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Latest Posts To: Developer Blogs

Strike Force Psi - dev blog 1

Since the last update I sent out to my team on Tuesday, I've made lots of changes and updates.  Including the following:
Added 'Buy' to pause menu if trial mode (360 only)
'Buy' on main menu if trial mode (360 only)
precision aiming 0-45 degrees (360 and pc with 360 controller only)
slowed autofire (hold button down), fast active fire (button tapping)
fixed floating in player death animation
added empty clip sound
replaced background music
lots of backend code clean up and optimizations
only draw visible items
powerups/collectibles as templates to add others easier
fixed crashing bug when enemies stacked and were shot with 1 bullet
enemies now follow player when visible on screen, otherwise resume patrolling
replaced 2 of 3 enemy graphics, unfortunately they look exactly the same at small size so I used my elite texturing skills to change 1 to gray
replaced gem images with a gold bar
changed HUD text color from yellow to red

One of the biggest updates is that we now have a youtube channel to showcase development in progress.  The most recent video is from the update before this one, but I should be doing a new one in a few days when I get the new background images in place.

--Tom

posted @ 1/23/2009 10:32 PM by TOgburn

Now posting from anywhere

I got a new iPhone today and I'm posting this while waiting for my truck yearly inspection. I should probably link in some twitter or other short message because a long blog will take a long time. Oh yeah, I've been working my day job a lot lately but I'm still making slow progress on my games. Expect to see one in about a month, around the time of the austin gdc. Now if only I had an easy way to do development while sitting here.

posted @ 8/9/2008 9:18 PM by TOgburn

New project and concerns

I'm still working on my next company project, but I have also started working with some others on a project.  We are still working on the vision documents for the game, and I need to work on filling out the technical spec document.  I'm a little concerned because it is a fairly large undertaking (ok, it's a multiplayer online game) for such an unitiated group of people.  I have no doubt we can get it completed given enough time, I believe we mostly have the necessary skills.  My concern revolves around the whole time thing and keeping motivation up during it for everyone involved.  Especially since all of us are part time.  I can see this project stretching for a year or more.  If we are able to get funding once our demo is complete, then that should help get it complete faster, but it's still going to take a while unless we can get enough funding to go full time.
We'll see in a few months when our demo is done and we start showing it to publishers.

posted @ 1/24/2008 9:22 PM by TOgburn

Ok, So I didn't

You caught me.  I didn't shut the site down.  I was going to, but didn't.  After taking a few weeks off I started back up.  I spent some time learning XNA and I am currently in the process of converting Sky Defender to XNA 2.0.  Then I plan on jumping into my next big game.  I am currently undecided if I will use TorqueX, which I have a license to, or just use straight XNA.  I'm leaning towards XNA since TorqueX hasn't been updated to work with 2.0 yet.

posted @ 12/21/2007 12:54 PM by TOgburn

eMoving

I've recently become involved in some projects outside of my company, Starlit Sky Games, and it's going to take me atleast another year to finish my next project for SSG.  At my day job, I'm being kept busier as well.  I've also been making great strides in my personal life.  I just don't have the time to maintain this website, which is still on outdated 2 year old version of Community Server.

In short, I will be e-moving and shutting down this site over the next few weeks.  For those who want to keep up with me, there will be several ways:  I am TOgburn on gmail, myspace (http://www.myspace.com/togburn), and my new blog on spaces.live.com (http://togburn.spaces.live.com).  All future posts will be on my spaces.live.

posted @ 8/12/2007 3:46 PM by TOgburn

Where the heck have you been

So, my divorce has been over for a while.  In the end I got pretty darn close to what I wanted, which is much more than I was led to believe I would get in the biased Texas (US?) family law system.  We have joint custody, with me having a little over half of Alexandria's time and determining primary residence and I had to give up very little.  Of course, my attorney suggested I not talk about it or my daughter online anymore, so if you want details contact me privately.  Suffice it to say, if there is something you feel strongly enough about, go for it; the only real loss would be if you never try.

Since then...  Starlit Sky Games is back on track.  I've begun work on my next game which will be an old-school 2d platformer and I will be looking for artist (anime style) and musician contractors soon.  More on that in a future post. 
Also, I've met a brilliant, sexy woman, but she needs to relax a little with a good massage.  Yes, I know you are googling me now and that is an offer. ;)

Future posts will be a little more professional and business oriented, but I had to indulge my loyal friends who have been wondering if I was still alive and asking for an update.

posted @ 3/20/2007 6:58 AM by TOgburn

Recovering from a computer crash

My work laptop had a hard drive failure the middle of last week.  I was working at about 8:00 pm when I heard the drive start scratching and struggling to read.  Two minutes later I got a blue screen and a refusal to boot or even recognize the drive existed.   Recovering from a hard drive crash is hard.  Well, more annoying than hard.  I backed up my dev data on a weekly basis, so I really only lost a few days worth of work.  The annoying part is I didn't back up my favorites, RSS feeds, and Start Menu settings.  Basically all the little things that really make a computer yours and make it comfortable.  In the end, it's probably better to get a fresh start on favorites and feeds; if I can't remember it then I probably don't need to waste my time on it.  But it's still really annoying to lose all those links I used once in a blue moon, but that took forever to find in the first place.  I'm currently using a loaner laptop while I wait for my new one to be ordered.  My old one was just a few months beyond old enough to be fully depricated so they couldn't fix it and I had to get a new one.
I do plan to add all those little things to my backup scripts so I don't have to go through this again.

posted @ 9/5/2006 11:02 AM by TOgburn

Life Lesson: Daddy Daughter Day

Note: This post is a part of an article and series of blog posts about my ongoing divorce and custody battle for my daughter.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I learned my next life lesson from an unexpected source, a complete stranger. 

I took Alexandria in search of a Gymboree with a play area that one of my friends had told me about.  The only one I knew about was in the Arboretum area.  So, after I got off work I gave Alexandria a bath and got her dressed up, then we headed out.  We found the Gymboree there, however it was only a small one with clothes.  So we walked around and saw an Amy's Ice Cream.  I asked Alexandria if she wanted some, and her usual response to any "Do you want ..." question is yes.

While we were eating our ice cream (a small mexican vanilla) I was talking to my friend on the phone about some of the events of the past few days.  A young lady whom Alexandria had been waving to and smiling at overheard part of the conversation and we started talking.  She talked about how when she was only 2 her parents got divorced.  She couldn't remember much, but she did remember that every weekend her dad had her they would see a movie together.  Even now, that is "their thing".  She suggested that we do something similar to help keep a strong bond, perhaps even a weekly ice cream trip.  After that her friend showed up and they left.  I have Alexandria late on Wednesdays so that would give us more time to do something...  Maybe it will be just getting ice cream and watching the people go by.

Life Lesson Learned:  Have a Daddy Daughter Day.  Something unique that the two of you do together, just spending time and building memories.  It can be as simple as watching a movie or having ice cream.  Just do it consistently week after week (or every 2 weeks, or any set time) and make it a priority.  Make that your time together, bonding, and show that your time together is important enough that only extreme emergencies should interfere with it.

posted @ 8/10/2006 8:19 PM by TOgburn

Quick update

Things went from bad to worse.  Apiwan took Alexandria and refused to let me see her for a week and a half.  Anything else I could have put up with, but not kidnapping my baby and refusing to let me see her.  So on July 21 I wiped out my savings, borrowed as much as I could from friends, hired an attorney, and filed for divorce.  Because at the time she was holding Alexandria hostage, neither of us had filed yet, she apparently was legally able to do that.  After I filed for divorce I was able to file for temporary custody orders and got Alexandria back part time.  Now we are trying to work out a permanent schedule.  The problem is I'm running out of money.  I'm cutting my bills, turning up the A/C and trying to minimize my spending to have as much as possible for the looming custody battle.

My plan:

I'm going to give away Sky Defender for free and develop a few other small games.  Why?  To drive traffic to my site to ask for donations for my legal fund.  Yes, I'm becoming an internet beggar.  My daughter is the one thing that can cause me to swallow my pride and do whatever it takes to make sure she is in the best of care (with me).  So over the weekend, I'm going to write up a timeline of the events that have happened and create a page to ask for donations.  I'll also be adding a post to this sites main page with links to that page as well as all my early blog posts about my daughter.  Over the next few weeks I'm going to create a flurry of free mini games to add to the page to help drive traffic.  I will also probably be digging my old baseball cards collection out of the attic and try to sell them on eBay.  If anyone needs any programming done, I'm more than willing to do work.

If any one is able to help me at this early stage it would be very much appreciated.  My PayPal id is TOgburn+paypal@gmail.com.

 

posted @ 8/4/2006 2:56 PM by TOgburn

Sadness, Silence

My wife told me she was leaving me on July 2nd and moved out July 9th.  I don't expect to post much or release my game anytime soon as I will be spending as much time with my daughter as possible.    The stress on her and the dogs is horrible, I hate seeing them like this.  When I pick her up in the afternoon she seems depressed, and the dogs don't eat during the day and just lay around.  After I get her home she gets happier and the dogs go out and play, but I can definitely tell it is taking a toll on them. It just kills me inside that there's nothing I can do to help them or explain what is going on. :`(

posted @ 7/12/2006 9:32 AM by TOgburn

Updates for the last month

So, it's been a month since my last post and I have been busy.  For Sky Defender, I have an artist I am working with to replace all the default graphics and I have worked a lot of bugs out of the game.  I am mostly working on balancing gameplay now and deciding if I want to spend the additional time adding an online highscore table or not.

"Sky Defender" has now managed to get this site in the top 10 on all major search engines, even though I haven't done any advertising yet and almost all of my (very few) links and posts have been in private developer forums.  That's also with my break in blogging.  On the other hand, how many people are going to be searching for Sky Defender.  What I really need to focus on is getting to the top of the search for Space Invaders since my game is a modernized derivitive of that, and it is a more well known phrase that people will search on.  And I'm nowhere to be seen in those searches... Yet. :)

GarageGames is about to release Torque 2D (Torque Game Builder) from the early adopter phase and the pricing is going to jump.  I've been considering getting the commercial license, like many others have done, while the pricing is still reasonable for an Indie.  Basically it allows me to not have to show the GarageGames splash screen on startup and I believe commercial licenses are owned by the company rather than individual.  So if I later decide to focus on the business side and hire a programmer, I can transfer the license to them.  Of course, if I'm making enough to consider that then the price of the license would seem very minor.

As I said above, I've contracted out the art for my Space Invaders derivative Sky Defender.  I will also be looking soon for a composer to potentially replace the music and sound effects.  Along with the launch of TGB to production, Garage Games is expected to announce the Breaking Into Games (BIG) contest.  Depending on limitations they put on that, I am considering my Admiral Alexandria platformer game (a Sonic the Hedgehog and Mario derivative).  If that is the case I will be looking for a 2D animated sprite artist and a composer/musician for paid contracts.  Yes, that is right.  I am an Indie game developer that has paid contracts, not vague promises of possible royalties.  Just remember I am an Indie game developer and cannot pay amounts competitive to EA or other major studios.

Expect the Beta 1 release of Sky Defender very soon.  It will definitely be on the PC, I have a Linux (Fedora Core 5) Virtual Machine that I am going to try to get it working on as well.  Sorry Mac guys, I just don't have a Mac system yet and there's no easy way to get one in a VM.  I really do want to get it on there, but it may have to wait a while until I can afford a Mac Mini.

posted @ 6/5/2006 2:13 PM by TOgburn

Sky Defender - Alpha 2.5

I was really hoping GarageGames would have Beta 3 of Torque Game Builder out by now so I could update and release Alpha 3 of Sky Defender with any bug fixes they might have added.  Since they don't and I've received some emails from people who want to play (Alpha 2 expired April 20), I'm putting out an Alpha 2.5.  this extends the timeout to July 31.  It also has a few minor fixes in it.  I think I might have fixed the issue of the game slowing down to the point of being unplayable in higher levels.  I also added some changes based on feedback from Dave D, Jason Swearingen, and Isaac Squires

PC (5Mb): Sky Defender Alpha 2.5 download here.

--Tom

posted @ 5/8/2006 8:21 AM by TOgburn

Sky Defender - Alpha 2

Sky Defender - Alpha 2 from Starlit Sky Games is now available for testing.

Defend our planet from the invading Mingian buggers.  Upgrade your weapons and grab the shields and extra lives while pushing back the aggressors from Earth.  As you successfully fight back you will go deeper into space where they have more ships and it will take longer to get upgrades to you, so get them while you can and prepare for an adrenaline pumping experience.

If you liked Space Invaders, you'll love Sky Defender.  With updated graphics and particle effects, retro gaming has been kicked up a notch.

PC (5Mb): Sky Defender Alpha 2 download here.

notes: This alpha version ends 2006 April 20.  Online high scores are not yet available and I still need to polish the graphics.

posted @ 3/28/2006 9:27 AM by TOgburn

I'll be a monkeys uncle...

Well, maybe not a monkeys uncle, but I am now an uncle.  I just found out my older sister had her baby at 5:47 today.  She is named Sara Elizabeth.  I don't know size or anything yet, but I should find out everything this weekend. 

My parents had 4 boys before they got their little girl, now as grandparents they have 2 grand-daughters in less than 7 months.

posted @ 3/16/2006 10:54 PM by TOgburn

American Inventor

There's a new show on ABC named American Inventor.  I saw the first episode tonight, there was a lot of stuff that was ridiculous and a few that were brilliant.  There is no way I would stand on the street, wrap myself up in a piece of plastic and "go number 1".  On the other hand, I would absolutely love to get my hand on a solar powered cooler with built in radio.  The beach is the one place you really want to keep drinks air conditioned and cool, and has the sun to pull it off.  Another excellent idea was the 1 person sandbag shovel.  I personally don't need one, but I can see a lot of use for it in other areas of the country.

The kid was brave, smart, and a decent salesman, but there's no way here in Texas that I would leave my dogs in the truck in summer with 110 degree Farenheit temperatures.  Not even with a little fan.  It may work up north where it doesn't get quite so hot.  He should definitely keep at it and I'm sure he'll come up with better ideas as he gets more life experience.

I don't care about the ladys psychology degree.  I would not put my daughter in a bubble cage, and really not when she's acting up and teach her that being bad and violent is a fun, rewarded activity.

I think I'll like this show more than American Idol.  Speaking of,... Simon is just a producer on this one, not a judge.  I think that "professional inventor" guy is trying to fill his shoes and failing.  He is trying, though, which is more than I can say for the British guy whom I thought would have Simon's straight-forward comments and dry wit that I expect of British now.

posted @ 3/16/2006 10:20 PM by TOgburn

They grow up so fast

My little girl turns 6 months old this Thursday.  She is almost ready to start crawling.  She can push herself up on her arms or legs, but not both at the same time yet.  She tends to push more with her arms so she getting pretty good at sliding backwards.  She can roll around with ease.  We have to watch her closely when she's on the floor because she rolls right off her blanket.  She is also getting ready to talk.  She says "dadadadada lalalalala mamamama nananana" among other incomprehensible stuff.  She does say dadadada first, so she knows who spoils her more even if she doesn't realize she's saying it. ;)  And last, but not least, we saw the top of her first tooth this morning.

Where does the time go.?

On the game dev front I am also almost ready for alpha testing of Sky Defenders.  It's sort of a modern Space Invaders clone.  Once some alpha testing and fun-factor testing is done I will hire someone to create all new graphics since right now it is using the images that came with the engine (Torque 2D Game Builder).  I'm also going to need some music.  All of that is around 2-3 weeks out.  I plan to file for my DBA this week and go ahead and set up a business account.  It should make it a little easier to file my taxes next year. :)

posted @ 2/21/2006 9:41 AM by TOgburn

Bangalore

I just got back from my day job trip to India Sunday night.  I was supposed to get back Saturday, but there was a little problem in the Narita Airport after a few inches of snow.

All together it was an excellent trip.  There was some concern before I went because all of my co-workers there were new to the team.  However after the first day I saw it wouldn't be an issue.  They were all competent and very eager to learn and get the work done.  We didn't get through everything I would have liked to, but we made enough progress that I feel confident any issues can be resolved once everyone is back from vacations, etc.

It was a very exhausting trip.  I woke up at 6 am (slept in late from my usual 4:30 am), got to work around 9 am, stayed until 7 pm, then worked again from 10 pm - 1 am so I could work with my co-workers in the US on questions that had come up during the day.  I went to the mall Wednesday evening for an hour or two, but other than that I didn't do any tourist stuff.  There just wasn't time with all the work we needed to complete and with me getting there Monday afternoon and leaving Friday afternoon.  Next time I will have to definitely plan to stay through the weekend so I can enjoy it a little. 

posted @ 1/24/2006 2:40 PM by TOgburn

XBOX 360

I was in Fry's on Friday and saw a guy walk by with 2 Xbox 360's in his cart.  I immediately went straight back to the games section and asked if they had anymore.  They just got them in and were still unloading them from the truck.  Needless to say I stood there and waited.  then proudly walked to the front of the store to pay for my new Xbox 360 Pro.  I spent some time over the weekend playing Need For Speed Underground 2 and Halo 2.  I spent a lot of time playing Hexic.

My gamer tag is below for anyone that wants to add me to their friends list or play a game sometime.  It should show my gamer card in an IFrame.  Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't.  I really need to roll my own website so I can have better control over what it does...

Grand Wizard

posted @ 1/9/2006 10:37 AM by TOgburn

Not enough time

I'm back from the holidays.  We drove up to visit my family in Kentucky for Christmas.  Imagine my wife, the baby, 2 dogs, and myself all stuffed into my truck with our stuff for an 1100 mile drive.  With all the stops, that came out to about 18 hours of driving.  On the way up there, we stopped halfway for the night.  On the way back, Ann decided she was ready to be home so I got to drive straight through.  I was tired when we finally got home.  The dogs did ok; Turbo slept almost the whole way there and back while Sky stared nervously out the window.  I think she was afraid we were going to leave her somewhere so she was memorizing the way home. :)

Alexandria slept most of the way too.  She really didn't like Tennessee and cried during most of the drive through it.  I think it is because all the big hills and corresponding change in air pressure made her ears hurt.  She drools a lot because she hasn't learned she's supposed to swallow yet.  I think if she was beyond that she would have been ok.  She got to meet her great-grandmother, her grandfather (her grandma was there when she was born), and her aunts and uncles.  We got pictures of everyone holding her, they were all excited.

Due to the trip and the neccessary sleeping afterwards, I didn't get much work done on my game.  I think that's ok, though.  It was much better to take an actual vacation, get away from computers, and just spend quality time relaxing and catching up with family.  Oh, I forgot to mention this before.  Turns out my sister is pregnant after years of doctors telling her she couldn't have children.  The baby is due in March I think.  They don't know if it is a boy or a girl because it was hiding during the ultrasound as opposed to Alexandria you wanted the world to know she was a girl. ;)

In my day job, I might be going to India for a week.  That would be fun.  Getting to meet many of the people I've worked with over the past few years, training them so we can work on some future projects together, travelling first class, ...  On the other hand, if I don't go it would mean I don't have to spend a week away from my baby.  I can see the bright side either way so I'll be happy either way.  I'm also trying to feng shui my cubicle a little bit.  I've added one of those little waterfalls to the corner of my desk (south west I believe).  I'm also considering getting a mirror so I can see the entry behind me and maybe a little plant.

2006 will be the best year ever.  Happy New Year.

posted @ 1/4/2006 8:19 AM by TOgburn

1 gallon - almost

Yesterday I went to donate blood at the Blood and Tissue Center of Austin.  It was to be the day I had donated a total of a gallon and get my nifty little coffee cup to prove it; except my blood didn't want to co-operate.  I usually have no problems and am able to get out of there pretty quickly.  I'm not sure if it was just too cold or if I was a little dehydrated or what, but about 3/4 of the way through my blood decided to clot up.  And if it hasn't happened to you, let me tell you it hurts.  At first I just felt pressure building up and the blood flow going through the tubes slowed down, so the technician (nurse?, medical student?) tried moving the needle around.  Poking around in there with a sharp object didn't make it any more pleasurable.  And the pressure just kept building.  After a few minutes of poking I said that's enough, she pulled out the needle and there was a clot that looked about an inch long attached to the end of it like a piece of string.  I didn't want to keep the cup since I didn't feel I had completely earned it, but she said since I got most of the way done and had to endure some pain that I deserved it.

posted @ 12/6/2005 10:24 AM by TOgburn

Discontent is the greatest motivator

    I have been listening to Earl Nightingale's "Lead the Field" series every night this week when I walk my dogs.  I've made it through most of the way, past the magic word, acres of diamonds, etc...  I vaguely even remember some of it.  :)  However, the phrase above did jump out at me and stuck in my head.  It wasn't even a main concept of his, it was just a supporting phrase mentioned once.  When I heard it, my life ran through my head and I realized how true it really is.  I was discontent with the environment I grew up in and wanted to get out, I worked hard and the universe converged to help me move.  I was flat broke and had the shadow of moving back  home to my parents house looming overhead, again I worked hard and the universe rewarded me with a job.  I was discontent with my job so I worked hard and did much more than the job required.  It paid off quickly with me getting big raises and promotions every year.  Then something changed.  The stock market crashed and the company I worked for had massive layoffs.  I lost many good friends to that time.  For a long while I felt partly responsible, after all I was the one writing programs to automate their jobs and made them redundant.  I made the job so easy it could be done with the click of a few buttons and shipped over seas.  I still feel that way sometimes, but I know there's really nothing I could have, or should have, done differently.  Anyway, at that point something inside me changed.  I was just grateful to have a job and stay in the status quo.  Losing so many friends and money in the market made me focus my discontent on my job.  Having a manager that I didn't like didn't really help the situation either.   My motivation suddenly went from doing the best job possible to working my 8 hours a day and getting out of there to feel sorry for myself.  I did a darn good job of that if I say so myself.  After all, I'm salaried now, why should I put in all those extra hours if I'm not getting paid for them.  I'd worked hard for years and it was time to enjoy it.
    Now, though, my original motivation is starting to come back.  I'm discontent with my environment and want better for myself and my family.  I was offered an opportunity at my day job that would give me a lot of opportunities to learn new stuff and put me in the spotlight more.  Sure, I don't really like the attention and would much rather just be another anonymous individual, but my discontent is starting to build back up to be more than discomfort.  So I took it and I plan on my career starting to sky rocket again after years of being on a plateau. 
I just need to rememer to keep my discontent focused on what I'm really discontent with and can affect, rather than focusing on something meaningless that I can only complain about.

posted @ 11/9/2005 8:00 AM by TOgburn

Miscellaneous past few weeks

So I'm still working trying to get this whole stolen credit card issue resolved.  I'm am seriously considering just getting a new card because my credit card company is being ridiculous.  They still haven't reversed the charges off my account a month later, even though I have sent them the affadavit with the charges listed and the police report number and everything else they have asked for.  I'm a charter member for pete's sake, I've had the card for well over 10 years.  It's not like I'm trying to defraud you.  Give me my money back.  They advertise all over their site that you should set up recurring charges so that you don't have to mess with paying bills.  Well, all those recurring charges are now being denied and I'm getting collection and disconnect notices.  AT&T Mastercard from CitiBank, get your act together.  There are commercials all over the tv about how if your card is stolen, the money will be back in your account the next day.  What they don't tell you is that applies if there's only one charge made.  If it is used multiple times before the theft is discovered then you are out of luck.

IGC 2005 (Indie Games Con) was fun.  I got to meet a lot of new people and see what everyone else has been able to accomplish.  I've started spending more time working on my games.  Well, not as much as I should since I recorded IGC and some of the sessions and I've spent some time compiling the videos so I can post them for others to download.  I'll get them posted as soon as I'm able to pay my web host (recurring bill on cc) and am sure it will stay up.  I also stayed for the Indie Torque Boot Camp.  If you are a T2D developer I wouldn't recommend it.  For TGE and TSE, if you've got the time and money, it's worth it.  If you are using TGE or TSE and your game has even the slightest chance to have multiplayer included, I would highly recommend it.  Everything that is covered is in the documentation, the real difference is in the why.  The docs tell you how everything works, the TBC tells you why Garage Games did things the way they did and how you can best use that to your advantage.

Alexandria is really growing.  She had her 2 month doctor appointment yesterday and was 10 pounds 13 ounces.  That's 3 pounds in 2 months and puts her squarely in the middle of normal.  She also had to get a couple of shots and really didn't like that, but as soon as I picked her up again she quieted down.  I really do spoil her and she knows it. :)  She's been lifting up her head and trying to roll over.  She can get herself up on her side, but then doesn't know where to go from there.  Or maybe she just likes that position.  She's also trying to move around when we lay her on her stomach.  She pushes with her legs, but hasn't quite figured out that she needs to move her arms too.

In my day job, I might start working from home permanently, except for going in to the office once a week for team meetings and then on other days as needed.  Still, 4 days a week from home will be great.  It will give me the chance to get more done with fewer interruptions, save me some gas money, and most importantly - let me see my daughter grow up.

We had a cold front move in over the weekend, so we went from highs of 95 / lows of 65 to highs of 70 / lows of 40.  Over the weekend the wind was strong so it felt really cold.  Yesterday and today it's just been cold, which is nice.  As long as the wind isn't blowing, I like it.

posted @ 10/25/2005 8:10 AM by TOgburn

Really Good Day turned into Really Bad Day

My day yesterday started out pretty good.  I'm getting ready to go to the Indie Games Conference, Alexandria is starting to cry less and sleep more at night, I'm pretty much done with my current projects at my day job and getting ready to start on a new one.

Then I went online to check my credit card to make sure I had enough money for my conference and the hotel.  It was maxed out.  I started looking through the transactions and there were 3 charges totaling $646.05 from Wal-Mart on three consecutive days last week.  Ok, I'll have to have a talk with my wife when I get home about this.  She's supposed to give me the receipts so I can keep track of how much we're spending, and well, that's a little bit much to spend and not tell me.  She called me at lunch time to ask if I was going to be going home and bring her something.  I asked her about the charges and she said she didn't knwo what they were and she didn't even go anywhere last week anyway.  She looked in her purse and her credit card was missing.  That is a horrible feeling.  So I called my credit card company and canceled the card.  I asked when I would get the money back for those because I'm going to a conference and need it.  I always thought if you dispute a charge, it's taken off immediately until it's been resolved.  Boy, was I wrong.  Because it was 3 seperate charges, it's more than they can just put back on my account with out an affidavit and police report and everything else.  Which they'll send me the form sometime next week.  Great.  What am I going to do.  At-least they are sending our new cards and I shoudl have those before I leave.  So I'll just have to make an extar payment this month to get me through the conference.

I stopped at the police station on the way hoem to file a report.  It was about 3:00 pm, and they were closing up for the day, but the detective was kind enough to stay and take my report.  We are pretty sure we know who did it, but we don't have anything beyond a doubt yet.  The good news is that the person used it at Wal-Mart and as anyone who's ever been in there knows, there are video camera's everywhere.  I stopped at Wal-Mart on my way home from the police station and talked to the manager, he assured me that they kept the video for 6 months, so we should definitely be able to catch the person who did this.  Now we just have to wait for the detective to contact them and get the tapes and find the portion of the video where this particular transaction is being made.  Then my wife and myself will just identify the culprit.  I'm pretty sure the detective said that because this was done using a stolen credit card it is automatically a felony, regardless of the dollar amount.  Oh, we also need to type up a statement in our own words describing everything that happened as best we can remember and specifically stating that we did not give anyone permission to remove the card from my wifes purse or to use it for making purchases.

posted @ 10/5/2005 11:05 AM by TOgburn

So little time in a day

Wow, I didn't realize it, but it has been 3 weeks since my last post.  I've been so tired at home and so busy at work that the time is just slipping away.  Alexandria and Ann are doing well.  We are all just trying to get into a nice schedule, well, all except Alexandria.  She changes her schedule almost every day.  One day she wants to stay up late, the next she wants to stay up in the middle of the day or early morning.  She is staying up a lot more now.  When she was first born she slept all the time except to eat.  Now she stays up for a few hours sometimes.  Warning to anyone thinking about becoming a parent: babies are cute, what comes out both ends is not; babies are cute when they are sleeping or smiling, not so cute when they are screaming for an hour at 2:00 am.  Think carefully about whether you are ready to completely forget the rest of the world for a while, you will have moments of pure joy and moments of pure misery.  The moments of joy always cause you to instantly forget the moments of misery.

On my diet, well I haven't been to focused on it.  I've been eating salads most days and junk food on others.  Overall I am still at 231 pounds so while I haven't lost any more, at least I haven't gained any with my indescretions.   Now that things are getting semi normal with a semblance of a schedule, I definitely plan to get back on track towards my goal of less than 200 pounds.

In game development, I haven't really done much of this either.  I am going to jump right back in with a renewed focus.  I am attending the Indie Games Conference and Torque Boot Camp.  I plan to get plenty of motivation from seeing what others have done, and some training to help take my productivity to the next level.

posted @ 9/21/2005 8:49 AM by TOgburn

Baby Ogburn 1.0 lauched successfully

    I know it's been a while since I last posted.  I've been really busy and really tired with the birth of my daughter, Alexandria.  She was born last Tuesday, August 23, 2005.  It was a relatively quick delivery without major complications.  She did have a little bit of jaundice so we had to stay in the hospital an extra day and keep her on a bili-blanket over the weekend.  She's getting over the jaundice and is old enough now that she's mostly out of danger.  She also has a crack in her right clavicle so she isn't moving her arm around too much.  She looks exactly like her mom.  I was hoping she would atleast get my nose so she could wear sunglasses:), but she's perfect the way she is.  My beautiful little princess.  I'll eventually get around to posting some pictures.

    Needless to say, I haven't worked on my game at all since my we had to deal with the INS and pick up my mom at the airport that Monday, then spent Tuesday at doctor appointments and the hospital.  The rest of the week we spent in the hospital and over the weekend I was just too tired.  I'm still trying to catch on my sleep.  Her mom is even worse and really needs some sleep.  I also went of the South Beach Diet while in the hospital.  It was just too easy to go down to the cafeteria and get a cheeseburger or pizza.  I gained 5 pounds as of Saturday, but I am back down to the 231 I was last Monday so I have already lost it.  I've now proven to myself that it is ok to cheat sometimes when I need to, then jump right back on track and power on to my goal.

posted @ 8/31/2005 11:35 AM by TOgburn


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