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{ Category Archives } Gaming Miniconf

Programmer art, it’s deadly!

So one of the other things I worked on at was a project Joel Stanley started, “Open Velociraptor Per Child, the Game!”.

The game comes out of the Open Velociraptor Per Child project’s ideas. The OVPC project aims to give every child in the world their very own Velociraptor. The game simulates what would happen if this project was ever to achieve it’s wonderful but lofty goal.

My main contribution was adding support for (very bad) collision detection, scoring and difficult levels. However, what I spent most of my time was spent making bad programmer art, that of the particularly gruesome child death animation. I like to think it was this artwork that meant we won top spot at the Gaming Miniconf competition, beating the “Shave Bdale” game.

You can download the game from the git repository. Have fun!

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Gaming Miniconf Videos

At 2008 the AV team did a great job of recording the main conference and almost all the talks can be downloaded from the main website. They where however, unable to record all the miniconf proceedings. I ran the Gaming Miniconf again and like last year I was able to record the proceedings myself. It took me a while, but I have finally finished encoding the videos and you can now download the videos. They should be of similar quality to the main conference videos.

The day on a whole was fairly successfully and there where lots of interesting talks, panels and tutorials. One of the coolest talks was Douglas Bagnall’s “Playing with Crayons“, while we had a number of technical difficulties with getting his laptop talking to the projector (he has an evil Nvidia card), it was really cool to learn about this program which turns a kid’s crayon drawing into a playable game. Douglas has now open sourced the code and looking to port it to the OLPC!

We also had some very cool panels sessions. The first was about using FOSS in Game Development education, we had some representatives from some of the top game education institutes in Australia. The second was an interesting licensing panel which includes Jessica Coats from Creative Commons Australia and Kimberly Weatherall – a former Rusty Wrench winner. I think our last panel was the best however, people got to grill representatives of the Australian commercial game industry on how they are using FOSS at their commercial game companies!

There where also some really good talks by Richard and Alex about pyglet, including the most impressive live coding I have ever seen. As the pyglet tutorial is so cool and I have also uploaded it to Google Video for your viewing pleasure. Of course, we couldn’t keep Rusty Russell away, he gave a short lightening talk about his new Pong Hero!

So why not download the Gaming Miniconf vidoes and take a look.

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LCA2008 all over :(

Well, I am back at work after spending last week at, it was a huge amount of fun and the organisers did a great job. I am really happy that I got to catch up with all the people cool I had not seen for almost a year. We managed to have a Thousand Parsec developer meeting which was pretty fruitful. As with last year, I ran the Gaming Miniconf and a large “Open Source Gaming” stand on Open Day.

The Gaming Miniconf was a little slow to start, my first speaker turned up late and my second speaker was unable to get his laptop to work with the projector. I was disappointed with the turn out during the morning, last year we easily had 70 people for most of the day, while this year it was closer to 40. The competition for people’s attention in the morning was tough, there where 8 other miniconfs running. The keynote speeches before the Miniconfs last year, really helped make everyone was getting out of bed.

I am much happier with the afternoon, things ran significantly smoother and the pyglet tutorial was a huge hit. It was amazing to watch Richard and Alex work, they really should give a main conference tutorial next year. I am currently encoding all the talks and hope to have them up very soon (for those who where silly enough to attend the wrong Miniconf). Watch this space for more information.

The Open Day was pretty cool, I would like to thank all the helpers – they did a great job and allowed me to concentrate on organising things (like setting up hardware and finding lunch for everyone). I do wish that the Open Day venue was much larger, it was rather cramped for most of the day. The open day is one of the best events we have to show the general public all the cool things FOSS is doing and I would like to see it become a bigger and longer event.

I belive that previously Miniconf organisers had been given the short end of the stick. The effort required to organise a Miniconf is significantly more then required for a talk, yet they received none of the perks or recognition that speakers did. I’m glad that the organising committee decided to make a change this year and I feel this small gesture made a huge difference.

Of course, I also managed to attended a number of cool talks. I would recommend going and watching some of them.

In the news!

As I have been organising the Gaming Miniconf, I was interviewed for a “blog” on ITWire. The post was finally publish today, you can find it here. It wasn’t to bad and the stuff comes of pretty positive.

Gaming Miniconf CFP open!

Just in case you missed this, the Gaming Miniconf has opened it’s call for participation. We are not just after presenters either!

This will be the second year that the Gaming Miniconf runs and with your help it will be even better. This Miniconf is not just a bunch of cool talks, it aims to be FUN! The Miniconf will be running some cool interactive demonstrations of FOSS games at the Open Day.

So why not come and participate in this exciting event?

The latest version of the announcement can always be found at woo!

As you may have already noticed, 2008 has announce that registrations are finally open, woot! If you are planning on coming, don’t forget to come to the best miniconf there is, the Gaming Miniconf! I am running it again this year and it is going to be packed with Gaming and Game Development goodness.

Much to my embarrassment I managed to accidentally announce the fact early to the channel, I just happened to check the website for some Gaming Miniconf business and noticed the registration button. Thinking I had missed the announcement (it has been long day) I hopped on to the channel to ask how long it had been opened. Turned out they had just started doing some testing and thanks to me the whole channel jump on being the first to register. Sorry guys!

I have booked my flights and registered, so I am all good to go.

Going to FreePlay

Well, I am going to FreePlay this weekend. I will be giving a talk about FOSS Game Development called “The best things in life are free”. If you are in Melbourne and have nothing to do on Saturday, why not come a long and see some cool talks?

I am running the Gaming Miniconf at LCA 2008 (I also ran it at 2007) which I will be advertising. I have also managed to organised to have 2008 postcards given out at the registration desk, which is pretty cool.