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1  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Comparison between 2 IDE's - Netbeans and Eclipse on: 2016-08-30 12:17:36
For some reason I never got on with IntelliJ. Always been a big, big fan of Eclipse, here. Tried NetBeans once too, couldn't stand it.

Cas Smiley
2  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: A* Pathfinding For Large Distances on: 2016-08-28 22:40:25
A couple of other minor optimisations:

- Don't use A* at first, try a Bresenham line to run straight at the target - it's extremely cheap and for shorter distances likely to succeed anyway
- When total distance is small-ish, say under 32 tiles, don't bother with the low-res search first

Cas Smiley
3  Game Development / Game Mechanics / Re: A* Pathfinding For Large Distances on: 2016-08-28 22:37:06
Divide map grid into sub-grids. Flood fill each unique traversable area on each sub-grid of, say, 16x16 to get a small number of "territories" (uniquely number each one for the entire world map) which becomes nodes in a low-resolution A* pathfinder (probably just 1 for most). After whole map has been done, scan along each edge to find out which territories can reach which other adjacent territories and that defines the topology.

Now in your game you do a low-res A* search first to get the shortest paths across the sub-grid in terms of the territories. You can discard any grid points in your main A* search that are not part of this set, thus massively cutting down on your open search set.

There are further optimisations you could do but I bet that's good enough.

Cas Smiley
4  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: What does your dream language look like? on: 2016-08-21 08:29:45
You don't want to be like me, I'm a curmudgeonly old bastard, and I hate computers.

Cas Smiley
5  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: Tips for reducing frame rate spikes due to JIT early in a game? on: 2016-08-13 07:54:23
Try using two-tier compilation with the server VM.

Escape analysys won't do anything for you.

Cas Smiley
6  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Why is Minecraft bad? on: 2016-08-11 09:47:33
I think producing a successful application and coding it well are a bit mutually exclusive.
Coding it well requires much more time but you win on the long term because it's more maintainable.
I'd normally agree but of course there is the caveat that if you don't intend to maintain it... don't waste your time making it maintainable!

Cas Smiley
7  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Why is Minecraft bad? on: 2016-08-10 20:22:04
I'm holding @FabulousFellini to his promise too Wink

Cas Smiley
8  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Why is Minecraft bad? on: 2016-08-10 19:53:09
Yeah, I think I am waaaay more happy than Markus, probably Smiley

Cas Smiley
9  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Why is Minecraft bad? on: 2016-08-10 18:10:04
The code was pretty hacky for a long time. Markus just bashed it together to make it work and then kept on kludging bits onto it. It all worked out nicely in the end for him though, no?

Cas Smiley
10  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Why is Minecraft bad? on: 2016-08-10 09:30:02
Mostly jealous programmers trying to figure out why they, with their perfectly designed cathedrals of worship to the alter of OOP, have not themselves made $2.5bn. When of course what it looks like under the hood is neither here nor there, it's the end result that's the important bit.

Cas Smiley
11  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: Hello gang! Hope all is well! - Missing JGO on: 2016-08-09 15:51:40
Still such a shame they didn't have the vision to back you up Sad

Cas Smiley
12  Game Development / Newbie & Debugging Questions / Re: getters and setters vs public vars on: 2016-08-06 20:39:14
64k is a Java VM spec limitation.

Cas Smiley
13  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Porting Native Windows Windows to Java on: 2016-08-05 21:41:01
You can already do irregularly shaped windows in AWT.

Cas Smiley
14  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Porting Native Windows Windows to Java on: 2016-08-05 12:11:04
What exactly is wrong with the AWT stuff? And of those wrong things, what bits aren't solved by LWJGL/JogAmp or SWT?

Cas Smiley
15  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: How much time will it take me to learn 3d game programming ? on: 2016-08-03 08:50:06
Actually that's exactly what it involves. And in a funny coincidence, why I was hired, which was to help design a system that doesn't kill every whale within 5 miles.

Cas Smiley
16  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: How much time will it take me to learn 3d game programming ? on: 2016-08-03 08:29:20
And it really isn't. Not even close. And not by any CS i know and I know a lot since it is my day job.
It's the second most complex* and difficult field I've encountered in my 37 years of programming. I think you may be being dismissive of the effort and knowledge and belittling the sheer brainpower that has gone into it... it ain't remotely easy. Not by even the most fanciful imagination.

Cas Smiley

* The most complex field I've been involved in is marine seismic exploration, where I am now
17  Java Game APIs & Engines / Java 3D / Re: How much time will it take me to learn 3d game programming ? on: 2016-08-02 08:30:07
delt0r is much more cleverer than wot I am. I find it to be extraordinarily difficult and it gives me major headaches. Admittedly a lot of the headaches are just caused by the fact that Java makes it rather difficult to do 3D graphics thanks to missing language features and so you spend half your time just scratching your head over pointless coding bugs which are incredibly difficult to track down (because usually the result is "black screen").

Cas Smiley
18  Game Development / Performance Tuning / Re: [libGDX] Can this small scanlines GLSL shader be further optimised? on: 2016-07-31 18:26:06
That shader is already about as efficient (and simple!) as it is possible to get. If you are therefore suffering a 50% frame rate drop when you turn it on, it would probably be the case that you are up against the fill rate limit of your GPU... which I imagine is a terrible, terrible GPU.

Cas Smiley
19  Games Center / Showcase / Re: Red Defense - Tower Defense Game on: 2016-07-29 23:03:58
The video concept looks pretty neat actually. Just needs a lick of paint and some polish.

Cas Smiley
20  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What I did today on: 2016-07-25 09:09:26
I am still waiting for a day when (especially non-indie) devs will finally start caring about security and doing online games right instead of just complaining that their game got hacked... Smiley
This won't happen, because games programmers rarely have any experience in the real world at large doing more diverse software engineering. One of the most pertinent indicators of these developers' inexperience in mature software development is the fanatical devotion to C++ and the almost face-palmingly poor tradeoff of performance versus critical bugs, a decision no-one in their right mind has made in the rest of the IT industry for the last 15 years when we all moved to managed languages.

Cas Smiley
21  Java Game APIs & Engines / Engines, Libraries and Tools / Re: Is it a good idea to make your own library to write less code in the future? on: 2016-07-22 10:26:40
A rule of thumb we use in The Real World doing consultancy is that it takes roughly 3x as long to make a piece of code genuinely usefully reusable as it does to just write the bare minimum to get something to do what you want it to. So bear that in mind when spending time on reuse.

Cas Smiley
22  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What I did today on: 2016-07-17 10:34:44
Wrote a post on how LWJGL 3's approach to memory management enables clean and efficient code.
Great post, Spasi - very insightful and illuminating.

Cas Smiley
23  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: Oracle proposes deprecation of CMS in Java 9 on: 2016-07-17 09:56:18
G1 performed particularly badly for me - halving framerates in Battledroid. Not sure why.

Cas Smiley
24  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: JGO bounced back on: 2016-07-13 09:52:43
> crashed a few MyISAM tables beyond recovery.

Gah, a database has only one job to get right... Emo

Cas Smiley
25  Discussions / Miscellaneous Topics / Re: What I did today on: 2016-07-13 08:54:44
What happened to KevGlass? He always worked on super cool projects and had loads of experience...
edit: and Kappa!
Kev's still around (occasional post on Twitter as cokeandcode). He just doesn't say much Smiley

Cas Smiley
26  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: What does your dream language look like? on: 2016-07-06 11:47:48
The syntax is only different necessarily to distinguish it from Java's arrays-of-arrays style, which still has perfectly valid uses not to mention the fact it is a completely different implementation  and concept under the hood in the JVM... otherwise the basic behaviour is the same as normal C multidimensional arrays, which confusingly use Java's [][] syntax...

The thing I'm absolutely most looking forward to is value types, coming hopefully in Java 10.

Cas Smiley
27  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: What does your dream language look like? on: 2016-07-06 11:06:00
Aliases are a natural extension of import static, and we've survived import static without becoming confused. I think that as aliases are only locally used within a single file there's very little scope for confusion without deliberate attempts to confuse, and plenty of scope for reducing confusion by aliasing by giving things locally meaningful names.

Oracle have been working on a version of OpenJDK for iOS for the last 10 years and nothing has ever come of it, nor probably ever will. Don't hold your breath!

Multidimensional arrays: int[,] is conceptually different from int[][]. One is a single array object; the other is an array of arrays. Right now if we want to simulate multidimensional arrays we have to do difficult-for-the-compiler-to-optimise and prone-to-calculation-errors code like this:
1  
a[x + y * width + z * width * height] = ...

when we should in fact be letting the compiler figure all that out for us, doing correct bounds checking, and optimising away the checks where possible:
1  
a[x, y, z] ...


Especially useful for matrix math which basically uses tons of small 2D arrays of various sizes.

Cas Smiley
28  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: What does your dream language look like? on: 2016-07-06 09:39:51
I don't usually look for problems if an acceptable solution already exists Wink

Java has 8 pain points for me:

1. Difficulty targeting consoles / iOS
2. No value types / structs, rendering rather a lot of algorithms to be very slow compared to their C implementations or consume vast amounts of memory
3. I don't want operator overloading but I would rather like to define methods as being infix/prefix/suffix operators
4. A few tiny syntactic sugars like being able to write byte or short literals without the huge ugly cast
5. Fast foreign function interface implementation. Boy am I sick of JNI.
6. No proper multi-dimensional arrays
7. No way to alias ("import blah.bleh.StupidClassWithReallyLongName as ShortName")
8. I really miss C# extension methods but I have a feeling I'm doing something immoral or naughty so the jury's out on that one Wink

It does more or less everything else perfectly well for every use I've so far put it to.

Cas Smiley
29  Discussions / Business and Project Management Discussions / Re: How to package game files on: 2016-07-06 08:22:42
@ndnwarrior15 take a look at what we do with our games... (Windows, Mac, and Linux builds of all of them to look at).
Note complete lack of being arsed to stop people poking in the jars. Though we do use our own file format for images for historical reasons which makes them a bit more awkward to pinch.

Cas Smiley
30  Discussions / General Discussions / Re: What does your dream language look like? on: 2016-07-06 08:20:33
I'd start with Java and make a few tweaks here and there. Some to increase readability, some to increase performance. Oddly enough most of what I want is scheduled for Java 9 and 10.

Cas Smiley
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