« Posts tagged Minecraft

Kickstarter Projects

Since Kickstarter started, I’ve backed three projects. They are (in order of backing)

Of the three projects, all met their funding goals, and one of them is actually complete.

Oddly it is the project I backed Last!

Lunatik Taktik

Commence Unpacking, in 3,2,1….

With Taktik I went for the $250 band, so in black, the Anodised Aluminium case with the upgraded Gorilla Glass Lens, for the iPhone 4S (and the iPhone 5 case, so when I potentially upgrade I have a case ready for it!)

I received in the post last week, my brand spanking new Taktik iPhone case.

After a quick unpack, and taking it apart. (It has 6 screws and comes with the tool to do so).

Bolting it on to my phone. The First thing you notice is the increase in weight and bulk. Or as I put it

MAN SIZED

Me and my Taktik-ised iPhone

So far its proven quite rugged and effective. Tho its not had any major drops or falls (only a couple of minor ones and a 3 foot fall from my desk).

The general abilities of the case is that it increase the iPhone’s water probability, and keeps the dust out, as well as being more drop proof. All that without a drop in audio or signal quality. In somes cases it actually improves the audio quality, as the channels to the Mic and from the Speaker are more enclosed.

And quite handily has a decent access port/cover for the headphone socket, and for the charger (although it can be a bit fiddly, the depth is nearly as deep as the charging cables block is).

But I do love my new iPhone case, it’s rather beautiful! (And mine is serial 0957), and I don’t mind the additional bulk or weight, and don’t have any issues using the screen edges, even if the depth between the top of the case and the screen is enough to be a little fiddly to start with.

Overall

So overall all 10/10, I love my Taktik. And it should keep my iPhone 4S going and going and going.

Tho to be fair, my iPhone 3G was pretty rugged, and kept going and going, (tho by the time I upgraded, it had no power button, no volume controls and not very easy access to the Mute switch, then I dropped it one too many times and put a crack on the LCD, not the glass covering it). In the end it got smashed against a table in the pub a lot, so I would *have* to upgrade. (It proved to be us indestructible as my old Nokia 3310), and still boots up (tho you can’t see anything on the screen…)!

Le iPhone3g

Looking forward to getting my next Kickstarter reward!

You can follow @LunaTikLife on Twitter!

My CV and some other Updates

Just a quick post to say hello.

I’ve updated my CV and tidied it up a little.
So any feedback on it would be useful! (Drop Me a Line rather than a Comment please)
Link in the SideBar on the right!

I should really write on my blog some more, but not a lot to write about of late.
JetPack Extras is doing OK, but JetPack core decided to implement the main feature I added, that being Pinterest but, Extras has evolved, it still of course has the ability to control button placement and has the extra Twitter Via/Related options, and the ability to share the WP.me shortened URL, makes a nice Twitter Card, embedding a short Preview of the Post with the Tweet, (check this Meta Tweet for an example) works with any wp.me url you share on Twitter by the way!

Most useful, mainly updated to keep up with JetPack core and use the new shiny hooks they have.
You can check it out on extend. Feedback/request are always Welcome!

Made a couple of tweaks and updates to the Blog in the background, added a better 404 page and updated the .htaccess rules, I have all subdomains pointing to the here, (unless their is a separate to show), so its a good idea to redirect non sites to here, rather than duplicating the content.
Also tweaked the Root .htaccess to have a Error Document (404) since it was just standard Apache Error, bit nasty, but now better, LOLCATS TO THE RESCUE! 😀

Heres a extract of the rules, if you find it useful/handy:

RewriteEngine on

RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^barrycarlyon.co.uk  
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://barrycarlyon.co.uk/%{REQUEST_URI} [R=301,L]
ErrorDocument 404 http://barrycarlyon.co.uk/wordpress/404-2/
ErrorDocument 403 http://barrycarlyon.co.uk/wordpress/404-2/

Next thing to do, is probably update and replace the MineCraft Server Site probably using Twitter Bootstrap as a new basis. It’s now a whitelisted server for Armchair Heroes or on Facebook, but of late I’ve been getting my MineCraft fix playing over at PhantomCraft, like a lot of open Servers I tend to get robbed/cleaned out and griefed a lot, but then again I am a little close to spawn. It’s a fun server to play on and the regulars are quite nice.

Hopefully moving further away when I get a chance to play some more, thinks are pretty busy at the moment between Magento fun at Day Job and Freshers Fun at the Union.

Then I really should get the Portfolio page on the Blog fixed up to showcase what I’ve done before, since I am a Freelance Web Developer (you got any work going or want a quote for? (Drop me a line)

So a couple more weeks and we’ll be back to the usual grind.
Hopefully I will have more to write about soon!

MineCraft Math

So, I tend to now and again do random bits and pieces to MineCraft Servers.

Of late I have been working with ZimDoorCraft, took the existing relatively static site, and flipped it over to a Mini PHP Powered Content Management System, that I wrote and roll out to smaller sites.
Couple of MySQL powered bits to make updates easier (Staff list and the like).

In time more complex and interesting things will be added (it was for a while running a Login with Mojang/MineCraft account, but that means you type your MineCraft login into the site…), how that works is a subject for another post. As is what ever I build next 😀

The MineCraft server in this case is running a derivative of Bukkit, which means it supports plugins, so we are using the JSON Api plugin, and making a call to the getWorld() data resource.
Which passes back information about the world in a nice handy format.

Heres an example

    [world] => stdClass Object
        (
            [remainingWeatherTicks] => 14670
            [hasStorm] => 
            [time] => 4964
            [environment] => normal
            [isThundering] => 
            [name] => world
            [fullTime] => 2903932964
        )

If your running Vanilla you can grab the same information just by decoding the level.dat file in the World Directory, however opening a file currently being written to, is not often a good idea, and the level.dat is written to a lot.

Like a lot of games, Minecraft uses ticks, in this case operating at 20 ticks per second, and running to 24000 ticks per Minecraft day, which means a Minecraft day is about 20mins.

Just to be interesting 0 ticks is Sunrise, rather than midnight. And midnight itself is 18000 ticks.

Also contained in the data packet is a count down to when the weather changes, in this case there are 7500 (ish) ticks to go.

Which works out as

14670 / 20 to get Real Seconds = 733.5 Seconds, and then its arbitrary to flip this to a human readable time. We have about 12 minutes, or half a MineCraft day, until the weather changes.

Reading out a more recent packet

    [world] => stdClass Object
        (
            [remainingWeatherTicks] => 7339
            [hasStorm] => 1
            [time] => 3827
            [environment] => normal
            [isThundering] => 
            [name] => world
            [fullTime] => 3902379827
        )

Looks like there is a storm on…. But its only Rain no Thunder and Lighting. With 6 mins to go.

On a side note!, watch out for FullTime, as its likely to run away, on a long running server, to something a 32 bit system might not be able to handle! Refer to my Post on Facebook and the Order ID on some thoughts about dealing with that.


Using Tick to Seconds math, means that it is also possible to display the current server time and weather on the website.

I’m using a bit of CSS, and the MineCraft time piece (craftable in game) to show the current time visually. In this case I’ve taken the 16×16 PNG’s and expanded them (by hand) to 32×32, finally converting the time from ticks to the relevant chunk of 360 degrees, offsetting as needed to account for the fact that Sunrise is 0 instead of Midnight.

I do this by adding 6000 ticks and from there treating the ticks complete as a percentage and scaling to meet 360 degrees. Some of the code involved needs a little tweaking and tidying to improve efficiency, but the angle is being calculated by a CRON Job powered script and stored with the full World JSON packet, in an extended object and cached in a file on the file system ready to be read by the web server when a request comes in. So it’s not a top priority to clean up yet.

I was finding that after taking into account the addition 6000 ticks to offset for Sunrise, the whole Sun Moon picture was upside down. So I just added 180 degrees, and corrected it when the angle was greater that 360. Since why bother rotating thru a whole 360 degrees?


$time = $world->time;// grab from data packet from JSON Api Call
$time += 6000;// add 600 for sunrise

// work out the scale factor 360 degrees / ticks in a Minecraft day
$scale = 360 / 24000;
$angle = $scale * $time;// calculate the <span class="hiddenGrammarError" pre=""><span class="hiddenGrammarError" pre=""><span class="hiddenGrammarError" pre="">angle
$angle</span></span></span> = number_format($angle, 0);// clean up
// correct
$angle = $angle + 180;// the image is upside down 🙁
if ($angle >= 360) {// clean up again
	$angle -= 360;
}

The rotation component was quite difficult to initially decide how to do, PHP wasn’t quite cutting it so switched to a CSS Transform.
HTML wise it consists of a pair of divs, a pair of images, and a chunk of CSS.

<div class="worldtime"><div class="inner"></div></div>


WorldTime being the one behind contains the Sun Moon Picture as a background image.


And Inner contains the Watch overlay also as a background image.

Apply the CSS transformation to rotate the Sun Moon Picture is just a little nasty, because in rotating the Sun Moon picture it also rotated the overlay (inner).
I decided to apply rotation to the overlay, in the reverse direction (so just sticking a negative sign in front).
Works quite well, but if you can think of a better way to spit out this with the rotation please comment below.

Heres my current Style Code

<style type="text/css">
	.worldtime .inner {
		width: 32px;
		height: 32px;
		background: url('large_watch.png') left top no-repeat;
	    /* CSS3 then proprietary code */
	    rotation: -336deg;
	    -webkit-transform: rotate(-336deg);
	    -moz-transform: rotate(-336deg);
	    filter: progid: DXImageTransform.Microsoft.BasicImage(-rotation=4);
	}
	.worldtime {
		float: left;
		width: 32px;
		height: 32px;
		margin: 0 10px;
		background: url('large_inner.png') left top no-repeat;
	    /* CSS3 then proprietary code */
	    rotation: 336deg;
	    -webkit-transform: rotate(336deg);
	    -moz-transform: rotate(336deg);
	    filter: progid:DXImageTransform.Microsoft.BasicImage(rotation=4);
	}
</style>

The whole WorldTime Div is then wrapped in another Div and jQuery used to once per minute go and fetch the updated time, weather and CSS rotation.

At first I did try using the PHP function to rotate the image, but the quality drop off when rotating by an angle not divisible by 90 was shocking.
So ended up resorting to CSS, which does work a hell of a lot better.

This only covers how to do this using the JSON API, in a future post I’ll talk about decoding level.dat and other Minecraft Files.