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1  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: I want to see Above the Sky With Java + Arduino. on: 2014-06-29 19:15:56
What you mean with this...

Sorry, I meant to type RC engines, not PC engines. If the question had to do with delta wings, then it's basically a triangular airframe without a tail; popular because of ease of building and load distributions.
2  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: I want to see Above the Sky With Java + Arduino. on: 2014-06-29 16:00:07
@Kevin
Indeed, I've already conceded that there are simpler ways. None of my postings are must do's, and while some things may seem a bit contrived, I can only say that usually happens when introducing a new concept to someone. Ever read some of the examples given for design patterns?

If Andre ultimately says "what the heck, all I need is a balloon, some twine, and a cheap camera", he still has been made aware that Java/embedded controller interactions are possible. As a tinkerer, my satisfaction comes from watching someone go from "how could I take some aerial pictures?" to "what will i do up there? Take photos, check for gases? Is it possible with arduino?". Even if it's only slightly, Andre's view of what's possible has been expanded. Cool
3  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: I want to see Above the Sky With Java + Arduino. on: 2014-06-29 05:27:59
@Kevin
While not strictly a Java link, Open-TX is open source firmware that works with various radios and adds useful features not included in stock firmwares. Since it's open source, it should be possible to learn how to decode radio data such as telemetry and how to transmit data back to your aircraft. As a side note, I have a FlySky 9x variant (listed on the previous page). The radio costs about $85.00 USD, and is a favorite among hobby RC hackers due to the fact that it has the same features as much more expensive transmitters. You have to do a little soldering to get it all to work, but it's beginner level stuff.

Bringing in Java, you can run a JVM on a Raspberry Pi and drive an arduino via serial communication. Once you start viewing the Arduino as an interface to other hardware such as temperature sensors, tilt sensors, etc, you begin to see new possibilities. Off the top of my head I can think of using an arduino to sense temperature differences in the atmosphere and using it to hunt for thermals to achieve extended flight for a glider platform. You could use GPS information and heading data to rig up a camera trigger to take pictures at certain points along a predetermined path. A lot of the RC community is composed of what's commonly called "makers" and homebrewers. I must concede your point that you could accomplish the original goal without any Java in the mix, but considering it's a hobby project and not something for widespread production and use, there's really no harm in trying different approaches to broaden your horizons. Smiley

@Andre
I'm unsure of your location, but most countries have some sort of model aircraft organization that should be able to inform you about different laws and such. In the U.S. it's the Academy of Model Aircraft.

Retrieval can be accomplished by using a beacon, or via analyzation of long range flight telemetry. Aircraft can be built fairly cheaply, many out of materials you can find at the local dollar store. Best advice is build cheap enough that if you lost it, you wouldn't be out a large investment. Even if you never lose your craft, crashes are still a regular occurrence.

I would highly recommend using a delta wing configuration or a glider setup. A blimp is pretty much a giant sail in the sky from the winds perspective and most PC grade engines aren't going to be powerful enough to guide it in a reliable manner. You can get a basic motor, battery, and esc for under $30.00 USD then build your airframe out of dollar store foam, something that's quite a common practice and can produce amazing results. Cheap, quick, and easy. Flite Test, or the previously linked forum are both great resources.

For ideas, the sky is the limit (no pun intended). If you can find a sensor that can be read by an Arduino, then you have a sensor you can interact with via Pi/Java. I mentioned a couple other things in my reply to Kevin.

Cost is going to vary depending on what you have on hand (soldering iron, glue gun, etc) and what you need to buy. As mentioned previously, figure about $40.00 for the basic craft. You'll need a transmitter/receiver combo with enough channels. I mentioned mine in the reply to Kevin. You can also go with the Hobby King Orange RX for around $70.00 USD. Compatible receivers are about $9.00 or so for it. An Arduino Uno is around $25.00 USD I believe and Pi's were around $35.00 USD last I saw. Figure about $99.00 USD for the micro camera. Finally pad the cost by about $100.00 to account for things you forget until you realize you need them and you're looking at about $368.00 give or take. Not exactly couch cushion money, but not a horrible amount either once you consider that all the equipment, except for the glue and foam in the airframe, is reusable and essentially a one time cost. If you're a shrewd bargain hunter, you can prolly get your stuff for less than that. My best advice is to avoid your local hobby store unless you can't get a part somewhere else.

A view from 3km+ would be impressive no matter how you cut it. Wink
4  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: I want to see Above the Sky With Java + Arduino. on: 2014-06-28 19:59:02
Plus, im more worried about the baloon going out of control and crashing into someone than if it will work or not.
How can i make it preety secure?

You'll pretty much have to look into free flight solutions if you want to get above the clouds. An unannounced aircraft in public airspace is already enough of a danger; any sort of dangling tether only increases the danger.

I dont think it would be that expensive.How controllable would it be?

Not controllable at all if there are any sort of real winds. Scale zeppelins and such are usually reserved for indoor flying.

Im also thinking in those planes controlled by RF.. i could, idk just put it below the plane and use the arduino while its flying...

They have arduino based auto pilot systems such as ardupilot that can be communicated with remotely from a ground station/transmitter. You could always look up the specification and figure out how to control it via a Java application.

You'll find that the rabbit hole on this project can run pretty deep both on the software and the hardware side. No matter how you cut it, both you and your dad should have a blast figuring things out. Best of luck. Can't wait to hear about what you come up with. Grin

@Kevin: I've been looking into this subject (RC flight) for over a year now as a serious hobby. While some components can be expensive prices on RC electronics aren't what they used to be, especially with vendors such as HobbyKing out there. I can also say that the hardware is becoming more open and sophisticated at the same time; nothing like completely customizable transmitter units for under $100.00. While Java may not be all you need, there are certainly applications for it depending on the end goal. Don't be so quick to dismiss things out of hand.
5  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: I want to see Above the Sky With Java + Arduino. on: 2014-06-28 19:18:41
Laws will vary by location, but most model aeronautics associations have specific rules about maximum flight deck for model aircraft of any type so check your local laws for more information. That being said, I can tell you that gear to do this type of thing is well documented and readily available if you have the cash. Try checking out the FliteTest channel on YouTube. One of their crew took an RC aircraft to the edge of space and back. The original video is here, and discussion about it is here. Overall, FliteTest is an excellent source for learning the ins and outs of RC aircraft.
6  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Slick2d TileMap on Server on: 2014-06-28 19:15:00
Try libtiled-java. If you've already got Tiled installed, you can find it in a subfolder of the main installation directory. You'll have to spend some time with the source to figure it all out, but it's fairly simple to get a handle on. It also has no sort of OpenGL, Slick2D, or other framework dependencies, so it integrates easily on the server side. No real need to roll your own or to copy/paste snippets out of Slick.
7  Games Center / WIP games, tools & toy projects / Re: Void of Heart on: 2014-06-27 20:48:03
I think the (not so eloquent) point being made by those quotes is that talk is great, but results are what most people find interesting. No matter how great an idea is, it's value is about $0.10 per dozen; real worth is found in actual implementations. While I wouldn't take the reaction personally, it's based on the perception that JGO is being overrun with posts that are more talk than action, the advice it conveys is actually pretty sound.

Currently not much is actually developed, but I hope to have quite a good amount more to share with you all here shortly. Please feel free to leave feedback and suggestions/criticism.

It's probably better to wait until you have something more than a logo and a concept to share. You won't get much (if any) useful feedback until you've gone beyond that because honestly, there's nothing to really give feedback on. You also lessen the chances of getting "backhanded compliments" as (apparently) happened here.
8  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: Tiled in Slick2D on: 2014-06-26 20:44:02
Looks to be at least a few on YouTube. I can't vouch for their quality since I'm behind a firewall at work at the moment. This one uses LibGDX and has a link for an "improved" technique in the description. A little Google-fu should provide other useful results.
9  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: Tiled in Slick2D on: 2014-06-25 19:39:08
If I understand your question correctly, you want a layer that indicates if a tile is blocked or walkable. If that's the case, the technique found in this article should get you pointed in the right direction. The tutorial uses Cocos2D, but the techniqe itself should work just fine in Java. The section called "Tiled Maps and Collisions" is what (I think) you want.
10  Java Game APIs & Engines / JInput / Re: How to determine gamepad/joystick components mapping? on: 2014-06-23 19:29:57
I'd say take a cue from games such as Super Meat Boy and others; design your setup around a standard controller such as the XBox controller, then let users customize the settings to match their actual controller. Even if your button mappings don't match the player's controller the first time they play your game, they'll be able to discover which of their buttons maps to action and cancel with minimal effort. From there it's just a matter of them going to a setup screen, similar to what Herjan posted, and configuring their inputs to what they like. It's futile to try and anticipate every possible controller configuration beforehand, especially once you consider that even if it was possible, preferences in how things are mapped can vary between owners of identical input devices.
11  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 05:05:09
I might give it a shot, but I just use a simple 3D int array that I iterate though, so it runs pretty fast. The only time it ever does anything beyong the basic iteration is if it detects X/Y is within the viewport *and* has a value that isnt 0.

I'd still be worried about the impacts on caching, but any technique that provides acceptable results is a good technique. Cool
12  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 04:52:33
BP's way is technically a faster way of going about it because you don't iterate the entire map, but this is how I do it. Although looking at BP's I may try his way and see how much faster it could be.

I foresee an easy optimization in your future. Smiley
13  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 04:51:21
No. The code BP posted always draws the character at the center of the screen. StartX is the left edge of your view and is computed by taking the player's position and subtracting 1/2 of the screen width.
14  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 04:35:05
You could, but I was under the assumption that you were looking for efficient methods; iterating over the whole map each frame is definitely not efficient unless your map takes up 1 screen or less. BP's method is pretty simple. Walk through it in your mind a few times and it will click. Wink
15  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: HP's "The Machine" on: 2014-06-17 04:00:16
Maybe I'm missing something, but it sounds like the concept basically boils down to creating farms of PLCs connected via private VPNs. A lot of the innovations now a days seem an awful lot like a return of the days of "big iron".
16  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 03:33:54
Glad to hear that! So, if I just drew a tile map with a tile creator and drew the image to the screen, could i work from there? I don't think loading maps from a file would be easy. I also don't see how a for loop would be necessary  to draw detailed parts of the map.

When prototyping, I usually just load up 2 tile images and use a loop to fill a 2D array with alternating instances of the image. As for loading maps from a file it can be as easy or complex as you choose to make it. Don't be afraid to try new things though just because they could be complex. The best way to build your programming muscles is to bite off slightly more than you think you can chew.

You'll always need at least one outer loop for rendering the map no matter how simple or complex it is. Inner loops are usually used for rendering multiple layers of tiles on a map. As long as you're sensible in how you handle sparse data sets, you can still get a nice balance of detail and efficiency. Smiley
17  Game Development / Game Play & Game Design / Re: Efficient game maps and Scrolling on: 2014-06-17 03:19:41
Since the player (view I think) moves up, the other entities (models) keep their location?

Yes. At least in the case where the player avatar is the only MOB. For simplicity sake, think of the player as your cameraman moving through the world (model) as opposed to the world moving around the cameraman.

The weird thing is, I would have to draw the items starting from 0x, 0y which would be the upper left corner of the map. So then, the map would have to start at the upper left corner? (Please say yes)

Indeed, although when you're rendering (as previously mentioned), you'd render player position +/- minus the appropriate x and y distances.
18  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Collision detection - server side on: 2014-06-12 18:49:17
Hey thanks, i tried this command in lots of ways, and i did exactly what you wrote here.. but it still didn't work and returned null.. does it work for you? if it does i will try again

Since the internal data structure of a TileLayer uses a 2D array of non primitive types, null is a valid return value for the function when no tile data has been set for a particular map offset. The format that I posted in my earlier reply does indeed work when using libtiled.

Anyways, I really like my library, it has a lot more features then libtiled and imo its more flexible, effective and useful, so i don't really see why should i switch to libtiled.

By all means, stick with what works for you. Smiley My original reply was a response to your assertion that you couldn't find a stand alone library to work with Tiled maps on the server side. Even if it's not the route you chose, it may come in handy if somebody searches for similar info in the future. Wink
19  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Collision detection - server side on: 2014-06-11 21:02:56
I believe for that it would be something like:
1  
((TileLayer)Map.getLayer(int i)).getTileAt(int tx, int ty);

It looks like the methods you've written are pretty close to the original. I will say I'm surprised by the lack of documentation for the library (libtiled-java, not yours), but the source is straightforward and compact enough that a quick "find" command is usually enough to get pointed in the right direction.

Either way, it may be something to keep in mind in case you hit a hiccup with implementing a feature in your library, and need to see how it was done before.

Cheers. Grin
20  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Collision detection - server side on: 2014-06-11 19:28:20
Hello,
So as nobody could really help me, and i couldn't find any documentation or libraries to use tiled maps, i don't mean libraries like libgdx, i mean libraries for easy checking, customizing the maps and tiles, collision detection, and everything you want. but a library without any textures to load or using OpenGL and your graphics card in order to work. just a library to work with the map without rendering it (like server sided collision detection).

So basically you want libtiled-java.
21  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: creating grid based ascii graphics for a rogue like on: 2014-05-29 00:54:49
The only thing it doesn't have is a method for replacing part of the string at an indicated row/columns. Its got a replaceRange() method, that'll get the job down, but the parameters are just ints for the beginning and end of the range that you are replacing. However, it'll be easy enough to convert coordinates to that...

Personally I'd just use the TextArea for display, and store/manipulate the backing data outside of the control. Once you've made your changes, a call to setText should be all you need to update the TextArea. This gives the benefit of not having your code rely on the TextArea if you change your mind later. While practical in a sense, relying on the replaceRange method tightly couples your game logic and your presentation method. A second benefit is that you can manipulate your data in a way that seems natural to you, and only worry about converting it to what your presentation space requires once.

Honestly though, there are many ways to skin a cat and in this particular case, just about any approach that makes sense is as good as the next one. Smiley Glad I could be of assistance.
22  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: creating grid based ascii graphics for a rogue like on: 2014-05-28 23:31:39
You could always take the middle ground and use a TextArea with a fixed size font. With a few tweaks to the control properties, you get the look and feel of a standard console window without a lot of the limitations such as "screen scroll" whenever the map is updated/output. Use a similarly styled TextField below the TextArea for user input. With a little more creativity in setting control properties, you should be able to make the two controls appear as one unified "console area". No external libraries needed. Cheesy
23  Game Development / Networking & Multiplayer / Re: Multiplayer game with libgdx on: 2014-05-22 23:31:33
From the "Support For TMX Maps" on the GitHub page under Java:
Quote
A library for loading TMX files is included with Tiled at util/java/libtiled-java.

Seems like a good place to start. Wink
24  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: Anybody knows how to run newest hiero version? on: 2014-05-22 22:16:58
Ok this page saved me.. I was starting to smash things around (not literally Cheesy)

For future reference of people getting ready to smash things, which page are you talking about exactly? There is no link in your posts. Wink
25  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Char values of 13 and 10 in java on: 2014-05-22 21:13:19
Not quite...
Quote
Here's a little known secret about MS-DOS.  The DOS developers weren't particularly happy about this state of affairs - heck, they all used Xenix machines for email and stuff, so they were familiar with the *nix command semantics.  So they coded the OS to accept either "/" or "\" character as the path character (this continues today, btw - try typing "notepad c:/boot.ini"  on an XP machine (if you're an admin)).  And they went one step further.  They added an undocumented system call to change the switch character.  And updated the utilities to respect this flag.
This is more IBM than Microsoft in this case. IBM was the customer, and Microsoft was the contractor.
26  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Char values of 13 and 10 in java on: 2014-05-22 18:51:40
So we take away from this that their command parser was a quick and dirty hack.

I wouldn't say that it was a quick and dirty hack. It just wasn't very a  very forward thinking API.

Quote
The fact that the "/" character conflicted with the path character of another relatively popular operating system wasn't particularly relevant to the original developers - after all, DOS didn't support directories, just files in a single root directory.

Then along came DOS 2.0.  DOS 2.0 was tied to the PC/XT, whose major feature was a 10M hard disk.  IBM asked the Microsoft to add support for hard disks, and the MS-DOS developers took this as an opportunity to add support for modern file APIs - they added a whole series of handle based APIs to the system (DOS 1.0 relied on an application controlled structure called an FCB).  They also had to add support for hierarchical paths.

Let's be honest though, a lot of technology comes down to solutions that work for the moment, and while I'm not a huge fan of Microsoft, I can hardly hang that albatross solely on their neck. Every developer has at least a slight stench of fowl hanging around them most of the time. Come, let me tell you the rime of the ancient code mariner. Tongue
27  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: Char values of 13 and 10 in java on: 2014-05-22 17:51:51
Long story short...IBM used "/" to indicate command line switches.

Short story long can be found here. Cool
28  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Crazy Mouse problems on: 2014-05-22 02:43:54
Wired or wireless mouse? Are the batteries charged and it the receiver free of obstructions (wireless)? Is the sensor clean on the mouse? Have you tried switching USB ports (wired) or checked to see if there's a conflict between the touchpad and mouse on the laptop? What happens if you disable the touchpad? It'd probably not a virus since the behaviour would make it obvious. Maybe try looking for a driver update if one is available.
29  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: "No, You Can't Make Video Games" on: 2014-05-20 22:24:33
I am 178.5cm tall man and I want to be basketball player. If I really want, try hard and practice every day. Can I be as good as 2m tall ones?

Why not? Wink

As a side note, it would be nice if there was some sort of easy language that people could use to get their feet wet when they're brand new to coding. Some sort of Beginner's All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code that would require minimal inputs to get some sort of visual results that would hook people or at the least pique their interest. Yeah, somebody should definitely come up with something like that. Cool
30  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: [Non-game] Some questions about making a program on: 2014-05-19 00:28:16
Make sure you're not putting your game loop on the event dispatch thread. Best advice would be to get rid of the loop completely and use a Timer and TimerTask to fetch data from the website. This will keep the GUI responsive (even with no input, speedy repaints when needed are always nice). One other note, set the Timer as a Daemon to ensure it closes when the rest of the application closes.
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