2013 Wrap-Up

It’s been nearly a month since my last post and some stuff has happened. The following text elaborates.

CODING

I’m working on an OS X app with my wife and a friend of mine. Robyn uses a standing desk at work and there’s some free software made by Varidesk that helps remind you to stand every now and then via a simple timer app. It’s supposed to work on both Windows and Mac, but the latter is buggy and the features could be improved. Thus, it was decided to crack open Xcode and get to work.

I’ve only dabbled in both Xcode and Objective-C before, so this is essentially boot camp for both of them. Having a friend who is a good programmer help bring in some ambition and skill to the process is completely necessary for this side project to have any future, so I thank him for that. We are gradually making progress and it’s pretty fun.

VACATION

Spent the Christmas season up in Anaheim, per the yooszh, and it was quite nice. Helped out with Christmas Eve dinner and got lots of cool presents to play around with in 2014. These include: Rocksmith for Xbox 360, a Phillips Hue programmable lightbulb starter kit, and a Fitbit Force wristwatch/step-counter.

New Year’s was really mellow, spent with a couple friends, at home. Loved it. The countdown is tradition, even if it feels more and more uninspired every year.

MUSIC

I did another Composer Quest collaboration for their sixth Composer Quest Quest. A cool guy named Damon and I put together a folky pop song inspired by a real-life naval sneak attack, which was initially inspired by a fortune cookie (which was the foundation of the Quest).

 

SoundCloud continues to rule for singles that come to me here and there, and a few more have found their way onto their servers as of late. I messed around with a neat iOS synth (This is Bebot), made a cool little acoustic jam (Anodyne Blues), and futzed with Nanostudio again after a long respite (Nanopepper).



Also, I contributed to my first Ludum Dare by doing the music and sound FX for a silly little QWOP-ish platformer called “2 Legs, 2 Many“.

 

PODCASTING

It’s been months since we last podcasted, so I think that project has run its course. The ending is bittersweet, but I’m really glad we were able to get together on a semi-regular basis and share what we’ve been doing. Making all the music for various episodes was a blast. Just hanging out, without the mics, seems just fine, though, so farewell, TEM. To those who tuned in, thank you, and it was always great to get your feedback. If you need to catch up, all the episodes are available from our website or iTunes.

GAMING

My time hasn’t been filled with too many games lately, but a few recommendations are in order, regardless.

The Room 2 (iOS) – You’re trapped in a series of rooms (again), and the only thing keeping you from exiting is an elaborate series of puzzles (again).

QuizUp (iOS) – Trivia that comes in hundreds of categories and matches you against random people on the Internet instantly? Yes, please.

The Stanley Parable (Win/Mac) – A game that is cleverly aware of itself being played.

Risk of Rain (Win) – Roguelike shooter that I’m kind of surprised I like so much (oh, wait…it’s got great music).

Game Stew Studio (iOS) – Studio that makes a bunch of games, all seemingly based on a similar foundation, that I find oddly addicting. Tower of Fortune 1/2 and War of Eclipse are all essentially slot machine RPGs, which sounds tedious, but can be fun in small doses.

FOR THE ROAD

2013 brought with it a potential opportunity for the expansion of our family which unceremoniously ended due to arbitrary forces of nature. 2014 is going to be a better year.

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