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Warren Shea

Archive for June, 2010

.NET 3.5 and my “process” in games and learning

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010 at 11:24 pm

Okay. I came to the realization that studying and learning for me is similar to how I play (console) games. I read (guides) and explore everything extremely slowly and thoroughly so that I only have to do things once. I try to understand things completely, 100%. I hate going back to things. This all leads back to some time in highschool, playing Final Fantasy VII for 56 hours and beating it but realizing I did a sh!tty job – it was my first RPG game! – and wanting to replay it but better and correctly a second time. It’s a lesson I learned that really, affected my whole learning process and how I do things.

The problem is that with a short attention span and the gemini thing, I start projects all the time and never finish. I’m always looking for the new, interesting thing to do. Something challenging. I’ll build the 75% hard part of a website but when it comes to alt tagging the images, titling the links, IE6 browser CSS styling, manual/tedious data entry, etc., I just drop the project and look for something else to do. The projects rarely get finished…but I don’t really care, my interest has moved on.

Now, if I re-pick something up after a while and partially forget things, I go and reread everything from the beginning. I don’t want to go into Part 2 of something without remembering exactly what happened in Part 1.

For Metal Gear Solid, I played it over and over. I got 100%, Bandanna and Stealth Camo. In my prime, I beat it in 2.5 hours.
For Metal Gear Solid 2, I played Snake’s Tanker level on Very Easy, Easy, Normal, Hard, Extreme. I played Raiden’s stuff on Very Easy, Easy, Normal…and then lost interest…
The thing is, because I never 100% completed MGS2, I’ve never played MGS3 or MGS4. I’m missing out on so much…because of how I do things.

For Sky’s Content, I read up to chapter…10 or 12 or something….kind of forgot what happened and then when I wanted to start it again, I reread everything (1-12) so that I would feel comfortable reading the rest (13-16).

For Toy Story 3, I rewatched Toy Story 1 and 2 the weekend before watching it.

I guess it’s part of being a perfectionist….I need my 100% in games or it bothers the crap out of me. I’m so glad I refused to get into Achievements for WoW, knowing it would absolutely destroy me if I went for it. Will Power and Common Sense +1.

For this .NET 3.5 book, I read a few hundred pages. Stopped and started another .NET 3.5 book. Now, I’m going back to the original book…and I started over again because I hadn’t looked at any .NET for around 4 months. And even now, I’m still reading, making notes on this book…until my interest goes to something else but that’s looking doubtful at this point.

I feel like I could do a .NET site and do it well. But I’ve seen code (at work) written by a pro developer…and while I can read and edit it, I can’t create what he did from scratch. So I don’t feel like I’m good enough. So I don’t want to start developing anything. I mean, why develop something as I’m learning, only to have to go back and fix it. Now, I understand that development is a growing process…
I will never reach a point where I will know EVERYTHING and feel I have nothing to learn. I should be developing now in .NET for experience…but right now, I still feel like I’ve got much to learn so the above applies. While I can do regular .NET, controls, database stuff, LINQ to SQL and LINQ to XML….I still don’t feel like it’s enough. I’ve seen good code and I’m not at that level yet. So I want to get good enough so that I’m close to that level before I start developing…does this make sense?

Once I finish reading this book, I’ll start my other (harder) book and actually start developing my EPIC SITE. Reading and studying 1 entire book should provide enough skill that I can feel comfortable enough with my skill.

Anyways…that’s how my .NET is going. I’m really understanding things really well a second time around. This really reminds me of how school was. Not really understanding stuff…and then before exams, reviewing things and everything made sense….and then I’d go into an exam and choke >_< Procrastination was always my Achilles Heel…well, I felt that it went along with choking and being unprepared for stuff..but that’s a whole other story. /back to reading textbooks on vacation days. I haven’t left the condo in 48 hours. I haven’t even opened a window. Probably not a healthy thing….

WordPress 3.0

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010 at 3:24 pm

Upgraded to WordPress 3.0!

The changes I made to the WordPress code, that took 2 nights to do, only accumulated to 8 files being modified, maybe a total of 40-50 lines of code changed. Took like, 30 minutes to redo the changes into WordPress 3.0….including using a Code Comparison program comparing default WordPress 2.9.2 and my current code to find the changes I had made.

About 50% of the changes are simply formatting/view source changes…which going forward, I should probably just ignore…not really worth the time. But my OCD has issues with that….

The other 50% of the changes include customizing how widgets are displayed as well as modifying the way WordPress displays content with their stupid <p> tags. I feel I *have* to do those changes…the way they’re coded is crappy. They don’t have <ul>s and </ul>s around their <li>s…definitely not XHTML valid! Anyways, I thought the transition to WordPress 3.0 would be difficult considering the 2 nights of changes I made…turns out, it wasn’t.

I’m kinda disappointed with WordPress 3.0….well, there are tons of cool new features but not for a web developer such as myself who’s already integrated WordPress into his site. They want WordPress to build a site for you…great for people without skill. Wasted on people with skill. I mean, I GET that it’s awesome for almost everyone but not for me…I’d rather make headers, menus, pages from scratch and have total control than be restricted to WordPress themes and constraints. That’s just me of course…

/next upgrade of wordpress will be even easier!


Monday, June 28th, 2010 at 11:04 pm

I added a new category, Random, to my site. It’s simply to put any posts that don’t fit in any categories there. To celebrate, I’ve posted this image from a few months ago.

At first I didn’t read the entire message and I just read “This window will disappear when enough randomness has been accumulated”. I thought “WTF!”
It actually makes sense once you read the entire message. Funny part is, there’s a bar at the bottom…that basically fills up when you move your mouse randomly. So Karol sat there just moving her mouse for like, 30 seconds until the bar filled up. The whole thing seemed a bit…unnecessary. Anyways, I got a good laugh…

/This blog post will self-destruct when enough randomness has been accumulated. If the post remains, you haven’t been causing enough randomness!

Blogging about blogging Part 4

Monday, June 28th, 2010 at 1:25 pm

Continuing the tradition (sorta – I missed last month) of blogging about blogging every month, here’s part 4: 5.5 months of blogging :O

On average, I have over 1 post/day with the exception of March 2010 where some crazy work got in the way. This month, I’ve been falling behind as well…like I said in previous posts, I’ve been a bit bummed lately and it’s been affecting my will to write.

Anyways, even though my posts are 1+/day, I wouldn’t consider some of my posts real posts. I’ve definitely noticed a decline in long, thought out posts. A correct assumption from a previous post regarding Z’s presence in my life. That and well, I wouldn’t say I’m running out of things to write about but most of my topics occur on the fly now. Also, my attention’s been pretty divided lately between updating this site ( and actual blogging. I love doing both…but I love working on my site more. Still, working on my site…satisfies me a bit less because there’s a lot of development for subtle changes and quick glances. My Portfolio section, which took quite a while to do, doesn’t get many hits. Kind of disappointing…

My homepage though, receives 90% of my hits…and is also the main drop off point. People come, read my blog a little, and bail. I almost feel like I owe my readers more content, I want them coming back, I want them to looking at the various topics and while most of them may be pretty meaningless, I hope that one post here or there will grab a random reader enough that they think “…wow, that was interesting, I’m gonna bookmark this site and come back to see what else this guy has to say”.

People find my site mostly through Google searches. I get a lot of redirects to my site when people search things like:
“Why don’t I like myself” or “Why does a person hate who she is” and stuff like that. It redirects to this post: A person who does not like herself should not want be friends with a person like herself” which actually simply discusses a Gate Keepers 21 character.

I also get this quote in Google:
“With the coming of man came the illusion of free will and with that illusion came chaos. With every choice we make we literally create a world..”
which leads to this post Welcome to Earth Prime. I guess I wasn’t the only one that thought those few lines were a masterpiece.

/to be continued in Blogging about Blogging Part 5: Bots and content stealing websites >:(

IE6 (Internet Explorer 6)

Monday, June 28th, 2010 at 11:11 am

I know I wasn’t going to code for IE6….but maybe I should. I ask myself “What’s the point?” Right now, people that use IE6 is 7.1%. That’s actually a fairly large percentage.

Now, by the time I complete my site and rework the CSSes (plural) to work for IE6, I imagine it will be a few months later (say, Sept) and the % will have dropped to 5.5% (on average it’s dropping 8%/month).

Also, this site tries to heavily use PNGs, and not JPGs or GIFs. You get the JPG quality plus transparency…it’s win win with PNG. The loss is that IE6…needs special CSS to display any PNG. Like, really?! seems a bit ridiculous…

But…if people are coming to my site…judging it’s cross browser compatibility and such…then I should have it working for IE6. How can I call myself a cross browser compatible web developer if I simply don’t code for that…I know I SHOULD develop for IE6. But is it worth it?

/I’ll think about it for a couple months. I’m sure the problem will resolve itself.