but that's where you'd have to go for those numbers. So, if we assume an annual distance of 15000 miles (almost double my annual mileage), but a more reasonable average mpg of, say, 38mpg and the current average gas price of $3.70 a gallon, it would only take ... a bit over 14 years. For a Ford Fiesta.

I guess I'll keep driving my inefficient little riceburner, then.

Incidentally, while the link at the beginning is a bit inflammatory, I'm not trying to score partisan points, here. I just thought it was interesting (and a little depressing) how much cars have to improve to make replacing mine worthwhile.
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Quick Review: Homefront (PC) 
2011.03.20 21:32 - Guns, Magpul Masada/Bushmaster ACR, Entertainment, Microcode, Whining
I finished the single-player campaign of Homefront on the PC. I'm not real enthused.

As John Walker opines over at Rock, Paper, Shotgun, the single player campaign is scripted in a way antagonistic to human interaction. Walking is slow, and your access to an area is almost always gated by one or more of your companion NPCs.

What I found most obnoxious was the way the game handled weapons. There are two things I found specifically obnoxious:
  • Guns that almost certainly share ammunition and magazines in the real world do not in the game. Which is why I found myself hauling around an empty ACR early in the game, despite being surrounded by M4s and M16s. I'm too lazy to go back in to find out if this problem affected everything in the game that would have taken STANAG mags (i. e. the M4, M16, ACR, SCAR-L, and PWS Diablo), or just some of them. Maybe the M4 and M16 actually work right, and the other guns are understood to take different ammo. Dunno. At the moment, not in the mood to find out.
  • The gun or guns I have at the end of chapter A almost never carry over to chapter B. Which is how the aforementioned ACR disappeared at the end of the first chapter and was replaced by an M4 at the beginning of the second. "What's the matter," one of the NPCs quipped, "don't you like guns?" Actually, I love guns; I was trying to figure out where mine had gone.

And I can't say much good or bad about the graphics. The reviewers claim it's fantastic, graphically, all I can tell you is I needed to turn all the levers down to "Very Low" and it still ran poorly. Also, it's very brown (that's a TV Tropes link; click at your own discretion).

I'm not really interested in the multiplayer. The reviews say it's fine, but I'm not really in need of a multiplayer FPS right this second.
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