Tag: Projects

  • SuccessWhale.com Discontinued as of Today

    As far as I know, SuccessWhale is not being actively used by anyone any more, so I have chosen not to renew the domain name successwhale.com when it expires today. Like most of my past web-based projects, it will continue to live on at an onlydreaming.net subdomain, in this case sw.onlydreaming.net, but will not be actively maintained there.  As well as its graphical web interface, SuccessWhale also has a back-end API that used to run on a SuccessWhale subdomain. This has now moved to https://successwhale-api.herokuapp.com/. The OnoSendai Android client already uses this address for the API as of update 479, so you may need to update.

  • Planning the Wind-Down

    It’s been five years now since, full of enthusiasm and convinced that SuccessWhale might make it big, I bought myself a server in London somewhere, and moved my web presence over from its previous shared hosting.

  • A Sea Battle Update?!

    “Sea Battle” was a casual 2D real-time strategy game that I put together in a few days back in 2010, and documented in a series of blog posts at the time. It’s lain dormant ever since, but I picked it up again today while bored and made a couple of tweaks.

  • The Constructorium Story

    “Hackerspaces”, or “Makerspaces” are very much an idea whose time has come. The analogy I liked to use most was that of a “community garden shed”—they are places run by the community, where any member can come along and work on their personal projects and collaborate with others.

  • A Base Hardware Set for USV Control

    Here’s a thing that I don’t have, wouldn’t have time to use, and really shouldn’t buy. But a thing that I really want anyway. It can do 40 knots.

  • Blast From the Past: Dragon’s Claw’s Chromatic Skill System

    Back in the dim and distant past of my school days, Dreaming Awake was called “Dragon’s Claw” and was going to be a video game rather than a book. As far as I can tell from trawling the Internet Archive, not much was posted about it online, but for some reason today I remembered the design work we did on its skill system.

  • Vivarium Automation: Requirements and Component Spec

    It’s a little over a month until we are getting our first pet – a crested gecko. Joseph has decided that if it’s female it will be called “Scarlet”, and Eric has decided that if it’s male it will be called “Rimbaud” after the surrealist poet, partially because it is also a homonym of “Rambo”. I almost hope we get a female as it will be easier to explain.

  • The End of the Road for SuccessWhale’s Facebook Support?

    My SuccessWhale application has long supported both Twitter and Facebook social networks, despite both networks’ relatively developer-hostile stances. The worst offender by far was Twitter, with it’s 100,000 user limit that has deliberately crippled many third-party clients in order to drive users to the official website and app, which make money for Twitter through adverts. While I was never under any delusion that SuccessWhale would be popular enough to reach 100,000 users, it’s not a nice thing to have hanging over your head as a developer.

  • Fun with Playbulb

    Playbulbs are colour LED lights sold by a company called Mipow. They come with an iOS and Android app that can set their colour and various patterns via Bluetooth. There’s no security on them whatsoever, so any nearby device can connect and change their colour. That seems pretty bad — especially when you consider that as well as the small “candle” style lights we have, they also sell room lighting versions that play music and can probably flash fast enough to trigger photosensitive epilepsy. Controlled by your neighbours!

  • All-Terrain Raspberry Pi!

    Another year, another childrens’ toy with a Raspberry Pi needlessly attached to it.

  • SuccessWhale 3.0 Released

    It turns out that my previous post about SuccessWhale, bemoaning how it had stagnated and become more trouble than it was worth, was just enough venting to kick me up the arse and get me going again. And so, not long later, I am proud to announce the release of SuccessWhale version 3.

  • Like Father, Like Son

    I knew the day was coming soon, when my son would decide that he wanted to make his computer do something new, something a computer had never done before. I thought that like me when I was a little more than his age, he’d sit down in front of his computer and type his first “hello world” in some child-friendly language.

  • State of the Whale Address

    It’s no secret that the current state of my SuccessWhale social network client is not a good one. It currently exists in three forms:

  • Fun with Quadcopters

    Over the weekend, my friend Alex visited us and brought his quadcopter in tow. I’ve bee trying my best to dump ideas on the internet and avoid buying my own extremely expensive remote control toys, but I can see the day I give in getting closer.

  • ChromeCopter 2000

    I’ve been asked several times whether I would be attending various Nodecopter events, even more so now that the fledgling hackerspace I am part of is getting to know about my love of robots.

  • Announcing: "Can I Call It…?"

    There are a whole host of decisions involved with starting a new software project. What’s my target audience? What language shall I write it in? Which libraries shall I use? And of course, “What shall I call it?”

  • Fuck it, Let’s Remake TweetDeck. Only Better.

    It’s no secret that, since the launch of version 2.0 back in July of 2011, my SuccessWhale social network client has stagnated somewhat. It had reached that point at which it did everything that I needed it to do, and so my enthusiasm for updating it kind of disappeared.

  • "Goddamnit, PHP", Episode 587

    If any of my readers are also SuccessWhale users, you may have noticed that for the last few days, clicking the “Conversation View” button for a tweet has resulted in a message declaring that you have tried to look at a “protected or deleted tweet” even though that is plainly not the case.

  • Seeking a Final Film Review (by the Numbers)

    It’s getting on for two years since I first drunkenly mocked a film in “By the Numbers” style.  I’m now onto my eighty-third and slowly but surely running out of ideas and interesting things to mock.  I think a round hundred would be a good place to stop, so I’m taking suggestions as to what the next sixteen films should be, and particularly what I should end on.

  • SuccessWhale is Terrifying: VPS Edition

    Just under two years ago, my SuccessWhale Twitter client was gaining new users at a steady rate and, as I noticed with alarm, was about to blow through my then-limited bandwidth allowance.

  • Announcing: SuccessWhale version 2.0!

    Ladies and Gentlemen of the Internet, I am pleased to announce that SuccessWhale version 2.0 has just been released and is now live on sw.onlydreaming.net.

  • Promises Fallen by the Wayside

    Nearly six months ago, I sketched out some ideas for a site then called “healthi.ly”, since renamed to Daily Promise. In time I coded it up, made it public, and made the same commitment I have to other sites in the past – 20 active users gets it its own domain and investment of time and effort. Less than that, and it goes how it goes.

  • SuccessWhale: Considering the Reply UI

    What was once my simple Twitter client, SuccessWhale, is undergoing a lot of changes in the build-up to version 2. One of the biggest changes is the support for multiple services, of which Facebook is the first to be integrated. This, combined with the Twitter website’s new design, brings into question SuccessWhale’s “reply” UI.

  • Autonomous Quadrocopter: What and Why?

    It’s now been two years since I last did any work involving autonomous vehicles, and I’m kind of disappointed by the lack of that kind of work. Writing software for big data acquisition systems is all well and good, but it lacks a certain something – I just don’t get attached to them in the way that I do to vehicles such as this one.

  • Announcing: Daily Promise!

    After a couple of weeks of development – documented here, here and here – I think I’m ready to call Daily Promise version 1.0.

  • Daily Promise: Avatars Everywhere!

    After a couple of days and one frantic family-free morning, Daily Promise is getting near completion. Here’s what’s new since last time.

  • Daily Promise: Coming Together

    Despite the lack of response to my earlier post, in which I floated my design concepts for “Daily Promise”, boredom won out in the end and I started coding anyway.

  • Daily Promise: Design Sketches

    Current flavour of the month of some of the geek crowd, “Health Month”, is a social network of sorts on which users compete to achieve certain health-related goals. Each month, each member sets a number of goals for themselves to achieve. Its core mechanic is health points – you start with 10, lose one every time you fail to meet a goal, and players who perform well can heal you.

  • Sea Battle: Of Ships and Submarines

    The distinction between surface ships and submarines in Sea Battle has turned out to be a more thorny issue than I originally imagined.

  • Sea Battle: Here Comes the Science Bit

    Another day down, and somehow Sea Battle is remarkably close to the finish line. (No idea what I’m talking about? See previous blog entries 1, 2 & 3.)

  • Sea Battle: That’s what Guns are for!

    Another day – or three, in this case – brings another ton of functionality for Sea Battle. (Previous posts: 1, 2)

  • Sea Battle, now with more Processing

    Nearly a month ago now, I blogged some sketches and ideas for a game I felt like writing. masterofwalri made a passing reference to Processing in his comment, and having heard people mention it in the past, I figured I should check it out.

  • For the Discerning Lady or Gentleman, SuccessWhale version 1.1

    The sudden proliferation of peoples’ syndicated tweets from sources such as Foursquare and Fallen London annoys me far more than it should. Any more sensible old grouch would pick up his pipe, don slippers and write a strongly-worded letter to the local newspaper about how this ‘checking in’ business is corrupting society.

  • Game Idea Spam Time!

    One of the games I remember liking from what I was shocked to discover was 11 years ago was Warzone 2100. It’s actually one of the rare examples of an Abandonware game that’s been taken and updated on by a loyal community – over a decade since it was first released, they’re working on version 3.0. (You can download it from here, completely free.)

  • a thousand words: Finishing Touches

    The vast majority of user-reported bugs and requested features on “a thousand words” have now been sorted out. As requested by my co-conspirator Eric, we now have an ‘adult content’ filter based on a date of birth field in users’ profiles, and a ‘report’ button to bring problematic stories and pictures to the attention of the moderators. There’s also a DeviantArt-style “request critique” option to let users know what kind of comments you’re looking for.

  • a thousand words: Alpha, Beta

    “a thousand words” has now reached a stage where every feature that I give a damn about is implemented. Thus, we’re opening it up to a limited beta test to iron out the wrinkles and get a list of any features potential users would like to see us launch with. If you’re bored or simply have a love of breaking other people’s shit, head along to http://athousandwords.org.uk and see what hell you can raise. As the Big Red Box Text warns you, really don’t submit any work of fiction you care about, just in case some kind soul finds an SQL injection vulnerability and trashes the database.

  • a thousand words: Hot Profilin’ Action

    A few days’ laziness (by which I mean a few days’ Starcraft) have passed with not much work being done on “a thousand words”. That came to an end tonight, with a productive evening resulting in a working profile system so that users can now add and display personal information, change their registered e-mail address and password, etc.

  • a thousand words: GETting and POSTing

    Another day, another bunch of functionality added to a thousand words. With the main public-facing interfaces largely complete, I have moved on to the guts of the site’s user interaction. The site now has working, but ugly, implementations of:

  • a thousand words: First Sketches

    With the main browsing UI for a thousand words up and running, it’s time to bore the world with more pointless trivia before moving on. Today: design sketches!

  • a thousand words: A New Timesink has Arrived!

    Somehow unable to cope with actually having free time of an evening, I have taken on yet another project which will doubtless push me deeper into the dark, untamed wilds of the internet, the land stalked only by the mysterious beast known as the “web developer”.

  • The Technology of Westminster Hubble

    For anyone interested (yes this is mostly for you, @HolyHaddock), Westminster Hubble is written in a combination of PHP and JavaScript, with a MySQL database as its backend.

  • Announcing: Westminster Hubble!

    Ladies and gentlemen of the blogosphere, I am proud to announce the release of a new website. This is what I have been winding up most of my Twitter followers for the last two months by referring to it only as “Super Secret Project #1”. Its name is Westminster Hubble.

  • Farewell, Dynamic Democracy

    Back in April, the Digital Economy Bill was rushed through the wash-up procedure of the outgoing government without the due debate and consideration that I and others believe such a far-reaching bill deserved. My disillusionment with the government decision-making process over the following week led me to set up and announce a new site, called “Dynamic Democracy”. It was an experiment to see what would be discussed if everyone was involved – on an anonymous basis – rather than just our elected representatives that often do not do a good job of representing us anyway.

  • An Experiment in Dynamic Democracy

    Dynamic Democracy

  • SuccessWhale is Terrifying

    On 29th August, I released my PHP/JavaScript Twitter client, SuccessWhale. I would like to take this opportunity to say HOLY FUCK.

  • Announcing: Full Width Facebook Lite

    Do I blog anything these days apart from new software? Oh well, here goes:

  • Announcing: SuccessWhale!

    For the last few days I’ve been working on a simple web-based Twitter client, to fill the void between the simplicity of Twitter’s own web interface and the broken-in-IE6 complexity of BeTwittered and Seesmic Desktop’s web interface.

  • PLFF Team Picker Now Online!

    In a fit of last-minute coding, I’ve produced version 0.1 of my automated team-picker for the Premier League’s Fantasy Football game. (If you’re intending on playing, you only have 12 hours left to get your team in before the start of the season!)

  • TFF Team Picker went Cloud-wards

    For the three of you who care, my Telegraph Fantasy Football team picker just got fiddled with.

  • TFF Team Picker hits v1.0!

    After a spree of lunchtime coding today, my Telegraph Fantasy Football Team Picker has finally hit v1.0.

  • Gunboat (Early Preview)

    As part of my irrational desire to teach myself OpenGL programming, I’m making a game that’s (currently at least) called Gunboat. It’s a fairly slow-paced 2D shooter that has the player in command of a ship, protecting a harbour from an attacking fleet.