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January 28, 2004

(update to old post)

Looking at the previous post, I realize I'd better write a quick update, LOL... My wife and I are not still living with my parents -- we found an apartment a few months ago. My long commute is almost ending -- I'll soon be transferred to a facility close to home. Life is great, and getting better all the time. :)

July 3, 2003

My whole life has changed, during the past few months. I thought attending E3 would be a terrible break in my progress, back in May, since I was on a role with my cavern designs. I told myself that as soon as this incredible week in California was over, I would immediately update this page with new screenshots and information. Little did I know that I would be moving to California a few weeks later!

A day after I returned from E3, my wife was verbally abused at work and quit her job. Since we were planning to move to CA anyway, and since my job would eventually require it, we finished packing and got out of Florida ASAP. It took a week of driving, followed by weeks of being broke, but we're finally settled and working full time again. Actually, it's more than full time for me...

My job requires a full hour commute, each way, not including time spent waiting at the office for my ride. This will change eventually, when we can afford our own apartment instead of staying with my parents temporarily. My time at home is from 7pm to 10pm, after which I must get to sleep so I can wake up and do it all again at 6am. That's 3 hours at home per day. =(

Time has become extremely valuable to me lately. Those three hours are quickly absorbed by family & friends that haven't seen me in almost two years, and by going running, and by my sister's baby that was born THE night we finished our cross-country drive. I don't know how long I can keep this up, but it's good money and I need lots of it!

So, on to Zelda3C, which is probably why you stopped by. The project is NOT dead, but it is significantly delayed for a while. I can still work on the game during weekends, and believe me, I love doing so. I still intend to update this page "for real" with pictures and progress reports. Life-in-general is really demanding of me, but I just wanted to let everyone know that I'm fighting against it. I'm very anxious to resume work on Calatia, and you'll be hearing from me again soon. Thanks for being so patient!!!

March 6, 2003

The only thing worse than having a bug in your program is forgetting, over time, what exactly you wanted to fix! About a month ago, I had been working really hard on the overworld, when suddenly I realized that only a fraction of my desired search results were appearing! I'd ask for blocks containing both mountains and water, for example, and only some of them would come up. After all the work I'd put into saving search results as external files (for quick reference), I was furious and frustrated that I'd have to generate many of them all over again. So, any time I considered working on Zelda3C, I'd say, "Not yet, I'm still mad at it!" I was dreading trying to fix that bug, because the logic involved just twists my mind into a pretzel! But today, I finally opened it up, and delved into the programming code. And for the longest time, I couldn't remember WHY the search results were being limited!

If you're still reading this post, then maybe you're interested in what the problem actually was. I'd better tell you, before I forget again! LOL, it's fixed now, but still... For AND searches, where a 32x32 block should have two separate attributes, the program was only yielding 32x32 blocks where one (or more) of its 16x16 blocks had both attributes. It was supposed to be yielding 32x32 blocks in which, among the four 16x16 blocks, both attributes are found. (not just on the same fourth) Well, once I realized what the problem actually was, fixing it wasn't too much of a headache. I only wish I hadn't procrastinated and lost time over it.

I've made good progress on Zelda3C, however, before this issue came up. Along with the obligatory new puzzles and concepts I've developed while, for example, bored stiff at the laundromat, I've created more programs that other Zelda 3 hackers will probably scream (in vain) to have. One of them automagically tells me every block in Hyrule that is ever adjacent to a given block. Say for example, I have this great tree block that has the perfect fence alongside it. I simply *must* use this tree block. But in spite of my searching, I just *can't* find a block that fits properly to the east of it. This program reads a custom-built database of Hyrule, lists every time my favorite block has ever been used, and for each usage, tells me what was placed to the east of it. Obviously, there might be several other blocks that could be placed beside the chosen block, yet had never been placed alongside it in Hyrule's map. But it's nice to have *some* appropriate blocks laid out before me; never underestimate the power of suggestion. :)

My apologies to any of you who want copies of these Excel macro programs, and/or the database I created through months of data entry. I'm only writing about them to dismiss the idea that Zelda3C isn't progressing. Most of my efforts have been programming-related, but in the long run, it'll save me a LOT of time. I'm very anxious to start putting screen shots and quest-related progress on this site -- hopefully I'm finally past the major hurdles for doing so. Playing Zelda64's Master Quest while waiting for Wind Waker has been a major inspiration, so I have lots I want to accomplish!

Questions? Ideas? Suggestions?
Write to me!

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