Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Touched up the game board and made some tweaks. I'll drop in an obligatory screenshot here of what I have so far. I'm hoping to get the game pieces done tonight and the board with some sample game pieces visually drawn. Tons to do! Still need to make the overlays for the gameboard so that the different squares are colored instead of all grey. If we do 4 colors then we can also have 2 wild squares on the board, which could be fun. I guess we will see how that works out once we get closer.

11:00 PM - 12:30 AM - Added random drawing selection to the pict viewer and the ability for the drawing scene to remember what it has drawn (which will need to be generalized later) for less repeat drawings. Added double-tap to go back to the main menu and start over for both the gameboard screen and the drawing screen. Cleaned up some of the test drawings, there will still be more to clean up or add. This is noticeable good stuff though, which is a happy thing! More later, it's late.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

PDF Viewer done

I finished the iPad viewer on Friday at work (late into the evening) virtually alone, though there were a couple of good contributions to it from co-workers.  It looks more or less the same as in the screenshots, but has a couple of good things to go with it as well.  Today it was approved for sale along with the timer app.  Being burned out a bit I took last weekend off and read Empire by orson scott card.  It was a pretty good, if light, read.  Interesting ideas in it though.  Tonight I spent about 90 minutes designing a gameboard.  I tried the oval came board I had been thinking about first, but it just wasn't working out.  I settled on a rectangle gameboard and hope to have some of the pieces done this evening.  I'm a bit torn as a side-view of the pieces would look the best, but a top-down view of the board would work really well also, so we will see how it goes.  Also did some research on the pieces and got some sample images.  Additionally I decided, with the help of my wonderful wife, that we would take pictures and have the line art transition into the picture.  We will start for that on a trial basis and see where that goes.  That will be a lot of daunting work to get the pictures as well as the line drawings together.

Oh, the PDF viewer is called "Simple PDF Viewer" in the iTunes app store, iPad section, feel free to have a look if you are so inclined.

PDF Viewer - a distraction

8:00 PM - So yesterday at work we talked about the iPad deadline and decided to take the rest of the week to try and get the work iPhone project done and ready for submission (a fairly generic timer app) and decided to do the PDF viewer also. The PDF viewer is looking alright so far, I've pretty well been put in charge of that. Here are some screenshots of what I've got so far, based on the split view controller on the iPad.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Well crap

I should make a note about what's happening. 3 days ago apple made an announcement that you had 8 days to submit your iPad app to the app store to make the launch. Using beta 5, which was released 2 days before that. I was terribly disappointed as I had been expecting apple to give developers time and a more stable SDK rather than spring this at the last minute. I took it pretty hard as one of my primary goals was to have this out by the time apple's deadline happened. This made me realize I'm a bit too close to the project so I'm going to take a week off. I'm planning on writing a simple PDF viewer for the iPad, possibly for launch. I need to decide if it will be free with in-app purchases, ad supported, or paid still. I guess we will see.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

iPad ordered, should be here on release day!

9:45 PM - 10:30 PM - did some work outlining some of what I have left to do. I've decided to keep the boardgame concept as that will translate well. Lots of category ideas to consider, content to create (graphically, musically, and line drawing wise) profiles to design and numerous other things to do. One step at a time I suppose. I wanted to also get a picture of the cat drawing at this stage since I've been picture happy lately. Oh, and lest I forget, the iPad was ordered last friday morning, and should be here sometime on saturday, April 3rd. Oh, also took a couple of minutes to look at the code for moveTo and adjusted the pencil from the top left to the bottom right as shown in the picture.  For reference, this was me drawing what started as hello kitty for my 4 year old.  I'm not an artist.  =)

I'll also include the sketch reference picture:

I should note I am liking the slightly off circles, it makes it look more hand-drawn. We will see what actually makes it into the final product.

1:00 AM - 1:45 AM - Changed the background texture to be full screen and added tint colors (5 shades, with 2 variations each, red, green, blue, purple, yellow). It pulses right now, these will eventually be the color of the different categories. Time to sleep.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

I'm not a scribe, I'm a translator!

I've had some struggles writing things down lately. I've spent 3-5 hours over the past few days and gotten the lines to be drawing correctly. I also changed the actions that draw lines to act on their target objects instead of on globals. Line drawing is more or less complete. I've changed the line drawing back to white and plan on tinting the background darker depending on the color choices. I've already had one suggestion to make the pen black, so we'll see where that goes as well. No actual work other than this today though.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Frustration, thy name is coding

7:00PM-7:45 PM, 10:30 PM-12:45 AM
Well I've missed my time tracking some, I worked on this issue a couple of times in the past few days. I'd guess that this is going on 6 hours of time. :/ I finally go the pencil fixed I think correctly, though I still do not understand why 0,0 is the center of a sprite in general and NOT the center when calling visit when drawing into the render texture. Sucks to be me I guess. So I modified the pencil and got it's positions worked out properly. It may move later but should be OK for now. Next stop is to get the "update" code to draw the pen pixel more than once as needed. Then it's back to some designing on the rest of the content drawing screen (like changing the pen color, making a better background, etc) and more design/decisions on the gameboard screen. See this thread on the cocos2d forums for more info on my struggles and a special thank you to one of the forum members for help.

Saturday, March 6, 2010


9:45 AM - 10:45 AM - well, I didn't get circles done last night, but I did get them done sort of this morning. The math is slightly wrong on the arcs, but it looks a ton better! More later today I hope, for now I have to go watch the kids as the wife is gone.

4:30 - 6:00 PM - Worked more on the pen, got it smaller and made it work a bit smoother, but it has a ways to go to really work properly. Kids hanging off me and crying, maybe more later.

8:00 - 9:30 PM - messed around some more, read some forums, decided I needed to do more fun stuff. Made a pencil image using a free picture of a pencil from the web. Added the pencil path which it almost follows just fine now. Also finished finding/adding SVN repository for pict. Using Beanstalk's free version for now. May need to get something more permanent.

11:00PM - 12:45AM - Fixed a bug with the moveto code at the beginning. Did all sorts of things to try to fix the pencil animation, but it's still off. It looks like the pencil's 0,0 is in the middle of the renderTexture instead of from the top left. Added moveTo's between non-consecutive points. (lineto's might be an issue here, they seem to always use the moveTo code regardless of where they start/end). Added a fairly generic background and colored the pen for fun and added rotation (not shown in the picture below).

Friday, March 5, 2010

Now with pictures!

9:45 PM - Doing some testing, the actions need to call visit every update event or you only get the first and last positions. So. Overriding the actions and making a bezier pen and a lineto pen, which should be plenty for now. Then I'll use those in place of CCBezierTo and CCMoveTo to draw stuff.

11:35 PM -- success! Looks like we will need a constant per-pixel drawing time or you get crazy images that are made up of non-touching dots the longer the lines are around. Apparently update only gets called every so often, so your timespan needs to be bigger to compensate. Also my top half of my circles don't seem to work, so I need to figure out why that is as well. I'll try to get circles done tonight then hit the time based drawing tomorrow. Too bad I didn't get pictures of my line-only OpenGL low level stuff. Maybe I'll have to dig something up for posterity. =)

As drawn in the modified sketch editor:
As drawn in the iPad simulator:

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I hate being sick. But we're getting somewhere.

10:15 PM - Definitely sick. STILL sick in fact. I've done about two hours of research and have a theory I'd like to try: Create a CCRenderTexture with a "pen" sprite. Use CCBezierBy actions to move that sprite around as rendering happens over a given period of time. We'll see how that works!

2:15 AM - Well, 4 hours later and I think I may have lines and circles coded. However, I don't see the drawing if I try to run the action sequence, so either my actions don't work like I am expecting or my coordinates are way off. If I comment out the actions I do get to see my pen dot show up on screen. That's got to count for something right? =) More tomorrow.