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Did you miss important information?

Google just sent me a mail with a poll, asking me why I visited their help pages two hours ago. They want to know if I found what I was looking for. Besides the fact that this is already quite unbelievable, the poll in the mail didn't have an option like "Because last time, your CENSORED human support guy told me that I was making up the bug and that I must be wrong". Argl.



irrKlang for your Mac App Store projects

If you are planning to publish a game on the Mac App Store, you obviously need some code to play sounds and music. I have some software on there as well, and I know that the Apple review team can get a bit picky and might decide to reject your app if something isn't as they want it to be. So if you are looking for a software library to play sound and music, irrKlang also might be an option for you. There are now three games using that library on the App Store, so it looks like it works. Nice. :)



The Pale Blue Dot

Beautiful:


..and somehow depressing.



WebsitePainter 1.4 released

I just released an update for my web editor 'WebsitePainter'. New features are for example a german language translation (wasn't too difficult since it is my native language), support for Quicktime videos, Youtube videos, HTML 5 audio, support for creating external CSS files, improved FTP upload, and new templates. One of the templates looks like this:

websitepainter black green template


I like this one especially because I took the picture of the rocks myself. They look quite unreal, but yes, they really exist. :)



Why WebGL doesn't work in Firefox 4 on some systems? Solution here.

Finally, Firefox has been released in version 4. This release also includes WebGL, yay! So if you try out some demos, like the WebGL Demos of CopperCube, and it tells you that your browser doesn't support WebGL, this might be because Firefox thinks your 3D drivers are too old. There are two solutions for this:

So, great, now creating 3D content for the web is pretty simple. Try out CopperCube once you have some time. ;)



My troubles in Starcraft 2

From time to time I play online games. As player name, I usually choose the one I used in nearly all games since about 15 years, and that is 'Irrlicht'. I eventually also implemented a now quite popular open source 3D engine and named it accordingly. Yesterday, I played a round of Starcraft 2. So this short chat started in game:

Other player: Irrlicht?
Irrlicht: Yes?
Other player: Did you name yourself after that programming package?
Irrlicht: No. I named it after my player name.
Other player: What?
Irrlicht: I originally wrote that 3d engine.
Other player: Of course you did.

Great. Well, at least I've also lost that match.



Molten salt reactor

Because of the recent events, I came across molten salt reactors. Never heard of those before, but apparently, they are much safer, cheaper and basically better. There is for example not the risk of a reactor meltdown because of their architecture. The only apparent reason that they are not in use is political: The companies building the current types of reactors simply didn't want to switch, since they had all work done already for building the types of reactors currently in use. Interesting stuff.



My last offer

Since I started my company Ambiera a few years ago, it was a lot of fun. And as several people predicted, I also had a lot of strange experiences. One of them happend some weeks ago:

A guy approached me and seemed to be interested in buying my companies flagship product, CopperCube. But he didn't want to buy a license for the editor, but the editor itself, so he can sell it himself. Basically, I'm open for all kinds of business requests, even if this is selling one of my main products. If the buyer guarantees to continue development on the product so that the customers are kept happy, and maybe even has more resources for this than me, I think I would be ok with that too. But it went like this (drastically shortened):

Guy: I want to buy your editor. You transfer all rights of it to me and I go on developing it and sell it on my own. Is this possible?
Me: With some restrictions, basically yes. But it's one of my main products, and that means that this won't be very cheap.
Guy: I can give you 500 euro.
Me: Seriously? You realize that this is less than two professional licenses for the editor?
Guy: I can offer you 20% of all sold licenses additionally.
Me: Ahem. So you say you want to transfer all exclusive rights of my software to you for basically nothing, and offer me a fifth of what I get now? Why should I do that?
Guy: 25%. My last offer.
Me: No, thanks.


I'm still not sure if I have become the victim of a troll. Or if the guy at the other end was slightly confused. But this is a good example of the strange things which happen to you from time to time when running a software company. You basically sit there wondering about what just happened. :)



Irrlicht - from Noob to Pro

Didn't know about this free wikibook: Irrlicht - from Noob to Pro, a german book about the irrlicht engine created by Onkeltorty. Great work!



Advertising and Online Game Magazines

I just browsed to one of the online game magazines/websites I read, and was presented with their main page, looking like this:


I know the only source of income for those websites are ads, but seriously, Krawall? Really? Take a closer look. Do you see where the actual content of the website is?


Yes, it's only that small white rectangle in the middle. They can't be serious about that. And it doesn't look much better on other websites. Dear gaming sites: Don't be surprised that most of your users now prefer using social media for their gaming news.



WebGL 1.0 is ready

Khronos just released the final WebGL 1.0 specification. That's great. Also, all major browsers except from Internet Explorer are already working on supporting this: Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera. I also like this report from golem.de (german), they are showing my WebGL 3D engine, CopperLicht as first video :)



Reconsidering 7z

The more I used 7-zip, the more I liked it. It compresses much better then for example .zip, and that's what it is good for. But I wouldn't recommend it for doing backups and similar. If there is one byte damaged, you usually can forget the whole archive. For .zip, every file is compressed separately, so it isn't that severe, if something goes wrong, it is usually possible to repair the damage or even work with it.