Laptops KC Computer Store on 5th Street

A little store on 5th street. Dunno if this area is “Little Italy” or not.  It’s more like the River Market area.  I go down there and buy a old HP dc 5800  desktop.  $35 bucks.  CHEAP.  I always built my own machines, used AMD ‘cos it’s cheap.  Well hey, the Intel Core 2 Quads are dirt cheap on Ebay.  Try $14.  A NewEgg MOBO I just bought fritzed on me big time.

Mike fixed me right up.  His prices are competitive with eBAY, plus you get it right now.  He put some RAM sticks in for me free of charge.  Laptopskc.com is his web site with his inventory, I believe.  Why buy a used computer from the Salvation Army, when you can buy from a professional?  I was highly impressed.  I build my own computers.  I have A+, INet+, Network+, so I am at least smart enough to do some things.  Eh- he does it better.

650 E. 5th Street, KCMO MO,  64106. 816- 521-0229.   He sells his gear on Craigslist.  He’s pretty good, helpful, and has a ton of stuff.  Very knowledgeable.  Before, I steered clear of Dell/Compaq/HP.

That old Machine has a heat pipe CPU cooler/all metal very sturdy case, PLUS this HP can be modded, upgraded.  Gonna Flash the Bios now.   All of my old cards worked great in it.  So, I am very pleased with this shop, and the area certainly needs a computer shop.  The old PC Warehouse went defunct.

Blender

I’ve had my nose in my computer for weeks studying Blender.  I took a Udemy Course by Billy McDaniel.  This one is pretty good.  This is Blender for UNITY.  About 60% through it, but it has let me take off with my 3D art.

Blender has a ton of addons, that is why I chose it over Maya, or Solidworks.  Plus it is free.  It reminds me of GIMP which I love.  I have a old copy of Photoshop CS, which I rarely use, I mean, hardly ever.

There are tons of great sites, forums, and YouTube how to videos with Blender.  These addons, many of them are superb.  I like “ArchiMesh” a architecture addonfor building house models quickly.  I like “Pocket Mesh” a addon to turn whatever you want into a primitive.

It is damn good, and revelation as to how you can save money making your own 3D art for your games and presentations.  It takes a while to learn Blender though!  I recommend Billy’s Udemy course.  I hate the tedious parts of  the courses though, the parts that don’t interest you.

Thugs of Northeast

More Price Chopper THUG action.   Northeast is full of dangerous morons. It is a scary place to live.  They had the black crack thugs, but even worse are the skinhead meth heads.

“It’s the little skinny white dudes who are the meanest ones.” – KC

I love the old song..”White Punks on Dope” by the Tubes.

When probation and parole let’s them out,  Northeast is where they come.  They have learned nothing in prison, other than resentment.  Prison is a place where people grow harder still.  Around here, they almost always go back to prison.  They get out and they do the same thing.  They just got “snitched on” or caught the last time, that’s all.

“Experience holds a very dear school, but fools will learn in no other”-  Benjamin Franklin

The thing is, this place could be nice to live in, it has potential.

But I guess, it is a natural world.  Even the smallest Paramecium is going to do as it damn well pleases, and there is nothing you can do about it.

Pray, that is what you can do.

Downloadable HOGS Free

I go to My Downloadable Games.com.  KC loves these games and it keeps her out of trouble.  I am like the “Johnny Appleseed” of computers, at least for these people.  They are too poor to be in the loop of the Online world.

Boy these games are good.  They used to cost $50 when they first came out.  Now they are free, and are much improved.

The HOG is the “Hidden Object Game” but now they have mini puzzles, AND a interesting storyline.  Before I did not like them,  they were just “hunt and find”.   They got boring after a while.   These have the storyline, which much improves them.

Keeps KC occupied for hours.  I teach her how to use her laptop, the internet, etc,  she does my dishes and lots of other tasks.  Cooks for me,  helps me get around.

The Ambulance over at the Church

At the church across the street, everyone comes out for the free Monday meal.  Many people depend upon this meal.  Well, a guy has a stroke or something while eating dinner.  The Ambulance is out there and people are staring.  Linda said he just up and keeled over, fell on the floor while eating the tuna fish casserole meal.

Linda says this happens all the time.  Linda goes over there and eats, she is waiting on her social security disability.  She has cancer, a bunch of other stuff wrong with her.

Sometimes, there are fights over there, and everyone will stop to watch the fight.

Stencyl- the gloves are off for Flash Programmers

I’ve been working and surfing all night working on my game, a mystery game.  I found a game engine called Stencyl, and boy.. that thing is the cat’s meow!  

I’d downloaded every game engine I could get:  3D Game Studio,  NeoAxis, Unity,  Irrlicht Engine, DXStudio, Construct, and others.  I worked with Flash scripting engines such as PushButton Engine,  Flixel, DAME for Flixel,  FlashPunk,  and the tools to work with them, Visual C++, Visual C#,  Eclipse,  CodeBlocks, and others.

Man.. I couldn’t get it off the ground.  Over my head, and I had programming school (back in the day).. got certifications, and U.S.N. Eletronics schools.  Was struggling with learning these engines.

THEN.. I read online about Stencyl.  It’s the cadillac, the cat’s meow!  It DOES require some coding, but has a “Design Mode” where you snap little blocks of code, and you don’t have to worry about syntax errors, and all those inscrutable statements.   I have had some “all night problems” trying to figure out coding, but it’s coming right along!

Game engine programming is challenging.  You also have to  pay attention to graphics formats, and you pick up skills with utility programs to make it easier to get your project off of the ground.  These chores really eat up the time.  I work on my game, and the script for it for hours and hours.

The community, so far, is very helpful.  I’ve even written a couple of small behaviors and added to the fast growing StencylForge library.  This is a library of code for Stencyl projects;  behaviors such as “follow mouse” “text colors”,  “Cut Scenes”, etc.   You just snap these blocks into your Scenes, or sprites, and away you go.

You can make slick, professional games that export to FLASH with this engine, and it has extensions to export to other platforms.

Unity might be slicker, but Stencyl is FREE.  Maybe it is just me, something clicked, but I am moving right along.. my first project will be ready soon.  Unity is a 3D program anyways, but it is the cadillac right now of 3D engines, but it has a price to boot, and a huge learning curve compared to Stencyl.  Unity has a “pushbutton’ coding engine, but it costs $99 extra.  Which really, is not bad  The full feature version of Unity costs $1500.   Even with this outlay of money, it is not a sure thing.  You still have to learn, and keep learning.