It’s hard to believe that the last couple of months have flown by so fast and summer is almost here. I am starting to understand that time somehow speeds up when you are a parent, which is sort of the opposite of what you’d expect, since a growing baby also makes you acutely aware of the passage of time. It can easily stress you out if you stop and think about it too much, but I’ve been making an effort to relax and enjoy my leisure time a little more as of late. That means less blogging and tweeting, believe it or not. My workaholic side usually makes me feel guilty and unproductive whenever I’m not doing something “creative”, but I realize that’s weird and not entirely healthy. Fortunately, fatherhood is quickly becoming a pretty satisfying creative project in its own right. Now if I could just nod off while watching a hockey game and not wake up feeling panic or remorse, I’d be in pretty good shape.
Alicia’s Macbook died a couple of weeks ago (don’t get me started on Macs!). Fortunately it wasn’t the hard drive, so we didn’t lose any photos or videos, but it did remind me that we really should start backing everything up to the cloud because, well, it’s the year 2012 and you can do that now. I’ve been taking advantage of Apple’s iCloud on my iDevices, but now Google recently announced that they are launching Google Drive. They offer 5 GB for free (just like iCloud) but the pricing is a lot cheaper if you want to increase it. I think I’m also going to give Carbonite a test run before I decide what I want to use.
Speaking of Google, their Project Glass video went viral a while back and caused a bit of a stir. The video illustrates how a pair of internet-enabled glasses with an augmented reality heads-up display might work in real life. It was quickly parodied and became a bit of a joke, but I suspect this is a lot closer to reality than most of us realize. They just have to figure out how to prevent people from walking into traffic while wearing them.
I was a little bit dubious when AMC announced that they were setting up a reality series to capture the modern day equivalent of Mad Men, but I have to admit that I am pretty hooked on The Pitch after watching the first two episodes. The competition between two marketing firms forms a classic reality TV structure for each episode, and the personalities involved are pretty varied and unique. Before I was a computer programmer, I had considered getting into marketing. I now realize that it would be way too stressful, but strangely, I see a lot of parallels with the video game industry.
The tech world is still reeling from Facebook’s recent $1 billion acquisition of Instagram, and although it seems like a lot of money for a bunch of photo filters, I am starting to see why it might be so valuable. There was a point where I too thought it was just a gimmick and a fad, but then I realized that I was sharing random photos on Instagram without sharing them anywhere else and checking for updates on a regular basis. On the flip side, I can’t remember the last time I uploaded a photo to Flickr. For the average person, photo sharing is all about convenience and the ability to add just a little bit of artistic flair. Which reminds me, this article is kind of fun.
As someone who grew up on early Sierra games and other adventure games that existed before the “point and click” interface took over, I’ve always wanted to write my own text adventure games. I tried making a few on the Commodore 64 when I was a kid until I realized that they are a little too complicated to pull off with a few billion “if” statements. The recent launch of PlayFic, however, has me itching to dabble in interactive fiction again. It’s basically a web-based community for creating and sharing games written with Inform 7. I know no one is interested in games without pictures anymore, but there are still annual IF competitions. Maybe I’ll start playing around with this and see where it goes.