Sunday, February 28, 2010

My games net module is almost complete under unix, and in theory should be able to handle both IPv4 and IPv6 communication fine; not that I have much to test the latter with. Windows support will need a bit more tweaking, and then it'll be possible to plug it into my Raven Shield admin quiet easily.

Pardoning interruptions, I've spent about 6 hours of my day working in straight C, followed by about 15-20 minutes for a little rest. For some sickening reason, my weekends almost always fall into the category of working all day, eating dinner, then working until dawn lol.

Doing things in C, I find more time consuming then more dynamic languages, chiefly because of how much testing I (try to) do, coupled with how much lower-level stuff one has to keep in mind. Having to deal with memory management issues, is not a problem for me, although I do admit that garbage collected languages can be very enjoyable. To be honest, I find the portability problems of doing anything interesting, to be a greater drawback then managing memory; e.g. by design Python is not very portable in comparison to C, but it more then portable enough for anything you're likely to bump into on a PC, and can do 'more' with less bother, for an acceptable level of portability. They are very different languages at heart, and their designs reflect it strongly. A lot of people (including myself) call Cs portability a myth, and it is in the sense of what most people want (especially me), I doubt is possible without a more modern rendition of the language (NOT Java or C++). Where C truly excels at portability, well I reckon you'll just have to study more assembly language to understand the value of it.

Now if only I had something better to do, then spend all my time behind a computer screen, monkeying around with GCC on one side, and MSVC on the other 8=).

Saturday, February 27, 2010


A REAL HOME is a playground. Beware of the house where no
rough-housing is allowed and no cries of glee are heard.

A REAL HOME is a workshop. Pity the child who is unfamiliar with
wrenches and hammers, knitting needles, thread, screwdrivers and saws.

A REAL HOME is a forum. Honest, open discussion of life's great
problems belongs originally and primarily in the family circle.

A REAL HOME is a secret society. Loyalty to one's family should mean
keeping silent on things that are the family's business and no one else's.

A REAL HOME is cooperative. Households flourish in peace when the
interest of each is the interest of all.

A REAL HOME is a school. Many of life's most important and lasting
lessons are learned here, both early in life and later on.

A REAL HOME is a temple, where people are loved and respected
and where life is appreciated, in the recognition that life in all its parts is
a gift of God, with our family being our personal and most precious gift.

Is your home, A REAL HOME?

Author Unknown

I wish I could answer that question without hurting anyone, myself included.

Almost a Quaketorious Victory :'(

It was a nice double that quickly turned into a massive battle, going up from last to match leader in the first couple minutes... couldn't be racking up frags any faster if I had a nuke: I actually had greater then 2:1 K2D ratio. It's like no matter what the other players did, BAM I was right on'em, often being involved in  3 to 8 way melees.

Ended up neck in neck with another match leader at the end, and cinched it at like the last blink of an eye by scoring like 6 frags in near perfect succession, winning the game!

Loaded up the next map and was having like the best freaking roll of my life, bodies dropping left and right. There's something uniquely satisfying about using my SAS skills to counter the other match leaders "Mad skillz", with great effect no less. Again neck in neck for the lead and looking like the end of this match is gonna flop in the bag in a sec.... when I got called off to clean up someone elses disgusting mess. Worse then that, because of QLs scoring system, not only does that mean I was forced to forfeit everything earned during that pwntacular frag fest, it negatively impacts my reputation for the quit.

And so, family induced as only it could ever be, ends one of the best game nights of my miserable little life. There must be some bastard in the universe, who can take a perverse pleasure in that. Odds are we're related.
In being dragged across the grocery store yet again! I spent some time contemplating what I was thinking about last night, as I was finishing up part of my games net code. Wouldn't it be practical, to just implement a simple Virtual File System? It would make adapting the code base to different uses easier, since pathes and I/O could then be defined through a set of VFS_routines, but on the downside, making it pluggable would push greater overhead on all those I/O routines at every use.

The zpkg, system input/output, and network modules present very similar interfaces. Main differences being that zpkg doesn't have write support (an unneeded non-trivial feature), and seeking between positions in a socket, just doesn't make the same sense as with local files. If a virtual file system layer was built on top of it, it would be rather easy to define a "Plugin" data structure providing the necessary function pointers as needed, and simply use a hash table to handle the mappings between paths. Of course that leads to the bugger of a look up operation \o/.

Really, most of the places where it matters wouldn't impact game play, since most I/O can be divided between startup phase, loading stuff, client/server communication, and shutdown phase; the chatter between client and server obviously being implemented directly on top of the networking module, and therefore a moot point. It would make it possible for the resource loading code to become more flexible at run time; i.e. being able to load game assets both out of zpkg files and local system files without a recompile or a  restrictive version of the VFS.

I think it would be worth while, as an added plus, it would even allow splitting the path argument to Zpkg_Open, and pulling out the interesting bits into the VFS adapter function, which would be replacing that feature of the zpkg module.

For today however, my primary goal is to port the networking code (almost) completed last night, from the BSD Sockets API over to the Windows Sockets API. That way I can replace the less appropriate network code in my RvS admin program with it, and save having to complicate its design to make the most of Qts networking API. All while improving my games code base ^_^.

Although WinSock was based on the old Berkeley interface, Winsock has arguably grown more over the last decade, then the Unix interface has over the last 20 years. Not that there was much need beyond adding IPv6 capability, which the common Unix interface already grew ages ago. I personally dislike both the Berkeley and Windows interfaces immensely, why? Because in my humble opinion, the proper way would have been something like:

int s;

if (s = open("/net/tcp/host:port", O_CREAT | O_RDRW | O_EXLOCK)) == -1) {
 perror("Unable to open a connection to host:port");

/* do usual stuff here, like read() or write() */

where /net would be an arbitrary mount point for a special file system, in which file system operations reflect their corresponding network operations. Flags for system calls like open() and fcntl() could have been suitably extended to cope, and others like accept() implemented as needed. In the light of things like FUSE, it would be even more interesting to do it that way today, then it would have been in the 1980s.

Instead of that simple form, whenever we want to create a socket: we have to setup suitable socket-specific data structures, which and how many depending on the operations to be conducted; common practice is to zero over the most important (sockaddr_in / sockaddr_in6) structures before using them, and leave it to the compilers optimizer whether it actually happens at run time; look up in the system manuals what pre processor definitions correspond to type of network connection we want (let's say TCP over IP) for the socket() call; initialise the field structures, using the same pre pre processor flags, and even converting details like the port # into suitable formats, all by ourselves. After which we might finally get around to doing the socket I/O ourselves, pardoning any intervening system calls needed for your particular task.

 * Assumes open flags in previous theoretical example corresponded to a connect
 * operation, rather then a bind() and listen() operation. Like wise for the
* sake of terseness, I'm "Skipping" support for rather then IPs.

int s;
struct sockaddr_in addr;

memset(&addr, 0, sizeof(struct sockaddr_in));
addr.sin_family = AF_INET;
addr.sin_port = htons(port);
if (inet_pton(AF_INET, "", &addr.sin_addr) != 1) {
 /* handle AF_INET, address parsing, or unknown errors here.
  * error is indicated by return value.

if ((s = socket(PF_INET, SOCK_STREAM, IPPROTO_TCP)) == -1) {
 perror("Unable to create socket");
 goto CLEANUP;
/* use system calls and a data structures as needed to setup things as desired */

if (connect(s, (const struct sockaddr *)&addr,
     sizeof(struct sockaddr_in)) == -1)
 perror("Unable to connect socket");
 goto CLEANUP;

/* do I/O here: send/recev, or read/write */

 shutdown(s, SHUT_RDWR);

I reckon the Berkeley interface was the right choice, for portability between systems (including non-unix ones; making it easy to write stuff like WinSock), and probably easier to graft onto the 4.3BSD kernel, but it's damn inconvenient for a UNIX programmer. That ain't changed after about 25-30 years.

Oh wells, at least it works pretty darn near every where, give or take a few kinks.

Now playing: one of my favourite songs

I don't want another heartbreak
I don't need another turn to cry, no
I don't want to learn the hard way
Baby, hello, oh no, goodbye
But you got me like a rocket
Shooting straight across the sky

It' s the way you love me
It's a feeling like this
It's centripetal motion
It's perpetual bliss
It's that pivotal moment
It's, ah, impossible
This kiss, this kiss, unstoppable
This kiss, this kiss

Cinderella said to Snow White
"How does love get so off course, oh
All I wanted was a white knight
With a good heart, soft touch, fast horse
Ride me off into the sunset
Baby I'm forever yours"

It's the way you love me
It's a feeling like this
It's centripetal motion
It's perpetual bliss
It's that pivotal moment
It's, ah unthinkable
This kiss, this kiss, unsinkable
This kiss, this kiss

You can kiss me in the moonlight
On the rooftop under the sky, oh
You can kiss me with the windows open
While the rain comes pouring inside, oh
Kiss me in sweet slow motion
Let's let everything slide
You got me floating, you got me flying

It's the way you love me
It's a feeling like this
It's centripetal motion
It's perpetual bliss
It's that pivotal moment
It's, ah, subliminal
This kiss, this kiss, it's criminal
This kiss, this kiss

It's the way you love me, baby
It's the way you love me, darlin', yeah

It's the way you love me
It's a feeling like this
It's centripetal motion
It's perpetual bliss
It's that pivotal moment
It's, ah subliminal
This kiss, this kiss, it's criminal
This kiss, this kiss

It's the way you love me baby
It's the way you love me darlin', yeah
This Kiss—Faith Hill

Yes, in some ways I'm a bit hopeless at heart lol.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Fucking figures...

... that I can't even write more then a few words in my journal without family trying to suck out every positive feeling.
One of the things that has been resting on my mind, is working on my game projects and raven shield admin system. I do believe, that I've figured out a way that I can augment my engines capabilities without breaking down portability to much, and still retaining the "C" language factor ;). I've also decided that my RvS admin tool, will likely benefit if I complete my games net code, and integrate it in place of the existing networking code it uses.

I've three game projects, generic titles being StarFighterGame, TacFPSGame, and MechCombatGame; each chosen for their obvious descriptiveness in place of an iron clad title. StarFighterGame, has been awarded the title of "Stargellas Revenge ©", and the others are still to be decided. Story wise, Stargellas Revenge is green light, it just needs the game code and assets to catch up with it. I have the general overview for TacFPSGames story and enough design details set, but still can't figure out a proper title. The 'mech game, I'm thinking of splitting into two different games: one aimed at a combat simulation, and the other as a Real Time Strategy game, charting the "Bigger picture".Story wise, things need to develop further, as well as growing a title. On the one side, I'm thinking some what along the lines of an epic war meets small scale tactical warfare, and some hordes of enemies to mow down for the action cravers, hehe.

The code backing my game projects, is engineered to be highly portable, and suitable for producing most any kind of game. My primary focuses, more or less follow the styles of arcade and simulation games, but alas, I prefer flexibility over rewriting crap later on, hehe. I could do so much more if I had more to work with :'(.
I haven't been getting much rest lately, although a fair bit of sleep. My dreams have been weird, ranging from caring for the best friend I've ever had, to struggling with more difficult adversaries. It's kind of strange, because I generally don't dream about the dead :-/. The only good thing I can say, is despite a few disturbing things, going to bed 'round 0200 local sure beats 0700, lol.

My minds focused on getting stuff done, and trying to rack up some R&R. Which leads to my new official Quake motto is "Fuck'em all, and let John sort'em out". With the wifi being a bit more upity lately, I've mostly been hanging around Raven Shield the past couple weeks; unlike SWAT 4, in RvS if you lag out in the middle of a gun battle, it tends to increase your survival rate, rather then negate it.

Yet I still have a tendency to lag up and fall off into deep space when playing Quake :-(. Although I must admit, even with my wireless freeze frames every two minutes or so, I'm actually getting quite good at handling them, but there's only so much you can do when it's in mid air lol. Last night I got plugged off an arena platform, and died with rocket launcher in hand, because I lagged up and missed the chance to rocket myself onto a nearby jump pad for a last minute save.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

This song is stuck in my head \o/

On the day the wall came down
They threw the locks onto the ground
And with glasses high we raised a cry for freedom had arrived

On the day the wall came down
The Ship of Fools had finally run aground
Promises lit up the night like paper doves in flight

I dreamed you had left my side
No warmth, not even pride remained
And even though you needed me
It was clear that I could not do a thing for you

Now life devalues day by day
As friends and neighbours turn away
And there's a change that, even with regret, cannot be undone

Now frontiers shift like desert sands
While nations wash their bloodied hands
Of loyalty, of history, in shades of gray

I woke to the sound of drums
The music played, the morning sun streamed in
I turned and I looked at you
And all but the bitter residue slipped away...slipped away

A Great Day for Freedom—Pink Floyd.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Well, I finally reached the point where I couldn't focus on the code any longer, and just went to sleep hours early lol. Ironically by the time I would've likely gone to bed, there was such a huge freaking storm blowing, that I woke up \o/. It was so ferocious sounding, that it took me a while to be sure whether or not I was dreaming or waking up, but it woke me up lol. The thunder was so earth shattering loud, I think to get any louder, it would take flying in it.

The downside of going to bed early, is missing a few hours coding, and that I'm awake already :'(

Between projects, duties, and my own odds and ends, I've basically have used five or six programming languages this week in order to get stuff done, and have probably read code in a dozen more languages. Sometimes I really wish sticking towards one or two languages across every task would be more practical, but I'm unlikely to see that happen in my life time. I just use whatever gets the job done best.

Ya know, if I could speak human languages as well as I know computer languages, I could order dinner in any civilised country in the world.

Today's main goals, are to work on finishing my 'new' client side admin for Raven Shield, hash out Stargellas networking sub system, and find some time to play a couple rounds. Although of course, if I actually had a worth while choice in the matter, I wouldn't be spending my day camped in front of a computer, but knowing my family well, it's unlikely to day is to stick to last weeks schedule. *sigh* at this rate I'm never getting out of this place without a sledge hammer.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Things have been hopping lately!

I've just finished a portion of a open source project, that's worth about $1,000-$1,500 in monkey labour, even at going wages for nublet programmers in these parts. But it's not a project I'm involved with for profit, so much as an opportunity to leave things better then I found it. It is cool however to know what ones time is worth \o/. On the upside, since the code I've written falls under a very permissive license, I can always put it to good work else wheres, hehe. The code should reach the git repo this evening.

Recently heard that my brother was involved in a car accident, sounded like it was on par with a "Jaws of life" or glorified can opener kind of situation. Either way, for the second time in 12 years, his cars totaled. Apparently, he is also pissed off that the guy who hit him, did it by serving to miss a dog, instead of running the poor animal over. I glad both my brother, the dog, and the other driver are all in one respective piece, even if it means a destroyed car. You've just got to love my family, don't you? It made me think a bit about how my father exited truck driving, by hanging the rig off a bridge, but sed -e s/missing a dog/missing a woman with kids in the car/g. Maybe it's just my brothers nack for driving like a Gran Turismo race track, but he seems to be good at totaling cars when he actually /does/ get into an accident.

As for me, I've been largely glued to a computer, working on various projects. Luckly, there has been one decent thing going for me, I don't have to get up before 'lunch time' on days off work :! Which kind of makes it easier to be up all day and all night working on crap, until of course, you've got to go back out to work >_>. I am that freako kind of person, when the project interests me (or I need to), you'll find me eating, sleeping, and breathing it. Until either it gets done, or I need to take a break before I have a stroke lol.

While I was being dragged across the super market the other day, I was contemplating very seriously, dropping support for FreeBSD from one of my upcoming personal projects. The time savings alone from doing that, would allow getting it done perhaps a year or two ahead of schedule. Delays involved from supporting FreeBSD are not a fault of the OS, so much as many third party assholes that make it more troublesome to support FreeBSD, but could like wise make life easier if the right software was available. Then I got to thinking, well if I could just purchase certain tools in the first place, the time savings in production would just be worth it (I'm only likely to be using the program under Windows NT anyway), and those tools would *ease* that platform support issue at the same time. A bit, at the cost that those tools would also mean closing the code base :(. Shortly after wards, it occurred to me: the possibility of forming a small company with some friends (or hiring them on as helpers). Having the extra dedicated assistance of a small team instead of going virtual army of one, would help speed up getting it done, keeping it professional, and between the lot of us, we could cook up some interesting projects to stay in business with. In due time, we could also upgrade to bigger and better tools for a more rapid turn around then a near non existent starting budget allows. The problem however, is even if we found a publisher for our products, our stuff kicked everyone's ass, and the publisher wouldn't simultaneously screw us out every orifice in the dealing, I doubt if we would reap enough profits in order to make it worth my friends efforts :-/. For me, any profit is still, well more then I had before, but if I'm going to get others involved, I would want them to get a fair share. I don't get involved with stuff in order to make a buck off it, I do it because I want to, but I can't expect the same of the rest of the world.

In all probability, that project in question will be produced virtual army of one, along with the help of a few people who've volunteered or given their services for a few parts. And the code base would stay open, and FreeBSD will likely be supported. Whenever possible, I do prefer writing code that supports Linux, BSD, general Unix, Mac, and Windows; but of course, since I don't have a Mac, I don't support OS X officially lol. I just don't burn the bridge of supporting a given OS, unless it's necessary.

When it comes to the questions of closed / open source, I'm a realist. I very strongly prefer open source, and under a *real* opens source license: not the GPL. (Zealots stop reading now and go fsck yourselves.) I will use closed source software when it is the superior or more suitable application. However, being able to read(!), and even hack at the source is a massive plus for me. When it comes to stuff I write, I prefer to keep it open source also, for just the same reasons I prefer to have access to the source code of programs I use.

In the end though, I expect a good quality program that is well executed, be it open source, closed source, free, shareware, or just costs more then a shiny new Lamborghini.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

In my ever successful attempt at spending sometime "Resting", rather then just working my ass off in front of a computer, since some how there's still nothing else to work on here >_>, I've been fluttering through some articles, mostly over at the Daily WTF!, as those who use the same 'microblogging' platform I do, would have noticed. I also came across a few interesting finds:

Although a tad dated by now, but still interesting hehe.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Feeling inspired

As always I've got plenty of loops open, always have, probably always will... I hate sitting idle. While I like time for R&R, I prefer to stay fairly busy. Right now I'm focusing on

I feel inspired in a way, to throsh along with work on my game projects, it's been a bit since I've had time to work onit, but the SYSIO sub system is almost complete, once that's done, I'll try to unify the ZPKG and SYSIO interfaces and work on using DevIL for texture loading code. When I pause for a moment and think about the sources before me, I can see what it could become, and all I need is the time and strength to do it.

Today I also thunk up the most perfect unit test for epi-sum, and one monster data set to test an internal library against. Overall, our EPI implementation isn't designed for to compete with C/C++ runtime speed, in fact, language selection was chosen with it as an after thought. The thing is though, while it still can keep pace with stuff like apt-get or PBIs, I want it to be faster then any valid competition :-D. It's also good geek fun to see where algorithms can be adjusted for savings. An extra bonus, since the ECA code is under a BSD style license, I can also 'barrow' the best parts for other projects, hehe.

When it comes to optimization, I generally "Skip it" whereever possible, and I rarely use the corresponding compiler flags either. The place where I focus my attention on, is doing things in a good way: data structures and algorithms that fit well, solve the problem, and that scales with it. You could say, my focus is on finding the best solutions that don't shoot you in the foot, nor complicate trying to understand wtf the code actually does. If a real bottleneck enters the picture, then I dig into the code monkies bag and start fine tuning things.
As is my custom when encountering a blog post, I'll usually check the current entries and grep for anything of interest after perusing what I came for; in this case, it was a blog post that floated into mention on #vim, during a short discuesion of git and hg. When I hit the 'home', I noticed a pair of entries: 1, 2; on the iPad.

It reminds me of why I stuck up my nose at the iPad about 5 seconds into the news report: because if it's not *at least* as easy to screw with as OS X, it's just one more over priced pile of garbage as far as I'm concerned... Then again, I'm kind of an odd ball, that I expect mobiles and tablets to be at least as good fun as early microcomputers were 15 years ago ^_^. I wonder how many decades I'll have to wait for that in the American market place :-/. It's actually possible to get outdated PDAs that are more fun, but unfortunately require some what of an import cost and learning some Japanese lol.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

Oh the weather outside is frightful,
But the fire is so delightful,
And since we've no place to go,
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!

It doesn't show signs of Pauseping,
And I've bought some corn for popping,
The lights are turned way down low,
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!

When we finally kiss goodnight,
How I'll hate going out in the storm!
But if you'll really hold me tight,
All the way home I'll be warm.

The fire is slowly dying,
And, my dear, we're still good-bying,
But as long as you love me so,
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sickness is the pits

It seems that I've finally succumbed to joining those around me, Monday and Tuesday being especially crappy days. At least today, I can smell again... lol; so I assume things are moving back towards normal again. Compared to most people that I know, I've always had a bit of a weak sense of smell, but more fine grained sense of hearing, so it's not a major loss. I'm just not used to being sick. Woke up with a sour throat, and went on to spend a day being wet, cold, and on the run, with just a gram cracker to show for nourishment.

Sometimes I wonder, if getting sick is GODs way of saying, TAKE A FUCKING BREAK! Either way, that's about as often as I get sick, irregardless of how many people manage to cough all over me 8=). On the upside, I've found more time for coding, if not gaming :-(. I spent about two days of having my mic muted whenever I joined TS3, because of my throat, .but I've been more active on the night cycle anyway of late, so it's not like I can speak much anyway lol. Code wise I've been working on my games I/O subsystem and experimenting with Qts WebKit module, and continuously failing to find the time to "Practice" my knowledge of WxWidgets, in favour of using Qt more often :-D.

Aching throats, nose constantly running, nasal passages stuffed tighter then a thanksgiving turkey, chilly as windy night, and so on... doesn't really bother me much, until I run out of paper towels to use as a Kleenex! At least this time, I haven't been killed by excessive PND and flem, like a few years back. The main things that piss me off is if I'm fussed over, luckely ma has been sicker then I have, so she's been to preoccupied with bitching about her own problems xD.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Strange dreams, involving a family outing and subsequent argument, being on the run trying to protect some woman from a Terminator and Michael Myers like unstoppable killing machine (at least cops cars come with M-16s in my dreams hehe), being knock out and chased by a T-1000 while trying to catch up, to traveling to another dimension where we're just filming a movie with Arnold Schwarzenegger lol, to the kitchen being overrun with cannibalistic garden spiders battling each other for dominance, including one the size of a large dinner plate that tried fleeing from us "Humans", only to be smashed by the stock of a shotgun.

I'm happier when I have crazy dreams, it reminds me everything is going O.K. lol.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Journal make over

If anyone notices very strange occurrences here, don't worry—it's the result of developing a custom theme ;).

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Reflections upon times past

I've been sitting here a while, mostly stiring the thoughts around, my brains always been a stew pot. Mostly I've been looking back over my times in SAS. I can still see all the people I've known, the names are pages long now. My thoughts have gotten me to the point of hysterical tears, but I actually do feel a hell of a lot better... if a bit out of character. That's the difference between the man and the machine.

The amount of time I've putted in, the era I joined up, the distance I place, helps me to look at things and see the truths there. It gives me a way of seeing things no other member I've met understands, because either they are to close, or to blind. That's something that's always separated me from my peers, past and present.

I came to SAS during a golden era, one hard fought for under Randoms command. Either it was SAS's second or first golden era, perhaps even third, I'm to young to know that. The first great war I witnessed came during Heims period as commanding officer, it nearly destroyed SAS, and it helped push the "Good ol'days" into the history books, where us old farts and the aging farts still remember them. I saw the first and only Dishonorable Discharge (DD) in SAS history, and almost the entire clan either walk out or die of a broken heart; those who didn't agree with James getting booted, and those that were so hurt at what the incident cost us. Most of my best friends in SAS drifted off into nothing, to damaged by it to participate as they once did, but caring to much for SAS to harm her by dropping out on the spot. It was a bloody mess, one I spent collecting information and dispersing it to the other members, trying to help them keep the faith. Darkest days I ever did see, even if my for bearers saw much worse.

Out of that train wreck, was the world my generation came of age in. We took to the trenches and worked like everyone else high and low did, SAS quickly recovered, and we pressed forward one foot after the other. I've seen the people we help mold come and go, both in good and bad alike, I've seen it all. In many ways, I feel that Rasa, Myself, and Rouge, were to young for the job set before us, but it's boots we and our peers had to fill in order to survive. Through that is where cancer developed, and anyone who saw those days will agree, except those to close to the matter to see the wider scope of what happened. Dave and Rasas training sessions are really what built SWAT 4 from a passing fancy to a serious element of SAS life, and where the sins of our fathers first came into sight.

When I was young, I had the feeling of being groomed to be a Sergeant, watched over if you will.Whether I was or not, it's with that same nature that I watched over the generations after me. Hexen is and has (sadly) remained, the only one to hit Trp to remind me, of me. The same sort of dedication, that drive to train, and so on, it made him one of the best. Miles was a little sap that grew on me, from someone I merely looked after, to being an incredibly dear friend, a teammate, and someone I consider a brother. When a young punk named Lazkostriker came along, he too became one of the important subjects my generation had a hand in, and one of the best instructors in SAS history, even better then Rasa. We helped shape what those members became, intentionally and unintentionally, and I had felt among them, is where our replacements would come from, but alas, not only did we out live the monsters (in both positive and negative senses of the word) that we helped to create, I have also outlived the others in my generation.

Through the people we helped bring into the SAS, lead to the wars that followed what we saw, and instilled a lingering cancer that was hard to remove. It's that single thing, that I feel with the greatest remorse, because I was a part of it. Some might hold Rasa (whom I still consider a brother) responsible, but I hold us responsible, our generation. We're the ones that made the curse or sat idly by when we should have acted. Members that followed, grew up waiting to receive the mark of a beast without even knowing it, even I hadn't realized it until the line in the sand was years back. The generations that learned from mine, would go on to be some of the hardest working members in SAS history, as well as some of our ones a saint.

It would take 3 wars to ride us of such things, one batch at a time. I still know people that grew up in that slop of a situation, but survived it without becoming tainted by their surroundings; they are the ones I'll have to trust, not to make our mistakes over again. Many of the others that came up through that mess were not so lucky, and fell into one trap or another. They are all gone now, along with some good souls, and some who could have been spared if they had come aboard during better days. It's been my place to see what becomes of members, my honour to see them come full circle, and like wise, my pains and joys to watch what marks they would leave behind for others. That's why this last and final war has taken so much out of me, because it proves that we were the real failures, not our commanders. If GCHQ has truly failed at anything during all my years of membership, it was in trying to lead stray hearts to water rather then shoot the horses early on. Honestly, I wonder if my generation never happened, would 3 out of 4 of the world wars in SAS have ever happened?

I'm tired of seeing good people brought into an uncertin future, all to often it hurts once the dice has stopped rolling. It's the life of a phoenix, of death and rebirth from the ashes. Whatever successes my generation achieved, whatever positive influences we've made, none of it can outweigh the mistakes we made, and the mistakes we helped influence. That's the legacy I've seen extinguished. I don't know if it was just our inexperience at being NCOs that help breed what kind of members we became, or if it's just our true selves coming out bit by bit. But I know this, the generations who will fold the next ones to come, are much better prepared then we were, and that is the comfort I find there.

SAS is now poised to become better then it has been, there's no more wars to fight, no more dark cloud over head, and I pray, there never will be again. My crystal ball says in a few years, members will come aboard in golden days the way my generation did, GOD willing, they will be a success should they ever be forced into the ground we had to uphold.

Generation means different things to different people, for me, it is groups of people: who entered and spent their times as Recruit and Trooper together along much the same time frames. My generation was Rasa, Myself, and Leon, with Rouge and Mandolore coming into the picture just in time to be apart of it, or one very close to it. Rouge and Mando were mostly trained by those that trained the rest of us, but we were Troopers at the time, so it may be fair to call them the generation after us.. Leon and Mando on the other hand, lacked the activity to have any real positive or negative impact compared to the rest of us old war horses. I have seen a great many generation of recruit come and go.

I hope that GOD will smile upon SASs future, and forever shield the new wave from racking up the things I've seen. Sure, I've been in the trenches, an integral part of SAS, it's something I committed to early on. We are always gonna need people who can do that, I just hope they do a better job then we did.

Spidey01, Warrant Officer Class One, Special Air Service 22nd Elite Virtual Regiment; 2005-2010 and beyond.

So far not so good.

Every time I manage to close my eyes and sleep, I'm haunted in my dreams. I hardly want to sleep any more. Today I woke up around a quarter after seven, falling asleep hours later didn't help, it just returned the train of thought to whence it came.

Discounting a few spells of intense concentration, I've mostly been like a headless chicken when I'm awake. Things are happening around me but most of it is only passively absorbed, not actively. Whenever I come towards snapping out of it, you can bank on it that I'll be tapped to do something and the cycle will repeat.

Around here I'm still nothing but a slave, having to "Jump" every short interval and all the other/related issues of being an overworked and always bitched at servant to indifferent family, is contributing greatly to my mounting exhaustion... my family as always is helping to tear me apart. I learned years ago they are good for nothing else.

Don't even feel like eating today, it's already well past lunch. I feel terrible. The last time I've eve been this bad, would have been the early 2000s, and my old wings would likely remember that very shitty period for one thing or another. Never rain, never peace, only misery and storms to be found; my spirit can't find any rest. Anything that comes through, I seem to either feel it very intensely or just bland, unresponsive. The face in the mirror isn't reassuring either.

I very sorely need a life change, a vacation from everything. There's absolutely nothing to do here that doesn't involve vegetating in front of a computer, or some similar implementation. I would rather soak for hours in a hot tub and drain a bottle of Tequila before drifting off to something else. Life's present situation ensures that no concept of a relaxing holiday will ever be realized, for quite a number of years to come, if even that. The closest I can get to a vacation, is vegetating away a day off work.

I'm getting closer to the 2,000 yard stare then anyone has a right to, in my position :-/. By 2,000 yard stare, I mean mentally, as well as my visage. The cracks are showing, but I never did learn how to shatter into a million pieces. Not sure if that's good or bad, but it's not a choice.
Some how it figures that once I get moving on a roll, it's time to pass out and catch some z's :-/.

Wouldn't it be cool if one could work without crashing sooner or later due to the lack of sleep...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Doing better today, much more stable, but on the downside, have also felt utterly mindless half the day... like the engines running but no ones behind the wheel. Ok, so I've got a few cracks in the crockpot, ain't the first time :-P.

In a rather interesting twist, normally I would play games to take a 'break' for programming tasks that require long periods of concentration: good choices being most things Id Tech or Unreal Engine based. Tonight, I instead found myself playing Chess to build up towards concentration, lol.

Well, as stupid as that sounds, it works :-S.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A little something else to focus on

After searching through the ports tree for suitable software, I cam across a program called eboard, that can be easily mated both with chess engines and servers. Not as spectacular as some of the chess apps I've encountered, in fact, I think there's a graphics heavy one on my cd rack somewhere... but who wants to see if it works under WINE! eboard is both simple and to the point, and despite the lack of photo-realistic graphics, it does present a very familiar interface.  I also installed gnuchess to serve as a sparing partner, since I haven't  really played a game of chess since the early 2000s, when Cyborg, Lioness, and I used to drop into an occasional parlor game in between drops. Perhaps I'll hit FICS someday, but an automaton will do just fine for the time being.

Having something to analyze intently, helps a bit....

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Exorcising the Demons

The last bomb finally dropped as I new it must, and my friends turned in their resignation. This is the worst day of my life so far, because the only thing I can think of that could be worse, is becoming an orphan. For me this has just been an utterly breaking and strength erasing event, and I'm sure it's no triviality for my friend either (but this is still my journal lol). Getting through work felt like doing it with a corkscrew twisting though my stomach.

I drifted off to work with more tics, shakes, and rattles then you can point a stick at, I've nearly thrown up about four times, and I've had to remind myself, "You don't fucking cry!", just to hold it together. As is my custom in times like these, what ever pieces were left, I cast myself back into the forge and let them reshape.

There the Spidey01 we all know, nearly died of his pain and grief in this matter. Very close he came to being replaced by a very different creature, one cold and remorseless like a machine: I looked for the first time in my life, at taking a path, where I don't know whether it threads along the side of light or darkness... willing to become an archangel or a knight of hell itself, a pure devil even, if it should need be,  ready to destroy anyone in the future who would dare rise to damage SAS, to become a monster if it should need be, something that would make Wiz at his best or worse, look like a limp noodle, for the sake of ensuring that never another war grace these shores. Whatever the cost might be in doing it, whether it would mean welding Souledge or Soulcalibur, that it would be done just the same. In short, take any and every action necessary to ensure that things like the past two weeks, would never be needed again.  I pondered over this course that lay ahead, describing it in my mind, in a sort of disturbing and epic form of poetry that can only exist in ones mind, just what I would be committing myself to. In thinking through that new beings description, what its name would become in place of Spidey01, and what my personal emblem would be in such... I found myself staring back at me through that emblem.

The death of Spidey01 and the rise of an avenging monster would have been the legacy, that Rouge, Valroe, Noer, Medic, Scout, and Ambu left behind, the price of their resolvability; it would also have been committing the first petty act of my life. Looking and questioning my reasons for such a choice of path, deeper at it's heart, I found the thought that, "I never want to feel like this again", more then SASs interests was to be found. That creature is so different then myself, that it would've warranted changing my name to reflect becoming a different person - an incident like something out of the old testament. Part of my soul cried out, "I'm alive, I'm alive, I'm alive, I'm alive", and that nothing will ever kill that tiny silver of goodness in me.

So who emerged from those soul searching fires?


 A sharper more refined image then before, but still Spidey01... not the demon that beckoned. Today's the closest I've ever come, to losing who I am. My name on the net, is incredibly personal, and is an identity that reflects me to the core.... it nearly died, really. Yet as surely as I have rejected darkness and evil all my life, I reject that idea.... of being a devil, even for my own reasons. Spidey01 still lives for what ever I'm worth, and I'm here to stay. Light or dark, right or wrong, I'll not abide by either, I'll just raise a flaming Spatha in one hand and a great axe in the other, and leave the suit of armour behind. Perhaps such a beast is really what SAS needs to ensure that the next golden age remains one for us as a group, but I am nether machine nor monster, only a man, and I will not yield my humanity. Whether that's for anything, anyone, or even myself, I'm a man not fucking machine.

One fortunate thing my life in the real world has taught me about times of bleeding out, eventually you will run out of something to bleed with. When having to watch today ceases to hurt, only time will show. In connection to something I once said of myself, being glad that I'm not made of tin, because I would rust: the words of the great Wizard of Oz come to mind...

As for you, my galvanized friend, you want a heart. You don't know how lucky you are not to have one. Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable.

 For better or worse, I have one.

Absolutely moving song

Tonight while waiting for Funny Girl to start on TCM, I overheard a very moving song during the previous movies exit. After all my years, I can't help but contrast it against the paths that I have crossed, relationships made both in my real life and in the virtual world. It's rather like listening to a tender memory.

Mmm. Mmm.
Memories, light the corners of my mind
Misty watercolor memories of the way we were.
Scattered pictures of the smiles we left behind
smiles we give to one another
for the way we were.
Can it be that it was all so simple then
or has time rewritten every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
tell me would we? Could we?
Memories, may be beautiful and yet
what's too painful to remember
we simply choose to forget
So it's the laughter we will remember
whenever we remember

the way we were.

In salute of old friends and comrades alike... cica 1996 - 2010.

Monday, February 1, 2010

A new dream cluster..

Somewhat of a strange cluster of dreams :-/. Ranging from hanging out with a female neighbor, to developing a new mobile device (a good one hehe) over lunch, being a Jack Ryan'ish CIA agent sent to an island full of racists, for a meeting with a quack dictator about to be knocked off; who's as nutty as the guy in The In-Laws, to leading a last stand of Colonial Marines and civilians in a shopping mall, against a brood of Aliens, including a show down against a non-canonical but really pissed off King Alien, lol.

All in all through, a much better grade of dreams then I've been having lately. It's usually a good sign when my dreams are mostly non nonsensical, although there seems to be a greater amount of combat involved. *Shrugs* prior to the last swing change in dreams, half my night was spent dreaming about the code I wanted to get written lol. I don't place the same level of analysis on dreams that some people I know do, and I don't think I would want to; I merely remember the interesting ones. Sometimes I draw similarities, such as reoccurring terrain/environments that find their way into several dreams.

There's only ever been 4 or 5 dreams to ever scare me in my 21 years of life, even though most dreams I've ever had in the past 8'ish, could likely be called a nightmare by most peoples definition of such. On the other hand there is significantly few things that can phase me, that dreams rarely have any impact on me. Should we just say, I'm not easily frightened, either in the real world or dream world. There's enough outlandlish things in my dreams, that I'm usually aware that it's not reality, somewhere in the back of my mind; perhaps that helps?