Cool Stuff

I will admit, I have no idea how to organize this thing. It is a massive behemoth of everything in my life with no good organization or purpose beyond getting things from my head to not-in-head status.

There is some cool stuff that is happening though. Not just with me, but in general. I will split it into stuff with me and then stuff that is not me.

Stuff With Me:

Tim and Matt Play:
My friend, Tim, and I started a let’s play channel on YouTube. Right now we are playing through a weird Russian game called Vangers. Tim played it a lot growing up (he didn’t have cable). It just came it out on Steam so there is no better time to tackle this weird one. We will be playing more and different games when Vangers is finished up so look for those if this proves to not be your thing.
Check us out out!

#NaNoWriMo
This is more of a heads up thing. Since this month is National Novel Writing Month, abbreviated as NaNoWriMo, I asked some friends if they wanted to do a collaborative novel where we would switch off days of writing. Mike and Tim (from above, the one who didn’t have cable) signed on and we have been doing a pretty good job. As of this post we have 14,788 words written between all of us. The goal is 50,000 words by the end of November. I can’t promise we will hit that, but we will definitely have a finished, long form story.

Tim and Mike are really talented writers and I am excited to read every portion each one of those guys contributes. It is a really interesting story and a great experience because you never know what you are going to be given to write about or how your portion will influence the direction of the overall plot and characters. I can’t wait to write, read, and share the rest.

Edit: I wrote this a while ago! NaNoWriMo has come and gone and we are going to tie up the story and release it. It’s pretty awesome.

Future Projects

Just to let you know what has been rattling around in my head and what is to come.

Photo Frame
I want to build a really awesome digital photo frame. It occurs to me that we have all these photos we take, but they mostly just sit in a folder or on an SD card somewhere. Kind of useless. There are digital photo frames out there, but they are usually slow, clunky, and are a pain to have new photos transfer to it.

My goal is to take a small computer (Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone Black) and have it drive an HD monitor. It will randomly pull photos from a central location over Wi-Fi without the need to ever update it. It will also pull from Instagram and Facebook to give you photos other people posted as well. The screen will be split into different sections and maybe display some rudimentary info beyond pictures.

Open Worm/More Robots
I heard about this a project that had mapped all the neurons of a simple creature’s brain, C. elegans nematode. It’s open source and can be modified to any application. A group of people hooked it up to a robot they built.

This robot has not been programmed for any behavior like “if you hit the wall turn around” it’s all based on the virtual neurons firing after some of the sensors give input. It is absolutely fascinating. I wanted to build a new robot after I finished up the one from senior design. This seems like a fantastic project. A real AI. It might be dumb, but it’s totally real.

Science and engineering are cool.

Stay tuned for more shenanigans.

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