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What I’m Up To

Hey everyone, I’ve received a couple emails asking about what I’m working on right now and I thought this would be a good news update in case people think I’m just twiddling my thumbs. If you don’t want to read this, I’ve made an ADHD version at the bottom. Here’s a breakdown of most things:

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THE WEBSITE - While most of the actual work is being done by Zachary Reidell and Jexius, I’m trying to manage some changes to the website I hope to get implemented. In short, I want it easier to create new episode pages and have more information added to each of the episode pages as well, including some notes I have for some of the episodes. I also plan on updating the FAQ and make it easier to navigate.

UPGRADING TO WINDOWS 7 - While this might be a simple procedure for some, I’ve been using Windows XP for a long time and I have a cornucopia of specialized software that I use, some of which is not compatible with 7 or at least the 64 bit version. I plan on setting up a virtual machine for the most incompatible stuff, but I’m trying to clean up all my files and determine everything I’ll need to reconfigure or reinstall. I also already use a custom GUI I made via Litestep, so adapting to a new OS can be an involved process for me.

VIDEO ENCODING TESTS - Since opinions are so divided on what format people want to download the videos in, I want to do some encoding tests on MKV and MP4 and see how they hold up, even when using VLC player.

CIVIL PROTECTION - There are some important bugs to isolate with the engine that I encountered when making The Tunnel. Once I can have the reproduced reliably, I’ll be looking for coding help to try and fix them, or else revert back to an earlier version of the source engine.

FREEMAN’S MIND - I want to stay true to my intention of being more regular with releases. While I haven’t decided on a new microphone to get yet, the next episode shouldn’t have too much shouting, so I plan on starting on that in the next day or two.

MOTION CAPTURE - I’m very interested in getting this up and running to see how much I can implement it into Civil Protection. I have the hardware I need, I just need more time to put into it.

SUBTITLES - With the help of some volunteers, I’m reviewing some of the submitted subtitles for the different episodes and hope to get more up soon.

SOUND EDITING MINI-CONTEST - I could use a backup sound editing person for future jobs that need extra help in the sound editing department. I plan to make an announcement on this later, but I have the perfect test in mind if people want to audition for this part. I don’t have the files ready yet, but I plan to get them done soon. All I can say is if you enjoy sound editing, you should enjoy this test. If you’re a sound editor and want to help out, let me know what video format for previews is most useful for you to work with when editing.

COMPOSER SHOWCASES - I still plan on having some posts dedicated to different composers who contributed towards “The Tunnel,” even if their music didn’t make it into the episode.

MICROPHONE RESEARCH - I’ve received lots of feedback on what microphones I should look into, which I need to sort through. I’ve also had at least one person claim that my problem lies with a lack of a compressor moreso than the mic, so I’m looking into that too.

ENGINE RESEARCH - While I really have my hands full with Civil Protection and Freeman’s Mind, I have tons of ideas for videos I want to work on, and one of which will be a very different format than anything I’ve done before (many different characters, continous storyline, longer content, etc.). It will still be comedy, but set in a medieval fantasy environment. Based on my research, I think the Dragon Age engine (Eclipse engine) will be the best choice for attempting this, even though the storyline won’t be based on anything from the game itself. This means I’ll have a new game engine to learn, which is likely to take a while.

T-SHIRTS - This is a low priority for me, but I eventually hope to get some t-shirts made due to viewer request with the show logos and/or some quotes with Freeman’s Mind along with accompanying artwork.

EMAILS - While I’ve caught up on a bunch of them, I still have many to reply to. I should reiterate that if your email is asking questions that are in the FAQ, you may not get a reply. Also type “cl_drawhud 0” in the game console to get rid of the HUD in Source-based games, since about 5-10% of my emails seem to be about that question alone.

GAMES - While this isn’t consuming a large portion of my time, I am YEARS behind on games I’ve been interested in playing. I actually haven’t had much downtime at all over the past several months. I went straight from finishing The Tunnel, to moving, to doing a series of Freeman’s Mind videos. In addition to catching up on everything else, I’m trying to at least have some more fun in between.

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ADHD version: Ross is working on lots of different things. He will start a new Freeman’s Mind soon.

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