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I can has a blag!

September 9, 2008

So, my name is Bill Whitacre, I’m 17, and I live in the United States. I’ve decided to start a blog so as to let my friends (the few that I have) keep up with what I’m doing. What I do is a lot of different things. This will be my introductory peice, and will therefore be long. So here goes. If you want a summary, look at the bottom.

I am a very experienced programmer, as I have been playing with computers since I was 5 for one reason: to learn to program. I am an enormously patriotic Ubuntu user, and insist annoyingly that you say GNU/Linux. Come on people, most of most Linux systems is GNU, so giving them half the name only seems fair. Now, you might ask yourself “Why would some five year old kid be all ‘hurr hurr must learn to program lol’?” Well, my dad was a programmer for most of my early childhood, and he regularly showed me his fun side projects. My strongest memory of a project of his is the O’s program. Basically it was for DOS, and it had random platforms made of minus signs. Then there were these O’s that spilled from the top of the screen and and flowed across the platforms making waterfall looking cascades at the edges, and just being amazed by how cool that was.

My known languages are C/C++, Python, Java, and Basic. I also know HTML/XML formats, and a very limited amount of JavaScript. I can make an interactive menu with JS and that’s about it. I am also very biased towards C as opposed to C++. I think that C++ is obnoxiously bloated, and there is honestly nothing more you can do with it. It simply makes things easier, but at the expense of weird memory management and bloated memory footprint, as well as bloated machine code. In C you can easily shoot yourself in the foot, but with a beebee gun. At worst you might lose a toe. In C++, the gun has the safety on when you pull the trigger, but in the off chance the safety failed you just blew your whole fucking leg off with a pump action 10-gauge shotgun. And you’d fix the safety, but it turns out the safety mechanism on the gun is some quantum gizmo, so there’s no hope.

I’m also a hardcore gamer, and also a big follower of Indie games. My favorites right now are Cortex Command and World of Goo. These are a mere taste of the genius of the Indie game movement. And don’t just think ‘ooh ooh 2D games lol old.’ That’s retarded, stop thinking in terms of ‘old’ and ‘new.’ These games are incredible because they introduce completely different gameplay mechanics in one way or another, stuff that’s never been played before, and that’s fun. And not all indie games are 2D. It’s just that 3D games often take larger development teams, and most indie developers do not have so many people. Some CAN produce 3D games though, and do so.

But I love some mainstream stuff too, with the exception of Halo, which is just absolutely the most unoriginal thing. Halflife 2 and it’s various episodes are far better as FPS games, because of their story and unique content. Also, Nintendo owns all those Microcrap and Sony fools with the Zelda and Metroid series’ awesomeness. The best RPGs ever, and with the Metroid Prime games actually being a hybrid RPG/FPS. Wicked! Another good game: Pikmin. I know, hilarious. No, it’s awesome. As horror games go, I would have to say Silent Hill 2 is still my favorite. I didn’t sleep for about three days or so.

I am also a fair musician; I play guitar with a reasonable amount of skill. When I was about five (yes five again, maybe that’s just when I started taking an interest in stuff seriously) I saw some street musician playing a guitar jovially and whatnot, and stood completely transfixed. Honestly, it was the first instrument I’d seen in person, and I wanted to play it right away.

I’ve been messing around on accoustic guitars a long time. First I had a tiny little Harmony, and when that got too small I got a full size Sonata. Until I was about fourteen I played stuff out of a book and gained valuable techical skill with the guitar. Eventually I stopped taking lessons because I didn’t want to do what they wanted me to anymore, and just started playing whatever I felt like.

For a long time I just kind of discovered things on my own and developed my own style. For about two years I’ve been reading about music theory and applied guitar methods, and integrating that with my own style. At this point I have a wide range of melodies and beats I’ve worked up, but only just recently decided to start working some of them in to songs. I don’t sing, so no lyrics for you. Period.

I also follow music obsessively. Not really obsessively, but enough to be ‘in to it.’ My favorite bands are Pink Floyd, Kansas, Opeth, Rush, Led Zeppelin, The Black Keys, and Death Cab for Cutie. On the indie front I’m in to Tunng, The Shins, Bloc Party, and The Killers. If there isn’t enough music geekery there I don’t know what else to say. My taste ranges from Classical to Folk to Rock to Metal, and I enjoy lots of deep emotional melody, philosophical lyrics, as well as elements of psycholdelic rock and progressive rock. I try to keep an open mind in music and accept genres that I don’t understand neccesarily, but I cannot stand gangsta rap. And that’s not just rap in general either, I like some rap, but that violent angry gangsta bullshit is ten times more offensive than metal, and yet it’s metal that’s considered to be satanic. Get some perspective, people. It’s loud and abbraisive, but it doesn’t have anything to do with some magical meanie man or whatever.

So that’s the scoop. This is the summary: I’m a programmer, musician, and gamer. Also, some random but important stuff I didn’t really cover in the body: I’m also in to graphic art and more recently along the lines of programming stuff, PIC microcontrollers. I’m working on a large multimedia library called Rampancy Engine that will represent a large portion of my games to come. My long term plans are basically in indie game development, and I hope to be at the IGF someday soon. I am also working towards college through a GED right now, as I have been fed up with the corruption of the public school system’s teachers, and the bratty preppy students who don’t give a fuck about anything they’re supposed to be learning. Not only that, but the education itself is corrupt. So, I’ll be off to college. I’m using a local college as a jumpstart for a big engineering school.

Anyway, I’ll be posting again when I feel like it. Perhaps on specific subjects, or maybe under etcetera again.

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