It’s been over a year…

And what a year it has been! After the contract working on Save Dino Island with the Digital Health Hub at Simon Fraser University, and teaching game development with the Digital Media Academy (DMA) at the University of British Columbia last year, it’s now been over a year since this blog has seen an update. For that I apologize! Let me fill you in (if anyone’s actually paying attention O_o) on what’s happened between then and now…

I’m just a few weeks out from a repeat of teaching the Game Design with Unity in 2018; a break from what has largely turned into a dream job as a full-time Unity developer with Blueprint Reality working on the VR/MR broadcasting software – MixCast.

Working with BR and MixCast has been a wild ride, that’s involved collaborations with Intel and work-for-hire with Unity directly, and multiple public releases of the improving (and awesome!) MixCast app. I’ve made new friends along the way, and have been constantly challenged to improve my knowledge of Unity, tools development, and programming in general. I have been truly privileged to work with a team of talented and intelligent individuals creating software that is truly something new and experimental in the fields of virtual reality and mixed reality imaging.

As a teacher at the DMA I’ve also now had multiple opportunities to witness the energy and enthusiasm with which youth embrace coding and game development. Unfortunately, pursuing these work opportunities has left very little time for indie game and app development – the long dark and dearth of posts on this blog is testament to that. Between the responsibilities of coding at BR and parenting a three-year-old, I just haven’t been able to find time to make progress on indie Unity projects. On the other hand, I have had some small measure of success doing fun game development with my son (playing around with a falling ball game, as he loves marbles), and have made the promise to myself to continue with that and also make some commits to personal projects in the future.

My son greatly enjoys my game Anachron’s Arcade (which has since disappeared from the Google Play store as I’ve failed to update it to meet Google’s changing policies), but perhaps just perhaps I (we) can revisit that in the near future. Teaching at the DMA this summer was also a fun opportunities to revisit my earlier projects, and the graciousness with which my students embraced my first project (Sad Paddle) was a joy to experience.

Ironically, the only app I ever made that I personally use regularly is also my simplest, and something I made as a funny joke not to be taken seriously. My Charms app (periodically referred to as Seven Charms and Eleven Charms), is something I do still use regularly to improve my focus on the virtues I feel should, at any given time, have the greatest benefit to me personally. Although the app jokingly pretends to be magic, as a self-help tool it has been quite invaluable at reminding me for the need for Grace, Wisdom, Patience, Joy, Charisma, Luck, Love, Intellect, Power, Will, Wealth, Guile, and Fame throughout this past year (ranked by the order with which I remember choosing those charms).

The utility of this app confounds me, yet there it has been used in my pocket all along, and before this year even started I wrote down the goal to publish an update to it by the end of the year. Not exactly sure how  it should be updated… maybe some of virtues requiring revisiting/renaming, or perhaps the color scheme and graphics are just too awful not to be redone (possible unlockable color palettes?). So the repo has now been made, and the wheels of progress have started to turn, so maybe, just maybe, in the remaining months of 2018 some future development will be done on the apps made by Anachronic Designs 🙂