Over the past few weeks I have been porting my Test Mission Grid mod from Homeworld 2 to Homeworld Remastered. You can find it on my Homeworld page as well as on Steam Workshop. I have also moved a lot of old content from my Homeworld page to my new Old Stuff page.
I created four new illustrations showing how several forms of graphical projection are produced. You can view them all here. I started out by modeling them in POV-Ray. The next step was to export the important coordinates to a text file using a modified version of “screen.inc”. I then imported these coordinates into GeoGebra, and connected them all using line segments to produce the final images. I discuss this process here.
I decided to open an Microsoft Azure account, and use the $200 in free points for new members to render a better version of my colony ship panoramic scene [edit: click here for an external view]. I was still unable to add atmospheric media and radiosity inside the station habitat. They simply take too long to render, even with dual 8-core CPUs and 32GiB of RAM. If I could afford several virtual machines linked together to form a render farm, maybe it would be feasible to enable them. But that would cost a lot more than the points I have available, I think.
Google Cloud has a similar offer for new customers, but limit you to a single CPU with 4 cores and 8 threads until you “upgrade” your subscription. So I did not find it very useful.
With lots of help from Christoph Lipka at the POV-Ray newsgroup, I created four more images for Wikipedia having to do with color spaces. They show the sRGB color gamut projected within the bounds of the CIELAB and CIELUV color spaces. Both the rectangular and cylindrical models are depicted. You can see all the renders, as well as some animations, on my Wikimedia Commons page.
Over the past several weeks I have been overhauling my Video Game Hotkey Maps tool. I made several changes to the underlying database structure, as well as to the styles and error detection. I also went ahead and created new PHP scripts that generate SVG versions of the maps. This makes it possible to upload maps to MediaWiki wikis, which is a major goal I set out to accomplish when I first created the PHP edition of the tool. I had created a MediaWiki template to accomplish the same thing, but the SVG images are a lot more convenient. I hope a lot of people get good use out of these scripts.
I’ve completed my optimizations for mobile browsers for the time being. I implemented CSS media queries to hide parts of the page when viewed on small screens, and narrowed the page a bit further to make the text more legible. My image galleries were also not wrapping properly on small screens, so I replaced the tables with uniformly sized DIV elements that float to the left. There are still a few pages that need to be reworked, such as my keyboard chart page, but mostly I am satisfied with how things turned out.
One task that required a lot of time and work was moving all my gallery images from PhotoBucket to my web host (and some to Flickr). PhotoBucket is simply a bad experience on mobile devices. In landscape mode the pages are filled with 75% advertisements, with only a tiny rectangle left for my image at the top. So, I copied, reorganized and renamed all my images to my web host, and updated all the URLs pointing to them. I also set up enabled CloudFlare on my account to act as a speed boost in case my images take too long to download.
Next, I switched to a different script for displaying my 360° panoramic renders. Previously, I was using PanoSalado, a Flash based viewer that does not work on all mobile browsers, and switched to Pannellum, a WebGL based viewer that should work on more browsers heading into the future. It performs a lot better and is easier to configure to boot. I am real happy with how this turned out, and am able to show off my Carriage House virtual tour once again using the new script. Note that the scene has hotspots that will take you to different rooms.
Lastly, I re-rendered some of my Lego model images using nicer POV-Ray settings. I performed several trials, and the radiosity settings in particular made the rendering a lengthy process. Here are some examples:
I still want to re-render my orthographic “heads” scene, as well as the panoramic Carriage House tour (the images are a bit washed out looking) in the future.
I’ve also begun taking steps toward making this site work better on mobile devices. You may notice that the sidebar on the far left of this page disappears when you make the browser window really small. This should happen automatically on mobile devices.
I am still resolving issues with font sizes being too small to be legible, however. Hopefully I will learn what is causing this in the next few days.
I updated two of my Homeworld Remastered mods to make them compatible with HWRM’s 2.0 patch.
The first mod should work properly in multiplayer now, and the maps in the second mod that are not multiplayer safe are marked as such now.
Lastly, my Video Game Keyboard Control Charts now allow you to switch visual styles without reloading the main HTML form.
I created a fork of Joseph Hewitt’s GearHead version 1.100. It features mainly graphical updates, as well as some additional terrain object types. Joseph has decided not to merge these changes into the main trunk in favor of a more comic book-like style, so I am unlikely to work on this any further.
In other news, I fixed my GeoGebra applets so they work again in browsers that no longer support Java, such as Google Chrome. View them here.
I’ve put a lot of work lately in my Colony Ship POV-Ray model. The latest version can be viewed at DeviantArt, here.
I’ve also updated several of my illustrations for Wikipedia. The switch from POV-Ray version 3.6 to version 3.7 required changes to how pigments are defined among other things.
Lastly, I updated ToEE d20 Inspector to fix some bugs related to how skill points are calculated and distributed. They should no longer be wildly inaccurate. You can find the program listed here.