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About EricBall

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    River Patroller

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    Markham, Ontario, Canada

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  1. YouTuber Tom Scott has just released a 16 episode series on making an app. (YouTube link behind the Spoiler.) I haven't watched the series (although I will), but IMHO the first question you need to ask yourself is what it's going to cost on an ongoing basis and how you plan on paying for it. For Slide Tilt Roll, the only ongoing costs were my Apple Developer ID* and a small website & domain name**, but something like Tom's failed messaging app is going to require some kind of server which will need to scale with the number of users along with ongoing support for users. In addition, you want your revenue to match your costs. e.g. When I first came up with the idea for Slide Tilt Roll and the built-in level creator I had the idea of having a website forum which players could use to share levels - a forum which would cost money to be member. But after some thought I discarded that idea because the revenue model (paid membership) didn't match the expense model (server & bandwidth costs). * I've let my Apple Developer ID lapse, so Slide Tilt Roll isn't on the App Store anymore. While the cost of the ID isn't much, the bigger problem is Apple requires apps to be updated. In my case that would mean upgrading to the latest MacOS, XCode & Swift and then rewriting my OpenGL fragment shader to Metal (in addition to any changes for the current version of Swift & iOS frameworks). Too much work for very little payback. ** I've since discovered it's nice to have a personal domain so I can create email IDs.
  2. Nice build. Currently my wife, son & I have started completing quests on Wynncraft. I used to play on 2B2T (and make YouTube videos), but now I just log in to see if my base is still standing, or is anyone has left new signs. My son used to play a lot on Hypixel, and the three of us have played a lot of local survival games (both PC and PS3).
  3. EricBall


  4. Be very, very careful testing out advanced graphics techniques using MAME/MESS or any other emulator as it may not be the same as actual hardware.
  5. No. Whether the 320D sprite uses palette 0 or 4 depends upon P2. P1 & P0 selects which colors are used for the graphics bit combinations. You get 3 colors + background & transparent from 2 palettes 320C uses C2 from palettes 0-3 or 4-7 depending upon P2. So you get 4 colors + background & transparent from 2 "palettes". Note: this is better shown in the spreadsheet as it breaks down the exact pixel colors for each graphics & palette bit combination. Don't forget that all 320 modes are subject to color aliasing for adjacent pixels with different Y values.
  6. There's also no reason you can't have two layers of tiles (indirect sprites) onscreen at once. However, it does severely limit the number of sprites can have in the same zone. Or you can just use a very wide normal (direct) sprite.
  7. 320C will allow you 4 colors with transparency. However, the two half pixels are either the same color, transparent or one is the background color.
  8. You're right. In 320B you can't have both of the two half pixels be C1. 320C doesn't have this issue, but it restricts the two half pixels to be either transparent, the same color, or one be the background color. You've also inspired me to revisit my sprite data to color mapping post an make it easier to understand and hopefully use. MARIA.zip
  9. https://atariage.com/forums/topic/272112-sprite-data-to-color-mapping/probably has the info you're looking for, although I don't see the bug you are referring to in 320B - you should be able to have two adjacent sub-pixels with the same color.
  10. I am fairly certain you can connect the arcade controls directly to the RPi GPIO headers and use the built-in audio jacks instead of the USB dongle.
  11. I hadn't thought of the AC conversion losses, but running high voltage high current DC lines would probably eat into most of the short term savings. And unless you're going to feed it with a dedicated 240V 100A circuit you're probably not going to see much benefit from a charging time perspective. I'm just thinking that there would be value from the power controller perspective to have a dedicated PEV charging circuit so it can best manage it. And it's a Tesla PowerWall - shouldn't it have a place to plug in your Tesla?
  12. Yep, charge the car before dumping the excess power back into the grid. It's interesting the power controller doesn't have a circuit specifically for PEV charging.
  13. Personally I'd think that having all 240V circuits grid only would make sense as those are typically power hungry and would quickly drain the batteries.
  14. Yep, I agree. In addition because the interface is "intuitive" they don't bother with documentation. So we the users are left hunting for how to access the information, change the configuration or otherwise make the app do what we want it to do. And the developers aren't doing themselves any favors either. Someone still has to take the time to create those "hidden" functions and test them. But because the majority of users never encounter those functions, they really aren't field tested properly.
  15. EricBall

    First 2 days

    For me a sunny weekend day means clothes drying on the clothesline - or as I call it "direct usage solar and wind power".
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