Programming in the first two weeks of 2021

It’s been a pretty busy 2 weeks. I’ve basically either been finishing up end of year blog posts or programming. Let’s jump in!

Extra Life Donation Tracker

I have the 5.3 release of my Extra Life Donation Tracker. I had a few minor refactoring goals for that release, but also a few user-facing enhancements. I added in the ability to grab the user’s avatar as well as their team’s avatar. They can now use that as an input in either XSplit or OBS. During these two weeks I also fixed a user-reported bug on crashes if a donor had emoji in their name. Oh emoji, you’re the bane of my programming existence!

On the more developer side, I decided to get rid of the devel branch. Others online had told me it was a bad idea to have 2 long-running branches. It’s been less of an issue since there really isn’t anyone else developing with me. But, it was really there as a stopgap before Github’s CI system came out. I started to realize there wasn’t really any point to it. When I would work on a new branch, I would run a bunch of Pytest against it and the CI system would create a Windows executable I could use for testing. So having a separate devel branch no longer made sense.

Impractical Python

I finished the English Civil War chapter and learned a bit more about encryption and Python. You can see my solutions and what I learned on my Github repo.

NASA Background downloader

I’m sure there are tons of scripts in every language to accomplish the same thing, but I customized mine to the way I work. Essentially, each day I go to NASA’s image of the day. I download the image and analyze whether it’s square, long, or tall. Based on that, I put it in the proper backgrounds directory. As you can see, I like to use it on my main desktop:

I’m not quite ready to share the code yet as I’m still working out some of the kinks, but I hope it will soon help me to clear up some of the clutter in my news reader.

RTS Unity Game

Progress continues on the GameDev.TV online multiplayer RTS class I’m taking. Here’s a video with my latest progress:

As I said in my end of year programming blog post, I’ve learned a lot, but when it comes time to create my own online multiplayer game, I’m definitely going to have to come back and revisit this class. Luckily, a lot of the concepts are very repetitious. That helps both with learning and also with figuring out what to do. I’ve also learned how to do IPC in C# (or at least one way of doing it).

Scratch Jr with Stella

I really prefer vanilla Scratch to Scratch Jr. I really hate working on tablets. That was solidified today when I was trying to create a new character in Scratch Jr and the cursor kept being offset from my finger. That said, the book we’re using, The Official Scratch Jr. Book, is really well written. Next time Stella and I will be making actual games. That should be a lot of fun.

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