So, after less than 6 months my OpenPandora LCD cable broke so I ordered two new cables and while doing the replacement I used the opportunity to modify the case to lock the LCD at an angle similar to how the DS and 3DS does (a common complaint about the OpenPandora).
I can now watch movies with my OpenPandora sitting on a desk.
Haven't updated in a while, been extremely busy for good reasons.
The American immigration clerk messed up the date on my wife's visa, turned November 1st 2012 into January 11 2012 (swapped the month and date numbers) so we had to leave early.
We incurred a lot of costs and are still trying to get the paperwork fixed.
You had one job clerk!
The visa paperwork even clearly marked the date order yyyy/mm/dd as well so I don't understand how he/she could mess it up.
Aaaaaaaanyway, back in Canada. Got a new job in an also great place to work doing the same thing, only in metrics and with a bit more snow, Kinder Surprise eggs, less shootings, free healthcare, ...
Things that I do miss: All my friends at Wayforward, doing BBQs on the studio's terrace, the lunch food truck, the great Mexican food and grocery stores (I MISS YOU Chicharrón!), In & Out and Five Guys Burgers, Californian weather (even tho my van had no A/C).
Its been one year now and I love it, its a great place to work plus there's the always-sunny Southern California weather.
I've already had the chance to work on 3 titles and help out on other projects with technical advices.
Best of which were Centipede 3DS where I worked on performance and stability issues, the 3DS platform and engine being fairly new there were a lot of technological gotchas with this particular system and Silent Hills : Book of memories where I worked on the engine for PlayStation VITA NextGen Portable, adding engine features, fixing multithreading issues and adjusting the Japanese text and voice-overs.
Its great to work at a studio where you get the chance to know everybody with a lot of staff-initiated game-industry-related activities.
I love the work environment, its no wonder Wayforward creates such interresting products where everyone gets to pitch in ideas, striving toward a better gaming experience.
Computer Vision Experiment: 3D scanning on the cheap.
While working on my 3D editor back in 2010, I wrote a custom routine to automatically create a spherical mesh out of any set of arbitrary points in 3D space and got tired of testing it with semi-random points in space.
So, a quick trip to the local Canadian Tire (a kind of hybrid between a hardware store, a home improvement store, a car part store, and a house applicance store) to buy
- a 20$ laser level guide,
- add a web cam (already had it, worth about $10),
- a quickly written bit of code,
I built myself a 3D scanner for 30$. click for bigger version
Some more experimenting with a cheap low quality webcam for extra challenge (Moar with less!).
This time its a barcode scanner with no controlled light source.
I wanted to scan barcodes with just the ambient lighting so I had to design an image filter that would amplify the picture's contrast and reconstruct the dark and light zones from a very low quality source.
I was then able feed the corrected image to a barcode decoding neural network.
Optimizing GLES2.0 Shaders : The case of scale2x on PowerVR SGX 530
From >200ms down to a usable 30ms.
OpenPandora forum user sebt3 started testing out scaling filter shaders on the SGX530 for use the OpenPandora console, the first working version ended up way too slow to be of any use.
Another forum user, FSO, improved the speed a bit (160ms to 180ms per frame).
An early preview of my new game using a tiled, procedural 3D world engine with a focus on small memory footprints targetting embedded systems such as cellphones, tablets and portable consoles.
Similar to Minecraft and other tiled games, with full 3D range of over +/-2000000000 tiles in all 3 axes, +/-9000000000000000000 for a 64bit-ranged build (supported even on 32bit architectures) and raytraced dynamic soft shadows.
The engine is currently being tested on OMAP3 SoC embedded systems such as the OpenPandora console, BeagleBoard development board and Nokia N900.
It is also running on 32bit as well as 64bit PCs and Macs natively.
Currently a memory footprint as low as 50MB and a minimum of 350Mhz processor (ARM Cortex-A8) is achievable.
The game including graphics is less than 2MB currently.
First released as an entry in the Pandora Rebirth Competition.